Due to treacherous road conditions this evening and tomorrow morning, the parish offices will remain closed today, reopening tomorrow morning at 9:00 a.m. Tonight's Shrove Tuesday party and the 7:00 a.m. Ash Wednesday Liturgy and Holy Eucharist are also cancelled.
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News from St. Peter's Episcopal Church | February 17, 2015
A Holy Lent
“Dear People of God: The first Christians observed with great devotion the days of our Lord’s passion and resurrection, and it became the custom of the Church to prepare for them by a season of penitence and fasting… I invite you, therefore, in the name of the Church, to the observance of a holy Lent, by self-examination and repentance; by prayer, fasting, and self-denial; and by reading and meditating on God’s holy Word” (Book of Common Prayer, pp. 264-65).

With these words from the Ash Wednesday liturgy, the Celebrant calls us to begin our personal and corporate observance of Lent. This year, I am particularly struck by the words, “I invite you….” Formed as I, and perhaps you too, have been by American religious culture, the beginning of Lent often has seemed to bring with it a perceived demand to avoid or abandon some thing deemed unholy. Year after year, pronouncements on social media and in actual conversation of things given up easily overwhelm in number, and sometimes in tone too, those trying to take on some spiritual discipline this season. But framing Lent as our intentional response to God’s invitation to something more, something deeper, something different, begins to correct this imbalance.

So how might you, how might we all, I wonder, in faithful fashion prepare our hearts for Holy Week? In their collective wisdom and experience, the revisers of the 1979 Prayer Book offer us good options—self-examination, repentance, prayer, fasting, self-denial, meditating on scripture. Note that fasting and self-denial are but two of the possibilities. And none are demands. I encourage us to choose one, or something else as the Spirit leads, and by that daily discipline to respond intentionally to the invitation a holy Lent. Who knows where it might lead?

–The Reverend Jonathan E. Soyars, Assisting Priest

Sunday, February 22

Christian Formation classes for all ages in the Parish House,
9:30 a.m.

Coffee Hour in the Community Room, second floor of the Parish House immediately following the
10:45 a.m. service.

Worship services at 8:00 a.m., 10:45 a.m., 5:00 p.m., and 6:15 p.m.

Worship Schedule

8:00 a.m.
Holy Eucharist, Rite I
10:45 a.m.
Holy Eucharist, Rite II
5:00 p.m.
Evensong (second and 4th Sundays, through March 22)
6:15 p.m.
Holy Eucharist
with Music
Monday through Friday
8:00 a.m.
Morning Prayer in the Chapel
Tuesdays and Thursdays
"Holy Food, Holy People," Holy Communion (about 30 minutes in the Chapel)



Sunday's Worship & Music Leaflets
The Rector's Blog
In our prayers this week
The Choir School at St. Peter's
Center City Concerts at St. Peter's
The Seal of St. Peter's Episcopal Church
"You are Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church."
Formation and Worship Offerings

Parish-Wide Adult Formation Offering during Lent: Throughout the 40-day season of Lent, the Sunday 9:30 a.m. Parish Hall Forum will be offered for all adults to participate in a five-week series focusing on the power of forgiveness and reconciliation. The three practical goals of the series are to 1) deepen our ability live in the reality of God’s love; 2) forgive others and release resentment; and 3) forgive oneself. Spread the word and please arrange to attend this series that is central to Christianity, especially during the holy time leading up to Eastertide.

Ash Wednesday is February 18 and the holy season of Lent begins. St. Peter’s will offer three traditional services of the Imposition of Ashes with Holy Eucharist: Noon, 5:00 p.m., and 7:00 p.m. The services at Noon and 7:00 p.m. include special music by the St. Peter’s Choir. We also will offer “Ashes to Go” throughout the day to mark the day’s solemnity for persons who are on-the-go from 11:15 a.m. to 11:45 a.m.; 4:15 p.m. to 4:45 p.m.; and 6:15 p.m. to 6:45 p.m. Our multiple offerings are scheduled to accommodate the lives of all ages of the parish, especially children and youth. (Note: Due to the forecast for treacherous road conditions Wednesday morning, the 7:00 a.m. service and the 8:15 a.m. "Ashes to Go" offering are both cancelled.)
The book God’s Tapestry: Understanding and Celebrating Differences now is available for purchase at the reception desk in the parish office for all to participate in a parish-wide book study during Lent. The author, the Reverend Dr. William Kondrath, will serve as one of the facilitators for our March 6-8 Lenten Weekend of Reconciliation. The Rector and Associate Rector will blog throughout the season based on reflections from this extraordinary resource. You can also pay and reserve a copy online and pick it up at the reception desk.

2015 Lenten Daily Devotion Book, “Living Well through Lent 2015: Practicing Resilience with All Our Heart, Soul, Strength, and Mind,” by Living Compass Faith and Wellness Ministry was distributed on February 15 at St. Peter’s. Beginning today, you can also download it online while we are acquiring more copies for pickup from the common spaces at St. Peter’s.

Special Events
The treacherous weather has forced the cancellation of our Shrove Tuesday party. If you reserved a space for the party, you'll receive a separate email with more information. For a snapshot history of Shrove Tuesday according to www.ask.com, click here.
Episcopal Church Women’s Retreat: “Finding God’s Peace Within” will be offered this Saturday, February 21, 8:30 a.m.–12:30 p.m. at St. Peter’s. Led by Elizabeth Richardson, this retreat will explore how to seek rest and peace in God, by identifying barriers that keep us from that peace and offering practices that may help us overcome them. Register at web.st-peters.org/rsvp. You may also call the Parish Office at 704-332-7746 with any questions.

The Choir School at St. Peter’s Serenade 2015 is Saturday, February 21. This year’s theme is “The British Invasion” and honors our MasterSingers as they prepare for a summertime week as Choir in Residence at Salisbury Cathedral. The gala is the School’s biggest annual fundraising event and helps sustain its mission to provide excellent arts education and performance opportunities for a talented and diverse community of young people from throughout the Charlotte region. Purchase your tickets to join others on this coming Saturday at the Mint Museum Uptown beginning at 6:30 p.m. for an evening that will include silent and live auctions, a seated dinner, choral performances, and more. Individual tickets are $125, and individual and corporate sponsorships are also available. For tickets or more information, visit thechoirschool.org or contact Allison Elrod (aelrod@thechoirschool.org, 704-749-6157).

Lenten Retreat Weekend: “God’s Tapestry: A Lenten Weekend of Reconciliation,” March 6 – 8, Register by February 23. We will have a variety of options for participation – plan to attend what you can by registering now. Friday night will feature a family-style meal and a program. Childcare is available after the meal by emailing Laurie Burlington (lburlington@st-peters.org) for a reservation. Saturday’s program, “Reconciling Our Minds, Our Hearts, and Our Relationships to Others,” is from 8:30 a.m. until 3:30 p.m. Sunday our Parish Hall Forum will be “Connecting to Our Ancestors in Faith.” Facilitators for the events are Episcopal Church Missioner for Social Justice and Advocacy Engagement, Chuck Wynder, Jr.; The Reverend Dr. William Kondrath, author of the book, God’s Tapestry: Understanding and Celebrating Differences; and St. Peter’s Rector and Associate Rector. Register online or at the parish house reception desk by Monday, February 23. Note: During Lent, a parish wide reading of God’s Tapestry will be offered for all; to acquire the book, you can also pay online and pick it up at the reception desk.

Parish News

St. Peter’s Pub Theology, Thursday, February 26. Spend some time with St. Peter’s Assisting Priest, the Reverend Jonathan E. Soyars on Thursday, February 26, from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. for holy conversation at Sir Edmond Halley’s Pub (4151 Park Rd.) in Park Road Shopping Center. This month’s topic will be: “On Observing a Holy Lent: How We Have or Might Practice a Lenten Spiritual Discipline.” Drop-in for as long as possible and bring a guest. Nonalcoholic beverages and food are also available. On March 26, the topic of “Racial Inequality and Justice” will be facilitated by the Reverend Ollie V. Rencher, Rector.

St. Peter’s needs you! Because we are growing in several ways and the availability of many who have served for many years is changing, we need additional persons to serve to enhance support of worship, programs, and parish administration. Whether behind-the-scenes on the Altar Guild, as an Usher, a Welcome Host, or a weekday Volunteer Receptionist at the Parish House, we need you. To learn more, please contact Director of Ministry Development Mary Virginia Woodall (mvwoodall@st-peters.org, 704-749-6151). It takes the time and talent of approximately 100 parishioners to support the various ministry roles and responsibilities that bring life to St. Peter’s. Join the crowd. Share the privilege. Make a difference.

Offering Memorials and Honoraria for Loved Ones. St. Peter’s has two easy yet powerful ways to remember a loved one (family or friend), in thanksgiving or in memory: altar flowers and Eucharistic supplies. Flowers are $150 per Sunday and more than one person can share in their giving. Eucharistic supplies (bread, wine) are $30 for an entire month or $15 for two Sundays. To give flowers or Eucharistic supplies, contact Mary Virginia Woodall in the Parish Office (mvwoodall@st-peters.org, 704-749-6151).

Centering and Intercessory Prayer Group Takes a Break: On behalf of the parish family, the clergy offers thanks for Judith Johnson and Ruth Woodend for their faithful ministry and leadership of our Centering and Intercessory Prayer group that had met on Tuesday at 11:00 a.m. If any parishioners are interested in leading this ministry or learning more about Centering and Intercessory prayer, please contact The Reverend Joslyn Ogden Schaefer (jschaefer@st-peters.org).

Beyond our Doors: Learning and Serving Beyond St. Peter's

Food Pantry Partnership with Loaves and Fishes. Collection of groceries for neighbors in need continues in February. This month’s focus is canned meat. (Note: for safety reasons, glass jars cannot be accepted.) We look forward to filling the big red barrels in the Gallery of the Parish House with your contributions.

All are invited to celebrate the Tenth anniversary of Samaritan House on March 5, 2015, 11:15 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. The luncheon will be held at Covenant Presbyterian Church on E. Morehead St. The speaker is Dave Richard, Deputy Secretary of NC Department of Health and Human Services. Tickets are $40 and may be obtained from Carol Lillard, Ruth Woodend, or www.thesamaritanhouse.org.
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