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Sunday, July 19, the Seventh Sunday after Pentecost

Dear Friends in Christ, This week’s worship videos are now available:

  Please join us for our virtual coffee hour at noon: • To join in the Zoom app, use the Meeting ID: 852 8633 0838 (no password).  • To join in your browser, click here: • To join from a smartphone, tap here: +16465588656,,85286330838#  • To join from a conventional phone, call (646) 558-8656 and enter the Meeting ID.  Continuing on one of the themes from my sermon, I want to remind you of our existing pastoral care resources, and let you know of a new one. Of course, I remain available for pastoral counseling and informal conversations. The best way to arrange a call or video chat is to e-mail me with some times that work for you. Your wardens, Karen Kasper and Ellen Sibley, are also available for conversation. And, now that we know a bit more about what does, and does not, put one at risk of contracting the novel coronavirus, we are allowing parishioners to reserve prayer time in the church, either solo or with people in the same household. To schedule a time, talk to Marge; she will work with you to schedule a time. Hope to see many of you at noon! Here are Mark's music notes: Our opening hymn is a favorite across Christianity in the last several hundred years “Praise to the Lord the Almighty” (#390). I’m certain that this will bring a familiar smile to many a face. Our closing hymn is less well known “O God of Earth and Altar.” We have sung it, not often enough, I guess. In the four volume Companion to the Hymnal 1982, the editor, Ray Glover writes: “At the beginning of the twentieth century, England was a nation experiencing the end of the long reign of Queen Victoria, the beginning of the Edwardian era, and the Second Boer War. It was a time of national self-confidence and pride, of materialism and moral laxity. In response to this, the critic and writer G. K. Chesterton penned a strong and poignant plea to God for social and political justice. In vivid language, the poet indicts both rulers whose duplicity and “easy speeches” give comfort to “Cruel men,” and people who in blindness and lethargy succumb to corruption. Written in 1906 with the intensity of the Old Testament prophets, the poet in ‘O God of earth and altar’ produced a text that spoke directly to the grim realities of his own time, but with equal intensity and relevance to our own.”

I have chosen 2 organ works which roughly reflect these 2 hymns. The opening “Lento” was a memorial piece to Charles Hubert Hastings Parry, composer of many good tunes including the famous “I Was Glad” sung at coronations and other great events. Composer Frank Bridge lived at the same time as Chesterton and the spare sorrowful tune might just as well be a commentary on the words of Hymn 591. And at the end, a little piccolo music that marches on using 8 & 2 foot stops which sound a bit like those fifes of the past. 

We have a new canticle this week, Canticle 1, the Benedicite opera omnia. This is a long canticle that resides on pages 35-37 in the BCP. As the instructions indicate we’re skipping one of the sections. This hymn is sung in the Old Testament story of the 3 young men who God saved from the flames in the furnace. It has a very interesting repeating them, of the last phrases remain the same (for the most part) in the entire canticle. Customarily I have chosen two different, but complimentary Anglican chants to mark the different sections of the text. The expansive subject matter including all of creation seems appropriate for us, here and now. I’ve recorded it myself using a barbershop technique of placing the top voice (the “lead”) in one tenor voice and then also singing the alto, tenor and bass in their correct pitches. Although people have been doing this since the advent of recording technologies this recent time of physical distancing has made this often necessary as well as fun. And the blend, for the most part, is due to all the vowels and timing are the same. Or, perhaps it is the ultimate chance to “back lead” one’s own self! -- The Rev. Bret B. Hays

Note from Gwen Kopka: Jean Dyett has moved to an apartment in her daughter’s home in Gloucester. She looks well and her apartment is darling, with its own little patio and separate entrance. Here is her new address and phone, in case parishioners want to wish her well. Jean Dyett 5 Loma Drive Gloucester MA 01930 978-325-0235 Thanks, Gwen

Action Lunches are back in business. Now that the Action Shelter has moved back to E. Main Street, we are once again preparing bagged lunches every Saturday for shelter guests to take with them when they leave on Sunday morning. Because of the reduced number of beds, we are only doing 20 lunches now instead of 36 before the pandemic. There is no need to enter the building. Just make your presence known and someone will come out to collect your boxes. Stewart’s took the first week; the Kopka/Sawyer team is on deck for the 18th. We need volunteers for July 25 and beyond. It’s quick and easy and means so much. To volunteer or for additional information, please contact Carolyn Stewart at 978-314-1381 or Thank you. 

Wednesday in the Office with Marge Everybody's invited! Zoom in Wednesdays from 9:00 to 10:00. Check in, say hello, and go about your day, or fix yourself a cup of coffee and stay a while! All topics are welcome. Use the Zoom link here or Meeting ID: 856 1241 4899 Password: 01930. See you in the office!  

Church Directory Download a directory of parishioners (updated 7/15). If you would like to have your information included (YES! It's not too late!!) please email Elizabeth with your name, street address, phone number (s), birth dates, and wedding anniversary. Thanks! 

St. John's Intercession List: Dorothy Sordillo, Ginga Graves and Patrick DeMuller, Grace Center (guests, volunteers, staff and supporters), Liana Webb, Ernie Runnells, Laura, Becki Pedersen, Abby Browne, Dan Dobbins, Gene Cadman, Dr. Ben Herman, Anne Sullivan, Kenny Fidler, Linda, William Secrest, Janet Gerome, Malcolm Henderson, Doug Fifield, Peter, Sheila Jones, Mary McCarl, Mayhew family, Sereda Feener, Bette Mae Baxter, Emelia Currier, Patricia Hodgdon, Ken, Jim Mills, Danny, Carolyn Cenami, Sarah, Patricia Anders, Meghan, Anthony Shamitaro, David Arnold, Connor Macauley, Susan Richardson, Mary McIntyre, Patti Kelleher, Margie Sonthemier, Beni Rose, Jack Ketchopulos, John Fleming.


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