Monday, March 30, 2020

Lenten Devotional for March 30

Ghent Altarpiece (center panel) - Jan van Eyck 
Songs of the Suffering Servant. The fourth song proclaims the salvific value of the Servant’s innocent suffering that will justify many and blot out their offenses. 

Isaiah 52:13-53:12: See, my servant shall prosper, he shall be raised high and greatly exalted. Even as many were amazed at him— so marred were his features, beyond that of mortals his appearance, beyond that of human beings— So shall he startle many nations, kings shall stand speechless; For those who have not been told shall see, those who have not heard shall ponder it. Who would believe what we have heard? To whom has the arm of the LORD been revealed? He grew up like a sapling before him, like a shoot from the parched earth; He had no majestic bearing to catch our eye, no beauty to draw us to him. He was spurned and avoided by men, a man of suffering, knowing pain, Like one from whom you turn your face, spurned, and we held him in no esteem. Yet it was our pain that he bore, our sufferings he endured. We thought of him as stricken, struck down by God and afflicted, But he was pierced for our sins, crushed for our iniquity. He bore the punishment that makes us whole, by his wounds we were healed. We had all gone astray like sheep, all following our own way; But the LORD laid upon him the guilt of us all. Though harshly treated, he submitted and did not open his mouth; Like a lamb led to slaughter or a sheep silent before shearers, he did not open his mouth. Seized and condemned, he was taken away. Who would have thought any more of his destiny? For he was cut off from the land of the living, struck for the sins of his people. He was given a grave among the wicked, a burial place with evildoers, Though he had done no wrong, nor was deceit found in his mouth. But it was the LORD’s will to crush him with pain. By making his life as a reparation offering, he shall see his offspring, shall lengthen his days, and the LORD’s will shall be accomplished through him. Because of his anguish he shall see the light; because of his knowledge he shall be content; My servant, the just one, shall justify the many, their iniquity he shall bear. Therefore, I will give him his portion among the many, and he shall divide the spoils with the mighty, Because he surrendered himself to death, was counted among the transgressors, Bore the sins of many, and interceded for the transgressors.

Sunday, March 29, 2020

Devotional for the Fifth Sunday in Lent

Now Is the Healing Time Decreed (YouTube link)
Text: Anonymous; Translator: Rev. T.A. Lacey (1853-1931)

Now is the healing time decreed
For sins of heart, of word or deed,
When we in humble fear record
The wrong that we have done the Lord.

Who, always merciful and good,
Has borne so long our wayward mood,
Nor cut us off unsparingly
In our so great iniquity.

Therefore with fasting and with prayer,
Our secret sorrow we declare;
With all good striving seek His face,
And lowly hearted plead for grace.

Cleanse us, O Lord, from every stain,
Help us the meed of praise to gain,
Till with the angels linked in love
Joyful we tread Thy courts above.

Father and Son and Spirit blest,
To Thee be every prayer addrest,
Who art in threefold Name adored,
From age to age, the only Lord.

March 29 @ St. Paul's UMC (3): Prayers

Joys & Concerns for March 29:

+Carol C. would like prayers for her brother, Bob, who has health concerns.
+Pat & Bob M. would like prayers for son, Andrew, an internist, and all health care workers.
+Sandra J. would like prayers for her daughter, Kimberly, a pharmacist.
+Marcy R. is in Alaska with her newest granddaughter, Axel!
+Louise C. reports that her daughter-in-law, Monica had successful surgery.
+We are blessed with the technology we need to stay connected during this challenging time.
+We were able to donate a large amount of towels and other needed items to the Bridge House outreach program.
+Tim C. was recognized at the Peaks/Pikes Peak conference as a "Quiet Disciple" for his many ministries in the St. Paul's UMC community.

March 29 @ St. Paul's UMC (2): Announcements

+All programs and events of St. Paul's UMC are cancelled until further notice. The church office is also closed in keeping with official health orders. 

+Virtual Church is here! Each week we are posting the weekly sermons to our YouTube channel. Starting next week (April 5), we'll also be offering a gathering via the Zoom platform each Sunday morning at the regular time. 
+St. Paul's food pantry is stocked and we are able to assist those in need. Pastor Charles is available to come to the church and assist those in request of services.
+UM's respond to COVID-19: Give to UMCOR’s Global Health fund: Advance #3021770, at or Donate online to the Mountain Sky Conference Disaster Response Fund.
+Please remember to send your gifts and offerings to support the ongoing ministries of St. Paul's UMC to the church office.

+Be sure to check our calendar on the website to see the latest activities being offered through various virtual platforms.

March 29 @ St. Paul's UMC (1): Worship/sermon

Following the guidance of the Mountain Sky Conference, and in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, we are not holding worship services in our sanctuary this week. Instead, we are offering posts here and on our YouTube channel as one way to stay connected as a community of faith.

The hymns for this week are linked to YouTube videos. The message may found on our YouTube channel. Click on the links below to view those files.

Call to Worship: I cry out to You from the depths, Lordmy Lord, listen to my voice! Let Your ears pay close attention to my request for mercy! If You kept track of sins, Lord my Lord, who would stand a chance? But forgiveness is with You— that’s why You are honored. I hope, LordMy whole being hopes, and I wait for God’s promise. My whole being waits for my Lord— more than the night watch waits for morning; yes, more than the night watch waits for morning! Israel, wait for the LordBecause faithful love is with the Lordbecause great redemption is with our God! He is the one who will redeem Israel from all its sin. - Psalm 130 (CEB)

Praise Hymn: "Come, Ye Faithful, Raise the Strain"
Musical offering: Medley - Lorie Courier 
Gospel Lesson: Mark 14:53-65                                 
Sermon: Thursday in Holy Week (pt. 1 and pt. 2)

Saturday, March 28, 2020

Peaks/Pikes Peak District Gathering (via ZOOM)

Note: This is the 500th blog post!

A good turnout was present via Zoom this morning involving 60+ laity and clergy from the north half of the Peaks/Pikes Peak District for the annual district gathering.

Among the highlights:
+Tim Cook was among those recognized as being one of the "Silent Disciples" in our district for his many ministries at 
St. Paul's UMC - Boulder.
+In breakout rooms, we heard about expressions of grace and joy we are experiencing in the midst of a rapidly changing landscape.
+A webinar, looking at an overview of church benefits from the economic recovery bill, is being offered on Monday @ 11:30 am.
+In nominations, Tim Cook and Belinda Alkula are on the Lay Leadership Nominations Committee. Pastor Charles is now on the District Committee on Ordained Ministry (DCom) and the Church Building and Location Committee.

Virtual Day Camps are a thing!

At United Methodist Camps, our campers are always at the heart of what we do. We know that recent events have caused significant change in the lives of campers everywhere and we are here to support in the best way we know how. We would like to present Virtual Day Camp, the next best thing to being at camp!
Each day, campers can log in and follow a day camp session, exploring topics such as Spiritual Development, Nature Exploration, STEM, Music, Art, Social/Emotional Learning, Exercise, and more. 

Visit this link to learn more.