Table of Contents
Ministry & Mission at the Ascension
- Sunday Worship at the Ascension (Reminders):
- Live Streamed Services: If you are interested in viewing Sunday service, you can do so by logging in to the new church website ascensionnl.ca, and go to the Social Media tab. Once there, click on the Facebook tab (please note you do not have to have a Facebook account to view the service). This will link you directly with the service once it has begun on Sunday.
- Cancellation of Service/Storm Notice and Office Closures: Please refer to the church website, ascensionnl.ca, or check the church answering machine (368-5693) for up-to-date information on the status of services as well as the church office.
- Pre-Authorized Givings: If you would like to set up pre-authorized givings, please contact the church office at 368-5693 for direction. Thank you!
- Birthday/Anniversary Sundays: We are once again designating one Sunday of each month as family Sunday. The worship for that Sunday will include the celebration of birthdays or anniversaries for that given month. Please send us a picture of yourself to include during the Birthday Sunday celebration portion of the liturgy. You can send your photos to [email protected]. We request that you submit your photos by the end of the first week each month to ensure they are included.
- Pandemic Appeal: To date we have raised $6,415. We encourage parishioners to continue to support our Parish in this effort by donating to the Pandemic Appeal. Thank you to all who have donated thus far.
- Technical Support: If you are having any difficulty accessing our on-line services, please feel free to reach out to the Parish Audio-Visual Team for support. Please leave a message at the office with your name & telephone number or email [email protected] and a member of the team will contact you.
- YouTube: The weekly on-line services are now available on YouTube. At this time, the services are not live on YouTube but they are available for viewing once the service is over. To find the Parish YouTube channel, type Parish of the Ascension NL into the search bar in YouTube. Some parishioners have experienced difficulty finding recorded videos on Facebook so this is another option for viewing.
- Front Line Workers Fund: The City of Mount Pearl is coordinating a Care and Support Fund for front line workers who are operating Covid test sites in our area. If you wish to make a donation in thanksgiving for their work, please do so by logging in to the parish website at canadahelps.org/en/charities/parish-of-the-ascension-mount-pearl/. Use the drop down menu to select the Covid Front Line Workers Care Fund and follow the prompts to complete your donation. Thanks for your support.
- Clergy Contact During the COVID-19 Pandemic: All pastoral visits/interactions will be via telephone, email or zoom appointment with either Reverend Burrows or Reverend Courage. To set up an appointment, please contact them via their email or cell phone. Reverend Burrows may be reached at 746-2095 or by email at [email protected] and Reverend Courage may be reached at 682-8500 or by email at [email protected]
- Weekly Prayer During Lent: Wednesday Evening Compline: The Lenten resource Lent In A Bubble is available online at lent.thetransmission.ca. This resource will enable families in their own bubbles to use resources and means at hand to explore their lives in Christ Jesus. Each week we will share a video outlining one of the Lenten Activities, and give suggestions as to personal reflection, learning, and prayer. In addition, we will livestream a service of Compline each Wednesday evening at 8:00 p.m., at fb.com/anglicantransmission/live.
- Key Messages from Vestry: As we move through Lent this year, once again the province is back in lockdown as we face the latest outbreak of COVID-19. This time there is much fear and anxiety as we adjust to this new reality. The changes and adjustments that are being made for society, work and school at this time are essential for the safety and health of everyone. We hope and pray that the winter, and our journey through Lent, is safe for all. The Vestry has faithfully met and prayerfully listened and discussed the challenges and decisions that are ongoing with the administration of the parish. At this time, the Vestry shares the following updates:
- The Vestry continued discussions outlining the many ways that persons can give in thanks to God for the continuing of ministry here at the Ascension. During this pandemic there may have been struggles for persons to find the best ways to continue to support the ministry of the parish. This year, with the new lockdown now in place, we were not able to distribute the regular Lenten messages and the Lenten folders. Please remember that there are ways to donate online through ascensionnl.ca. In addition, at any time donations can be placed in envelopes and dropped off at the parish in the mail slot on the front step. Please mark all envelopes with your contact information and the designation for the donation.
- We are continuing to look for new members to join Vestry. In this pandemic time, we continue our monthly meetings on Zoom. We are looking for committed, creative, and passionate persons who may be able to work together with others as we grow the parish and continue to reach out in love to others.
- We are looking for information that will help us enhance our online worship. If you have suggestions concerning how we might be able to continue to reach out in love through this online opportunity, please email the parish. In addition, we invite the parish to continue to share our online information with family members who may have become disconnected with the parish or may have moved away. We can continue to be a blessing for persons, no matter where they are living. Share the good news of how God continues to help us be the community of faith wherever we live.
- The Vestry provisionally passed a budget for 2021. This will be discussed and affirmed at the Annual General Meeting, which is tentatively set for March 21 (Subject to Provincial Regulations of COVID-19 Alert Status). The budget is austere, and reflects the new reality that within which we are operating. The budget projects a $33,000 shortfall, to be filled by using the remainder of the Clarke Bequest. This is not the ideal for us at the parish, yet we recognize that we are living in uncertain times. This is a short term solution. In future years, we will have to find ways to adjust our patterns of being so that we can live within our means. This may mean large changes over the next three years. We ask you to pray and consider how Jesus may be calling us to be in this next period of the life of the parish.
- Revenue: $23,440
- Expenses: ($26,754)
- Gain (Loss): ($3,314)
- Revenue: $19,866
- Expenses: ($32,488)
- Gain (Loss): ($12,622)
- Services During the Week:
I remember so vividly the first time we drove to Burgeo. It was May 1998, and I had been asked to serve as the Catechist for the Parish of Burgeo for three months. Krista and I packed up the things we needed, and together with an eighteen month old Leah, drove over the Trans Canada Highway. When we got to the Burgeo turn off, it was uncharted territory for us. The sign said ‘Burgeo, 254km.’ A further sign reminded us that there were no gas stations between the highway and Burgeo.
We drove off, and around every turn there was newness and opportunity, beautiful vistas and a stunning skyline. It reminded me of some of the land I had seen while living on Baffin Island. We chatted away with nervous excitement about what life would bring and how we would live in this unknown place for a time, with the community there.
Upon arrival at Burgeo we were welcomed warmly with open arms. The warden and her family became the closest of friends. Despite uncertainty and fear, I embraced the pastoral and liturgical responsibilities, and fell in love with the place, while falling in love with the people even more deeply.
While not ordained, I served as a pastor in my role as Catechist. I was seen in a different light than in other places before. I was not seen as a student, a son, a volunteer, even as a youth worker. I was seen as the Spiritual leader within the community. In some ways I felt as if this time served to form and mould me into the kind of priest that I have become. I led my first services. I buried the dead and cared for the grieving. I helped the parish leadership make decisions. I baptized infants for the first time, and prepared families for baptism and couples for marriage. To me, Burgeo will always be the place where my calling as a priest and pastor was first enacted.
I relate this story to you, for when I hear the story from Genesis about Abram and Sarai, I think of the journey that that couple had undertaken. I think of the challenges they were faced with, and how the Holy One blessed them with a covenant, a binding promise. This promise was that they would become ancestors of many nations; with that promise came the name change. Abram became Abraham, Sarai became Sarah. They had outward signs that revealed the blessing that had been bestowed upon them.
I believe Krista and I changed during our time in Burgeo. While we didn’t have name changes, our titles adjusted for a time, and our identities became formed by the blessing of knowing and being with the beautiful people of Burgeo. Burgeo for me became a sign that affirmed and propelled my journey further as a child of God, a priest of the church, and a follower of Jesus in community with others.
Now, in this pandemic lockdown, I find we are going on another journey. Like the road to Burgeo, there are many turns, twists, and hills. It is a long road, one with few stopping points on the way. It is a road where we are not completely sure of the time it will take to get to our destination. There may be frustrations and challenges on this road.
This road will change us, and we are encouraged to journey this road with our closest family, and with the Holy One. There may be grief and uncertainty, perhaps frustration and anxiety. I believe this road will lead us to a renewed understanding of community. This road will help us to leave behind things that are nonessential, and encourage us to appreciate the blessings we have.
May we live the covenant this Lent, this lockdown. May we encounter the Holy One and be called by name. May we embrace the journey understanding that we will be changed, but knowing that the Holy One will be with us every step of the way, blessing us and offering us hope and love.
Prayers of the People
Jesus Christ intercedes for us at all times. Together let us remember and pray to God through Christ, saying: Have Mercy, O Lord.
For the church, that the fasting of these forty days may clear away much that is needless, and so open our eyes to the bright glory of the cross. We remember Samuel our Bishop, the parishes of Burin, Parish by the Sea, and Carbonear, and for those worshipping in Nicaragua, we pray: Have Mercy, O Lord.
For the church, that those baptized at Easter will learn from us to read and ponder and cherish the scripture: Have Mercy, O Lord.
For the children of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, that the Jewish people may find blessing and a zeal for justice in their covenant with God, we pray: Have Mercy, O Lord.
For all who suffer want, that God in his mercy may turn our hearts toward one another and bring us to end our faithless reliance on weapons, war, and the threat of war, we pray: Have Mercy, O Lord.
For prisoners, that all who are bound in body may find such a strength of spirit to lift up all of us, we pray: Have Mercy, O Lord.
For ourselves, for those on our Parish Prayer Cycle, that this church may walk both as burdened and as free as Jesus, we pray: Have Mercy, O Lord.
For ourselves in this assembly, that we may strain forward toward Easter, especially all who are impacted by the Pandemic, those undergoing testing, those who received positive results, those in isolation, all our teachers who continue to provide online education to our students and for all students who are adapting to this new form of leaning, all front line workers and health care professionals and all those who are working tirelessly to combat this Pandemic believing in our every deed the good news, we pray: Have mercy, O Lord.
For all who have died, especially Ronald Buckley, that they be at peace, we pray: Have Mercy, O Lord.
God, whose ways are beyond our knowing or approving, place the world’s troubles ever in our plain sight, and be yourself in our seeing and in our praying. We ask this always through Christ our Lord. Amen.
Ascension Prayer Cycle: Aden, Ann, Aubrey, Audrey, Barbara, Baxter, Bob, Brenda, Brian, Brittany, Brandon, Carl, Cathy, Christina, Cindy, Claire, Clarence, David, Debra, Delilah, Dennis, Don, Donna, Doreen, Dot, Doug, Dulcie, Edgar, Elaine, Erin, Finnley, Frederick, Fred, Frank, Flo, Garrett, George, Gerry, Glenda, Gordon, Harry, Hilda, Ike, Ina, Ingrid, Ira, Jack, Jason, Jennifer, Jenny, Jim, John, Josephine, Judy, Junior, Kent, Kevin, Kim, Laura, Leo, Leonie, Lindsay, Lori, Louise, Madeline, Marie, Marsha, Mark, Marion, Maurice, Maxine, Maxwell, Melissa, Melvin, Michelle, Mike, Moana, Nancy, Pam, Phyllis, Rachel, Randell, Rodney, Roland, Ruby, Ruth, Rita, Sean, Shirley, Stephen, Susan, Tina, Todd, Tom, Valerie, Vera, Victoria and Wayne
Prayer to be used during the Pandemic:
God of compassion,
be close to those who are ill, afraid or in isolation.
In their loneliness, be their consolation;
in their anxiety, be their hope;
in their darkness, be their light;
through him who suffered alone on the cross,
but reigns with you in glory,
Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
whose Son was revealed in majesty
before he suffered death upon the cross,
give us faith to perceive his glory,
that being strengthened by his grace
we may be changed into his likeness, from glory to glory;
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and for ever. AMEN
A Reading from the Book of Genesis
When Abram was ninety-nine years old, the Lord appeared to Abram, and said to him, "I am God Almighty; walk before me, and be blameless. And I will make my covenant between me and you, and will make you exceedingly numerous." Then Abram fell on his face; and God said to him, "As for me, this is my covenant with you: You shall be the ancestor of a multitude of nations. No longer shall your name be Abram, but your name shall be Abraham; for I have made you the ancestor of a multitude of nations. I will make you exceedingly fruitful; and I will make nations of you, and kings shall come from you. I will establish my covenant between me and you, and your offspring after you throughout their generations, for an everlasting covenant, to be God to you and to your offspring after you. As for Sarai your wife, you shall not call her Sarai, but Sarah shall be her name. I will bless her, and moreover I will give you a son by her. I will bless her, and she shall give rise to nations; kings of peoples shall come from her." GENESIS 17:1-7, 15-16
Reader: The Word of the Lord
People: Thanks be to God
Praise the Lord, you that fear him; stand in awe of him, O offspring of Israel; all you of Jacob’s line, give glory.
For he does not despise nor abhor the poor in their poverty; neither does he hide his face from them; but when they cry to him he hears them.
My praise is of him in the great assembly; I will perform my vows in the presence of those who worship him.
The poor shall eat and be satisfied, and those who seek the Lord shall praise him: “May your heart live for ever!”
All the ends of the earth shall remember and turn to the Lord, and all the families of the nations shall bow before him.
For kingship belongs to the Lord; he rules over the nations.
To him alone all who sleep in the earth bow down in worship; all who go down to the dust fall before him.
My soul shall live for him; my descendants shall serve him; they shall be known as the Lord’s for ever.
They shall come and make known to a people yet unborn the saving deeds that he has done.
Father, your tortured Son felt abandoned, and cried out in anguish from the cross, yet you delivered him. He overcame the bonds of death and rose in triumph from the grave. Do not hide your face from those who cry out to you: feed the hungry, strengthen the weak, and break the chains of the oppressed, that your people may rejoice in your saving deeds. This we ask in the name of Jesus Christ our Saviour.
Reader: The Lord be with you
People: and also with you
The Holy Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ According to Mark
People: Glory to, you Lord Jesus Christ
Jesus began to teach his disciples that the Son of Man must undergo great suffering, and be rejected by the elders, the chief priests, and the scribes, and be killed, and after three days rise again. He said all this quite openly. And Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him. But turning and looking at his disciples, he rebuked Peter and said, "Get behind me, Satan! For you are setting your mind not on divine things but on human things." He called the crowd with his disciples, and said to them, "If any want to become my followers, let them deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me. For those who want to save their life will lose it, and those who lose their life for my sake, and for the sake of the gospel, will save it. For what will it profit them to gain the whole world and forfeit their life? Indeed, what can they give in return for their life? Those who are ashamed of me and of my words in this adulterous and sinful generation, of them the Son of Man will also be ashamed when he comes in the glory of his Father with the holy angels."
Reader: The Gospel of Christ
People: Praise to you, Lord Jesus Christ
Prayer over the Gifts
God of wisdom,
may the light of the eternal Word,
our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ,
guide us to your glory.
We ask this in his name. AMEN
Prayer after Communion
Creator of heaven and earth,
we thank you for these holy mysteries,
which bring us now a share in the life to come,
through Jesus Christ our Lord. AMEN
Anglian Church of Canada One Licence #733242-A Book of Alternative Services The Taizé Community Book of Common Praise GIA Publications Wee Worship Book The Iona Community CCLI License # 1733318Resources for Chimes from the above sources