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Messages from Father Desmond (March 28 - April 19, 2020)

Here is Service of Worship for the Second Sunday in Easter, 19th April 2020:

Greetings and Grace, Trinity People of God and People of Grace.

Here is Service of Worship for the Second Sunday in Easter, 19th April 2020:

The Salutation:
Rejoice now, heavenly hearts and choirs of angels,
and let your trumpets shout Salvation
for the Victory of our Mighty King.

Rejoice and sing now, all the round earth,
bright with a glorious splendor,
for darkness has been vanquished by our Eternal King.

Rejoice and be glad now, Mother Church, 
and let your holy courts, in radiant light,
resound with the praises of Your people.

We Give Praise and Thanks to God:
By singing/saying the words of the hymn:
The day of Resurrection! Earth tell it out abroad, The Passover of gladness, The Passover of God
From death to life eternal, From sin's dominion free, Our Christ has brought us over with hymn of Victory.

Now let the heavens be joyful, Let earth its song begin, Let all the world keep triumph, And all that is therein
Let all things seen and unseen, Their notes of gladness blend, For Christ the Lord has Risen, Our Joy that has no end!

All praise to God the Father, All praise to God the Son; All praise to God the Holy Spirit, Eternal Three in One
Let all the ransomed number, Fall down before the throne, And honor, power and glory, Ascribe to God alone!

We Confess our sins to Almighty God and ask for His Forgiveness:
I bless Thee, O most Holy God, for the unfathomable love whereby You have ordained that Spirit with spirit can meet and that I, a weak and erring mortal, should have this ready access to the heart of Him who moves the stars and gave His life for my life:
With bitterness and true compunction of heart I acknowledge before You the gross and selfish thoughts that I so often allow to enter and to influence all my deeds:
I confess, O God -
that oftern I let my mind wander down useless and forbidden ways
that often I deceive myself as to where my plain duty lies
that often, by concealing my real motives, I pretend to be better than I am
that often my affection for my family and friends is only a refined form of caring for myself
that often my sparing of my enemy is nothing more than cowardice
that often I do good deeds only that they may be seen by people, and shun evil only because I fear they may be found out.
O Holy and righteous God, let the fire of Your love enter into my heart, and burn up this coil of meanness and hypocrisy, and make my heart as the heart of a little child.
Give me grace, O God, to pray now with pure and sincere desire for all those with whom I have had to do this day. Let me remember now my family and my friends with love and my enemies with forgiveness, entrusting them all as I now entrust myself, my soul, and my all to Your love, care, protection and forgiveness. Through Jesus Christ, our Lord, we pray. Amen+.
[A Diary of Private Prayer, John Bailee, Revised and expanded]

For the forgiveness of all my sin, and my sins; for all my sin of omission, and all my sins of commission; I give You great thanks, O God, Now fill me with Your Holy Spirit that I may please You in all things, that I may always do Your Will, that I may prayerfully and intentionally seek Your Kingdom for Yours is the glory, the honor and the power, this day and for ever. Amen+.

We Listen to God's Word for us this day: We obey God's word for us this day:
The Collect for the Second Sunday in Easter is: 

Almighty and everlasting God, who in the Paschal mystery established the new covenant of reconciliation: Grant that all who have been reborn into the fellowship of Christ's Body may show forth in their lives what they profess by their faith; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

The Scripture - Lectionary Readings are:
Acts of the Apostles 2: 14a, 22-32; Psalm 16; I Peter 1: 3-9; John 20:19-31

Biblical Strategies for Transforming our "loss," into GAIN!
There is no question that one of the major operational words and world in which most of us; if not, all of us live is the word, and world of "loss." The question is, How does the Resurrected Lord set us free and empower us to transform our "loss," into Gains? Here are strategies for you and for me to consider in the radiance and the splendor of Jesus Christ and His Resurrection:

1. To transform our "loss," into GAIN, diligently and intentionally distinguish between "loss," and "LOSS." "Loss," refers to all temporal "loss." "LOSS," refers to eternal "LOSS." Examples of "loss," are: loss of my pay check/loss of incoming income, loss of investments, loss of relationships, loss of fortune, loss of fame, loss of transportation, loss of health, etc., etc. Examples of "LOSS," could be the LOSS from hearing the voice of God, LOSS of a dynamic relationship with God, LOSS of excitement to share the Good News of Jesus with people, LOSS of a devotional life, LOSS of contact with the Divine - with the Lord Jesus Christ, etc., etc.
Both "Loss," and "LOSS," are real, both are painfully and excruciatingly straining and both have the capacity to drive us to being and doing and saying "dumb," stuff. To transform "loss," into GAIN, you and I have to distinguish between "loss," and "LOSS."
I recall the words of Jesus to all of us when He says, "What is the earthly use of gaining the whole world; but loosing your soul." Also Jesus said, "Fear not them who destroy the body, but cannot destroy the soul!"  And, Paul says, "For me to live if Christ and if I should die, that is gain to me!"
So, distinguish between "loss," and "LOSS."

2. After you and I have isolated the issue at stake, whether it is "loss," or "LOSS," begin by the grace of God to fix the LOSS first, and then tackle the "loss." 
Again, Jesus says to you and to me, "Seek first the Kingdom of God ("The LOSS") and [consequently] all things (The "losses,"will be given to you."

How can we fix the "LOSS?" Three words - Remember, where and when the "LOSS," began. Two, Repent of that sin, of that act of disobedience, or that act of unforgiveness and work your way back to the cross. Three, Re-Do the things that strangely warmed your heart at the ALTAR OF GOD! Re-DO, acts of Your first Love towards God and His Christ and the Holy Spirit.
Scripture says to you and to me, "He restores my Soul!" Let God restore your soul.

3. With our new found faith and our new found grace or with revived and renewed faith and grace, we begin to fix our "losses."
Give yourself time to "grieve," the loss. But this time to "grieve," has to always be measured. It cannot be, and should not be ad infinitum. Why? Because if "grief," prolongs, we would lean towards (a) Blaming ourselves, (b) Blaming others, (c) Justifying our pain and as we do, we continue in our pain, (d) We begin to whine and to whine, and throw ourselves a pity party and take a long time to get out of the doldrums of darkness and sorrow and pain and "loss." This could result in a dead-end kind of living. We would stop living and just exist from day to day which is not a way for a follower of Jesus Christ to live.

4. Surround yourself with a group of three to five trusted people who would keep confidence with you to help you with wisdom and knowledge to begin to fix the "losses." The people of God.....the people of the Sacrament are willing, ready and able to work with you to bring a meaningful resolution to the "loss." Remember, this is a process, but a necessary step to resolving the "loss."  The Church ["Where two or three are gathered together, there I am present," says the Risen Christ], is the community God has ordained to help each other resolve our "losses." The Church is the community where we out live and out love and out do one another for the glory of God. We heal each other, we bless each other, we pray for one another, we correct one another, we share with wisdom, knowledge and insight with one another. When one weeps, we weep. When one rejoices, we rejoice. When one is at pain, we are in pain. When one achieves, all of us achieve.

5. Seize the new and different opportunity that comes your way as if a gift from God and now practically begin to work out the kinks of the "loss." Nothing happens by chance and there is no such a thing as luck. God is providentially caring for you and for me.  It may be small...it may be small as a mustard seed, but as Jesus reminds us, "It begins small, but grows into that which is large, and larger." At this point "change," is necessary and that is okay too. When God is in the "change," creative engergy and opportunities begin to flow your way on to better opportunities and possibilities.  

6. Give thanks to God and to your support group for seeing you through the crisis and the "loss." Because all "loss," is temporary and after the rain, the grass begins to grow, the flowers begin to appear and Spring enters into life with a wonderful and pleasant joy filled with glory.

7. Be faithful and trust God to use you to maximum to fulfill His purpose and His Will in your life.

8. Share your experiences with others and help others find joy in their nights.

Father, we pray that in the Strong Name of Jesus Christ, and the Power of the Holy Spirit, you would transform all our "loss," and our "LOSS," into gain, for Your glory. We ask this in the Wonderful Name of the Blessed Trinity, Amen+.

We ask God to Bless and to Bless and to Bless:

Jesus said, Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven; O God, incline our hearts to follow in His way
Jesus said, Seek first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness; O God, incline our hearts to follow in His way
Jesus said, Do good and lend, hoping for nothing in return, O God, incline our hearts to follow in His way
Jesus said, Love your enemies; O God, incline our hearts to follow in His way
Jesus said, Watch and pray, that you enter not into temptation; O God, incline our hearts to follow in His way
Jesus said, Fear not, only believe; O God, incline our hearts to follow in His way
Jesus said,  Except you turn and begin like little children, you will not enter the Kingdom of God; O God, incline our hearts to follow in His way
Jesus said, Ask and you will receive, seek and you will find, knock and the door will be open to You; O God, incline our hearts to follow in His way 
Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowd be Your name, Your Kingdom come, Your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven
Give us this day our daily bread, and Forgive us our treaspasses and we forgive the trespasses of others,
Lead us not into temptatio, Deliver us from the evil One
For Yours is the Kingdom, the Power and the Glory. Amen & Amen++.

We Give to God:
Ourselves, our families, our community, our State, our Country, our world, our crisis and our limitations, our diocese, our Bishop, the Clergy of our diocese, the people of the diocese
Those who are sad and lonely and grieving
Those who are persecuted for righteousness sake
Those who are hungry and lost and lonely
We ask God to place His strong and Wonderful arms around all of us and gather us all unto Him this day and always....that, all of us would be blessed and blessed and blessed

We give God our gifts and ask that God use us and our gifts to glorify His Holy Name

We give God our offering and our pledges to fulfill His Mission 

We Receive the Blessing of God Almighty:
Jesus,by Your wounded feet, Direct our path aright
Jesus, by Your nailed hands, Move ours to deeds of love
Jesus, by Your pierced side, Cleanse all our desires
Jesus, by Your crown of thorns, Annihilate our pride
Jesus, by your silence, Shame our complaints
Jesus, by Your parched lips, Curb our cruel speech
Jesus, by Your closing eyes, Look on our sin no more
And, Jesus by Your broken heart, Heal our hearts and our lives.
To You and You alone, by the glory and the honor and the power. Amen & Amen++.

Our Concluding Hymn of Praise and Faith:
Because He lives, I can face tomorrow
Because He lives, all fear is gone
Because I know He holds the future
And life is worth the living, just because He lives!


Here are the Collects and the Readings of Scripture from Easter Thursday - Easter Saturday:

Greetings and Grace, Trinity People of God.

Here are the Collects and the Readings of Scripture from Easter Thursday - Easter Saturday:

Easter Thursday:

The Collect is: 
Almighty and Everlasting God, who in the Paschal mystery established the new covenant of reconciliation: Grant that all who have been reborn into the fellowship of Christ's Body may show forth in their lives what they profess by their faith; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one god, for ever and ever. Amen+.

The Scriptures are: 
Exod 13:1-10; Psalm 146 or 148 [or both], 1 Cor 15: 41-50; Gospel of Matthew 28: 16-20

Easter Friday:

The Collect is:
Almighty Father, who gave your only Son to die for our sins and to ruse for our justification: Give us grace so to put away the leaven of malice and wickedness, that we may always serve you in pureness of living and truth; through Jesus Christ Your Son our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen+.

The Scriptures are:
Exod 13: 11-16; Psalm 136; 1 Cor 15:51-58; Gospel of Luke 24:1-12

Easter Saturday:

The Collect is:
We thank you, Heavenly Father, that You have delivered us from the dominion of sin and death and brought us into the Kingdom of Your Son; and we pray that, as by His death He has recalled us to Life, so by his love He may raise us to eternal joys: who lives and reigns with you, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen+.

The Scriptures are:
Exod 13: 17-14:4; Psalm 145; 2 Cor 4:16-5:10; Gospel of Mark 12L18-27

Blessings and Blessing and Blessings to you and all your family. Fr. Des+

Continue to pray for:

Walter Passinaeau
Tish Kelly
Christiana Scorsone and family
For each other
For our Country and our World....For Healing to the nations. Peace. DCF+.


Here are the remaining Stations of Eastertide/Resurrection and the Concluding Prayers of the Service:

Greetings and Grace, Trinity People of God.

Here are the remaining Stations of Eastertide/Resurrection and the Concluding Prayers of the Service:

Station Eleven: Jesus Commissions the Apostles:

The Scripture is: Matthew 28: 16-20 [Please read the Scripture before proceeding]

Their Sound has gone out, alleluia!
Into all the world, alleluia!

Let us pray:
Lord Jesus Christ, as you have sent out Your Church to reach and to baptize, give us zeal in witness, compassion in service, and through Your abiding presence, enable us to serve the world in your Name and to proclaim Your love to all. Amen+.

And now the eleven stand once more,/ Upon the mountain of the Lord
He sends them forth to bear the Word,/ That throughout the world His grace be poured.

Station Twelve: The Ascension of Jesus Christ

The Scripture is: Acts of the Apostles 1: 6-11 [Please read the Scripture before proceeding]

The Lord is gone up with a triumphant shout, alleluia!
The Lord with the trumpet's melody, alleluia!

Let us pray:
Almighty God, Your Son has taken our human nature into the fullness of glory; teach us to live as witnesses to His gospel and with a lively hope that we will see Him and be with Him; through the same, Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen+.

Jesus, the King of gentleness,/ Do thou Thyself our hearts posses
That we may give Thee all our days,/ The tribute of grateful praise.

Stations Thirteen: The Blessed Virgin Mary and the Apostles Remain in Prayer

The Scripture is: Acts 1: 12-14 [Please read the Scripture before proceeding]  

Oh, how good and pleasant it is, alleluia!
When the Church lives together in unity, alleluia!

Let us pray:
Gracious Lord, as you call us to Yourself, You call us into companionship with all Your people. Turn our hearts and our affections toward one another in charity, and let our prayer answer Your own, that we may all be one. Amen+.

Joy filled the blessed mother's heart/ When she beheld her risen son
And with the apostles she remained/ In prayer and fellowship divine.

Stations Fourteen: The Day of Pentecost

The Scripture is: Acts 2: 1-14 [Please read the Scripture before proceeding]

Come, Holy Spirit, fill the hearts of Your faithful people, alleluia!
And kindle in them the fire of Your love, alleluia!

Let us pray:
We give You thanks, Lord Jesus, that You have conquered death and that You call us to new life; grant us the outpouring of Your Spirit, that in our own day and each in our own language, we may declare Your mighty works to all people. Amen+. 

O come, Creator Spirit, come/ And make within our souls Your home.
Come with Your grace and heavenly help/ To fill the hearts which you have made.

So make our great Creator known,/ Teach us the eternal Christ to own,
While we with all the saints above,/ Acknowledge you, the bond of love.

And, so we pray again:

O Lord of all, with us abide/ In this our joyful Eastertide;
From every weapon death can wield/ Thine own redeemed forever shield.

All praise be Thine, O risen Lord,/ From death to endless life restored;
All praise to God the Father be/ And the Holy Ghost eternally. Amen+

The Concluding Prayers:

Alleluia, Christ is risen/ The Lord is risen indeed, alleluia!

O God of unchangeable power and eternal light; Look favorably on your whole Church, that wonderful and sacred mystery, by the effectual working of Your providence, carry out in tranquility the plan of Your Salvation: Let the whole world see and know that things which were cast down are being raised up, and things which had grown old are being made new, and that all things are being brought to their perfect by Him through whom all things were made, through Your Son Jesus Christ, our Lord. Amen+.

Remember us, Lord, when You come into your Kingdom, and teach us to pray,
Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be Your name, Your Kingdom come
Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day, our daily bread,
Forgive us our sins, as we forgive the sins of others,
Lead us not into temptation, and deliver us from the evil one.
For, the Kingdom, the Power and the Glory, are all yours,
for ever and ever. Amen+.

The God of Peace, who brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus Christ, the great Shepherd of the sheep,
through the blood of the everlasting covenant: Make you perfect in every good work to do His will,
working in you that which is well-pleasing in His sight; through Jesus Christ, our Lord, to whom be glory
forever and ever. Amen+

A million blessings as you pray through the Stations of Eastertide/Resurrection.

Fr. Des+
Praying daily for all of us and our families++.
Here are the Stations of Eastertide/Resurrections, Stations 6 - 10:
Greetings and Grace, Trinity People of God and of Grace.

Here are the Stations of Eastertide/Resurrections, Stations 6 - 10:

Stations Six: In the Breaking of the Bread:

The Scriptures is: Luke 24:28-32 [Please read the Scripture before proceeding]

The disciples knew the Lord Jesus, alleluia!
In the Breaking of the Bread, alleluia!

Let us pray:
O God, whose blessed Son made Himself known to His disciples in the breaking of the Bread: Open the eyes of our faith, that we may behold Him in all His redeeming work; who lives and reigns with You, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one god, now and for ever. Amen+.

O Risen Lord, be with us still/ And open Thou our blinded eyes,/ 
Break Thou the Bread, our hearts to fill/ That joy throughout the world may rise.

Station Seven: The Upper Room:

The Scripture is: John 20: 19-23 [Please read the Scripture before proceeding]

Jesus stood among them and said, 'Peace, be with you,' alleluia!
And the disciples rejoiced when they saw the Lord, alleluia!

Let us pray:

Grant us your peace, O Lord, and strengthen our faith in You, that we may live as witnesses to Your gospel and rejoice in Your presence among us. Amen+.

That night the Lord among them stood,/ Who bore our sins upon the Rood,
'Peace be with you,' He spoke His word: And, so their hearts with joy were stirred.

Stations Eight: Thomas:

The Scripture is: John 20: 24-29 [Please read the Scripture before proceeding]

Thomas answered, 'My Lord, and my God,' alleluia!
Blessed are those who have not seen, and yet have believed, alleluia!

Let us pray:

Confirm our faith and give us patience for the work that belief requires of us, O Lord; and, as Thomas was brought to a joyful recognition of You in the midst of Your disciples, bring us to see You now and to rejoice in Your presence eternally. Amen+.

How great a love was Yours to take,/ Our human woes for humans sake,
And pangs and cruel death to bear/ To ransom us from death's despair.

Stations Nine: Jesus Appears by the Sea:

The Scripture is: Jon 21: 1- 14 [Please read the Scripture before proceeding]

The one who believes in me will also do the world that I do, alleluia!
That the Father may be glorified in the Won, alleluia!

Let us pray:

Make us, O Lord, swift to recognize You in the midst of our lives, give us ears to hear when You ask us to cast out our nets once more despite our disappointments and weariness; that we may rejoice in faith and accomplish your purposes, for the sake of Your love. Amen+.

Eternal Christ, let praises ring,/ Salvation through Your blood we sing
By Your death of death was wrought,/ And grace to human life was brought. 

Station Ten: Jesus and Peter:

The Scripture is John 21: 15-17 [Please read the Scripture before proceeding]

We have this treasure, alleluia!
In earthen vessels that the glory may be God's alone, alleluia!

Let us pray:

Gracious Lord, when we falter and deny You and when we clutch and hoard what is Yours to give, recall us to Yourself that love may be renewed in repentance; then open our hands to give and inspire us to work once more for the good of others and always for Your glory. Amen+.

First Five Stations of Eastertide and the Resurrection of Jesus Christ:

Greetings and Grace, Trinity People of God.

Here are the First Five Stations of Eastertide and the Resurrection of Jesus Christ:

The Gradual:
Christ has died, Christ is risen, Christ will come again. Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia!

Opening Prayers:

Rejoice now, heavenly hosts and choirs of angels
Rejoice now, all the whole earth,
bright with a glorious splendor.

Rejoice and be glad now, Mother Church, and let your holy courts in radiant light, resound with the praises of your people
For in Christ's resurrection,
joy has come to the whole earth.

Let us Pray, as we say:
O Almighty God, we come to seek the Living among the living, and to follow Christ as He goes before us to Galilee and into joys eternal. Let the hope of His Resurrection shine in our praises, as it leads us into more faithful witness and more joyful service; trhough Hesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns in glory everlasting. Amen+

The First Station: The Earthquake
The Scripture is: Matthew 28:2-4 [Please, read the Scripture before proceeding]

The earth trembled and was still, alleluia,
When God arose to judgment and to help all
the meek upon the earth, alleluia! 

Let us pray together:
Break open our lives and pour Your Light into the night of all our sorrow [and pain], that we may live in the joy of Your resurrection, now and evermore. Amen+.

The Risen Christ in glory bright/ Has banished death's eternal night,
And having harrowed hell with might/ Brings forth the sleeping saints to light.

The Second Stations: At the Tomb:   
The Scripture is: Mark 16:1-8 [Please read the Scripture before proceeding]

Christ is risen from the dead, alleluia!. And, Christ goes before you into Galilee, alleluia!

Let us pray together:
Grant us courage, O Lord, like the women who came to your tomb early on the first day of the week, and when fear and sorrow might overwhelm us, make us to hear and heed the angel's message, "Do not be afraid," that we may ever follow where you have gone before. Amen+.

Entombed within the stone of late/ Securely sealed, where soldiers wait, 
Now shining in triumphant state,/ Christ rises victor from death's gate.

The Third Station: Peter and the Beloved [John] Disciples go to the empty Tomb:

The Scripture: John 20:2-10 [Please read the Scripture before proceeding]

Those who sowed with tears, alleluia! Will reap with songs of joy, alleluia!

Let us pray:
Lord Jesus, let our minds rest in Your Word, so that when doubt and grief would overwhelm us, faith will open our eyes to see Your hand in our life, and enable us to turn the future with hope and toward each other in perfect charity. Amen+.

The light dawns now, the shadow clear,/ And yet their hearers are help in fear/ 
The empty tomb before them lies,/ And still they mourn their Lord so dear.

The Fourth Station: Mary Magdalene Encounters the Risen Lord:
Read the Scripture: John 20: 11-18 [Please read the Scripture before proceeding]

The Good shepherd calls His sheep by name [He calls you...He calls your name_____], alleluia! 
And they follow because they know His voice, alleluia!

Let us pray:
O God, whose Son Jesus is the Good shepherd of Your people: Grant that when we hear His voice we may know Him who calls us each by name, and follow where He leads; who, with you and the Holy Spirit, lives and reigns, One God, for ever and ever. Amen+.

Hell's chains are loosed and demons fled;/ Captivity is captive led;
The angel crowned with light has said, That Christ is risen from the dead.+.

The Fifth Station: On the Road to Emmaus: 
Luke 24: 13-25 [Please read the Scripture before proceeding]

The eyes of all were fixed on Him, Alleluia, And He began to say, "Today this Scripture is fulfilled in Your hearing, Alleluia!

Let us pray:
Make our minds attentive, O Lord, and upon our understanding, that we may receive with gratitude the witness of the prophets and psalmist, apostle and evangelist; let the Scriptures give hope and quicken faith, that we may ever walk in the joy of Your resurrection. Amen ++

Along the road the stranger came/ Who asked and listened to them mourn,/ 
And hope and calm were soon reborn,/ The Scripture's witness to did claim.

 
Enjoy these first Five Stations of the Resurrection.

Peace and Blessings. DCF+.

April 12, 2020 (Easter Monday)
A Particular and Special Prayer Request, and Scripture Readings and Collect for Easter Monday
Greetings and Grace, Trinity People of God.

I trust all of you has a Good Easter celebration. Jean and I did and so did our families and we are very grateful to the Wonderful Mercies of the Lord for all His Goodness and Grace to us. 
Now, for a special and particular Prayer Request: Chris Balkwell called me earlier today and informed me that special prayers ought to be offered for her uncle, Walter Passineau who has been diagnosed with Cancer in the front lobe of the brain. A biopsy for Walter would be performed Easter Monday and we would know what is going on with Walter. And, if learn of anything further, I would keep you posted.
In the mean time, please offer repeated prayers between when you see this information and through the days to come for the Healing of the Cancer for Walter Passineau: "Great God of Heaven and Earth, you always do all things well for all of us. We pray for Walter that you would have great mercy on him and on his health condition. May it please you, Heavenly Father to Heal him of this Cancer and make him well. Give to all those who would care for Walter, the wisdom to do everything possible and necessary that would all work together for Walter's healing. Be with his dear wife and all his family and grant to them, courage and hope and strength and wisdom and the confidence that You are in full control of Walter's life and would only perform that which is good for him and his family and for the glory of Your Holy Name. Thank you, Heavenly Father, for hearing our prayers and for answering our prayers. For, we ask all this in the strong and matchless and mighty Name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Amen & Amen ++.

Third, Easter continues this week and in the weeks to come, until we celebrate the Feast of the Ascension of Jesus and the Glorious Gift of Pentecost. Ascension Day is May 21st and Pentecost is Sunday the 31st of May 2020. Looking forward to these celebrations with the People of God. 

Here are the Collects and the Scripture Readings for Easter Monday - Easter Wednesday;

Easter Monday: The Collect is:
"Grant, we pray, Almighty God, that we who celebrate with awe [WONDER] the Pascal Feast may be found worthy to attain to everlasting joys; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with You and the holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen."
The Readings are: Exod 12: 12: 14-27; Psalm 66 & 93; 1 Cor 15: 1-11; Gospel of Mark 16: 1-8

Easter Tuesday: The Collect is:
"O God, who by the glorious resurrection of Your Son Jesus Christ, You destroyed death and brought life and immortality to light: Grant that we, who have been raised with Him, may abide in His presence and rejoice in the hope of eternal glory; through Jesus Christ our Lord, to whom, with You, and the Holy Spirit, be dominion and praise for ever and ever. Amen. 
The Readings are: Exod 12: 18-39; Psalm 103; 114; 1 Cor 15: 12-28; Gospel of Mark 16: 9-20

Easter Wednesday: The Collect is:
"O God, whose blessed Son made Himself to His disciples in the breaking of the Bread: Open the eyes of our faith that we may behold Him in all His redeeming work; who lives and reigns with You, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, One God, now and for ever. Amen."
The Readings are: Exod: 12: 40-51; Psalm 97; 115; 1 Cor 15: 29-41; Gospel of Matthew 28: 1-16

Finally, here is a prayer, you may prayer everyday during these 40 days of Easter...which is many ways is the Festival of Joy upon Joy:

"O God,
Who bey the Resurrection of Your Son, Jesus Christ,
Gave JOY to the world,
Grant that through Your Grace upon Grace upon Grace in each and in all of our lives,
We may obtain Your JOY and the JOYS of everlasting Life;
Through our Lord and our Savior, Jesus Christ. Amen & Amen++.

[Later this week, I would attempt to post the Stations of the Resurrection for our Friday Devotions during these 40 Days of Easter].

We well everyone, be filled with the presence and the joy of the Lord, and be joyfully patient, God's best for each and for all of us will God [and it is worth the wait....As disciples, we are enrolled in God's school of Christian maturity to become like Jesus our Lord]

Blessings in the strong Name of our Lord. Desmond+.

April 12, 2020 (Easter)

A Worship Service: The Empty Cross and the Empty Tomb, It's Easter, 20208
Greetings and Grace, People of God.

Here is a Worship Service for Easter 2020: The Theme is, The Empty Cross, and the Empty Tomb, Jesus is Alive!

We Give Thanks to God: The Preface:
Rejoice now, heavenly hosts and choirs of angels,
and let your trumpets shout Salvation
for the Victory of our Mighty King.

Rejoice and sing now, all the round earth, bright with a glorious splendor,
for darkness has been vanquished by our eternal King.

Rejoice and be glad now, Mother Church, and let your holy courts, in radiant light,
resound with the praises of your people.
[BCP, pg. 286]

Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia!
Jesus Christ is Risen, He is Risen Indeed!

This is the day the Lord has made, we will rejoice and be glad in it! 
This is the Lord's Doing, and it is Marvelous and Mighty in our midst!
Let u rejoice, and give thanks to His holy Name, this day and always, Amen & Amen++

We Praise God: From the Hymn writer:
Christ the Lord is Risen today, Alleluia! Earth and heaven in chorus say, Alleluia!
Raise your joys and triumphs high, Alleluia! Sing, you havens and earth reply, Alleluia!

Love's redeeming work is done, Alleluia! Fought the fight, the battle won, Alleluia!
Death in vain forbids Him rise, Alleluia! Christ has opened paradise, Alleluia!

Lives again our glorious King, Alleluia! Where, O death, is now your sting? Alleluia!
Once He died our souls to save, Alleluia! Where's your victory, boasting grave? Alleluia!

Hail the Lord of earth and heaven, Alleluia! Praise to You by both be given, Alleluia!
You we greet triumphant now, Alleluia! Hail the Resurrection, thou, Alleluia!

We Listen to our Resurrected Lord from His Word to us:
The Lectionary readings for Easter are:
Choice One: For Morning Prayers are: Exodus 12: 1-14, Isa 51: 9-11; Psalm 114, 148 & 149, Luke 24: 13-35; John 20:19-23
Choice Two: For the Eucharist are: Isa 25: 6-9 or Jeremiah 31: 1-6; Psalm 118: 1 & 2, 14-24 or Acts of the Apostles 10:34-43; 1 Cor 5: 6b-8 or 
Col 3: 1-4; Matthews 28:1-10 or John 20: 1-18.

What is the Word for you and for me on this Easter Sunday?
Anyone taking an objective look at the Resurrection of Jesus Christ, has to conclude rather decisively that Jesus did rise from the dead. To conclude contrary, would be open foolishness and an insult to human understanding and analysis. that having been said, the more significant issue of the Resurrection of Jesus Christ is, What is the Significance of the Resurrection of Jesus Christ for us and our daily living? Here are possibilities 

Jesus' resurrection tells me that there is The Person - God Himself, who is most interested in me and in my welfare... God's restoring and uplifting, healing and comforting Presence is with in, in me and through me 24/7/365 days....every minute of every day...He will never, ever leave me on my own. God is over me, God is under me, God in all around me, God goes before me, God follows after me and in God I am a child of the King of Kings and Lord or Lord's.

Jesus' resurrection tells us that's God's Pardon for all my sins and failure is guaranteed and solidified. It is secure and certain and overwhelmingly freeing. I am "clean," and I am "free," from all the crud and all the cruelness in my life. Jesus has taken my sin, and has gifted me with His righteousness. I am forgiven and free and assured of God in me and through me all the days of my life..."No one or nothing, can pluck me out of His hand and His heart. Today, I radiate with the amazing and the awesome grace of God.

Jesus' resurrection tells me that God's Power - God's resurrection power is shared with me. God gives me His Power that I would live free from fear, free from cowardice, free from anxiety, free from anger, free from intimidation, free from the threats of soul's enemy - from Satan himself. God gives me His power to Live each day for His honor and His glory. God gives me His power to do His will and share His grace with all people. God gives me His power to love and to serve my neighbor [to go outside the box and raise the fallen and let the light shine in the darkness]. god gives me His power to no longer fear death. God gives me His power to become like Jesus day by day.

Jesus' resurrection tells me that God's Provisions and God's Prayers for me would be sufficient for all my needs. What are these provisions and these prayers? 
Our daily bread would be supplied [in all forms, shapes and colors...If God feeds the birds of the air and we are of more value than them, how much more, will God not care for us, His own?]
Our spiritual needs would be supplied
Our eternal needs would be supplied 
We can say with the Apostle Paul, "My God....My God will supply all my needs according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus."
Additionally, my prayers to God would also be answered..."Call unto me, and I will answer you," says the Lord God Almighty. when we ask in faith, ask according to the Will of God, and ask to bless others and ourselves, and ask for the glory of God, we would never, ever be denied."
"Nothing, I need would be denied; God will take care of me."

Jesus' resurrection tells me that God's Promise of eternal and everlasting life will be accomplished. Jesus said to Martha and to Mark, "Believe me girls and girls, boys and boys [I am paraphrasing], your brother [__________] will LIVE AGAIN!
Jesus is preparing a home for us and where He is, we will be too!

Thank God a million, billion and a trillion times for the Resurrection of Jesus Christ.

So, how we best respond to the Resurrection of Jesus Christ?
The best response to Jesus' resurrection is the response of Thomas, the Apostle who when he discovered the significance of Jesus' resurrection did this: "He fell at the feet of Jesus and said, 'My Lord, and My God.'" May this be our response too.

We Bring our Prayer Requests to God: This is what we ask of the Lord for ourselves and for all people:

O Father, we pray ----
for faith to believe that You rule our world in truth and in righteousness
for faith to believe that when we seek first the Kingdom of God, and all His righteousness, you will provide for all our needs and the needs in our world
For faith to believe not to be anxious of this, that and the other, but to trust in Your great and effable mercies that You would do all things well
For faith to believe that in spite of all the uncertainties around us that Your purpose of grace and redemption is being worked out in us and in our world, day by day
For faith to be calm and brave in the face of danger as may come our way in our daily lives and living and relationships and work
For faith to believe in the power of Your great Love to invite all people to Yourself and to Your Kingdom
For faith to believe that You heal us and all the peoples in our world
For faith to believe that Your presence would be with those who are persecuted for righteousness sake
For faith to believe that You are with the sad and the only and those who are grieving and granting them Your presence and comfort to meet their several needs
For faith to believe that You would be with all those who are the first responders, the cashiers and clerks, the medical staff at all levels and "caring" situations and use them to bring hope and healing to the peoples and encourage them in all their challenges and meet their daily needs and protect them from sickness and fatigue and burn-out
For faith to believe that you would eradicate the scourge of COVID 19 from our midst...For cures to be found to attack and destroy this virus
For faith to believe that in and through suffering, you make us strong and cause Your Love and Your light to shine upon us and grant hope upon hope
For faith to leave in Your care all our family, our friends, our neighborhood, our churches, and our world
For faith to believe that those who lead and serve us in their official capacity would truly serve the people and not for personal gain. Grant them wisdom and grace to lead and to counsel according to Your Light and for your glory and the fulfillment of Your perfect Will.
For faith to believe that Your Kingdom would come, and Your Name would always be glorified.
All these, Heavenly Father, we ask in the strong and matchless and Risen Name of our Lord Jesus Christ. AMEN & AMEN++

"Almighty God, who through Your only begotten Son Jesus Christ overcame death and opened to us the gate of everlasting life: Grant that I, who celebrate with joy the day of the Lord's resurrection, may be raised from the death of sin by Your life giving Holy Spirit; through Jesus Christ our lord, who lives and reigns with You, and with the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen+  [BCP]

"O God, who for our redemption gave Your only-begotten Son to the death of the cross, and by this glorious resurrection delivered us from the power of our enemy: Grant us so to die daily to sin, that we may evermore live with Him in the joy of His resurrection, through Jesus Christ Your Son, our Lord, who lives and reigns with you, and the holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen+ [BCP]

We Give Back to God:
Our lives, our homes, our families, our country and its people, our world and all the people
Our promises to keep our pledges to live to His honor and His glory in all that we are, in all that we do, and in all that we possess

We Receive the blessing of God the Reigning Father, the Risen Lord Jesus Christ and the Redeeming Holy Spirit:

Jesus, by Your wounded feet, direct our path
Jesus, by Your Nailed hands, move us to deeds of love and grace
Jesus, by your pierced side, cleanse all our desires and our passions
Jesus, by Your crown of thorns, destroy all our pride and arrogance
Jesus, by Your silence, take away all our complaints
Jesus, by Your parched lips, destroy our cruel speech
Jesus, by Your closed eyes, look on our sin no more
Jesus by Your broken heart, align ours to Yours, this day and every day. Amen & Amen ++

The Blessing of God Almighty, the Father, The mighty and Risen Son and the Holy Spirit be with You and all Yours and all the people in our world, this day and for ever.++   

Rejoice, the Lord is King! your Lord and King adore! Rejoice, give thanks and sing, And triumph evermore.

Jesus, the Savior reigns, The God of truth and love; When He had purged our stains, He took His seat above.

His Kingdom cannot fail, He rules over earth and heaven; The keys of death and hell, Are to our Jesus given.

Rejoice in glorious hope! Our Lord the judge shall come, And take His servants up, To their eternal home.

Lift up your heart, lift up your voice!
Rejoice, again, I say, rejoice!

Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia!
Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia!
Alleluia!
Jesus Christ is Risen; He is Risen, indeed! Amen & Amen ++ 

April 11, 2020 (Holy Saturday)

We Journey with Jesus to Easter through Calvary, 8

Greetings and Grace, Trinity People of God.

Today is Holy Saturday. We continue in our Journey with Jesus to Easter through Calvary. We pause and ask, What was possibly happening on Holy Saturday?

The Preface:
We Glory in the Cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world, Gal 6:14
We adore you, O Christ, and we Bless You
Because by Your holy Cross, you have redeemed the world!

The Collect for holy Saturday:

O God, Creator of heaven and earth: Grant that, as the crucified body of your dear Son was laid in the tomb and rested on this Sabbath, so we may await with Him the coming of the third day, and rise with Him to newness of life; who now lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen+
[BCP]

[The proper Liturgy for this day - Holy Saturday, will be found in the BCP, page. 283, which you may use for your devotions and prayers]
[You also may use, The Litany of the Passion, which I sent you earlier in the beginnings of our Journey to Easter through Calvary]

From the Hymn writer:

Sweet hour of prayer! Sweet hour of prayer! That calls me from a world of care, And bids me at my Father's throne
Makes all my wants and wishes known; In seasons of distress and grief, My soul has often found relief,
And oft escaped the temper's snare, By thy return, sweet hour of prayer!

Sweet hour of prayer! Sweet hour of prayer! thy wings shall my petition bear, to Him whose truth and faithfulness
Engage the waiting soul to bless; And since He bids me seek His face, Believe His Word and trust His grace,
I'll cast on Him my every care, And wait for Thee, sweet hour of prayer!

Just as I am, without one plea, But that Thy blood was shed for me, And that Thou bid'st me come to Thee,
O Lamb of God,  I come! I come!

Just as I am, Thou wilt receive, wilt welcome, pardon, cleanse, relieve; Because Thy promise, I believe
O Lamb of God, I come! I come! 

Just as I am, thy love unknown, Hath broken every barrier down; Now to be Thine, yea Thine alone,
O Lamb of God, I come! I come!

Tell me the story of Jesus, Write on my heart every word; Tell me the story most precious, Sweetest that ever was heard
Tell how the angels in chorus, Sang as they welcomed His birth, "Glory to God in the Highest!
Peace and Good tidings to earth."

Tell of the cross where they nailed Him, Writhing in anguish and pain; Tell of the grave where they laid Him,
Tell how He liveth again. Love in that story so tender, Clearer than ever I see: Lord, may I always remember
Love paid the ransom for me.

From the Scriptures: The Proper Readings for this day are:
Choice one: Job 14;1-14, Psalm 130; 31: 1-5; 1 Peter 4: 1-8; Matthew 27: 57-66; John 19: 38-42
Choice two: Lamentations 3: 37-58; Psalms 27 & 88; Hebrew 4: 1-16; Romans 8: 1-11.

The Meditation/Reflection issue/question on our way to Easter through Calvary is, what was Happening on Holy Saturday?

The proper answer is, "God only knows!" This is not a cliché. We have very little from the Scriptures to tell us what was happening on Holy Saturday. This much we can be certain. Jesus died for you and for me to take from us our sin, and to give us His righteousness.

But, we do have a small clue as to what may have happened on Holy Saturday. Peter tells us from his letter, 1 Peter 3:18 - 20a reads, "For Christ also suffered once for sins, the just for the unjust, that He might bring us to God being put to death in the flesh but made alive by the Spirit, by whom also He went and preached to the spirts in prison, whom formerly were disobedient."

So, what may have happened on Holy Saturday? Jesus the Lord of the heavens and the earth, who was made alive by the Holy Spirit of God, went to the prison [to hell, to hades, the place where the dead are kept awaiting divine judgement] and preached [ANNOUNCED] to the "disobedient," that
(a) He was alive....He was dead, but now alive and has (b] Defeated - definitely trounced the powers of sin, the powers of evil, the powers of the devil and the powers of death, and that (c) all the blessings of God's grace would be given freely and fully to all people who would trust Him as Lord and Savior. 

The above truth is affirmed, attested, celebrated and advocated by the Revelation of Jesus Christ to John in the Book of Revelation which reads, "And when I saw Him, I fell at His feet as dead. But He laid His right hand on me, saying to me, 'Do not be afraid; I am the First and the Last. I am He who lives, and was dead, and behold, I am alive for evermore. Amen. And, I have the keys of Hades and of Death.'" Revelation 1: 17 & 18.

And, the blessing of Holy Saturday, is life upon life, the end of death and the enduring Hope of eternal and everlasting life. You and I have been given the joy of the Lord, you and I have been given the gift of wellness and you and I have been given the confidence and the hope of life everlasting! 

Thrive in these gifts of God grace given to us freely and fully in Jesus Christ!

From the Altar of Prayer:

Almighty and everlasting God, grant that we may celebrate the mysteries of our Lord's Passion in such a manner as to deserve Your pardon. Through the same Lord Jesus Christ. Amen+

Almighty and everlasting God, who willed that our Savior should take our flesh and suffer death upon the Cross, that all humankind should follow the example of His great humility, mercifully grant that I may both follow the example of His patience and also be made a partaker of His resurrection. Though the same Jesus Christ. Amen+

O God, creator of heaven and earth: Grant that, as the crucified body of your dear Son was laid to rest in the tomb and rested on this Sabbath, so we may await with Him the coming of the third Day, and rise with Him to newness of Life; who now lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God for ever and ever. Amen+

Rejoice now, heavenly hosts and choirs of angels and let your triumphs shout salvation for the victory of our mighty King.
Rejoice and sing now, all the round earth, bright  with a glorious splendor, for darkness has been vanquished by our eternal King.
Rejoice and be glad now, Mother Church, and let Your Holy courts, in radiant light, resound with the praises of Your people.

[All the above prayers are from, The Divine Hours, Phyllis Tickle, Divine Hours for Springtime]

From the Fountain of Benediction:

Heart of Jesus, think of me.
Eyes of Jesus, look on me.
Face of Jesus, comfort me.
Hands of Jesus, bless me.
Feet of Jesus, guide me.
Arms of Jesus, hold me.
Body of Jesus, feed me.
Blood of Jesus, wash me.
Jesus, make me thine own.
Here in this world, and in the world to come. Amen & Amen. ++

Lord Jesus Christ, for the sake of your Holy Cross, be with us to shield us. Amen+
Lord Jesus Christ, by the memory of Your blessed Cross, be with us to strengthen us. Amen+
Lord Jesus Christ, by Your holy Cross, be over round about us to protect us. Amen+
Lord Jesus Christ, by Your glorious Cross, go before us to direct our path. Amen+
Lord Jesus Christ, by Your adorable Cross, come after us to guard us. Amen+
Lord Jesus Christ, for Your worthy Cross of all praise, over shadow us to bless us. Amen+
Lord Jesus Christ, for Your noble Cross, be in us to lead us into your Kingdom.
For the Power, and the Glory are always yours. Amen & Amen++
[From St. Augustine's Prayer Book]

A Holy Saturday to you, and all your family.
Be well and safe, and blessed, everyone!
Fr. Desmond+     

April 10, 2020 (Good Friday)
We Journey with Jesus towards Easter through Calvary, 7....We take along pause at Good Friday
Greetings and Grace, Trinity People of God.

Today is Good Friday. In our journey towards Easter, we pause, we bow before The Lord Christ, we reflect and we say, "Thank You!" with all our heart, mind, soul, spirit and body.

The Preface:

We glory in the Cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom the world is Crucified unto me and I unto the world, Gal 6:14
We adore You, O Christ, and we bless You;
Because by Your Holy Cross, you have redeemed the world

The Collect for Good Friday is:

Almighty God, we pray You to graciously behold this Your family, for whom our Lord Jesus Christ was willing to be betrayed, and given into the ands of sinners, and to suffer death upon the Cross, who now lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen+

From the Hymn writer - A medley of Hymns about the Cross of Jesus:

On a hill far away stood an old rugged Cross, The emblem of suffering and shame; 
And I love that old Cross where the dearest and the best, For a world of lost sinners was slain.

O that old rugged Cross, stained with blood so divine, A wondrous beauty I see;
For it was on that old rugged Cross Jesus suffered and died, To pardon and sanctify me.

So I'' cherish the old rugged Cross, 'til my trophies at last I lay down
I will cling to that old rugged Cross, And exchange it some day for a crown.

Behold the Savior of mankind, Nailed to the shameful tree! How vast the love that Him inclined, to bleed and die for thee.
'Tis done!~ the precious ransom's paid! "Receive my soul!" He cries; See where He bows His sacred head! He bows His dead and dies!

Mercy there was great and grace was free, Pardon there was multiplied to me,
There my burdened soul found liberty-
At Calvary

At the Cross her vigil keeping, stood the mournful mother weeping, where He hung, the dying Lord.
There she waited in her anguish, seeing Christ in torment languish in her heart the piercing sword.

With what pain and desolation, with what grief and resignation, Mary watched her dying son
Deep the woe of her affliction, when she saw the crucifixion of the sole begotten one

Were you there when they crucified my Lord! Were you there when they crucified my Lord!
O! Sometimes it causes me to tremble, tremble, tremble! Were you there when they crucified my Lord?

Were you there when they nailed Him to the tree! Were you there when they nailed Him to the tree!
O! sometimes it causes me to tremble, tremble, tremble! Were you there when they nailed Him to the tree?

From the Scriptures - The Scripture Readings are:

Isa 52:12 - 53:13; Psalm 22, 40, 69, Hebrews 10:1-25; Gospel of John 19:1-37
[May I kindly encourage you to read the Scripture texts please]

Reflecting on the Scripture Text's: On Good Friday, Jesus spoke Seven Words while on the Cross. Here they are:

Jesus prays for Forgiveness: "Jesus said, 'Father, forgive them for they do not know what they are doing." Lk 23:34.
Jesus prays for Salvation: "Jesus look at him and said, 'Today, you will be with me in my Kingdom." Lk 23:43.
Jesus prays for his Mother and for His disciple, John: "Jesus said to His mother, 'Dear woman, here is your son,' and to the son/disciple/John, 'Here is your mother." Jn 19:26 & 27.
Jesus prays that His Father would be glorified, "My God, my God, why are you forsaking me?" Matt 27: 35 & 46.
Jesus prays for His thirst to be met, "I am thirsty." Jn 19:28.
Jesus prays that His Mission is accomplished, "It is finished!" Jn 19:30.
Jesus prays that His Father would receive Him into glory, "Father into Your hands, I give you myself....all of me." Lk 23:46.

I just want to comment on Jesus' Fourth prayer from the Cross:
What was the cry of Jesus? Jesus said, "My God, my God, why have You forsaken me?" Matt 27:35 & 36.

Was Jesus' cry, a cry of anger, or a cry of despair, or a cry of unbelief or a combination of all the three realities?
Was Jesus' cry, a cry of loneliness or being forgotten and left alone to die a fool's death?
It was a cry of Victory....The victory of grace over guilt; the victory of light over darkness, the victory of righteousness over unrighteousness, the victory of God over Satan. Ture, Jesus is quoting from Psalm 22 and true the first half of Psalm 22 describes defeat and loss because of sin. But, the second half of Psalm 22 is the celebration of grace over guilt and shame and failure and loss. The first part of Psalm 22 is sun set. But the second part of Psalm 22 is Sun rise. In the first part of Psalm 22, you and I are doomed to death and to rottenness and hopelessness. But in the second part of Psalm 22, you are I are fee to love and serve God, and to love and serve the world in which we live. We are set free to celebrate the wonder and the unparalleled love of god for us in Jesus Christ.

Jesus has to go to hell and come out victorious over hell and all its hosts. So that, you and I do not have to go to hell, but be free from hell itself and have our heavenly home established in the new heavens and new earth. 

In Jesus Cry of Victory, we see, (a) The horribleness of sin, (b) The Unlimited and matchless Love of God for us, and (c) The gift of Salvation offered to all who would trust in Jesus Christ.

How do we respond to what Jesus Christ has done for us? 
We repent of all our sin which include:
Our pride which expresses itself in irreverence, presumption, distrust, disobedience, impertinence, vanity and arrogance
Our anger which expresses itself in resentment, grudge, and retaliation
Our envy which expresses itself in jealousy, malice, and contempt for others
Our greed which expresses itself in inordinate ambition, domination, and lack of trust
Our lust which expresses itself in unchastity and immodesty
Our sloth which expresses itself in unfaithfulness, indifference and being irresponsible
And, our gluttony which expresses itself in lack of discipline...lack of self-control in all areas of our lives and relationships

From the Altar of Prayer:

We pray for: See BCP, pgs. 278-2882
For the Church that God will Confirm His Church in faith, increase it in love, and preserve it in peace 
For the nations/countries in our world [especially during this time of COVID 19], and for the peoples of the earth, and for all those in authority and leadership in them that with the help of God all our leaders would seek justice, truth, righteousness and see the people
For all who suffer and all who are afflicted in body, or in mind or in emotions or in relationships..That God will bring comfort and relieve us of all our pain and our suffering and stir us up by His Holy Spirit to love and serve the people...We pray that God in His great mercy would bless and bless and bless and bless all the peoples of our world
For those who are persecuted for their faith  
For those who lay their lives on the line for the welfare and well being of others...Those who serve in the several Service branches, the First responders, the Fire fighters, the Ambulance Service, dr's, Nurses, Aid's, Helpers, Assistance, Cashiers, Clerk's, Business leaders, etc., etc
For people to be open to the Grace of God in their lives and come to faith in Jesus Christ. That they would not resist the gospel of God's grace
For God to be glorified and His Kingdom come on earth as it is in heaven

From the Foutnain of Benediction:

Lord Jesus Christ, for the sake of Your holy Cross, be with us to shield us. Amen+
Lord Jesus Christ, by the memory of Your blessed Cross, be with us to strengthen us. Amen +
Lord Jesus Christ, by your Holy Cross, be over around about us to protect us. Amen. Amen +
Lord Jesus Christ, by Your glorious Cross, go before us to direct our path. Amen +
Lord Jesus Christ, by Your adorable Cross, come after us to guard us. Amen +
Lord Jesus Christ, by Your Cross worthy of all praise, o0ver shadow us to bless us. Amen +
Lord Jesus Christ, by Your nobler Cross, be in us to lead us into Your Kingdom. Amen +
For all the Power is Yours, and all the Glory is Yours, this day and always. Amen & Amen + +

Heart of Jesus, think of me
Eyes of Jesus, look on me
Face of Jesus, comfort me
Hands of Jesus, bless me
Feet of Jesus, guide me
Arms of Jesus, hold me
Body of Jesus, feed me
Blood of Jesus, wash me
Jesus, make me thus thine own
Here in this world, and in the world to come.
Amen & Amen.++

A Blessed and more blessed Good Friday to you and all your family, to our parish, our diocese and our world.

We adore You, O Christ and we bless You
Because, by Your Holy Cross, You have redeemed the world!

DCF+
4/10/2020.

April 9, 2020 (Maundy Thursday)
A Prayer - A Lament in the Midst of the COVID 19 Pandemic
Greetings, Trinity People of God.

I discovered this Prayer Lament from the Ravi Zacharias International Ministries, headquartered in Atlanta, GA. Dr. Ravi is one of the world's best Christian Apologists. I encourage you to check their website for more info on their ministries and especially their Videos on FB. You would never grow tired listening to Ravi; at least, I don't. Here is the Prayer Lament [You may use during your daily prayers...it is especially appropriate for extra praying given the circumstances we find ourselves in for Maundy Thursday and Good Friday and the days to come].


"Hear our cry, Almighty God, listen to our prayer. How long will we have to hide in our homes from this invisible enemy? Where will it strike next? And whom? And what if..? Our screens relay a continuous escalation of suffering and death around our world. Panic and anxiety abounds. Our souls are weary from the strain of the life-altering unknowns.
Heavenly Father, from the depths of our pain and confusion, we cry out to You. From fear-filled hearts and anxious minds, we plead with You. Rescue us, Father of compassion and grace. We lift up our eyes to You, Lord God, the One who sits enthroned in heaven.

On all who have contracted the virus, Lord have mercy
On all who have lost loved ones to this sickness and are in mourning and anguish, Lord have mercy
On all who are unable to earn income because their jobs have been suspended, Lord have mercy
We cry out for healing and needed resources
We cry out for comfort and peace

On all medical professionals and caretakers attending to those infected with the virus, Christ have mercy
On all scientists and technologists striving to find a vaccine and to make it available, Christ have mercy
On all leaders of institutions and governments as they make decisions to try and contain the virus, Christ have mercy
We pray for strength in the long and exhausting hours of labor
We pray for wisdom in the research and difficult decisions

On all who have not yet contracted the virus, Lord have mercy
On the most vulnerable of our society who are unable to buy extra food or get proper medical care, Lord have mercy
On all disciples of Jesus Christ discerning how to reflect Jesus' Love to others in this crisis, Lord have mercy
We plead for protection of health
We plead for all to remain calm and kind 

The Lord is the everlasting God, the Creator of the expanse of the universe. And yet this earth is no longer as You created it to be. Holy Father, our earth groans from the devastation caused by the curse of the Fall.  My God, Your Word is true. One day You will liberate creation from its bondage to decay and death.
Life is sacred and precious in your sight. you are the God who sees us and sustains us.
Nothing can separate us from the Father's unfailing love and kindness, not even sickness or the fear of tomorrow. You are our Light as we walk in this darkness. We will remember to celebrate the beautiful gifts You have given us in this present moment.

Almighty God, You are our Rock, our Refuge from the enemy, our hiding place.
You calm our frantic thoughts and fill our despairing hearts with joy and strength.
In Your Presence living Water springs forth in the wilderness.
You restore our souls."

[Jill Carattini, managing Editor, A Slice of Infinity, RZIM, Atlanta, GA].


Thanks and Great Blessings to you and all the family
Be well, be joyful and be content...God our Father is in control and He would see us through.

Fr. Des+


April 9, 2020 (Maundy Thursday)

We Journey with Jesus to Easter through Calvary, 6

Greetings and Grace, Trinity People of God.

Today is Maundy Thursday, the beginning of the three Great Days of The Season.

As we travel together to Easter, we stop and barely peep into, Jesus Foot Washing, Jesus' Institution of the Greatest Supper of all time and we dare enter with Jesus into Gethsemane. Let us begin:

The Preface:

We glory in the Cross of Jesus, by which we have been crucified to the world, and to world unto us, Gal 6:14
We adore You, O Christ, and we praise You
Because by Your Holy Cross, you have redeemed the world

The Collect for Holy Thursday - Maundy Thursday is:

Almighty Father, whose dear Son, on this night before he suffered, instituted the Sacrament of His body and Blood: Mercifully grant that we may receive it thankfully in remembrance of Jesus Christ our Lord, who in these Holy mysteries gives us a pledge of eternal life; and who now lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen+

From the Hymn Writer:

O sacred head now wounded, defiled and put to scorn; O kingly head, surrounded with mocking crown of thorns
What sorrow mars thy grandeur? Can death thy bloom deflower? O countenance whose splendor the hosts of heaven adore

What language shall I borrow  to thank thee dearest friend, For this thy dying sorrow, thy pity without end?
Oh make me thine forever! And should I fainting be, Lord, let me never, never, outlive my love for Thee.

God to dark gethsemane, ye that feel the temper's power, Your Redeemer's conflict see, Watch with Him one bitter hour;
Turn not from His griefs away, Learn of Jesus Christ to pray.

Follow to the judgment hall; view the Lord of life arraigned; O the wormwood and the gall! O the pangs his soul sustained!
Shun not suffering, shame, or loss; learn of Him to bear the Cross.

Calvary's mournful mountain climb; there, adoring at His feet; mark the miracle of time; God's own sacrifice complete;
"It is finished!" hear Him cry; learn of Jesus Christ to die.

From the Scriptures: The Readings are:

Exodus 12:1-14a; Psalm 78:14-25; 1 Cor 11: 23-32; Luke 22:14-30 or John 13:13:1-15

The three great themes are Jesus' Foot Washing, Jesus Institution of the Great Supper of all Time and Gethsemane: What are the possibilities?

Jesus' Foot Washing - We learn:
1. Jesus is the model of not only service, but also of humility.
2. Jesus Foot washing is also a parable of Salvation. In washing the disciples feet, Jesus speaks to Peter about two actions: The act of bathing and the act of washing. Possibly to mean:
2a. To bathe is a possibly a reference to Christian baptism where two realities take place: We are forgiven of our sins, and, we are born again by the Holy Spirit of God who comes to reside in our hearts. 
2b. To wash is a possible reference to ongoing forgiveness....Living out daily the forgiven life by the help of the Holy Spirit. Also, living daily in the presence and by the provisions of the Holy Spirit who gifts to us His spiritual gifts to do the work of God and His spiritual fruit to live the Forgiven life style which is marked by love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, meekness and self-control.

Jesus' Institution of the Great Supper of All Time - We learn 
The weight, the wisdom and the worthiness of DELIVERANCE. We have been delivered, we are being delivered daily by the grace of God, and we will be delivered. We have been freed from the penalty of sin, we are being freed from the power of sin, and we will be delivered from the power of sin.

Jesus came....Jesus was anointed with the Holy Spirit, Luke 6, to set the captive free. In giving us His body, and His blood, Jesus dramatizes setting us free from sin and setting us free to love God and to serve God all the days of our lives.

Live in the freedom of the Holy Spirit, Gal 5 & 6, to the glory of God!

Gethsemane - We learn
The greatest spiritual battle of all time and all eternity. Jesus goes to war for us against Satan
In this battle, the issue for Jesus was, "Should I do my Will or must I do the Will of my Heavenly Father," who sent me to earth to do His will
After a prolonged, intense labor of almost physical death [The Scriptures says "He was dropping sweats of blood,"...It was excruciating and the 'nth degree of intense struggle between Jesus and the Devil.
Eventually, Jesus prevails and surrenders 100% and does His Father's will...He marches onward and bravely to the Cross.

What is the take away for you and for me, dear friend?
1. Followers of Jesus Christ are marked with the Sign of the Cross which celebrates and advocates service and humility
2. Followers of Jesus Christ are marked with the Sign of the Cross which celebrates and advocates freedom and full forgiveness...We are slaves of no one, but we are servants of all for the glory of God
3. Followers of Jesus Christ are marked with the Sign of the Cross which celebrates and advocates Living in the Holy Spirit and for the glory of God
4. Followers of Jesus Christ are marked with the Sign of the Cross which celebrates and advocates always doing the Will of God in season and out of season
5. Followers of Jesus Christ are marked with the Sign of Cross which celebrates and advocates becoming more and more like Jesus daily

From the Altar of Prayer:

Jesus, adored by the heavenly hosts, yet ready to hear our prayers, we worship You
Jesus, veiling Your glory that we may come close to you, we worship You
Jesus, both priest and sacrifice, we worship You.

Living bread, that whoever eats will live forever, evermore give us this bread
Jesus, manna in the wilderness, evermore give us this bread
Jesus, broken bread that feeds the multitude, evermore give us this bread
Jesus, bread that comes down out of heaven, evermore give us this bread
Jesus, bread that gives life to the world, evermore give us this bread
Jesus, the good Shepherd, who laid down Your life for Your sheep, evermore give us this bread
Jesus, giving your own Body and Blood to be our food, evermore give us this bread
Jesus, revealed in the breaking of the bread, evermore give us this bread

Hear us Lord, and grant that we may know Your presence, hear us, Lord
That we may acknowledge our dependence on You, hear us, Lord
That we may seek to know and do Your will, hear us, Lord
That we may recognize and give thanks for every blessing you give, hear us, Lord
That we may come to repentance for the wrongs we have done, hear us, Lord
That we may approach this ineffable mystery in perfect charity, hear us, Lord
That we may be ready to lead a new life, hear us Lord
That we may walk in the way Your commandments, hear us, Lord
That receiving this great gift we may grown in gratitude and trust, hear us, Lord
That the wounded may find healing, the desponded, hope and the fearful courage, hear us, Lord
That we may see Your image in one another, hear us, Lord
That we may adore you here, we may hear after be ready to stand in Your presence, hear us, Lord

Jesus, Lamb of God, have mercy on us
Jesus, bearer of our sins, have mercy on us
Jesus, redeemer of the world, grant us Your peace

Open eyes, dear Lord that we may behold You in all Your redeeming work; for You live and You reign with the Father and with the holy Spirit, this day and always. Amen & Amen ++
[St. Augustine's Prayer Book]

Lord Jesus Christ, I give You my hands to do Your work
My feet to follow in Your way,
My eyes to see as You see,
My tongue to speak Your words,
Take my mind and let my thoughts dwell always on You and in my spirit,
Pray always with me. Above all, I give you my heart; that in me You may love Your Father and all people.
I give You myself, that You may grow in me, so that it is you, Lord Jesus, who lives and works and prays in me. Amen+

From the Fountain of Benediction:

Heart of Jesus, think of me
Eyes of Jesus, look on me
Face of Jesus, comfort me
Hands of Jesus, bless me
Feet of Jesus, guide me
Arms of Jesus, hold me
Body of Jesus, feed me
Blood of Jesus, wash me.
Jesus, make us thine own.
Here, and in the world to come. Amen & Amen++

April 8, 2020
We Journey Towards Easter through Calvary, 5
Greetings and Grace, Trinity People of God

We continue with our journey towards Easter through Calvary, 5.

The Issue that we would address is, "Where is God in the midst of COVID 19?"

The Preface:

We Glory in the Cross of Jesus, by which I am crucified to the world, and the world unto me, Gal 6:14
We adore You, O Christ, and we praise You
Because by Your Holy Cross, you have redeemed the world.

"Assist us mercifully with Your help, O Lord God of our Salvation, that we may enter with joy upon the contemplations of those mighty acts, whereby you have given us life and immortality; through Jesus Christ our Lord." Amen +

The Collect for Holy Wednesday:

"Lord God, whose blessed Son our Savior gave His body to be whipped and His face to be spit upon: Give us grace to accept joyfully the suffering of the present time, confident of the glory that shall be revealed; through Jesus Christ Your Son our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, our God, for ever and ever." Amen. + 

From the Hymn Writer:

When I survey the wondrous Cross where the young Prince of Glory died,
My riches gain I count but loss, and pour contempt on all my pride.

See from His head, His hands, His feet, sorrows and love flow mingled down!
Did e'er such love and sorrow meet, or thorns compose so rich a crown?

Were the whole realm of nature mine, that were an offering far too small;
Love so amazing, so divine, demands my soul, my life, my all.

More than two parish members have asked me, "Where is God in the midst of COVID 19?" Here are possibilities to consider:
For answers to the question, I would encourage you read in detail, Isa 63:7-9; 2 Cor 1: 8-22

Back to the question, Where is God in the midst of COVID 19?
When Eli Wiesel, the Jewish Philosopher, Peace Activist and Holocaust Survivor was asked almost the same question, Where is God in the midst of the Holocaust?, he said, "In the very same place, where His Son, Jesus was brutally, inexplicitly, and inhumanly crucified." So, where is God in the midst of COVID 19? God is still in control in the midst of pain and suffering. We must never, ever forget this truth that both in the good times and in the bad times, God is still in control. Additionally, we must add:
1. God is not the source of pain and suffering. God is not the author of evil, pain and suffering. True, God permits suffering and pain and COVID 19, but God is not the source and not the author of pain and suffering.
2. Pain and suffering and things like COVID 19 are undeniably horrendous; but, it is only for a while. All pain and suffering is temporary and only for a while. It is not permanent.
3. All pain and suffering and displacement realities are the consequence of evil, of sin and unrighteousness.
4. When God created our world....and, all matter; God looked at His creation and said, "It is good!" But, the consequence of sin was pain and suffering and sickness and death, etc., etc. An enemy broke in and turned all the good into bad...Jesus said, "The thief comes to steal, to kill and to destroy." 
5. In all our pain and suffering, the people of God, do not suffer alone. Scripture plainly says, "In all their affliction, He was afflicted," Isa 63:9.
God is with us in our pain and in suffering. The example is Exodus. When His people cried to Him out of their pain and suffering, the Bible says, "I have heard their cry." Then, the plan of redemption began with God sending Moses and Aaron to speak to the powers to "Let His People Go and Worship Him!"
6. There is a way out of pain and suffering. The way is to call upon God, and to ask God to intervene and bring deliverance and God delivers us from pain and suffering. The Kingdom of God....a mark of the Kingdom of God is freedom from pain and suffering and one day, in the New heavens and in the New earth, there will be no more pain and suffering and tears and mourning....All things would be made New.
7. Deliverance from pain and suffering is "through," pain and suffering, and never "from," pain and suffering. With Jesus Christ we have being delivered, we are been delivered and we will be delivered. "By His stripes, I am healed," says both the prophet Isaiah, and the Apostle Peter. The Bible says, "When I walk through the valley of the shadow of death; I will not be afraid. For the Lord is with me!"
8. Jesus is greater than pain and suffering and COVID 19 and in the end, Jesus would win!
I ask the question, Who is gonna win, Who is gonna win? You say, COVID 19, I say Jesus; You say, COVID 19, I say Jesus. In the end, Jesus is going to win! Jesus is going to win! Yes, Jesus is going to win!
In the midst of all pain and all suffering, Jesus is winning and Jesus is gonna win!

From the Altar [of prayer]:

God grant me the peace to accept the things I cannot change, 
The courage to change the things I can,
And the wisdom to know the difference between the two.

With this peace, I shall live one day at a time,
enjoy one moment at a time, [one person at a time],
accept hardship as the pathway to peace,
Take, as Christ did, this imperfect world as it is 
As I would have it to be,
Trusting God will make all thing new, and right,
As I surrender to His will.

So shall I be reasonable happy in this life
And supremely happy with God in the next.
[Reinhold Niebuhr]

Let nothing trouble you
Let nothing affright you;
All things are passing, God never changes;
Patience obtains everything,
Nothing is wanting to one who possesses God,
God alone suffices.

From the Fountain of Benediction;
Lord Jesus Christ, for the sake of Your Holy Cross, be with us to shield us. Amen.
Lord Jesus Christ, by the memory of Your blessed Cross, be with us to strengthen us. Amen.
Lord Jesus Christ, by Your Holy Cross, be over round about us to protect us. Amen.
Lord Jesus Christ, by Your glorious Cross, go before us to direct our path. Amen.
Lord Jesus Christ, by Your adorable Cross, come after us to guard us. Amen.
Lord Jesus Christ, Your Cross worthy of all praise, over shadow us to bless us. Amen.
Lord Jesus Christ, by Your adorable Cross, be in us to lead us into your Kingdom.
For the Power and the Glory are always Yours. Amen & Amen.

A Holy Wednesday to you and all your family.
Be well and safe and blessed, everyone!
DCF+
4/8/20.

From the Scriptures: The Reading of Scripture for Holy Wednesday is:
Lamentations 2:1-9; Psalm 74; 2 Cor 1:23-2:11; Mark 12:1-11

April 6, 2020
We Journey with Jesus Towards Easter Through Calvary, 4
Greetings, Trinity People of God.

As we travel towards Easter through Calvary, we stop and reflect on both Barabbas the Brigand and on Simon of Cyrene.

The Preface:
We glory in the Cross of Christ and we praise the Lord
Because by Your Holy Cross, You have redeemed the world.

Assist us mercifully with Your help, O Lord God of our Salvation, that we may enter with joy upon the contemplation of those mighty acts, whereby You have given us life and immortality; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen. [BCP, 270]

The Collect for Holy Tuesday:
O God, by the passion of Your Blessed Son you made an instrument of shameful death to be for us the means of life: Grant us so to glory in the Cross of Christ, that we may gladly suffer shame and loss for the sake of Your Son our Savior Jesus Christ; who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, our God, for ever and ever. Amen.

The Scripture [Lectionary] Reading for Holy Tuesday:
Lamentations 1:17-22; Psalm 6 & 94; 2 Cor 1: 8-22; Mark 11: 27-33

From the Hymn writer:
There is a green hill far away, outside a city wall, Where our dear Lord was crucified who died to save us all.
We may not know; we cannot tell, what pains He had to bear, But we believe it was for us He hung and suffered there.
He died that we may be forgiven, He died to make us good, That we might go at last to heaven, saved by His precious blood.
There was no other good enough to pay the price of sin, He only could unlock the gate of heaven and let us in.
O dearly, dearly has He loved! And we must love Him too, And trust in His redeeming blood, and try His works to do.

From the Scriptures:
Barabbas the Brigand, Mk 15:6-15....Ve. 6 reads, "Now it was the custom at the feast to release a prisoner whom the people requested."
Simon of Cyrene, Luke 9: 18-26.....Lk 23:26 reads, "As they led away, they seized Simon from Cyrene....and put the cross on him and made him carry it behind Jesus."
Reflecting on Barabbas and Simon: A possible contrast between Barabbas the Brigand and Simon of Cyrene:
Barabbas a zealot, was a rebel who used rebellion as his way of life. Simon of Cyrene was a reconciler and used reconciliation as a way of life
Barabbas used force as a way of life. Simon of Cyrene used "faith," as a way of life
Barabbas used violence as a way of life. Simon of Cyrene used "virtue," as a way of life
Barabbas used power as a way of life. Simon of Cyrene used powerlessness as a way of life
Barabbas' philosophy of living was "I did it my way." Simon of Cyrene philosophy of living was "not my will, O Lord; but Your will be done"
Barabbas used Godlessness as a way of life. Simon of Cyrene, on the other hand, kept God front and center in his life.
Barabbas rejected the Cross of Jesus. Simon of Cyrene, accepted and carried the Cross of Jesus.
The question for us to ask in the light of these two characters is whose way of life do I embrace for my life and living?

From the Altar [of prayer]:
Lord, by Your sweet and saving sign, the Cross; defend us from all our foes and thine.
Jesus, by Your wounded feet, direct our path aright
Jesus, by Your nailed hands, move ours to deeds of love
Jesus, by Your pierced side, cleansed all our desires        
Jesus, by Your crown of thorns, destroy our pride
Jesus, by Your silence, shame all our complaints
Jesus, by Your parched lips, curb our cruel speech
Jesus, by Your closed eyes, look on our sin no more
Jesus, by Your broken heart, knit ours to Yours
And, by Your sweet and saving sign of the Cross, draw us and all people to Your peace and Your glory. Amen.

From the Fountain of Benediction:
Lord Jesus Christ, for the sake of Your Holy Cross, be with us to shield us. Amen
Lord Jesus Christ, by the memory of Your blessed Cross, be with us to strengthen us. Amen
Lord Jesus Christ, by Your Holy Cross, be over around about us to protect us. Amen
Lord Jesus Christ, by Your glorious Cross, go before us to direct our path. Amen
Lord Jesus Christ, by Your glorious Cross, come after us to guard us. Amen
Lord Jesus Christ, by Your adorable Cross, come after us to guard us. Amen
Lord Jesus Christ, for the Cross worthy of all praise, over shadow us to bless us. Amen
Lord Jesus Christ, for Your noble Cross, be in us to lead us into Your Kingdom

A Holy Tuesday to you and all your family.
Peace.
DCF+
4/7/20.
For the Power and the Glory are always Yours. Amen & Amen.

April 6, 2020
We Journey with Jesus to Easter through Calvary, 3
Greetings and Grace, Trinity People of God.

In our Journey with Jesus to Easter through Calvary, we pause and take at look at the Betrayal of Judas, The Denial of Peter and the Fleeing of all Jesus disciples when He was sentenced to be Crucified and the Vacillation of Pilate.

The Preface:
We glory in the Cross, and we praise You, Lord
Because by Your Holy Cross, you have redeemed the world.

"Assist mercifully with Your help, O Lord God of our Salvation, that we may enter with joy upon the contemplation of those mighty acts, whereby You have given us life and immortality; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen." [BCP, 270] 

The Collect for Holy Monday
"Almighty God, whose most dear Son went not up to joy but first He suffered pain, and entered not into glory before He was crucified: Mercifully grant that we, walking in thee way of the Cross, may find it none other than the way of life and peace; through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen." [BCP. 220]

From the Hymn Writer:
Upon the Cross of Jesus mine eyes at times can see the very dying form 
Of one who suffered there for me; And from my smitten heart with tears two wonders I confess,
The wonder of redeeming love and my unworthiness.

I take, O Cross, the shadow for my abiding place; I ask no other sunshine than the sunshine of His face
Content to let my pride go by, to know no gain nor loss
My sinful self, my only shame, my glory all the Cross.

From the Altar:
Here dying for the world, the world' life hung,
Bathing a world's sin in that deadly tide;
That down bent head
raised earth above the stars;
O timeless wonder! Life because Jesus died.
Thank you Father, for His death, and my life. Amen.
[St. Augustine's Prayer Book, Revised]

Lord by Your sweet and saving sign, Defend us from all our foes and thine.

Jesus, by Your Wounded feet, direct our path aright;
Jesus, by Your nailed hands, move ours to deeds of love;
Jesus, by Your pierced side, cleanse all our desires;
Jesus, by Your crown of thorns, destroy our pride;
Jesus, by Your silence, shame all our complaints;
Jesus, by Your parched lips, curb our cruel speech;
Jesus, by Your closing eyes, look on our sin no more;
Jesus, by Your broken heart, knit our to thine.

And by the sweet and saving sign of the Cross, draw us and all people to Your peace and Your glory. Amen.
[St. Augustine's Prayer Book, Revised]

From the Scriptures and Reflection:
At our third stop on our way to Easter, we pause and reflect on,
The Betrayal of Judas, Matth 26: 47-56
The Denial of Peter and the Fleeing of all of Jesus' disciples when He was sentenced to be crucified, Mk 14: 66-72
The Vacillation of Pilate, Jn 19:4-16

Why did Judas betray Jesus? Possibly because Jesus did not fit into Judas' agenda for life and living. Judas wanted a warrior King who would destroy his political [and all his] enemies and when Jesus did not fit into Judas agenda, he was willing to betray Jesus. Second, Judas desired to be aligned with mammon...with materialism, with money more than His Master. And, when push came to show, Judas opted for the money over His master.
Does Jesus have to fit into our will and our agenda or do we need to fit into Jesus' Will and agenda? Jesus said, "Where your heart is, there will be your treasure. Is our treasure our heart or is the Lord of glory our treasure. 
The story is told that a mother once lost her eyes and it was driving her crazy. She was heard to say in the midst of his children, "I am loosing my mind." To which, her 4 year son said, "Mother, whatever you do, do not loose your heart." His mother asked him, Why? The son said, "Because I am in your heart!" Holy Monday, forces us to honestly ask ourselves, "Where is our hearts today?"

Why did Peter deny Jesus and why did all the disciples flee from Jesus when He was sentenced to be crucified? Two possibilities. Peter denied Jesus not because He was confident, not because he was under confident and not because he was over confident when he was challenged about his association with Jesus [he spoke Galilean]. Peter denied Jesus because his confidence was, what I call either false confidence or fake faith in Jesus. Peter, like many of us, pretend to have faith in Jesus. But, when our faith in Jesus is put to the test, we fail. We fail because our confidence in Jesus is false or our faith in Jesus is fake. The Cross of Jesus challenges us to move from a false confidence in Jesus to a genuine and true confidence in God...God can be trusted. As for the rest of the disciples, like us, they fled Jesus because of cowardice. They were afraid when tough times came their way. How do we respond when tough times [like the present time] crosses our pathway....today it is COVID 19, tomorrow, it would be something else. What would be do?  What do we do when we face tough times? Do we flee from Jesus, do we question Jesus, do we distrust Jesus, do we get upset with Jesus or do we double down on our faith in Jesus? 

As for the Vacillation of Pilate, his challenge was; Pilate like many of us, most of us, desired more than anything else to please the crowds...to please the populous. The secret to success is that no matter how we try, we cannot please all the people, all the time. Like Jesus, you and I need a Rule of Life....A Mission....A purpose and no matter what, we must stick to the Rule, to that Vision, to that Mission and to that purpose. It ought to be the Cross of Jesus by which we are crucified to the world and the world is crucified to us.....Our glory, our pride and our joy is the Cross of Jesus Christ. We live each day at the Cross and we live each day from the Cross for the glory of God.

From the Fountain of Benediction:
Lord Jesus Christ, for the sake of Your Holy Cross, be with us to shield us. Amen.
Lord Jesus Christ, by the memory of Your blessed Cross, be with us to strengthen us. Amen.
Lord Jesus Christ, by Your Holy Cross, be over round about us to protect us. Amen.
Lord Jesus Christ, by Your glorious Cross, go before us to direct our path. Amen.
Lord Jesus Christ, by Your adorable Cross, come after us to guard us. Amen.
Lord Jesus Christ, for Your Cross worthy of all praise, over shadow us to bless us. Amen.
Lord Jesus Christ, for Your noble Cross, be in us to lead us into Your Kingdom. For the Power and the Glory are always Yours. Amen & Amen.  

A Holy Monday to you and all your family.
Be well and safe and blessed, everyone!
Fr. Desmond+
4/6/20. 

April 4, 2020
We Journey Towards Easter Through Calvary....Our Second stop is Palm Sunday - A Service
Greetings and Grace, Trinity People of God.

Here is our second stop as we journey towards Easter: It is Palm Sunday! A Service of Worship.

The Preface:

Assist us mercifully with Your help, O Lord God of our Salvation, that we may enter with joy upon the contemplations of those mighty acts, whereby you have given us life and immortality; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen. + 

We Praise out God:

Ride on! Ride on in majesty! Hark! all the tribes hosanna cry; 
Thy humble beast pursue his road
With palms and scattered garments strowed.

Ride on! Ride on in majesty! In lowly pomp ride on to die;
O Christ, thy triumphs now begin 
Over captive death and conquered sin.

Ride on! Ride on in majesty! In lowly pomp ride on to die;
Bow thy meek head to mortal pain,
Then take, O God, thy power and reign.

We confess our sins to God:

Have mercy on me, O God, according to Your loving kindness;
in Your great compassion blot out my offenses
Wash me through and through from my wickedness
and cleanse me from my sin....
Create in me a clean heart, O God,
and renew a right spirit within me.

We receive the Forgiveness of our sins:
Heavenly Father, forgive us of all our sins, cleanse us from all righteousness
fill us with Your Holy Spirit and bless us with Your righteousness, this day
and every day. Through Jesus Christ our Lord, we pray. Amen. +

We Hear from God [and we learn to obey]
The Collect for Palm Sunday:
Almighty and ever living God, in Your tender love for the human race you sent Your Son our Savior Jesus Christ to take upon Him our nature, and to suffer death up on the cross, giving us an example of His great humility: Mercifully grant that we may walk in the way of His suffering, and also share in His resurrection, through Jesus Christ my Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen. +

The Lectionary Readings for the Day are:

Isa 50: 4-9a; Psalm 31:9-16; Psalm 22:1-11; Phil 2:5-11; Gospel of Matthew 26:14-27a....66; 27:11-54 [This is the annual Dramatic Reading of the Passion of our Lord]

Reflecting on the Scriptures:
There are many themes and sub themes which surround the historical event of Palm Sunday. I would like to reflect on Jesus entering the temple and attempting to clean up the temple. Why does Jesus attempt to clean up the temple? Here are possibilities for us to consider:
1. Because the focus of religion was on things, and not on exclusive trust in God Almighty.
2. Because the focus of religion was on getting the propositions right and not on getting the practice of the propositions correct. Right belief must flow out in right behavior, correct?
3. Because the focus of religion was on self-importance, and not on putting God Almighty first in their/our lives
4. Because the focus of religion was on "grabbing," and "getting," and not on "generosity," towards others
5. Because the focus of religion was on externals, and not on the matters of the heart
6. Because the focus of religion was picking and choosing who to serve and who not to serve, instead of serving everyone
7. Because the focus of religion was placed on the blessing, instead of the Blessed, God Himself
8. Because the focus of religion was half-hearted.....a kind of yo-yo, instead of single hearted pursuit for all of God in season and out of season

As the result, the glory of God was almost leaving the temple. Hence Jesus has to step in and begin process of cleansing and purifying and perfecting the people of God. May this be real in all of our lives. We cannot bargain to trade in the glory of God for the glory of "self,"

We Bring our cares and concerns to Almighty God:

Abide in us continually Lord, as we abide in You and may our love for You grow richer, and more perfect day by day. Teach us, not to fret and fume about any anxiety over lesser things. Let no troubles drag us down towards defeat and loss, teach us never, ever to replace You with self and getting out of focus. Give us your all sufficient grace that You would always be front and center in all of our lives. Through Jesus Christ our Lord, we pray, Amen & Amen. +

Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed by Your Name, Your Kingdom come, Your Will be done.
On earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread, forgive us our sins as we forgive the sins of others.
Lead us not into temptation, deliver us from evil. For the Kingdom, the Power and the glory is Yours. Now and for ever. Amen.+ 

We give to God:
Our homes, our families, our community, our diocese and our world
Our pledges and out tithes and offering [to fulfill the Mission of the Church]
[By the way, thanks to all of us who sent in our pledges and gifts. We have been blessed. So, thank you everyone]

We receive the Blessings: [There is no formal blessing on Palm Sunday. But, here is a possibility]

Lord Jesus Christ, for the sake of Your Holy Cross, be with us to shield us. Amen
Lord Jesus Christ, by the memory of Your blessed Cross, be with us to strengthen us. Amen.
Lord Jesus Christ, for Your Holy Cross, be ever round about us to protect us. Amen.
Lord Jesus Christ, for Your glorious Cross, go before us to direct our paths. Amen.
Lord Jesus Christ, for Your adorable Cross, come after us to guard us. Amen.
Lord Jesus Christ, for Your cross, worthy of all praise, over shadow us to bless us. Amen.
Lord Jesus Christ, for Your noble cross, be in us to lead us all into your Heavenly Kingdom. For the Power and the Glory are always Yours. Amen.
April 3, 2020
Let us Journey towards Easter through Calvary - 1
Greetings and Grace, Trinity People of God.
First, we remind you to please send names of loved ones who have passed away to be remembered in prayer for Easter. Please send the names to Stacy Draper ASAP, as she complies a list for us. She would send the finished list to me a week from today, and then I would forward for all of us to pray for our loved ones for Easter 2020. Thanks for doing now.
Second, beginning today, may I invite you to Journey with me towards Easter through Calvary:
Our Refrain:
We glory in the Cross of Jesus Christ by which I am crucified to the world, and the world unto me, Gal 6:14.
We adore You, O Christ, and we praise You.
Because by Your Holy Cross You have redeemed us.

From the Hymn Writer:
Beneath the Cross of Jesus I fain would take my stand,
the shadow of a mighty rock within a weary land,
A Home within the wilderness, a rest upon the way,
From the burning of the noon tide heat and the burden of the day.

From the Scriptures:
Gospel of Mark 14: 1-11...ve. 8 reads, "She poured perfume on my body beforehand to prepare for my burial."
Gospel of Jn 17.... ve. 1 reads, "Jesus looked towards heaven and prayed, 'Father, the time has come."
[I would encourage you to read the full text of the Scriptures, please]
From a Pastor's Mind and Heart to your Mind and Heart:
As we begin our journey towards Easter, through Calvary, I would like for us to look at two incidents which propel Jesus towards His Cross and His Resurrection.
The first is the anointing of Jesus' feet by Mary. What the truths we learn from this 'royal,' ministry of love and care for Jesus as He comes to the end of His Mission? Here are possibilities for us to consider:
~In anointing Jesus' feet, Mary was doing a very beautiful, and matchless act of grace signifying to us her devotion to our Lord. What about, and where is our devotion towards our Lord?
~In anointing Jesus' feet, Mary was not in any manner marginalizing the poor. Instead, she was placing Jesus first and foremost in her life. What about us? Where is Jesus in the totem poles of our lives...At the top, or at the bottom or somewhere in-between? What is our most truthful answer?
~In anointing Jesus' feet, Mary was expressing her best towards Jesus and for Jesus. How about us? Do we give Jesus our best or leftover's?
~In anointing Jesus' feet, Mary was anticipating Jesus' torturous and unjust death, and glorious Resurrection. Are we living each day at the Cross and from the Cross and looking forward to the glorious return of the Lord?
~In anointing Jesus' feet, Mary was expressing the most generous act of love which compels Jesus to say, "Where ever, and when ever the gospel is reached, Mary's act of self-sacrifice ought to be mentioned. Like the Cross of Jesus, the $64,000 question is, "Are we living just for ourselves, or are we living for the benefit of others?  It is in giving, that we receive; it is in dying that we are born alive and well and strong and remain eternal.     

From Jn 17, we learn that Jesus was the Master at Prayer and in prayer. What did Jesus pray for? Jn 17 is referred to as the Holy of Holies in the gospel of John. Jesus prays for:
1. Jesus prays that His Father is to glorified. How? By Jesus to be glorified as He is lifted up on the Cross for the salvation of the world.
2. Jesus pray for His disciples...you and me to be true and faithful to the gospel of revelation and grace...to be true and faithful to the Scriptures for life and for living.
3. Jesus prays for evil and for the evil one to be completely eradicated and destroyed. For the Kingdom of God to come.
4. Jesus prays for us to be filled with His joy.
5. Jesus prays that we would be Holy worldly followers of Him...To be in the world, but not of the world. To live above the circumstances of life with Him, and through Him each day.
6. Jesus prays that we would go "into," in Mission.
7. Jesus prays that His followers would be One United Community....where we love, forgive, heal and bless one another.

Like Jesus, let us learn to pray His petitions for us and for our church and for our world and may our lives, like Jesus' become a prayer.
From the Altar:
The Cross of Jesus is the abyss of wonders
The Cross of Jesus is the center of desires
The Cross of Jesus is the school of virtues
The Cross of Jesus is the house of wisdom
The Cross of Jesus is the throne of love
The Cross of Jesus is the theater of joys,
The Cross of Jesus is the place of sorrows
The Cross of Jesus is the root of happiness
The Cross of Jesus is the gate of heaven.

Here, Father, we see a man loving all the world, and a God dying for all humanity.
Here we see the most distant things in eternity united
Here, in the Cross of Jesus, Father,  we see the well of life beneath which we see the face of heaven above and the only mirror wherein all things appear in their proper colors: that is, sprinkled in the blood of our Lord and our Savior, in whose name alone, we pray. Amen.

Thomas Traherne, Centuries].

From the Blesser/Benediction Himself:
Lord, by this sweet and saving sign,
Defend us from our foes ad thine.

Jesus, by Your wounded feet,
Direct our path aright;
Jesus, by Your nailed hands,
Move ours to deeds of love;
Jesus, by your pierced side,
Cleanse all our desires'
Jesus, by Your Cross of thorns,
Annihilate our pride;
Jesus, by Your silence,
Shame our complaints;
Jesus, by Your parched lips,
Curb our cruel speech;
Jesus, by Your closing eyes,
Look on our sin no more;
Jesus, by Your broken heart,
Knit ours to thine.

And by this sweet and saving sign
Lord draw us to Your peace and our peace, and to thine glory always. Amen.

We adore You, O Christ, and we praise You
Because by your Holy Cross You have redeemed the world, and you have redeemed us.
Amen & Amen.

Peace, Joy and Wellness to you and all yours this day and always.
Fr. Des+
4/3/2020.

April 2, 2020
A Word to the Wise, Please...Light in the midst of the Darkness

Greetings, Trinity People of God.

Three items to share with you:

1. A parish member called and chatted with me about, "I am really scared at this time and I do not know what I can do?" So, this is what I shared with our parish member:

a. It is okay....it is human to be scared about our health, our jobs, our profession, our homes, our safety, our retirement savings, etc., etc. Given the uncertainty all of us face. It is human to be afraid.
b. We must not deny the reality of our feeling. If we are afraid, or stressed out, or anxious or worried or troubled, etc., etc. Do not deny the reality of the feeling. Do not dismiss the reality of the feeling. Do not sweep it under the rug, or do not flee from it. Face the ________squarely and uprightly.
c. We should take responsibility for the reality of our feelings whatever it is. It is our feeling and only we know the depth and the strength of our feeling. Is it mild? Is it severe?
d. Begin to manage our felling. Here are some of the tools to empower us to manage our feelings:
     1. Discover the source of our feeling. Is it internal or is it external?
     2. Invite God into the area of our feelings. It is only "through," our feeling we find deliverance and victory.
     3. Claim the promise of Scripture to overcome and to crush the negative feeling. The Scripture says, "The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not be in want." The Scripture also says, "By every stripe Jesus received, you and I are made whole." The Scripture says, "I would never leave you or forsake you."   The Scripture says, Peace I leave with you. My peace I give unto you." The Scripture says, "Cast all your cares on the Lord and He will sustain you." Offer a prayer something like this: "Heavenly Father, I give you my negative feeling of ________. It is no longer mine to bear. It is yours now. In its place give me your peace that pauses all understanding and deliver me from the negative feeling I had [notice the past tense]. I ask that you fill me with your peace, your presence and your power to live my daily life. Give me Your victory Lord this very moment. Thank you for taking away all my negative feelings and giving me your peace and your joy. I praise you and I bless you this day and always. IN Jesus Name and for His glory I pray. Amen & Amen. 
     5. If you need medical help, it is perfectly acceptable to talk to your primary care dr. about the same.
     6. Share with two to three trusted friends and form a support group and help each other through the challenge and on to victory.
     7. Benedict yourself with the Cross and the Blood of Jesus Christ and the Blessing of God at least 3 - 4 times a day.
e. Live daily in the Joy of the Lord.

Together, let us continue to overcome all our challenges for God's glory.

2. I wanted to share this thought with you in the light of the immediate, and other crisis we face from time to time:

As far as I am concerned and believe, our current worldwide crisis and other crisis we face while real, and tragic and awful in all cases; it is, what I refer to as the small "c." But, thanks God in Jesus Christ, we have the big "C". The big "C," is Christ and the Cross! And, if Scripture reminds us of anything at all, we are reminded that the big "C," swallows up the small "c," just like Jonah was swallowed up by the whale which in Jonah's situation was his deliverance and salvation. It is in the belly of the whale, Jonah cried out to God and great deliverance came to him. Jesus Christ and His Cross is the big "C," and has, and will swallow up the current small "c," and all other small "c,'s" in all of our lives. 

So, the best way and the winning way to live our daily lives is at the Cross of Christ, and from the Cross of Christ. When we do, we are victorious in our daily lives. Thank God for the gift of the Big "C."

3. This is about the single file procession possibility for Good Friday and Easter.
The "Counsel," I have received is not to proceed with the single file procession for both Good Friday, and for Easter. So, we would not be moving forward with these movements of public witness to the gospel of God's grace for all of us. Thanks to those parish members who volunteered to join me in the same....You know who you are, so I would not mention any names....There is no Good Friday and no Water day single file procession from our Sanctuary down to the corner of Walgreens and Hannaford.

Also, two parish member suggested ideas for Worship possibilities for Easter in our Graveyard or Rectory area open space. Again, the "Counsel," I have received is not to have any form of public worship. Hence, we would not have any Worship Services offered here at Trinity either inside or outside.

I am convinced that these are the most charitable "Counsel," all of us have received in the light of all that is happening all around us.

Finally, I have a strong hunch that "much help," is on its way for all of us to move forward with our lives and our works. In spite of all the challenges, miracles and wonders are taking place in our midst. Let's keep Love, Faith and Hope alive and strong these days.....Robust, Heathy, and Conquering.

God Bless us all at Trinity and through Trinity to the world.

Peace everyone.
Fr. Desmond C. Francis+.


April 1, 2020

It is the Best Time to Turn our eyes and hearts towards Calvary

Greetings, Trinity People of God,

One challenge we constantly encounter as we live our daily lives is the truth that "we live in Chronos time," [today/contemporary], but as followers of Jesus Christ "we live for Kairos time," [tomorrow/the future]. Today is the 1st of April which is eleven days before we celebrate the queen of the Christian Feasts, Easter.  Today, is the best time for us to begin to focus not just on the crisis of the moment; but to actually, intentionally and deliberately turn our eyes to Jesus and particularly to Calvary

To empower us to do so, here are possibilities for the next eleven days:

First from the Hymn Writer:

King of my life, I crown Thee now, Thine shall the glory be;
Lest I forget thy thorn crowned brow, Lead me to Calvary.
Lest I forget Gethsemane/ Lest I forget Thine agony/ Lest I forget Thy love for me/ Lead me to Calvary.


Show me the tomb where Thou was laid/ Tenderly mourned and wept; 
Angels in somber of light arranged/ Guarded Thee while Thou slept.
Lest I forget Gethsemane/ Lest I forget Thine agony/ Lest I forget Thy love for me/ Lead me to Calvary.

Let me like Mary, through the gloom,/ Come with a gift to Thee;/
Show to me now the empty tomb/ Lead me to Calvary.
Lest I forget Gethsemane/ Lest I forget thine agony,/ Lest I forget Thy Love for me/ Lead me to Calvary.

May I be willing, Lord, to bear/ Daily my cross for Thee;/ 
Even Thine cup of grief to share/ Thou has borne all for me.
Lest I forget Gethsemane/ Lest I forget Thine agony/ Lest I forget Thy love for me/ Lead me to Calvary. 

Second from the Scriptures:

Luke 9:51ff reads, "When the days drew near for Jesus to be received up, Jesus set his face to go to Jerusalem.  And Jesus sent messengers ahead of him, who went and entered a village of the Samaritans, to make ready for Him; but the people would not receive Him, because His face was set toward Jerusalem.  And when his disciples, James and John saw it, they said, 'Lord, do you want us to bid fire come down from heaven and consume them?'  But Jesus turned and rebuked them, and Jesus said, 'You do not know what manner of spirit you are of; for the Son of man came not to destroy people's lives, but to save them.'  And they went on to another village...[they went on to Jerusalem].

Daily life, living and all relationships is about one thing and one thing alone and that is, 'Who's got the most power?' Right?
The chief difference between Jesus and his disciples, the chief difference between Jesus and us is that we want all the power, we want all the power now and we want all the power over people [isn't that the chief challenge Jesus squared of with Satan in the Wilderness] and seldom do we pause to think of the devastatingly destructive attitude and action is. Did not Lord Acton warn us, when he said, 'Power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely!'

Jesus went to Calvary and all through His life, giving up all His power and when He used His power it was always to serve, to love, to heal, to destroy  evil and eventually death. He gave up His power to give life, liberty and happiness to all people. 

There are two paradigms by which we who follow Jesus may live our lives. One paradigm by which we can live our daily lives is to wield power in and through our lives over others by getting, grabbing, keeping, snatching, controlling and retaliating. A second way to live our daily lives is not to wield power, like Jesus, and live our daily lives in terms of giving, serving, loving, forgiving, healing, blessing others, ourselves and God and welcoming all people into the Kingdom of God.

If Calvary teaches us anything at all:
Calvary teaches us to give us all our power [whatever power we have, is a gift from God]
Calvary taches us to use "our very limited power," to love, to serve, to forgive and to bless people   
Calvary teaches us not to just live in Chronos time, but to live in Kairos time keep Calvary {Jesus' central in our lives.

Third from the Altar of God - Prayer and Worship:

Our great God and King whose love for us was most perfectly seen in the blessed life and death of our Lord Jesus Christ, enable us now to so meditate upon His passion, that in fellowship with Him in His sorrow, we may learn the secret of His strength and His everlasting peace
We remember Gethsemane
We remember how Judas betrayed Jesus
We remember how Peter denied Jesus
We remember how they all forsook Jesus and fled
We remember Jesus' scourging
We remember Jesus' crown of thorns
We remember how the people spat on Jesus
We remember how people smote Jesus on the head with a reed
We remember Jesus' pierced hands and feet
We remember Jesus' thirst
We remember how Jesus cried, 'My God, my God, why hast Thou forsaken me?

Grant heavenly Father, that as we bow before You, we would be embraced into the great company of all those who received life and salvation through the Cross of Jesus.  Let Your redeeming power that has flowed from Jesus suffering through all these many generations, flow into our lives and our souls, our homes, our churches and our world.  May we find full forgiveness of all our sins and be filled with Your righteousness, to love and to serve you and to love and to serve all people. Through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen and Amen.
[From the Book, A Diary of Private Prayer, John Bailllie, Revised].

Friends,

We may not know, we cannot tell, What pains He had to bear;
But we believe it was for us, He hung and suffered there.
[William Cowper]

I pray, this day and every day, we would live our daily lives at Calvary, [by Jesus Christ], and from Calvary [through Jesus Christ].

Peace and Christ's power to you this day and always.
Fr. Desmond+    
We remember Jesus crown of thorns 

March 30, 2020

A Suggestion: Benedict Yourself and your Family For the Long Haul


One of the most blessed things you can do for yourself and for your family beginning this day is to,
Benedict Yourself during the day.....In the morning, at Lunch, in the evening at tea time, at Dinner and just before you go to bed.

Here is what you can do using one of these Benedictions or a combo of the same signing yourself with the sign of the CROSS:

Benediction One:

The Lord Bless me and Keep me
The Lord Make His Face to shine on me and give me health and peace
The Lord Lift up the Light of His grace upon me 
And, Keep me this day and always free from all evil and unto Eternal Life.  Amen.

Benediction Two:

Be of good courage, Hold fast to that which is good
Render to no one evil for evil, Strengthen the fainthearted
Support the weak, Help and Heal the sick and afflicted 
And, Honor all people, Lord.
The Blessing of God Almighty, The Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit be with me
and all my family, community and people. Amen.

Benediction Three:

Your glorious majesty surround me
The Blessed Trinity protect me
And the Eternal Godhead preserve me.

Your unlimited mercy, Lord, surround me
Your loving kindness circle me
Your favor make me to rejoice.

The eternal truth of God be my delight
The saving knowledge of Christ strengthen me
And, the all prevailing grace of God be sufficient for me.

May the grace of God the Father lead me
The wisdom of God the Son be my strength and healing
And, the power of the holy Spirit enlighten me

Lord my creator stand by me
Lord, my redeemer save and sanctify me
And, the Holy Spirit, my Comforter, dwell with me. Amen.
[Johann Habermann]

Benediction Four:

God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit
Be above me
Be below me
Be in front of me
Be above me
Be all around me
Be with me, be for me, be in me and be through me to you and to the world
This day and always. 
The Lord Bless me and keep me for His own. Amen & Amen.
 
Praying for each and all your family and for our community, our neighboring faith communities, for all in our diocese and people around the world..
Praying for God to take the scourge of COVID 19, cures to be found for now and in the future.
Please be safe, practice all the guidelines by Federal and State and our diocese and together we shall triumph/overcome and continue to love and serve our Lord who is GOOD.....He knows what He is doing and it is our privilege to TRUST in Him today and every day and in all times, seasons of our lives.

One Day at a time with grace upon grace. Desmond+.

March 28, 2020

Greetings and Grace, Trinity People of God.

Here is a Service of Worship for Tomorrow, Sunday March 29, 2020, the 5th Sunday in Lent.

Please know: That Your Heart is His Altar, and His Love is a flame upon the Altar of your heart!
Your Home is also is His Altar, and His Love is His flame upon the altar of your Home!

A Preface to Worship:
     Collect for Saturdays
Almighty God, who after the creation of the world rested from all your works and sanctified a day of rest for all your creatures: Grant that we, putting away all earthly anxieties, may be duly prepared for the Service of your Sanctuary, and that our rest here upon earth may be a preparation for the eternal rest promised to your people in heaven; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

     Invitation to Worship:
"And now, Israel, what does the Lord your God require of you, but
to feat the Lord your God,
to walk in all his ways,
to love him, 
to serve the Lord your God with all your hearts and with all your soul,
and, 
to keep the commandments and statues of the Lord, which I am commanding you today for your good." Deut 10: 12 & 13.

A Service of Worship:

     We Give Thanks to God:
Lift high the Cross, the love of Christ proclaim, Till all the world, adore His sacred Name.

O Lord, once lifted on the glorious tree, bears thou hast promised draw the world to thee.
So shall our song of triumph ever be, Praise to the Crucified for victory.

Lift high the Cross, the love of Christ proclaim, Till all the world, adore His sacred Name.

Say out Lord, # 13, A song of Praise, BCP, pg. 90

     We ask God to Forgive all our sins:
Confess your sins, BCP, pg. 62
Receive your Forgiveness in the Name of the Father, the Blessed Son and the Glorious Holy Spirit
"The Almighty and merciful Lord grant you full and complete forgiveness of all your sins, genuine turning away from all your unrighteousness and the total transformation of your life and the full and complete blessing and strength of the Holy Spirit, this day, and always. Amen.

     We Hear from God:
The Collect for the 5th Sunday in Lent:
"Almighty God, you alone can bring into order the unruly wills and affections of sinners: Grant your people grace to love what you command and desire what you promise; that among the swift and varied changes of the world, our hearts may surely there be fixed where true joys are to be found; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen."

The Readings are:
Ezekiel 37:1-14; Psalm 130, Romans 8:6-11; John 11:1-45.

The Homily:
In a small portion of our Gospel reading, Jesus says to Martha, "Did I not tell you that if you believed, you would see the glory of God?
What is the Glory of God, and How can you and I receive the glory of God today?
1. The glory of God is the unparalleled majesty, magnificence and mystery of God [in Himself, see Isa chapter 40 for a description]
2. The glory of God is the unparalleled weight and worthiness of God [in relationship to His creation, see Col 1, 1 John 1 and Rev 1 for a description]
3.The glory of God is the unparalleled radiance and brilliance of the Light and the Power of God's amazing Grace [see John 1 for a description]   
4. The glory of God is the unparalleled weakness and suffering of God as Jesus dies on the cross for us, for our sins and for our salvation [see Isa 53 and all the passion readings of the gospel, especially John 12 where Jesus says, "The corn of seed must be buried; if not, the grain would not be harvested]
5. The glory of God is the unparalleled Victory of God as Jesus rises from death, from sin, from darkness triumphantly and reigns at the right hand of God [see the last chapters of all the gospels, especially, Luke 24 and John 20 & 21, Rom 8 and 1 Cor 15] 

How can you and I receive the glory of God for our daily life and living?
Jesus says, "Did I not say to you, unless you believed!"
To believe not only means an intelligent deliberations of all the facts and figures of the one you are to place you trust in; but, to believe also means that you and I commit our lives to the person we place our trust in. To believe means that in our minds we are convinced that Jesus Christ is the glory of God as well as Jesus Christ is the One, and the only One we trust our lives with. We commit our lives to Jesus who is the glory of God, we abandon our lives to Jesus Christ who is the glory of God and we live our daily lives in this trust and commitment for the rest of our lives in all times, in all seasons, and in the context of all people and circumstances and situations.

What is the take away for you and for me?
Only "In Jesus," my friend, there is unparalleled Joy, unparalleled Freedom, unparalleled Wellness and Unparalleled Certainty."
To see Jesus is to see the glory of God. to touch Jesus is to touch the glory of God, to experience Jesus is to experience the glory of God. Amen.

     We Bring all our cares and concerns to God in Intercession:
The Prayers of the People are from Form 6, BCP, pg. 392 & 393.
[If you do not have the BCP, you can use the Litany of the Passion I sent on Friday]
Before you begin the prayers of the people, I would suggest that "Our special Intention be for God to remove from us the plague of COVID 19 and that a mitigation means be developed to bring massive healing to us people.
Also, pray for all "loved ones," and all people around the world who have lost loved ones to this sickness and find meaning and strength during this very difficult time]

     We Give to God the Best we have to Offer;
Our lives, our family, our world
Our pledges to fulfill His Mission

     We Tell the world that God loves them: 
How: By words and by deeds, intentionally we seize every opportunity to share with ourselves, our family, our friends, our neighbors and our community that in our present darkness, the Light of God's Love shines radiant and brilliant. In Jesus , there is grat joy in the midst of sorrow and life....eternal and everlasting life in the midst of death and loss and pain and grief.

     We receive the Benediction of God:
The Lord Bless you and Keep you
The Lord Make His Face to Shine upon you
And, the Lord Give you His peace, this day and for ever. Amen & Amen.

God of mercy, God of grace; Show the brightness of Thy face
Shine upon us, Savior shine, Fill your Church with light divine, 
And Thy saving health extend upon earth's remotest end.

Let Thy people praise thee, Lord; Be by all that live adored,
Het the nations shout and sing glory to their Savior King;
Let all be, below, above, one in joy, and light and love.

Now, go in peace to Love and to Serve the Lord! Amen 7 Amen.  
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