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.
- Weekly Service Guidelines – Many Members, One Body: As you may have heard and seen, the Diocese has offered amended guidelines to Many Members, One Body (https://anglicanenl.net/home/covid19/) as we are now in a modified Alert Level Four since the latest lockdown. As a result, we will be resuming online streaming from the church on Sunday mornings. These services will be attended by those who are directly associated with the leading of worship and the live-streaming of worship. We will be following all of the guidelines, and conducting ourselves safely so that we can continue in the participation of the liturgy. I pray that as we continue to move through these weeks ahead, the restrictions will continue to adjust based on Provincial requirements, and the great way the entire community has been adapting to the most recent outbreak. I understand the hardship that this has been for so many of us. None of us understood that the events of this past year would be as they were. I continue to encourage you to be gentle with each other, show care and consideration, and always respond in safety and in love. My prayers continue to ever be with you. David
- Palm Crosses: Following the blessing of the palms on Palm Sunday, Palm crosses will be available for the community to receive. For those interested in getting Palm crosses, a table will be set up in the vestibule of the church at the front steps on Sunday, March 28 from 12 noon until 1:00 pm. When coming to the church, please wear your mask and practice proper physical distancing and safe practices as per Dr. Fitzgerald's provincial guidelines. Family and Friends of the Ascension
- Photos of Holy Week Services: If you have any photos of past years Holy Week Services, including Palm Sunday, Maundy Thursday, Good Friday, Easter Vigil and Easter Day, please send them to [email protected]. We are hoping to prepare slide shows for use during the up-coming Holy Week services. Thank you.
- Ministerial of Mount Pearl: Clergy from the Ministerial of Mount Pearl along with the Mayor of Mount Pearl, the Principal of Mount Pearl Senior High, and the Coordinator of the Mount Pearl Senior’s Independence Group came together this past month to offer a Vigil for those affected by the most recent lockdown due to the COVID-19 variant. Please take time to watch this Youtube video at https://youtu.be/xBGRV-OxFTU, and share it with your friends and family. Together we can be people of hope and care at this time.
- 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.
- Lent in a Bubble: 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.
- Lenten Folders: The church office is closed to the public due to the recent Covid 19 outbreak. As a result, your Lenten folders are not available for pick up. If you wish to contribute, you may do so by placing your donation in an envelope and dropping it in the church mailbox located at the front steps of the church. You may also donate electronically on line at canadahelps.org/en/charities/parish-of-the-ascension-mount-pearl/. Thank you.
- 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]
- 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 $6,585. 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.
- Services During the Week:
Time continues to roll on, the days unfold, as the world continues to move through this pandemic. For Christians, we are moving into the fifth week of Lent. The readings for this week hearken back to some words we heard at the beginning of our Lenten journey. Words of covenant, words of mercy, heart language. It is a time when some people can feel as if they are being propelled forward into the journey of Holy Week, almost racing, as if nothing can stop, that no pause is possible.
The decisions that many of us made at the beginning of Lent may seem so far away at this time. What have we promised to take up? From what will we fast? How will we mark prayer and reflection during this journey? If these were questions you asked, reflect back now. Pause. See where you have been and how your journey has progressed.
These questions may be similar in nature to how the world entered the pandemic, and subsequent lockdowns, for us in March of 2020 and again in February of 2021. At the beginning of these times, did you ask questions? Did you make plans? What was guiding you or propelling you? Did you promise certain patterns of life?
In the Scripture for this week, I am mindful of the relationship between the Holy one and humanity. The words that leap off the page for me are:
‘I will make a new covenant . . .’
‘I will put my law within them, I will write it on their hearts.’
Jeremiah 31: 31,33
‘Have mercy on me O God, according to your steadfast love . . .’
‘Create in me a clean heart; renew a right spirit within me . . .’
Psalm 51: 1,10
‘Unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains just a single grain; but if it dies, it bears much fruit.’
This takes me to the images I share with you this week. The first is a mosaic gifted to Krista and I from a dear friend that we met at Iona in 2017. The mosaic contains beauty from the cracked shards of abandoned glass and pottery. The mosaic means much to me for it came at a time during sabbatical when I was taking intentional time to reconnect spiritually, after journeying through life and ministry at breakneck pace. The broken shards remind me of the realities of life and of ministry, which when assembled and offered through the Holy One, bring beauty and purpose.
The second image is of straw flowers, which even in their death display beauty, yet only in their dismantling and destruction, reveal the seed and the possibility of new life that can come. The journey that I have reflected upon during this pandemic and in particular in this Lenten season, is that there is much for me, for society, for the entire earth to examine. We have much that needs to be broken apart, offered as redemption, healing and balm, if we are to hope for a new covenant, a new journey of healing and of joy in the future. We as individuals, as society, as the inhabitants of the earth, must accept responsibility for wrongs: personal failings, community transgressions, and systemic injustice. We must write a new way into our hearts, so that human dignity, care for creation, and justice be present for ourselves, for the community, and for the entire world.
What has broken in you, or for you this Lent, this pandemic?
How have you been held even in your brokenness?
Who has come alongside you to bring beauty to your brokenness?
How are you moving in the directions of healing, beauty, justice and love?
Prayers of the People
The hour has come; now is the time to glorify God’s name. Let us intercede for the church and for all God’s creation, turning to God, we pray: Lord, your kingdom has come.
You are our God:
May those who are poor and those who are rich, those near and those far, welcome your covenant of peace, we pray: Lord, your kingdom has come.
We are your people:
Be with those who will receive your promise in baptism at Easter, we pray: Lord, your kingdom has come.
You honour those who chose to serve:
Help us to be true followers of your servant Son. We pray for Samuel our Bishop, for the Parishes of Churchill Falls and Cow Head, and for our brothers and sister in the Diocese of Atlanta: we pray: Lord, your kingdom has come.
We know that we must die so that we may truly live: strengthen all who suffer in mind or body especially those on our Ascension Prayer Cycle, we pray: Lord, your kingdom has come.
You draw all people to yourself:
Bring us out of our slavery to possessions and away from the desire for wealth, we pray: Lord, your kingdom has come.
We remember those in the Pandemic:
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, those who work in the ICU and Covid Units, believing in our every deed the good news, that after a year of turmoil and strife we are closer to having a vaccine and freeing the world of this virus, we pray: Lord, your kingdom has come.
We remember the dead:
Especially Edgar LeDrew, Yvonne Benmore and Dennis May, and the Asian community in Atlanta Georgia as they mourn the death of those who were murdered this past week, bring them to eternal rest and peace, we pray: Lord, your kingdom has come.
Lord God, show us the way of obedience through patient endurance and the way of glory through the law written in our hearts. Hear our prayers and come to our aid. We pray through Christ our Lord. Amen.
Ascension Prayer Cycle: Aden, Amelia, Ann, Aubrey, Audrey, Barbara, Baxter, Bob, Brenda, Brian, Brittany, Brandon, Callum, Carl, Cathy, Christina, Cindy, Claire, Clarence, David, Debra, Delilah, Dennis, Derrick, Don, Donna, Doreen, Dot, Doug, Dulcie, Ed, Edgar, Elaine, Emily, Erin, Evelyn, Finnley, Frederick, Fred, Frank, Flo, Garrett, George, Gerry, Glenda, Gordon, Harry, Hilda, Ike, Ina, Ingrid, Ira, Jack, Jason, Jennifer, Jenny, Jim, John, Josephine, Joan, 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 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.
Most merciful God,
by the death and resurrection
of your Son Jesus Christ,
you created humanity anew.
May the power of his victorious cross
transform those who turn in faith
to him who lives and reigns with you
and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. AMEN
A Reading from the book of Jeremiah
The days are surely coming, says the Lord, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and the house of Judah. It will not be like the covenant that I made with their ancestors when I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt a covenant that they broke, though I was their husband, says the Lord. But this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, says the Lord: I will put my law within them, and I will write it on their hearts; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. No longer shall they teach one another, or say to each other, "Know the Lord," for they shall all know me, from the least of them to the greatest, says the Lord; for I will forgive their iniquity, and remember their sin no more. JEREMIAH 31:31-34
Reader: The Word of the Lord
People: Thanks be 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.
For I know my transgressions,
and my sin is ever before me.
Against you only have I sinned
and done what is evil in your sight.
And so you are justified when you speak
and upright in your judgement.
Indeed, I have been wicked from my birth,
a sinner from my mother’s womb.
For behold, you look for truth deep within me,
and will make me understand wisdom secretly.
Purge me from my sin, and I shall be pure;
wash me, and I shall be clean indeed.
Make me hear of joy and gladness,
that the body you have broken may rejoice.
Hide your face from my sins
and blot out all my iniquities.
Create in me a clean heart, O God,
and renew a right spirit within me.
Cast me not away from your presence
and take not your holy Spirit from me.
Give me the joy of your saving help again
and sustain me with your bountiful Spirit.
Almighty God, to you all hearts are open, all desires known, and from you no secrets are hidden. Cleanse the thoughts of our hearts by the inspiration of your Holy Spirit, that we may perfectly love you, and worthily magnify your holy name; through Christ our Lord. PSALM 51:1-13
Reader: The Lord be with you
People: and also with you
The Holy Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ According to John
People: Glory to, you Lord Jesus Christ
Now among those who went up to worship at the festival were some Greeks. They came to Philip, who was from Bethsaida in Galilee, and said to him, "Sir, we wish to see Jesus." Philip went and told Andrew; then Andrew and Philip went and told Jesus. Jesus answered them, "The hour has come for the Son of Man to be glorified. Very truly, I tell you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains just a single grain; but if it dies, it bears much fruit. Those who love their life lose it, and those who hate their life in this world will keep it for eternal life. Whoever serves me must follow me, and where I am, there will my servant be also. Whoever serves me, the Father will honour. Now my soul is troubled. And what should I say - 'Father, save me from this hour'? No, it is for this reason that I have come to this hour. Father, glorify your name." Then a voice came from heaven, "I have glorified it, and I will glorify it again." The crowd standing there heard it and said that it was thunder. Others said, "An angel has spoken to him." Jesus answered, "This voice has come for your sake, not for mine. Now is the judgement of this world; now the ruler of this world will be driven out. And I, when I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all people to myself." He said this to indicate the kind of death he was to die. JOHN 12:20-33
Reader: The Gospel of Christ
People: Praise to you, Lord Jesus Christ
Prayer over the Gifts
your only Son suffered death upon the cross
to bring the world salvation.
Accept the praise and thanksgiving
we offer you this day,
in the name of Jesus Christ the Lord. AMEN
Prayer after Communion
you have called us to your table
and fed us with the bread of life.
Draw us and all people to your Son,
our Saviour Jesus Christ. 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