'Bad Habits' the Musical ... At the Cathedral, Sunday, March 21, 4:00 p.m.
The Church of the Mediator has been examining the issue: Welcoming and Ministering With People Who Have Special Challenges. This Sunday 3/21 at 9:00 a.m., we will examine the topic of welcoming visitors with physical disabilities. John Luhutsky, a 19-year-old Junior at Freedom High School, will share his compelling story about growing up in Russia in “Baby House 10,” essentially a warehouse for orphans, in a culture which rejected people with disabilities. He managed to survive until he was helped by a foreign correspondent’s wife and eventually adopted by a woman in Bethlehem. John has recently published a book The Boy From Baby House 10: From the Nightmare of a Russian Orphanage to a New Life in America, coauthored with Alan Philips. Episcopal Church of the Mediator, 1620 W Turner Street, Allentown. Services are at 8:00 a.m. and 10:15 a.m. [From Jo Trepagnier, administrative assistant, Mediator Allentown]
Diocesan Life, April ... Download it here.
Gay Men's Chorus ... This Sunday, March 21, the Lehigh Valley Gay Men’s Chorus will perform their spring concert at Grace Allentown, 108 N. Fifth) at 4:00 p.m. The theme of this spring’s concert is “Come Travel With Us” and will include music from around the world. Anyone who has heard this group perform before knows that they always mix the contemporary with the historical and the serious with the humorous. You will enjoy this concert. At each concert there is a silent auction as well as an opportunity to purchase CDs of their past concerts and other items. This year a portion of the proceeds from their concert CD will be donated to the World Rainbow Fund for Haiti. If you have any questions, please free to contact the church office. [From Robert S. House, parish administrator, 610-435-0782 (Office) 610-360-1476 (Cell) or email.
Italian Dinner and Bake Sale ... Saint Andrew’s Episcopal Church located at 1900 Pennsylvania Avenue in Allentown will be hosting an Italian Dinner and Bake Sale on Thursday, March 25th from 5-7 p.m. Cost is $8.00 for adults, $5.00 for children 3-12, and those under 3 years of age are free. Please join us for some delicious food and fellowship. All proceeds from the bake sale will go to ERD for Haiti. [From John Todaro, vestry member]
Winnie Romeril in Haiti... The image of a picture I did not take stays with me. It’s of a sign embedded in my mind since childhood. I’ve caught sight of it all over the world, and it always makes me smile. That red, white and blue shield with the familiar words, The Episcopal Church Welcomes You. I saw a fragment of it on a shattered wall in Leogane, Haiti. Most of the sign was gone, but it was still recognizable to me. I smiled out of habit; I could have cried. [Download Haiti for the Long Haul by Winnie Romeril, daughter of Bob and Canon Gwendolyn-Jane Romeril, who says "two weeks in Puerto Rico" with a Diocese of Bethlehem youth group some years ago, "changed my life."]
Facts about the Diocese of Haiti and the aftermath of the earthquake. Read here. Check the Haiti page of The Episcopal Church for news, updates, resources, videos and important information, as well as the Episcopal Relief and Development website.
Bishop Anthony's visit to the Diocese of Bethlehem ... Find Bishop's Paul's comments and photo covrage of the visit of Kajo Keji Bishop Anthony Poggo to the Diocese of Bethlehem here.
... The best place by far to post news or information about your parish
is on the interactive list of the Diocese of Bethlehem (the House of
Bread) called the Bakery. In order to post there, however, you have to
be joined to the list. Join at the "Get Connected" page at the DioBeth website.
Bakery has some 200 addresses. If you post something about your parish
on Bakery, however, I will most likely include it also on the
twice-weekly newSpin newsletter which goes to some 1,000 addresses. And
Kat may pick it up for use in Diocesan Life.
Prayers of the People are provided by Canon Cliff Carr every Wednesday for the following Sunday. Canon Carr of Trinity Bethlehem tailors the prayers based on the lectionary and what's happening in the world around us, Find Prayers for 5LentC here. Sign up at the "Get Connected" box at the DioBeth website to receive them weekly by email.
Dale H. Brodt, 71, of Allentown, husband of Joan, died on Sunday, March 14. He had once been very active in Cursillo and was a member of the Cathedral Church of the Nativity and senior and junior warden of former parishes. Find obituary and photo here.
Pray for our young men and women who have died in Iraq and Afghanistan, and for their families … Aaron M. Arthur, 25; Lakeshia M. Bailey, 23; Nicholas S. Cook, 19; Jonathan J. Richardson, 24; Jason M. Kropat, 25; Garrett W. Gamble, 20; Jonathan D. Porto, 26; Erin L. McLyman, 26; Glen J. Whetten, 31... for the fallen heroes also of our coalition partners, and for the citizens of Iraq and Afghanistan who have died, unnamed and unknown to us, and for those who mourn ... and for an end to this endless war.
What's Happening? ... Diocesan Events. (One correction: the June 29 Ordination will take place in Wilkes-Barre, at St. Stephen's Pro-Cathedral.)
For those driving to Allentown from other parts of our diocesan community ... You may not know that a cell phone ban in the City of Allentown will begin to be enforced tomorrow (Friday). More here.
Free tax filing ... VITA, a program of the IRS, provides free assistance to help in completing tax forms. VITA sites are open through April 15. VITA and the IRS can save on tax preparation fees and help users to receive their entire refund. To find the closest VITA site, call the IRS at 1-800-906-9887 or check out the partial list here. The special IRS number is available to locate a VITA site where volunteers will provide help in completing a tax return and claiming the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC, available to low income persons/families—learn more here). However, the number is not for EITC questions (those need to go to IRS.gov, or the regular toll-free number at 1-800-829-1040). –– From The Rev. Sandra L. Strauss, Director of Public Advocacy, Pennsylvania Council of Churches. firstname.lastname@example.org, www.pachurchesadvocacy.org
A good diet and regular exercise may help the mind function better, a new study suggests. [H/T to Diana Marshall]
Can you talk your way to happy? Meaningful conversations more fulfilling than small talk, researchers find. [H/T to Diana Marshall]
Episcopal Church Scholarships ... Applications are now being accepted for over 60 scholarships available through The Episcopal Church. Earmarked for education and schooling for Episcopalians, funding for the scholarships is derived from numerous trust funds that have amassed over the years. More info here.
Quit thinking of your church as a family ... Consulting firm to congregation: “The most important thing (Name of Church) will ever do is end whatever amount of ongoing conflict exists as well as quite thinking like a family ... The purpose of the church is to transform both society and individuals to be more Christ-like. This concept goes way beyond family." More at Episcopal Cafe.
The C of E Weddings Project ... "Congratulations! You're welcome to marry in church whatever your beliefs, whether or not you are baptised and whether or not you go to church. And, marrying in church has never been easier thanks to a change in the law which means you now have more churches to choose from." Not kidding. Bill is not attempting bad satire. Read about the Church of England's Weddings Project here. [H/T to Ann Fontaine]
The Limelight, a church turned nightclub, to be reborn as a market ... What is perhaps Manhattan's best-known former house of worship, the Church of the Holy Communion, will be reborn this spring as the Limelight Marketplace, with 35 upscale boutiques and restaurants within its lancet-windowed walls on Avenue of the Americas in Chelsea. More at NYTimes. [H/T to Neva Rae Fox]
Refugees ... Presiding Bishop renews Episcopal Church commitment to refugees and urges reform on 30th anniversary of Refugee Act. “As we mark the 30th anniversary of the Refugee Act, we can celebrate the renewal of life and hope experienced by the thousands of people resettled through Episcopal Migration Ministries .. We will urge Congress to enact much needed reform of the U.S. refugee resettlement program, particularly through seeking the resources necessary to promote self-sufficiency and to integrate refugees seeking life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness in our nation.” Full statement here.
Dying Matters ... To mark the Dying Matters Coalition's first Awareness Week (March 15-21, 2010), the Church of England is encouraging churchgoers to talk openly about dying and death, in a new podcast suitable for sermon and house group use. More here.
Martin Marty on Glenn Beck ... The fact that Mr. Beck charms millions of devotees tells more about the sad state of truth-telling and the high state of lie-receiving than civil citizens should want to hear. Read Marty's Sightings column here.In Africa, a step backward on human rights ... [Washington Post Op-Ed by Desmond Tutu] Hate has no place in the house of God. No one should be excluded from our love, our compassion or our concern because of race or gender, faith or ethnicity -- or because of their sexual orientation. Nor should anyone be excluded from health care on any of these grounds. In my country of South Africa, we struggled for years against the evil system of apartheid that divided human beings, children of the same God, by racial classification and then denied many of them fundamental human rights. We knew this was wrong. Thankfully, the world supported us in our struggle for freedom and dignity. It is time to stand up against another wrong. More here.
The Future of Inclusion ... The Rev. David Norgard, president of Intergrity USA, addressed the students and faculty of Virginia Theological Seminary on March 4. His topic was "The Future of Inclusion." The address has been published in two parts. Part One ... Part Two.
Nuns break from bishops over health care ... "We are the ones who work every day with people who are suffering because they don't have health care. We cannot turn our backs on them, so for us, health care reform is a faith-based response to human need." More here.
Religious groups weigh in on health care as reform may be approaching a make or break moment. More here.
Facebook is now the Number One most visited webaite in the U.S. Google is Number Two. More here.The Episcopal Church ... Website ... NewsLine ... News & Notices ... EpiScope ... InfoLine ... Episcopal Life Online ... FastFacts ... Calendar ... I am Episcopalian ... Weekly Bulletin Inserts ... On Twitter ... On Facebook ... and on YouTube.
Find earlier issues of the newSpin newsletter here.