Third Sunday in Lent
Friday 10 March 2023
Dear Members and Friends of St. Paul’s,
This week is the Third Sunday in Lent. Our Gospel reading this week is, once again, from John (4:5-42). It is the story of the Samaritan women at the well. Jesus is traveling with his disciples through Samaria. Jesus arrives at the communal well in a village and asks a Samaritan woman for a drink. Jesus is going against cultural and religious norms by talking to a Samaritan – and not just any Samaritan but a woman. From the conversation it sounds like the women may have even been somewhat of an outcast in her own society. She has had multiple husbands and is now living with a man who is not her husband. It has been suggested that is why she was at the well in midday. Most women drew water in the cool of the morning – it was a communal event. Jesus holds a conversation with the women without regard to her standing in society. Without regard to the strictures his society places against interreacting with Samaritans. The sparring is wonderful and in the midst of that conversation the women comes to believe he is the Messiah. And through her many others came to believe.
I find it interesting that the last two weeks Jesus has encountered people who are curious. Nicodemus – a Pharisee, had heard, and perhaps witnessed, Jesus’ healings and other signs. This week an outsider having a conversation with Jesus comes to the knowledge that she is speaking with the Messiah. They both ask Jesus questions. Questions about God’s reign. As we prepare for Easter during this Lenten season, I wonder what questions you have for Jesus? What questions are on your hearts that can lead you to God’s living water?
Program Click here to view/print the program for the service for our Sunday Eucharist. This will allow you to better participate in our worship.
Calling all Singers!
Our choir is starting up again! All are welcome to join in and “Make a joyful noise to the Lord.” Choir rehearsals are Saturday starting at 1:00, after the sack lunch distribution. If you would like more information, see Justin after the Sunday service, or e-mail the church and I will forward your e-mail to Justin.
New Website We are excited to announce that our new website is up and running. It is still under construction so watch for additional content as the weeks go on. One new feature is the ability to easily give using this website. Just click on the giving link on any of the pages to set up a one-time or recurring donation. The website is at stpaulssacramento.org.
Masks The community level of Covid-19 in Sacramento County continues to be medium based on cases and hospitalizations, according to the most recent update from the C.D.C. on March 9th. We recommend wearing masks indoors, especially when singing in the congregation. Our COVID response guide includes following health guidance so at this time we will be masking except when eating and drinking.
Livestream of the service This week we will, technology willing, again use two platforms for sharing in our worship: YouTube and St. Paul’s Facebook page. St. Paul’s YouTube channel can be found here: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UcjU73KRrR_-y3gc9n_gr80A Our Facebook page can be found here: https://www.facebook.com/StPaulsSacramento/ Ingathering– Project (Re)Start Please sign the project restart cards that are on the back table – and this week they really will be on the back table! Each bin includes a card letting those who receive the bins that they have been put together with love.
Soundbath Evensong Does your heart need some solace? Our next Soundbath service will be this Sunday March 12 at 5pm. This service combines the beauty of Anglican evensong with contemporary elements from our Lenten materials from A Sanctified Art and a meditative soundbath. Join us for an experience of healing through song, sound, and silence.
Book Group: This Here Flesh continues on Monday evenings, 6:30pm on Zoom. “By listening to another person’s stories—about God, about their greatest hope, about their deepest pain—we learn about their experience and reflect anew on our own.” Books and copies of the schedule are available in the narthex this Sunday. We will meet for an hour, reflect on what struck us in Cole’s stories and share our own related stories, using story sharing practices. If you have questions or need a copy of the book email Karen at firstname.lastname@example.org We will be meeting on Mondays through May 15, except for Holy Week. This week we’re talking about Body. You’re welcome to join whenever your schedule allows.
Zoom information for this group: Join Zoom Meeting https://us02web.zoom.us/j/81226569092?pwd=VUVpRU82Q2ZyNkJCT210dTE2aU1rZz09 Meeting ID: 812 2656 9092 Passcode: Learn Dial by your location +1 669 900 9128 US (San Jose) +1 646 558 8656 US (New York) Meeting ID: 812 2656 9092 Passcode: 580581
Lenten Resources Lenten Ingathering This lent we are collecting blankets, sleeping bags, and socks for our cold neighbors. Recently Safe Space wound down their ministry, so we now have room to store more to help those who come to our doors. Please consider donating to this expanding ministry at St. Paul’s.
Living Compass We have the Living Compass Lenten mediation booklets available. You can pick one up starting this week. If you would like one mailed to you, please e-mail the church at email@example.com
Join the Journey Through Lent A poster that leads us on the path through lent to Easter. Each day on the journey there are short activities and suggestions to prepare for Easter. It is like an Advent calendar – but without the chocolate! They can be picked up in the back of the church.
Sanctified Art Lenten Material We have several offerings from Sanctified Art. We have a devotional booklet “Seeking: honest questions for deeper faith.” The devotional booklets can be picked up in church or can be mailed to you. In addition, there are cards for each day of Lent that offer a question to ponder as well as a daily prayer. The cards for the first week of Lent are available to be picked up at the church.
Living Compass Lenten Group sponsored by Trinity Cathedral Please join us for our Living Compass Lenten Book Group, a seven-week discussion of Practicing Compassion with All Your Heart, Soul, Strength, and Mind. To sign up for the group, please email the Rev. Anne Dryden McKeever at firstname.lastname@example.org to receive the Zoom link and arrange to receive your free copy of the booklet either at church on a Sunday or via postal mail. We’re grateful to our Diocesan Partners in Ministries of Health for providing these booklets to us at no cost. And we give thanks for Susan Hotchkiss, who will handle technology for us. When: Noon - 1:30 pm Mondays, February 20, 27, March 6, 13, 20, 27, and April 3. Where: Zoom Midweek Noon Services Come join us on Wednesdays and Fridays for midweek Eucharist at 12:10. We use the lessons assigned from Holy Women, Holy Men. It is a great way to learn more about the “saints” of the church. The “noon” services start at 12:10 pm.
Save the Date for WordFest! Psalms: Lament, Listen, Laugh
Saturday, May 6 | 10:00 am – 2:00 pm Zoom Only Back by popular demand! If you are a lay reader or lay preacher, or just love to learn about scripture, join us for WordFest. This year, we are examining the Psalms – understanding them, and learning different ways to share them effectively in worship. Registration details to come. Zoom: $10 per person
Getting the Word Out One way of letting others know about St. Paul’s is to “Share” the livestream of our worship services that are on St. Paul’s Facebook page to your individual Facebook page or to start a “watch party” on Facebook. It’s a very efficient way of sharing access to our worship and liturgy with others. If you are not able to join us at 10 a.m., the service will be recorded on both our YouTube page and our Facebook page so you can share in the service as your schedule allows.
Keeping up Appearances The grounds can always use a bit of sprucing! If you have a little free time to pick up litter and sweep the walks it would be greatly appreciated.
Giving We will again be blessing the gifts given this week at the “Offertory” and together we will pray a “Doxology” of gratitude. I am so grateful for your ongoing support to cover the financial expenses of St. Paul’s, so we are able to continue our vital ministry." Gifts can be sent to: St. Paul’s Episcopal Church P.O. Box 160914 Sacramento, CA 95816 Should you not wish to mail checks or don’t have access to stamps, please use your bank’s Bill Pay feature to set up your recurring gift. You can also give through our website at stpaulssacramento.org/give We pray over these gifts every week asking God’s blessing upon them and that we be wise stewards of everyone’s generosity.
The Very Rev. Rik Rasmussen Rector & Dean of the Capitol Deanery