Ascension and Pentecost
According to the Gospel writer Luke, Jesus ascended into heaven 40 days after the Resurrection. The liturgical year follows Luke’s story line. Ascension is celebrated 40 days into the season of Easter and is often transferred to the following Sunday. On June 2 we celebrate the Ascension of our Lord, which isn’t as much about the geography of Christ as it is a celebration of Christ present in all times and all places. At the second service we celebrate the baptism of Pepper, daughter of Sean and Sally Thomas. This is also the day we will “quilt” our graduating seniors, a venerable PRLC tradition of “wrapping” our sisters and brothers in the love of God as they embark upon new journeys. Pentecost, a major festival of the church, is the climax of the 50 days of Easter. The reign of the Risen Jesus is spread through the life-giving Holy Spirit. Those in the WAY and Confirmation who were baptized and affirmed in their baptisms at the Easter Vigil will participate in the “Rite of Affirmation of Vocation.”
The Sunday after Pentecost is Holy Trinity Sunday, Then we settle into “ordinary time”, which isn’t so much a season as it is the marking of time and weeks between Pentecost and Advent. It is the “in-between” time between the first Pentecost and the fulfillment of time when Christ comes again. Also known as the “long, green and growing season,” the focus on the Gospel readings from Luke describe Jesus’ ministry and include his many parables.
In Christ God was reconciling the world to himself, not counting their trespasses against them …
~ 2 Corinthians:5
This year we will have a service of confession and forgiveness on Wednesday of Holy Week. Following the pattern of the mid-week Lenten services, we will meet at 11:15 a.m. and then break bread together over soup at noon. This liturgy serves as a kind of conclusion to our Lenten journey and a prelude to Maundy Thursday and the celebration of Easter.
Another good discipline in these days before Easter is Individual Confession and Forgiveness. Should you desire individual confession and forgiveness, please contact Pastor Hansen and Pastor Van Kley. Either pastor is ready to pray with you in this way at any time throughout the year. Be it a communal or individual, the accent in this practice is on the declaration of forgiveness. This absolution is a declaration of good news spoken personally. New life is a consequence of being forgiven, not a precondition. Confessing our sin is a response to God, centered in gratitude to God.
Jesus’ suffering, death, and resurrection are at the very heart of the Christian year; especially the Three Days that constitute one worship service spanning Thursday through Sunday. These are our most sacred days.
Passion/Palm Sunday, April 14
Holy Communion at 8:30 am and 11:00 am
Procession with Palms, the Passion story from the Gospel of Luke
Monday & Tuesday in Holy Week, April 15 and 16
Scripture readings and prayer resources will be provided at the Grace Station for your use during these days following Passion Sunday.
Wednesday of Holy Week, April 17
Service of Confession and Forgiveness at 11:15 am followed by soup and bread
This service marks the end of our Lenten journey and serves as a preparation for the Three Days that include prayers of confession, the declaration of forgiveness, scripture reading and reflection.
The Great Three Days
Maundy Thursday, April 18
Holy Communion at 11:15 am and 7 pm
The Three Days of Easter begin to unfold on this day in which Christ commands us to love. Feet are washed, communion is shared, and the worship space is stripped. We leave in silence. There is no final blessing as the liturgy continues Friday …
Good Friday, April 19
Stations of the Cross at noon
Adoration of the Cross at 7 pm
We pray the stations of the Cross at Noon. The evening liturgy includes the Passion story from John, intercessions, and the prayer around the Cross. There is no final blessing as the liturgy continues the next day …
The Great Vigil of Easter
Service of Light, Word, Water, and Meal at 6:30 pm
The pinnacle of the Three Days. There is no other night like this one. Light, story, baptism, renewal of baptismal promises, holy meal. As you prepare for the Easter Vigil, you are invited to bring a special vessel so that you may join in the procession of pouring water into the place of baptism.
Easter Sunday, April 21
Festival Holy Communion at 8:30 am and 11 am
Please bring a bell to ring at the singing of the “Alleluias”. Easter breakfast served between services.
“Ho, everyone who thirsts, come to the waters …”
– Isaiah 55:1 (reading for 3 Lent and the Easter Vigil)
During Lent, adults prepare for their baptism at Easter. Some will be preparing to renew their baptismal vows as they seek a closer relationship with PRLC. They do not walk this path alone. We walk with them. This is most obvious on the Sundays in Lent when we surround these persons with our prayers and support. On the first Sunday in Lent, March 10, Xia Bouzek and Rachel Arteaga will declare their intention to be baptized. On subsequent Sundays they will be prayed over along with their companions in the WAY and the 8th grade confirmation students. In addition to these prayers they will be handed the Apostle’s Creed and gifts for worship and prayer.
All who walk this Lenten journey are seeking to turn to Christ in some new way. We are invited on Ash Wednesday to practice the ancient disciplines of fasting, prayer, and almsgiving. Never an end in themselves, they and other practices may serve to help us fully embrace Jesus’ gift of free love. In Lent we ask ourselves how we resist Jesus’ offer of newness and grace and seek to discern what we need to risk or renounce in order to accept Jesus’ priceless gift.
On Sundays in Lent we begin as we usually do, at the font. In Lent that includes music that echoes the offer from Isaiah 55. Then we prepare for worship together with confession and forgiveness. The Rites for WAY and confirmation folks occur after the sermon and are pivotal to these Sundays. Look for a simpler liturgy these weeks, making room for the Assembly to pray: “Return to the Lord your God, gracious and merciful, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love.”
The Lenten journey begins on Ash Wednesday, a solemn call to fast as we begin our journey to the baptismal waters at Easter. The liturgy includes confession of sin and the imposition of ashes. With the cross of ashes on our brow, we long for the spiritual renewal that flows from the Easter feast to come. This year Ash Wednesday falls on March 6. We will have three worship opportunities: the 11:15 a.m. and 7:30 p.m. liturgies are held in the sanctuary. At 6:30 p.m. we offer a shorter service in the Tree of Life room, intended for families with children. All three services include imposition of ashes and communion.
More Worship Opportunities in Lent
As we simplify other aspects of our life and seek spiritual depth, we can center around a practice of prayer, either alone or together. In addition to the services offered on Ash Wednesday, we will also be having midweek services every Wednesday during Lent: March 13, 20, 27, and April 3 and 10. Join Vicar Elizabeth at 11:15 in the Chapel for prayer, reflection, and self-examination as we journey together these forty days. Services will be followed by a simple fellowship meal of soup in the narthex together. Please come join us, and enjoy a holy Lent.
A great blessing of the Liturgical Renewal movement has been the recovery of Lent and Easter as times for baptismal preparation and renewal. Lent is not a sad time. Nor is it a prolonged reflection on Jesus’ Passion. That’s reserved for Holy Week. Lent is a time for personal and communal change and transformation. For adults in the WAY process, Lent is a time to prepare for baptism at the Easter Vigil. For other adults in the WAY and our 8th grade confirmation students, Lent leads to a renewal of baptism at Easter. For all of us, Lent is a time to prepare with joy for the Easter Feast. The 50 days of Easter then become a training ground for ministry in daily life. Look for various rites at worship during Lent. These are times to pray for and with the people who are preparing for baptism or renewal of baptism. Notice, too, the themes of the lectionary readings and the many opportunities before us to grow in faith and renounce those things that prevent a deeper engagement with the things of God.
This year we are provided with rich fare through Lent, compliments of the Gospel of Luke – Jesus fasting in the wilderness, Jesus’ lamenting over Jerusalem and longing for God’s people to return as a mother hen longs to gather chicks under her wings, Jesus’ parable of a fig tree calling us to return to God, the return home of the prodigal son to his forgiving father, and finally, Mary’s extravagant anointing of Jesus before his burial. These scriptures are calling us to return to God who is gracious and merciful and to make our true home in Christ.
The Lenten journey begins this year on March 6th. There are three opportunities to worship on Ash Wednesday: 11:15 a.m. and 7:30 p.m. in the sanctuary and a family-oriented service at 6:30 p.m. in the Tree of Life room.
Christmas Worship Times
Monday, December 24 , 2018
+ Christmas Eve
A very special Christmas Eve liturgy led by the Youth Choir and the Children’s Choirs presenting the story of Jesus’ birth from Luke’s Gospel. Come at 4:30 for the special pre-service music!
Festive Candlelight Eucharist
At this liturgy we “pull out all the stops” for a festive Eucharist. “Hymn and chant and high thanksgiving …” led by the Chancel Choir. Come at 10:30 to hear the beautiful music of the pre-service recital.
Tuesday, December 25 , 2018
+ Christmas Day
Christmas Day Holy Communion with beloved carols and the good news from the Gospel of John.
Sunday, December 30, 2018
+ First Sunday of Christmas
Eucharist with Lessons and Carols
8:30 and 11:00 a.m.
Gather around God’s gifts of Word and Meal on the First Sunday of Christmas with the Service of Lessons and Carols.
(Image: Swanson, John August. A Visit, from Art in the Christian Tradition, a project of the Vanderbilt Divinity Library, Nashville, TN. Used by permission under the Creative Commons Attribution Noncommercial ShareAlike 3.0 License.)
The month of November begins with the Feast of All Saints and ends with the Feast of Christ the King. There is more than a hint of the consummation of all things or “end times” in the scripture readings for November. It’s reflected in the autumn landscape and chilly temperatures. Winter is on its way. Death is part of life. The good news, though, is this: death does not have the final word. This note of hope helps carry us through our tears of grief over beloved saints who have died, and God’s promise of a new heaven and a new earth makes us practitioners of hope here and now. In fact, the reign of Christ the King has already begun! We live to love our neighbors and ourselves in hope and joy, for Christ is risen.
October is always a special month at PRLC. We take a “time out” from the Sundays in Ordinary Time to celebrate special Sundays:
The Feast of St. Francis is celebrated this year on October 7th and includes the annual Pet Blessing at the 8:30 service. Please bring your cat, dog, gerbil or whatever favorite companion to this service for a special blessing. This traditions has long been associated with the saint who was known for befriending animals, loved nature, preached to birds, and even tamed a wolf.
The Feast of St. Luke is celebrated this year on October 21st with healing prayers offered to all in the assembly at both services. Luke, identified as the author of the third Gospel and the book of Acts, was believed to be a physician. His day has been dedicated to prayers for the sick and to caregivers and to services of healing.
Reformation/Reconciliation Sunday commemorates Luther’s posting of the 95 theses and has become an occasion to lift up Ecclesia semper reformanda est – the church is always in need of reform. On this day we lament the divisions in the church and pray for its constant renewal. This day is rightly seen as a festival of the Holy Spirit.
Thursday, Saturday, and Sunday November 1, 3, & 4, 2018
All Saints Worship Service
Thursday, November 1, 2018 7:30 pm
John Rutter‘s Requiem is a musical setting of parts of the Latin funeral mass with two added psalms – Psalm 130 “Out of the Deep” and beloved Psalm 23 “The Lord is My Shepherd”. It was completed in 1985 and was written in memory of Rutter’s father, who died the previous year. In the first six months after publication it received over five hundred orchestral performances in America alone. Rutter envisioned this work as a requiem for our time. The beauty and accessibility of the music and the profound melding of text and tune have endeared the work to countless singers and listeners.
A Quiet Day For All Saints
Saturday, November 3, 2018 8:30 am-2:00 pm
There are many things that can only be seen through eyes that have cried.
– Oscar Romero
All Saints Sunday (Nov. 4 this year) provides all of us with the opportunity to remember and celebrate those we love but see no more. But as we remember and celebrate, we also grieve. This year we are offering the opportunity for all who grieve to bring their remembrances, feelings of loss, and need for healing to a Quiet Day of preparation for All Saints.
Meeting from 8:30 am until 2:00 pm on Saturday, November 3, 2018, this program will offer a time for prayer and reflection, a time to share stories of those we miss, and a time to sit in the presence of our risen Lord and allow his healing love to enfold us.
Whether your loss is recent or your grief has been a long-time companion, you are invited to take part in this experience.
All Saints Sunday Worship
Sunday, November 4, 2018 Services at 8:30 & 11:00 am
Our All Saints celebration culminates in Sunday morning’s festive worship. We will remember those from Phinney who have died this past year, and we welcome new saints into the Body of Christ through the celebration of Holy Baptism at both services. You are invited to bring photos of loved ones now deceased and place them on tables in the sanctuary. We celebrate the baptisms of Cassia Laudadio and Kincade Shutes-David.
Pentecost is the culmination of Easter’s 50 days. At Pentecost we celebrate the outpouring of the Holy Spirit. It is the Spirit of Christ who breathes new life into the church, and provides us with energy for life, faith, and ministry. At every celebration of Holy Communion, we pray that the Holy Spirit will make the bread and wine on the table to be the Body and Blood of Christ and to make us, the gathered assembly, to be Christ’s body in the world. It is the Spirit who makes God present and alive.
What a glorious day for the whole church to come together! We will celebrate Pentecost in one service at 10:00 a.m. followed by a special reception. Baptisms will be celebrated, as well as Confirmation (Affirmation of Baptism).
Come, Holy Spirit, fill the hearts of your faithful people, and kindle in us the fire of love.