Parish News February 16, 2018

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“Choose Life”
By Fr Bruce Swinehart
See, I have set before you today life and prosperity, death and adversity. If you obey the Lord your God, by loving him, walking in his ways, and observing his commandments, then you shall live and become numerous, and the Lord your God will bless you in the land that you are entering. But if your heart turns away, and you are led astray to bow down and serve other gods, you shall perish; you shall not live long in the land. I have set before you today life and death, blessings and curses. Choose life so that you and your descendants may live, loving the Lord your God and holding fast to him; for that means life to you and length of days in the land. (Deuteronomy 30:15-20)
This passage from Deuteronomy was Thursday’s reading for a daily prayer/mediation that I listen to called Pray as You Go.  As the Israelites prepare to cross over into the Promised Land, Moses sets a stark choice before them: life and prosperity or death and adversity.  Which will it be? Follow God, the way of life itself, or some other god of our own devising, which is the way of death. And then, just before he dies, Moses tells them, “choose life.”
The calm voice on the podcast reminded me that every choice we make is ultimately a choice between that which gives life, and that which diminishes or destroys it: “I choose death when I act out of vengeance, or anger or hate, when I ignore, neglect, or dismiss the needs of others. I choose life when I do what I know to be right, even if I costs me, when I care and nurture and support, when I speak the truth in love. What choices are before me today?” And, “what are the ‘other gods’ that I might be tempted to bow down and serve? The gods who lead me away from the path of life?”
These searching questions felt like an appropriate way to start the Lenten Season.
A few hours later I heard the news of yet another slaughter of innocents, which by now have become part of our way of life.  Or death, as it were. I bristled at the description of this latest event as a “tragedy.”  While it is certainly a tragedy for those suffering unimaginable loss, I thought, for us as a people and a society it’s a choice.
(click on event title links for details)
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A new Sign-Up Board is now located on the wall between the kitchen and the fireplace.  Check it out and sign up to provide Altar Flowers or Coffee Hour.
Journey Through Lent at St Mary Magdalene:
“Body, Mind, and Spirit”
Join us in the many opportunities to reflect together during this Lenten season.  Find more information here for the events listed below.
  • Lenten Suppers: Wednesdays @ 6:00-7:30pm
  • Series begins on Feb 21 with reflections and conversation on “Body, Mind and Spirit,” guided by Katherine Ann Cantrell.
  • Centering Prayer: Tuesdays @ 9:15-10:15am
  • Yoga in the Sanctuary: Tuesdays  @ 8:00-9:00am and Saturdays 8:30-10:30am
  • Adult Forum Series:The Monastery: Our Lady of the Mississippi Abbey,        Sundays Feb. 18 – Mar. 18 @ 9:00am
  • Labyrinth Walks:  Fridays Feb 16 – Mar 23 @ 12:00 noon

Lenten Devotional Resource from the Society of St John the Evangelist
SSJE, an Episcopal religious order, is offering a 6-week daily Lenten devotional series called “Meeting Jesus in the Gospel of John.” The program “invites participants on a  six-week journey into deeper intimacy with God by praying with the words of John the Evangelist.”  Includes a daily video and prayer email and a companion prayer journal. Click here to learn more.
Sacrament of Reconciliation
Lent is a traditional time to partake in the Sacrament of Reconciliation, aka, Confession. The Rite is found in the Book of Common Prayer beginning on p. 448 (available online Here). Please contact Fr Bruce directly if you would like more information or to schedule a time to meet. The Church’s rubric for Reconciliation is, “all may, some should, none must.”

Bring a Prayer Book Sundays During Lent

During the season of Lent we will be utilizing the Book of Common Prayer to lead us through our Sunday worship services.  Our supply is limited so, if you own a Prayer Book, please bring it each Sunday, February 18-March 25.  If you see that someone does not have one on Sunday morning please share your copy as we “Celebrate and Share God’s Love” together.
“My Faith, My Life” for Teens
All middle and high schoolers are invited to join Sue and Fr. Bruce Sundays from 12:00 to 1:30pm, February 4-25, for a lunch series exploring questions of faith and the Episcopal Church, with the option of continuing on to confirmation.  For questions & to RSVP please contact Sue Crowley.

Opportunities to get involved in SMM Youth Ministries
Youth Group Leaders: The SMM Youth Group is looking for a couple of adult leaders to help with faith formation on the 1st and 3rd Sunday of each month, during worship. Please speak with Sue Crowley if you feel you are called to help with our youth group program.
Mentors for SMM Confirmation Program: We will need adult mentors to share their faith stories with youth who are preparing for confirmation.  Adult mentors will meet with youths 2-3 times in March.  Interested in mentoring?  Please talk with Sue Crowley or Fr Bruce.
Mission Trip to Nogales AZ/Mexico 

We are planning another “border immersion” trip to Nogales, a city on both sides the US/Mexico border.  We will learn how legal and illegal immigration affects on life along the border, talk with migrants, walk migrant trials, and visit a sister Episcopal church. We’ll stay at a community center on the Mexico side, and work with the children there.

Please contact Fr Bruce if you are interested or would like to learn more. The dates of the trip have not yet been finalized — it will either be July 16-21 or 23-28.  Please let Fr Bruce know which date(s) would work best for you. Last year the cost was roughly $600/person, including airfare.
Lenten Update from Colorado Haiti Project and St. Paul’s School

With the Lenten season fast approaching, we write to share an update on the progress of St. Paul’s Episcopal School in Haiti, a calendar of Lenten reflections, and our sincere gratitude for the transformational help you and your parishioners continue to share with Haiti.  Contact Teresa Henry for more information.
Got Grocery Cards? 
Q: What Are Grocery Cards and Why Do We Want Them?
A: Free Money for SMM!

Grocery cards are a simple, phenomenal way to support SMM.   By purchasing cards through SMM and using them at Natural Grocers, King Soopers, and/or Safeway your groceries net 5% for SMM.   In just the first month of 2018, SMM received $924 from King Soopers alone!  Imagine the impact of $12,000 a year in the life of SMM.

To purchase, find Colleen at coffee hour after the 10 am service or contact her at  Cash, check or credit cards accepted.  King Soopers ($2.50) and Safeway cards ($10) are rechargeable at the store; Natural Grocers are non-rechargeable in $50 and $100 increments.
Join the SMM Food Ministry! 
The Food Ministry is now co-chaired by Sheila Martinson and Janet Taapken. A new sign up sheet is posted in the back of the church. If you are interested in occasionally providing a meal to a parish family in need, we would love to have you join our team. Thank you!
Support Community Food Share 
Looking for an easy way to support Outreach? Please remember the SMM Food Pantry basket in your weekly grocery shopping! Donations such as cereal, peanut butter, soup, canned tuna and chicken, rice, and baby food/formula are especially needed. Place sealed, non-perishable items only in the basket at the back of church in the entry way. Thank you!
Outreach Funding
REMINDER: 25% of our loose plate collection in 2018 (i.e., anything in the offering plates not designated as payment toward a pledge) will go toward St. Mary Magdalene’s Outreach grants.
12th Annual St. Benedict Benefit 
Please join us for a night of great food, music and a silent auction!  The 12th annual St. Benedict Benefit will be held at 5:50pm on Saturday, February 24, at the Avalon Ballroom (6185 Arapahoe in Boulder).  This event is always delightful and the proceeds benefit a very important ministry that provides healthcare to the homeless and working poor of Boulder County.  Tickets at $50 each and can be purchased at the door or in advance by contacting Larry Burgess or on the website: Thank you!
St. Benedict Silent Auction: Donations Needed!
St. Benedict Health and Healing Ministry is seeking your generous auction donations for our crucial annual St. Benedict Benefit fundraiser on February 24, 2018.   Perhaps you could donate a weekend at a vacation home, tickets to a sports or theatre event, jewelry or a beautiful piece of art.  These are just a few ideas.  Please contact Beth Kimberly (silent auction co-coordinator) at St. Benedict to discuss any potential donations with us. Many thanks for your consideration; we depend on your help! For more information about St. Benedict’s work please visit  Thank you!
Sign Up for Coffee Hour!
Please consider providing Coffee Hour treats following the 10:00 service.  Instructions and assistance are available for making coffee and setting up.  If no one has signed up for a given Sunday on the volunteer sheet posted near the fireplace, coffee may be made, but no munchies will be furnished.  Committing to this ministry just once a year will keep us in refreshments every Sunday!  We appreciate your generosity.  Questions?  See Patti Guilford or Jane Rogers, Kitchen Co-Managers.
Bake Communion Bread!
Would you like to bake communion bread? The recipe is simple – making and baking takes about a half hour on Friday evening or early Saturday morning.  Deliver the bread to the church before 10:00 am Saturday.  It is nice too if you present it at the offertory on Sunday morning, but not necessary.  This is a wonderful expression of service and care for your church family!  Find the recipe here!  Contact Janet Poley to volunteer.
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Bishop: The Rt. Reverend Robert O’Neill
Priest in Charge: The Rev. Bruce Swinehart,
Children and Youth: Sue Crowley,
Music Director: Matt Witherow,
Parish Administrator: Brian Gates,
Sr. Warden: Jim Watkins,
Jr. Warden: Jeff Cantrell,

Worship Service Times
Saturdays 5:00pm
Sundays 8:00am & 10:00am

Office Hours
Mon-Thur 9am-2pm

Priest in Charge Hours
Monday – Sabbath
Tues-Thur – Office Hours
Fri-Sat – by appointment

To submit an announcement for the church calendar, Parish News, website, and bulletin, contact the church office no later than 12:00pm on the Tuesday prior to desired publication.  Please limit announcements to 50 words or less.  If more information is needed, a document can be linked to the announcements with a full description.


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