"...you will be my witnesses..."
In December, I signed up for a course to be offered this month by the Calgary School for Discipleship (formerly the Calgary School for Mission & Ministry). It is called Foundations of Preaching. I bought the required textbook and dutifully read it, underlining important passages and making notes in the margin. I read and listened to the examples of sermons provided by the course instructors. I considered the questions I will need to respond to, as part of my homework. It wasn't until I was actually in the Zoom meeting for the first lecture, that it dawned on me that I would be expected to deliver a sermon, a recorded sermon in front of a live congregation, for people not only in the pews at the time, but to be watched by those at home, or...gasp...anyone in the world!
Me...giving a sermon...in front of my brothers and sisters of my home parish. Yikes.
And yet, this should not be such an intimidation at all; this should be an opportunity to speak the message of Christ before a welcoming, receptive audience, who truly care for me, and want to hear my thoughts. And if the Spirit has nudged me to take this Preaching course in the first place, surely this same Spirit will fill my mind and my mouth with the necessary, life-giving words for those listeners whoever and wherever they may be.
This same Spirit is with all of us as we journey each day through our lives. You may not be standing in a pulpit with a paper sermon in hand, but you are called to bear witness to everyone you encounter at any time of the day.
"But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth." - Acts 1:8
St. Magloire, Drumheller:
At the request of the parishioners of St. Magloire, Drumheller, Diocesan Council concurred with the motion to disestablish the Parish. The Parish has requested that they be established as a Mission. This request and the future of the building of St. Magloire's is still being worked out. Please pray for the former parishioners as they discern their way forward.
The Rev. Dr. Carolyn Langford:
The Rev. Dr. Carolyn Langford, former Interim Incumbent at Church of the Ascension, Coaldale, has stepped down from her position as of December 31, 2021. We are grateful for Carolyn's ministry for over three years at Ascension, and wish her well in her future ministry.
The Diocesan office staff are mostly working from home at this time. Staff are available by email. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org for confirmation of contact information on the staff person you are wanting to reach.
An Encouraging Homily
St. Augustine, Lethbridge, from Sunday, January 16
One of our newest priests gave "an excellent homily" this past Sunday at St. Augustine, Lethbridge. You can find the Link here.
This "incredible, encouraging and hopeful" sermon offers a timely word of encouragement. Thank you, Rev. Gillian!
St. Martin, Calgary
St. Martin's is one of the original Anglican parishes in Calgary and is located in an established community on the western edge of the city. Our unique new building, to which we have recently moved, has been extensively renovated. This offers exciting new opportunities for both Parish and community involvement.
We aspire to be a vibrant, multi-generational community of Christian faith, grounded in our Anglican heritage, yet open to innovation. We respect diversity in the Church and in the world, are responsive to those in need, and have a humble appreciation for the mystery of God.
We are looking forward to welcoming a new incumbent who will support us as we grow into our new Parish home. We are still accepting applications, and will continue until we have a successful candidate.
Our profile is available upon request; please email The Ven. Dr. Pilar Gateman.
New Technology in the Diocesan Office
As the pandemic continues to stretch out before us, using the technology God has blessed us with has become paramount. A new piece of technology called “the Owl” has been introduced to the Synod office, which will make holding Zoom video conferences easier and more inclusive.
The Owl is a 360 degree camera, microphone and speaker system that enables hybrid gatherings, bridging the gap where attendees are in-person and online. This incredible little device connects to a computer or smart TV and uses a split screen to focus on the current speaker, while showing the other participants online. The Owl rotates to focus on a new speaker, without shifting too quickly to making those online dizzy. This new technology will allow everyone to attend meetings, workshops, seminars and courses, without being held back by inclement weather or distance.
Many thanks to Larry Taerum, the Diocesan tech guru who keeps our technology current and running smoothly.
All Saints, Cochrane
Monday evenings, beginning January 31 via Zoom.
Alpha is a weekly meeting of inquirers or refreshers who research and discuss the Christian Gospel and what it means to be a disciple of Christ. There are fifteen sessions, including a Holy Spirit Weekend, each lasting no longer than an hour and a half.
Fr. Tony will lead the sessions with some co-leaders.
Alpha is very informative and much fun! Please register to receive the Zoom link by emailing Sonya or calling (403) 932-6556.
Grief Support for Loss of a Loved One:
The Rev. Deacon Elizabeth Short, Director of En-Courage, will be offering this six-week course. Please contact her at email@example.com or call (403) 660-5636 to register and receive the Zoom link.
There is no cost for this course, but donations gratefully accepted for All Saints Parish House.
Cursillo AGM via Zoom
Friday, January 21, 2022 7:30 pm
On Friday, January 21, we will hold our AGM via Zoom. The AGM Report Booklet and Financials have been posted on the Cursillo website under AGM Files. The Secretariat positions of Treasurer, Secretary and Fourth Day Chair will need to be filled; job descriptions can also be found on the Cursillo website. Please prayerfully consider if you are called to serve on Secretariat. For more information on the duties of these positions, or to receive the Zoom link, please contact Gerald Ingeveld.
Leading Reserved Sacrament Course
The Rev. Betty Piwowar
ACW Zoom Hymn Sing
Sunday, February 6, at 7:00 pm
To register and receive the Zoom link, click here to email, or call (403) 734-2130.
2022 Delegates Assembly (February 10th): On February 10th, we invite you to attend the online Delegates Assembly. During this Delegates Assembly, we will set our direction for the year to come, take action on our campaigns, prepare for a new listening campaign and amend our bylaws. We ask that each of our member organization’s delegates attend and that they bring their core teams with them as we come together to discuss, act, and work together. RSVP here.
Hamper delivery volunteers wanted: At the start of the pandemic we responded to the food insecurity it created by having our members volunteer to deliver food hampers to people in need. The Calgary Food Bank has now taken on this role, by starting their own in-house Hamper Delivery Project. The Calgary Food Bank would like to increase the number of hamper delivery volunteers in the effort to work toward meeting demand. If you want to reach out to the Calgary Food Bank about joining the project, please reach out to Laura Harrisson or Michelle Vetland.
History of Jew Hate – The Never Ending Story (January 27th): In honour of International Holocaust Remembrance Day, please join internationally renowned Jewish author and educator Ben M. Freeman as he discusses Jewish identity, combating antisemitism and raising awareness of the Holocaust. This event is hosted by the Calgary Jewish Federation. RSVP on Facebook here.
Chair of Christian Thought Lectures
Two Lectures: Friday, January 28 and Saturday, January 29
What Counts as a Charism? Discerning Signs of Grace in the Life of Pauli Murray: Friday, January 28, 3:00 - 4:30 pm. Should we think of charisms as a specific set of spiritual gifts demarcated in scripture? Or might certain human lives expand our understanding of what counts as a spiritual gift? This lecture will explore the eclectic, often-contested charisms that enabled Murray to engage in faithful risk-taking and maintain dialogue with people holding opposing views about human difference. Register here.
Harriet Powers, Rosie Lee Tomkins and their Stitched Sermons: Saturday, January 29, 1:00 - 2:30 pm. What if truth is less of an abstract concept and something one experiences primarily through colour, texture and symbol? Harriet Powers and Rosie Lee Tomkins shared this more fluid view of truth and used quilting to proclaim their faith. This lecture will offer historical portraits of Powers and Tomkins, relect on the proclamatory dimensions of select compositions, and examine the implications of treating quilts as expressions of spirituality and vehicles for preaching. Register here.
In connection with this Bentall Lecture on Christian Education and Theology, there will be an exhibition of quilts made by the Grace Presbyterian Church Quilters. If you are interested in learning more about this exhibition, please contact Dr. Carolyn Muessig, Chair of Christian Thought.
United Nations World Interfaith Harmony Week
February 1 to 7, 2022
This year's theme is Healing, Wholeness and Hope.
All community-wide events will be held via Zoom.
February 1: 7:00 pm, Opening Ceremony with featured speaker, Calgary's Mayor Jyoti Gondek. Prayers from some of Calgary's many faith traditions
February 2: 7:00 pm, Prayer Vigil "Sharing Prayers for Healing, Wholeness and Hope"
February 3: 7:00 pm, Panel Discussion on "Hope, Healing and Wholeness in Our Times" with Dr. Harjot Singh (Sikh Community), Fr. Adrian Martins (RC Archdiocese of Calgary), Imam Fayaz Tilly, Tony Snow (Indigenous Minister, United Church of Canada); Moderator Rev. Natasha Brubaker (Anglican Church)
February 4 to 6: Pulpit Exchanges - Congregations around Calgary will host speakers from other faith communities to address our theme during worship
February 7: Closing Ceremony
Day Camps in 2022
With the hope that communities will be more confident about opening their doors to summer activities, Crosstalk Ministries is offering Day Camps for Summer 2022.
This year, the theme is "Follow the Leader" to be offered in three formats:
- A virtual experience, which families can hold in their own backyards, or share among neighbours
- The Super Day Camp Experience, with virtual mentoring for communities new to our materials
- The Basic Day Camp Experience, a community-led program that includes all the resources needed to host a Day Camp.
For more information or to order the resources, please contact Valerie, Day Camp Director
Phishing Scams Happening Again
Once again, there have been several phishing attempts reported to the Diocesan Office. If you receive a request from one of our staff asking for your help, and you are suspicious, please do not respond and delete the email.
Phishing emails may look extremely authentic. Here are some tips on how to protect your confidential personal information:
· Do not click on links OR open attachments in emails or messages from people that you do not know.
· Remember that the Archbishop or the staff would never ask you for assistance in this way.
· Look out for spelling or grammatical errors.
· Check the sender’s email address. Is this address the same as you would usually see from this person or organization?
· Be cautious with any unexpected messages. When in doubt, delete.
These emails are not harmful to your computer, just annoying.
We'd Like to Hear from You
We are interested in what is happening in your parish and would love to highlight those events and news in our newsfeed.
We look forward to your contributions - feel free to forward your event announcements, your parish news, your stories. Send in your details and pictures to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Please remember in your prayers:
- our clergy and churches as we continue to find our way forward in these strange times;
- those who are sick, suffering, fearful or in need, remembering those suffering from COVID-19 and their caregivers, those feeling isolated and those who are vulnerable;
- for Michelle, Monica, Howard, Travis and Barbara W.;
- those who have died and those who mourn;
- the victims of violence and natural disasters;
- our Indigenous brothers and sisters, especially remembering their hurt and grief at this time;
- refugees, remembering those fleeing the Taliban regime.
Request a prayer:
Send prayer requests to email@example.com to let us know how we can pray for you. We will only use first names which will be removed after two or three weeks. We will also pray for you during our regular Chapel services each week. Please ensure that you have permission from those whose names you are submitting for prayer, and that they understand their name will be made public to all who subscribe to the Newsletter.