Ministry of St. Francis of Assisi

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October 2014

st-francis-assissiI took this photograph about 10 years ago when I visited Taize in France. For those of you who don’t know what Taize is: it’s an ecumenical community of faith situated in the Burgundy region of France. Established by Br Roger in 1940 as a safe haven for those escaping World War II this village has been transformed in the past nearly 75 years into a pilgrimage site for youth and young people from all over the world to come together worship God and be together in a peaceful, meditative environment. This image of St Francis is in the original chapel and it has been an inspirational image for me that I have carried with me for all these years. I want to share it with you as a gift as I think about the GIFT program that we will offer this October – as well as our other observations marking the life and ministry of St. Francis of Assisi.

The Feast of St Francis of Assisi is October 4. We choose to celebrate his life and ministry on the Sunday following this feast this year through a daylong celebration which begins with our October GIFT Gathering. Where we will have a special presentation from our friends at the Lehigh Valley Zoo, who will be coming to talk to us about conservation and bringing along 5 animal ambassadors, including an African Penguin. The presentation is designed for children and adults ages 6 and up. All are welcome and it will begin promptly at 9:15 am.

During all of our services (and throughout the month of October) our mission project collection will be for items needed for the Peaceable Kingdom in Whitehall. They have provided us with a wish list. If you are interested in delivering these items with Mother Kim on Monday November 3, 2014 please let her know.

In the evening we will celebrate our own furry, scaly, and feathered friends with our Annual Evensong and Blessing of Animals liturgy. This will be our second evensong of the new program year under the direction of Stephen Williams and we are excited to hear what the choir offers up. I love this service as it always provides me with an opportunity to bring my (no longer officially but I still call him one anyway) puppy, Indiana to work with me. This year I am hoping to also have at least one potbellied pig in the pews as well as a few felines and other pets in the congregation. The service begins at 5 pm. Bring your friends and neighbors for this annual observation of St. Francis’ life and ministry to all of God’s creation.

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