** Third Sunday after Trinity** Service of Holy Communion July 6th, 2014
A New Bishop!
Bishop Grote Rev. Ray Sutton The 54th General Council unanimously elected the Rt. Rev. Royal U. Grote, Jr. to serve as the Presiding Bishop of the Reformed Episcopal Church. On Friday, June 13th, the retiring Presiding Bishop, the Most Rev. Leonard W. Riches, installed Bishop Grote as the Presiding Bishop. Bishop Grote will officially assume the responsibilities of Presiding Bishop on July 1st. Bishop Grote had previously served as Assistant Bishop of our Diocese (when it was know as the New York and Philadelphia Synod) for approximately ten years before moving to Texas to oversee the development of what would become the Diocese of Mid-America.
The Council also elected the Rt. Rev. Ray R. Sutton to serve as the Vice-President. Bishop Sutton is the Bishop Coadjutor of the Diocese of Mid-America, and been the main overseer of interchurch relations for the past decade for the Reformed Episcopal Church. Bishop Sutton also served as Seminary President and was the Homiletics Teacher (how to make and deliver sermons) for both Pastor Mike and Pastor Jerry when they went to Seminary.
Onesimos Nesib, Translator and Missionary
June 21, 1931
By James Kiefer
Onesimos, was born in about 1855, in western Ethiopia. His parents name him Hika as a baby, meaning “Translator”; he took the name “Onesimos”, after the Biblical character, upon converting to Christianity. He was captured by slave traders and brought to the coast. There Swedish Lutheran missionaries bought him, freed him, educated him, and converted him.
He belonged to the Galla people, the largest linquistic group in Ethiopia, and he proceeded to translate the Bible into Galla, and returned to his homeland to minister to the Galla people. He died there, on June 21, 1931.
It should be noted that the country of Ethiopia was already officially Christian. In the fourth century, the great theologian and bishop Athanasius of Alexandria in Egypt consecrated the Syrian Frumentius (dates approximately 300-380) as Bishop of Ethiopia, and he established the Christian Church in that land. (His commemoration is August 1st in Ethiopia, and October 27 in the West.) By this century, however, because of changes of language, there was no longer any translation of the Scriptures in a language understood by the people, and the religious education of the people (not through any conspiracy) was very sketchy. A modern translation was produced around 1950 after the country was decimated by World War II by order of the Emperor Haile Selassie, which had to be printed from photocopies of an original written by the Emperor in his own hand, since otherwise the people refused to accept it.
Trinity Sunday - What is It All About?
Trinity Sunday is one of the few feasts of the Christian Year that celebrates a reality and doctrine rather than an event or person. On Trinity Sunday we remember and honor the eternal God: the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.
The Trinity is one of the most fascinating Christian dogmas. The Trinity is a mystery. By mystery the Church does not mean a riddle, but rather the Trinity is a reality above our human comprehension that we may begin to grasp, but ultimately must know through worship, symbol, and faith. It has been said that mystery is not a wall to run up against, but an ocean in which to swim. The common wisdom is that if you talk about the Trinity for longer than a few minutes you will slip into heresy because you are probing the depths of God too deeply. The Trinity is best described in the Niceno-Constantinopolitan Creed, commonly called the Nicene Creed.
Essentially the Trinity is the belief that God is one in essence (Greek ousia), but distinct in person (Greek hypostasis). Don’t let the word “person” fool you. The Greek word for person means “that which stands on its own,” or “individual reality,” and does not mean the persons of the Trinity are three human persons. Therefore we believe that the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit are somehow distinct from one another (not divided though), yet completely united in will and essence.
The Scriptures call the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit “God,” yet the three are also clearly distinct. For instance, St. John gives Jesus the titles theos and monogenes theos (God and Only-Begotten God) and has Jesus saying the Father and Son are one, yet in his gospel Jesus also states that the Father and Son are not one witness, but two )John 1:1, 18; 8:17-18, 10:30). Over time, and with the aid of the Holy Spirit, the Church reflected on the implications of God’s nature, and even began using the word Trinity by the middle of the 2nd century to describe the relationship between the Father, Son and Spirit. When in the 4th century a presbyter named Arius denied the Father and Son were both true God and co-eternal, his bishop Alexander of Alexandria challenged him and deposed him. Eventually the Arian controversy spread, and the emperor Constantine, newly fascinated with Christianity, convened a council of bishops in AD 325 in Nicaea to deal with Arianism. It is there that the Church drew up the beginnings of the current Nicene Creed.
Alleluia! He is risen!
From John 20: 1-8- "Now on the first day of the week Mary Magdalene came to the tomb early...and saw that the stone had been taken away from the tomb. So she ran and went to Simon Peter...Peter went out with the other disciple, and they were going toward the tomb. Both of them were running together, but the other disciple outran Peter and reached the tomb first. And stooping to look in, he saw the linen cloths lying there, but he did not go in. Then Simon Peter came, following him, and went into the tomb. He saw the linen cloths lying there, and the face cloth, which had been on Jesus' head, not lying with the linen cloths but folded up in a place by itself. Then the other disciple...also went in, and he saw and believed."
Read further in article, "The Not Quite Empty Tomb, by Pastor Mike Blitz, in Pastor Mike's Corner.
" "Three Marys at the Tomb," by William Bouguereau
Note for those interested in the Reformed Episcopal Missions:
The webpage link for additional information about our churches' missions, and to get your own color, printable copy of the Mission Newsletter that was included in this past Sunday's bulletin is:
This article is also available as a file that you can download and print out, at our News and Articles Link, under the document downloads.
Update: Our presentation of The Star was a great success! We enjoyed watching the film, listening to Dr. Culley, and discussing what we had seen- the movie sparks not only a lot of thinking about the events surrounding the birth of Jesus, but gave us all a profound sense of appreciation for God's awesome power! An additional note: We will be offering expanded sessions for those interested in this presentation; delving into more Biblical detail! Stay tuned for information regarding dates and times!
additional information about this dvd, go to: http://www.bethlehemstar.net/
Grace Church hosts a Bible Study on Monday mornings, in the Parish Hall. Our Monday Bible Discussion is an interdenominational group that meets to discuss God's story and His journey with Man from the first verse of Genesis to the last words of Revelation. While we rarely select a given Book for study, preferring to discuss "themes" such as the Character of God, the Seasons of the Church, The Gospel in The Jewish Feasts, and Understanding the Full Gospel, our time always focuses on knowing upon what/whom our faith stands. (2 Timothy 3:16)
Our group enjoys open conversation with a good exchange of questions and answers all with the intent to enable participants to defend their Christian faith. No matter your level of Biblical understanding, I believe you will gain insight from your time with us at Grace Church. Our mission, in our discussion, is to make the Word of God real in your life.
Come and enjoy time with us every Monday, from 10:00 until noon,
and grow in His Grace!
In His Grace, Bob Appleton
Yeah! We are all so happy that Bob Appleton has been ordinated into the Reformed Episcopal Church! The ceremony which took place on Saturday, December 28th was a wonderful event that we all enjoyed-
Grace Church will be hosting a division of the Campus Life Youth Program. This will be the Havre de Grace area's location, and this program is geared towards Middle School and High School age young adults. We are now in the process of doing outreach activities to encourage attendance. Visit their website for more information: http://www.yfc.net/campuslife/ and for the Harford County Chapter- http://www.mmyfc.org/ministries/campus_life/harford_county_campus_life/
Our Morning Prayer on Wednesdays will resume on Wednesdays, at 9 am at Grace Church. Come and join us for prayers and meditation.
It's SUMMER! As you celebrate events and get-togethers with friends and family, please remember to pray to God for his blessings upon our country. This country was founded upon Christian values, moral beliefs, strong work ethics and religious freedoms and liberties. We need to help others understand this, and protect it. Enjoy your holidays and fun!