The Lower Lights
WE WERE A LITTLE LATE in beginning Morning Prayer, perhaps fifteen minutes. Yet, it is not written in stone that the liturgy for the morning Office must be precisely at 9:15. For that matter, it has never been proposed to me that we must have this liturgy at all, Monday through Saturday here at St. Peter’s. I just happen to believe that every priest should observe at least one of the Offices each day. Our carillon signals Morning Prayer at precisely 9:10, allowing me and Candy to be in place at quarter past the hour. Rarely, someone joins us. This day was different, and I believe Providential. A few minutes after we began the Office the front door opened. Since we were late in starting, I assumed it was our Open House hostess arriving just a wee bit early.
Dressed very casually, as one would expect a visitor to the Island this time of year, he took his place in the pew at the side aisle on the south side of the church, in the seat just ahead of Candy. He placed a rosary and two Roman Catholic prayer books on the seat beside him. He joined us for the remainder of our prayer time. After we finished, we introduced ourselves to him. He says he often stops into the church for prayer, and he discovered this day to be especially meaningful for him. He heard the words “trust” and “hope” read in the lesson from The Acts of the Apostles, saying that they were especially meaningful to him. For the past nine years he has trusted God with a fervent hope that his daughter could be set free from the shackles of drug abuse. This day was the 116th day of her being drug free.
He returned to his pew and knelt for silent prayer as Candy and I quietly left the church.
Through the weeks, many different “stories” come in and go out of our church, especially during the “season.” Candles are lighted every day. St. Peter’s is a house of prayer for all God’s children.
You and I share a special ministry at St. Peter’s. We will never know this side of glory how many souls have been renewed by simply being present in a beautiful little chapel for a time of prayer, meditation, and even adoration (of the Blessed Sacrament on reserve in the ambry, or before the Shrine of the Blessed Virgin). But they know and God knows and that’s all that matters. DLT+
THANK YOU FOR YOUR SUPPORT of African Team Ministries, one of our Anglican missions in East Africa. Every two years, the first two Sundays in July, St. Peter’s features artifacts, jewelry, and other items hand made by the people served by this extensive ministry in East Africa. this year’s sales totaled $941.00. All of the money we receive is sent to the work of the mission.
(The two children shown at the Ministries’ display in the Parish House, in the e-mail edition of this newsletter, are grandchildren of Candy and Fr. Don, Eli and Addy Erikson.)
IT ALL BEGAN SEVERAL YEARS AGO when a thirsty biker was seen drinking from the water hose that used to hang on the outside wall of the old Sacristy. Laminated poster for our A-frame signs were made that state “Free Water, Refresh Body and Soul,” with one placed at the corner of Broadway and 7th Street and the other at 7th and Central Avenue. And so it was that St. Peter’s water ministry was created.
Over these several years bikers, runners, and walker have taken advantage of this gift, especially with the oppressive heat we’ve experience this summer. As we begin the month of August over 400 bottles of water have already been distributed! And those who partake do not hesitate to express their appreciation in action, such as the young girl who picked up the bottle caps that were scattered by a gust of wind, or verbally — when one recent morning a mother and her son were seated by the pond, drinking their water. “I just love this garden. It’s such a beautiful place. And our reward for jogging is to sit here and have a drink of ‘holy water,’” the mother commented with a huge smile on her face.
Our ministry has blessed others, and we, in turn, are blessed! This article written by Candace Turner
IMPORTANT AUGUST DATES: BIRTHDAYS AND ANNIVERSARIES: Kathy Di Antonio (03); Hannah Ciaston (10); Robeert Shull (14); Dick Evleth (15), Meg Cave (17), Robert and Maria Schmidt, Anniversary (23), Richard and Sally Potts, Anniversary (29), and Robert and Cynthia Shull, Anniversary (30). Are you missing? Notify Fr. Turner (609) 494-5048 or email@example.com.
THANK YOU hostesses and hosts for your presence in our church during July and August for our Open House. While the church is open from 9:15 a.m. to approximately 5:30 p.m. each day, the Open House is on the Island activities schedule for Tuesdays of the aforementioned months, from 10 a.m. until noon. The “cast,” in order of appearance: William Spall, Don Cummings, Reg and Barbara Smith, Joanne Kranch, Allacen Rathbun, Nancy Rudko (with assistants - granddaughters Fiona and Phoebe), Joanne Kranch again, Maria and Bob Schmidt, and Linda Pugliese. Thank you!
MINUTES OF THE MOST RECENT Mission Committee meetings are posted on the bulletin board in the Parish House. You may remove them for reading while in the facility. Please place them back on the board when you are finished.
Vicarage: (609) 494-5048 Cell phone: (609) 661-1663
Ronald Kolla, Organist (215) 704-4568