Here is a way to draw a new path to God!!! Sitting still and staying focused on prayer is a challenge, with so much silence and isolation surrounding us now. If you want to listen to God’s desire for you to love deeply, and your mind wanders, you may need a new way to pray!! Join me in making loopy scribbles or doodles with big spaces. In each space or doodle, I invite you to write the name of one person or group for whom you wish to pray. Then, doodle in each person’s space with details and key words for that person. This can be done with markers or pencils, like my doodling prayer above. Next week we will ask you to make a doodle prayer for those in your life whom you love, or are trying to love. Please take a picture of it, and send it to our parish administrator by April 29 so that she can make a slide show for our worship!! We will present this in worship on May 2!!
Thank you and blessings on your doodling!
Bring a Good Shepherd to in-person worship or your Zoom screen THIS SUNDAY, April 25, for Good Shepherd Sunday this week.
Many of us have images of the good shepherd on our walls, table tops and gardens. This Sunday is Good Shepherd Sunday. Please bring your images of Shepherds to our sanctuary for in-person worship or to your Zoom screen!
Isolation is Linked to Decline in Elders
If you have the time and inclination to visit our elders, please take a picture of them and send it to our parish administrator, who is compiling a slide show of visits, so that we may share pictures of them again during our zoom worship in June.
Depending on whom you visit…you can now meet them outside, across from a window, or in person…all with masks on and physically distanced. Call ahead to arrange the visit. Listening and caring for 30 minutes is a great investment in love. ❤️
Please let us me know if you need help in identifying someone to visit. Before June, if we each visited 1-2 people, our love would certainly increase!
Green your laundry routine
Use cold water when washing clothes to reduce energy use. Energy is needed to heat water. You can also opt for a shorter wash cycle. Only do laundry when the load is full. Not only does this save water and electricity, but it also saves you money and time. Avoid using energy to dry your laundry, by hanging a laundry line or using a drying rack. This cuts down on your electricity bill as well!
Change your lightbulb to eco-friendly types
CFL and LED bulbs can emit 25-80% less energy than traditional incandescents, plus they last longer! Consider this greener alternative when it comes time to replacing those bulbs.
Last Chance for a Lily
You can take a lily to someone, or plant one in your yard!
Our altar lilies will be disposed of this Sunday.
April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month
April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month. We’d like to think that sexual assault doesn’t happen to people in our congregation or community, but the truth is that it happens in every community. This is why it’s so important for us to stay informed. According to RAINN, 1 out of every 6 women is a victim of attempted, or completed, rape in her lifetime. 1 in 33 men is also a victim. Sexual assault is a serious public health crisis that can affect anyone. It’s also a spiritual crisis.
Experiences of sexual assault can be difficult to talk about. The stigma against sexual assault can make victims afraid to speak up. This stigma explains why we often don’t hear about assaults. Additionally, victims are often blamed for the assault, and that can make it doubly difficult for victims to disclose. We all have a critical role to play in supporting survivors of sexual assault. Please, talk to your friends and others in our congregation about your ideas, and if you have concerns, please talk with Deb Lemieux, our advocate, who can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
Free and confidential resources include the Center for Hope & Healing, Inc. https://chhinc.org/ and the RAINN hotline at (800) 656-HOPE (4673). Additionally, the Boston Area Rape Crisis Center (BARCC) at 800-841-8371 is 24/7, barcc.org You can also learn more about sexual violence and faith here at https://www.interfaithpartners.org/our-resources
If you are in immediate danger, call 911.
Community Garden by Mike Caitham
Youth Opportunity for DIP's Community Garden
A new, exciting, partnership with North Shore Unitarian Universalist Church has occurred this year, to invite children and youth to dig their hands into the soil and make things GROW!
This year, the youth of our Interfaith Community will have the opportunity to join in this exciting work. We will gather to learn how to garden from seed to table for the benefit of others. Our community garden effort blends faith and agriculture in asking participants to plant, pray and proclaim, with the hope of feeding those in need, while stewarding land and fostering community. All vegetables will be given to the Danvers Food Pantry to support those who are food-insecure in our community.
Registrations are due by May 15 so we can begin our planting at home, in our homemade green houses, before seedlings are planted in the community garden. Please talk it up in your communities as we emerge from the pandemic, and still stay safe with masks on! Registrations can be sent to Susan Haas via email or NSUU Church 323 Locust St. Danvers Ma 01923
The Danvers People to People Food Pantry has reopened and needs the following items. Please consider adding a few items to your shopping cart and dropping them off at church on Thursdays between 8:30 and 1:30 pm, or on Sunday Mornings, or at the pantry itself.
KISS THE GROUND unveils a game-changer to our climate crisis: the Earth’s own soil. Here it is...we can reverse global warming. The solution is called “Regenerative Agriculture,” and this film presents the research, practice, and hope we need to move forward.
Join us in viewing the 84 minute documentary through this FREE link until April 26.: https://vimeo.com/528990233Password: kiss
We know that people use many techniques to cope with chronic pain, including praying to God or a higher power. We are trying to better understand what kinds of prayer are most helpful. If you are interested in participating, you can go directly to the screening website: https://is.gd/PainandPrayerScreener
The goals of this project are the development of the first ever scientifically validated bedside-prayer-tool. Participation is easy, via online questionnaires. All spiritual backgrounds are welcomed. If you or someone you know is suffering with chronic pain and uses prayer or meditation to cope with their pain, we would love to hear from you. We need a few hundred volunteers.
Assistance Items Available
If you know someone who is in need of canes, a bed rail, or a walker, please call the office. Also available are a transit chair and Rollator (not pictured).
Deanery and Diocesan News
May webinars scheduled for next steps in prayer, learning, action and advocacy: As additional next steps, webinars on four successive Wednesdays in May, each at 7 p.m., will focus on the individual planks of the bishops' declaration:
Directed by award winning filmmaker James Rutenbeck,
parishioner of St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church in the South End
Saturday, April 24th at 9:00 am
The 83-minute film will be followed by a one hour conversation with the filmmakers. Zoom link will be provided at end of film screening. FREE and open to members of all parishes in the North Shore Deanery, Episcopal Diocese of Massachusetts
Reach out and invite your fellow/sister parishioners!
A mural memorializing George Floyd and other Black victims of police violence is displayed near the site in Minneapolis where Floyd died May 25, while being taken into police custody. Photo courtesy of Paul Lebens-Englund via Episcopal News Service
Episcopal leaders pray for victims of racism as ex-officer found guilty in killing of George Floyd: [Episcopal News Service] The presiding bishop and other Episcopal leaders called for prayer, justice and healing on April 20, as a jury in Minneapolis, Minn., found former police officer Derek Chauvin guilty on all three counts of murder and manslaughter in the killing of George Floyd. Chauvin’s bail was revoked while he awaits sentencing.
Much of the trial had centered on the eyewitness video that showed Chauvin, who is white, pressing his knee for more than nine minutes into the neck of Floyd, who was Black. Floyd’s death and the video of the killing, sparked widespread national protests against police brutality and racial injustice.
Episcopalians and church leaders have joined in the calls over the past year for a reckoning with the racism embedded in American institutions after the killing of Floyd, 46, and other victims of violence by police and white vigilantes. Presiding Bishop Michael Curry, in a video message released before the Chauvin verdict, said the struggle for justice will continue.
“There is no celebration. Nothing will bring George Floyd back to his family or his community,” Curry said. “Please pray for the soul of George Floyd, for his family, and for everyone everywhere who has suffered because of the sin of racism and oppression.” Read more here.
The Episcopal Church has released racial audit of leadership, citing nine patterns of racism in church culture. You can read the audit in its entirety here.
Sabbatical Approved for Bishop Gates
The Standing Committee has approved plans for our Bishop, Alan Gates, to have an upcoming sabbatical leave. This summer marks seven years since his arrival to serve as bishop. He will be away from June 13 through October 11, representing a three-month sabbatical, together with summer vacation. He looks forward to a time for deep rest, reading, reflection and re-creation – a sabbatical in the mode of true “sabbath renewal.”
During his absence, full oversight and leadership in the diocese will be taken up by our bishop suffragan, the Rt. Rev. Gayle Harris, who will work with all governing bodies and the staff of the diocese to assure continuity of episcopal guidance.
The first day of his sabbatical – June 13 – marks the beginning of his 35th year in ordained ministry.
Dear People of the Dioceses of Massachusetts and Western Massachusetts,
With the advent of spring, our thoughts turn with renewed gratitude to the great gift of God’s creation. “For behold, the winter is past; the rain is over and gone. The flowers appear on the earth, the time of singing has come, and the voice of the turtledove is heard in our land.” (Song of Solomon 2:11-12)
Our thoughts turn also to the devastation of that created order which continues to unfold around us. With the prophet we ask, “How long will the land mourn, and the grass of every field wither? For the wickedness of those who live in it the animals and the birds are swept away.” (Jeremiah 12:4)
Each year on Ash Wednesday we offer the Litany of Penitence, decrying “our self-indulgent appetites and ways, … our waste and pollution of (God’s) creation, and our lack of concern for those who come after us.” (The Book of Common Prayer, p. 268) In our stewardship of God’s creation, we are thus called into the fullness of gratitude, repentance, and amendment of our lives.
What follows is a Declaration of Climate Emergency by your bishops. We urge you to read it thoroughly, thoughtfully, and prayerfully, receiving it as both challenge and invitation, and responding with commitment, in the power of the Holy Spirit.
The Rt. Rev. Douglas J. Fisher,
Bishop Diocesan, Diocese of Western Massachusetts
The Rt. Rev. Alan M. Gates,
Bishop Diocesan, Diocese of Massachusetts
The Rt. Rev. Gayle E. Harris,
Bishop Suffragan, Diocese of Massachusetts