A Reflection on Sheltering in Place by Rev. George Stonikinis

Some thoughts made possible from sheltering in place…

I believe, and embrace resolutely, that I (we) are loved by Jesus Christ. As I have expressed, this pandemic is NOT God’s punishment perpetrated on sinful people… oh, it’s sinful people alright, but not my Father’s doing.

Because he loves us, He must want good things to come from what we are enduring. And Christ is THE WAY out! I see that in so many unexpected ways we already are making discoveries… sheltering-in-place is leading many to “rethink” many things previously taken for granted!

Honestly, in some ways, I am enjoying this enforced “containment” as it has offered time to study new books, reflect on a variety of materials, even podcasts have produced new ways of thinking.

Reflection takes time, as does the pursuit of the most powerful and profound gift of our Father’s GRACE… prayer! This makes our opportunities for reflection a most precious resource. I might suggest we take a moment to look at how we spend that time for prayer and self-examination… when we do such, something profound emerges…

We all know, we all sense, life will not go back to the way it was… in the words of Seals and Croft:

We may never pass this way again …

I would encourage us all to take a moment to think about all the things in our life that we might never experience again, or experience in the same way/s that we have in the past.

And it is here that we PRAY… pray that we might mature in our ability not to take people and experiences for granted, pray that we might offer solace to those who are filled by loss and promise, pray that we might grow ever more aware that in the hollowness that threat and fear engender we are not alone, and pray that we have become more aware of the reality of our moment to moment living… that we not take each other for granted… that the power and preciousness of our expressed faith not be smothered by a “return to the usual”…

People, God did not do this terrible thing to us, but through Jesus Christ we will handle it. I have said so many times, and I’m sure you have also, “if I had the time!” Well, you got the time… and you need to hold onto it…

“and, soon, when you go back out into that world, remember Christian, that person next to you is your brother or your sister!”

Don’t waste this time you’ve had alone with yourself and God… we have lived some time now on the fringe of our mortality… we need to ask ourselves… “How did we allow Christ to get us through it all, and how are we going to fill our lives with Him when it all begins again??”

Really missing you, George

Service Schedule

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Healing Service Tuesday, June 2nd 7 pm.  The service will be live streamed on Facebook Live up until the healing prayers offered for those in attendance.  Here is the Healing Service Bulletin so you can follow along.

Sunday Services of Holy Communion: 8 a.m., 9:30 a.m. & 11:30 a.m.

We intend for the doors of our church to remain open for most of our scheduled activities; however, nobody is obligated or pressured to come.  Therefore, we will be offering a few options for participating in our services from home

How to Participate in Sunday Services from Home with the Sunday Service Bulletin

  1. Participate via Facebook Live at our 8 a.m. service.  You do not need to have a Facebook login to watch the video.  Go to this link and to the Live video: https://www.facebook.com/Church-of-the-Redeemer-Anglican-1377253895832755/
  2. Watch the Facebook Live Video at anytime following its recording by going to the link above and scrolling down to the video.  Again, you do not need a Facebook login.
  3. Lead yourself (and family) through the service using the Pentecost Sunday Bulletin and listen to the sermon online or via podcast.

For all of the above, you may use or print the attached Sunday bulletin.  I encourage you to participate in the fellowship and communion of our church and the Body of Christ from your home, as you are able.

I invite you to use your wisdom and prudence for your decisions, and I encourage you in all things to have faith in Jesus, his work on the cross and in the resurrection, in everything you do and think. And this is a time to do our best to Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances. (1 Thess 5:16-18) We have plenty of reasons to rejoice, to pray and to give thanks.

The Men’s Bible study groups that normally meet on Wednesday and Thursday mornings will meet only on Thursday mornings at 7:15 a.m. at the church until further notice.  On Sunday mornings, we will not have the Sunday morning Catechism class, continental breakfast or coffee hour until further notice. We will try to provide schedule updates and confirmations each day.

Lectio Divina will continue to be offered each Wednesday at 5:45 p.m. at the church and is also streamed on Facebook Live and posted to our podcast.

If you would like this information emailed to you as updated, please send your email address to redeemercamden@gmail.com

Archbishop Foley Beach’s Letter
Anglican Live Stream Church Service Options
Church of the Redeemer Facebook Page
Church of the Redeemer Podcast

FAMILY AND INDIVIDUAL PRAYER RESOURCES 

We have developed resources for family and individual prayer during this time and afterwards.  These are forms of prayer that can be used by anyone to maintain times of prayer and connection to the Body of Christ.

BCP Family Prayer

New Book on Spiritual Formation by Redeemer’s Rector The Rev. Dr. Craig Stephans

The Anglican House Media Ministry recently released To Be Silent: The Too Busy Church by the Rev. Dr. Craig Stephans.  To Be Silent promotes the spiritual formation of readers through the means of grace of spiritual disciplines with an emphasis on the practice of silence in the Lord’s presence.  The book includes contributions by over a dozen Anglican leaders writing on the value of the spiritual practice of devotional silence.  Readers will come away inspired to seek the Lord and to renew their spiritual disciplines.

At the recent annual synod of the Anglican Diocese of the Mid-Atlantic, Rev. Dr. Stephans led a workshop on the topics of the book.  The recording of the workshop can be accessed on our diocese website or via the Church of the Redeemer podcast here and on iTunes.

To Be Silent: The Too Busy Church is available on Amazon and at Church of the Redeemer.

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