|667 Mount Road, Aston, PA 19014 610-459-2013
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|Small Parish - Big Heart - Inclusive
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|The CHIMES - August 2013
Calvary Episcopal Church, Rockdale
For a PDF version of the Chimes, please click here.
As Christians we are called to be disciples of Jesus Christ; but, exactly what does that
look like in daily life? The disciples in the New Testament physically followed Jesus,
learned how he wanted them to live by watching how he lived. We are not so
fortunate. Our only guide is found in what was written about the amazing experience
of being there, being live apprentices of a master craftsman who spoke, and breathed,
and responded to daily struggles as they happened .
So how can we truly be disciples of Jesus when our lives are full of loud televisions,
long commutes, and unbalanced checking accounts? It is so easy to let our
awareness of God’s love slip from consciousness. The world overwhelms us with its,
well, worldliness. But do not despair. There is a sanctuary from all that noise, a place
where disciples gather and remind each other that even in the modern world, we are
walking a dusty road with our eyes on Jesus. We are learning how to live each day by
doing as He did. Where is this place? Right outside my window, in a little white
church called Calvary. As we gather there each Sunday, we are learning how to be
disciples of Jesus.
First, a disciple actively looks for God in all things. “For God so loved the world,”
begins the familiar passage of John 3:16. It articulates God’s longing to heal and make
peace with the whole world, no exceptions. By learning to love what God loves, we
bear the fruit of God in our everyday human choices -- joy, peace, forbearance,
kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.
By his own example, Jesus makes love the distinguishing mark of discipleship, "I give
you a new commandment that you love one another. Just as I have loved you, you also
should love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you
have love for one another” (John 13:34-35). In the practice of imitating Jesus,
disciples discover meaning and purpose to life transformed by an experience of God’
s love and, out of gratitude, love others.
“Just then a lawyer stood up to test Jesus. ‘Teacher,’ he said, ‘what must I do to
inherit eternal life? He said to him, ‘What is written in the law? What do you read
there? He answered, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all
your soul, and with all your strength, and with all your mind; and your neighbor as
yourself.’ And (Jesus) said to him, ‘You have given the right answer; do this, and you
will live.’ But wanting to justify himself, he asked Jesus, ‘And who is my neighbor?’”
This question leads to one of Jesus’ most famous parables, the story of the Good
Samaritan. The lawyer’s question, Who is my neighbor?, asked Jesus to limit the
collection of people whom he must treat as he would want to be treated. The Good
Samaritan refuses to do that. Jesus uses the tale to describe the lengths to which
love goes and how often love is found in the most unexpected of people. The lawyer
is pushed to learn about genuine love from the deeds of one whom he regards as his
Christian love is motivated by the need to see others succeed in life, no matter who
they are. To be a disciple of Jesus is to desire for all to be successful as we would
wish to be successful. Jesus lived as a servant, an example of God’s self-giving love.
Disciples imitate Jesus by creating loving relationships, because by its nature, love
satisfies the needs of others.
Discipleship is an ongoing process of God’s love made real in the choices we make.
By the renewal of our minds, the Holy Spirit guides us in living out the ethics of Jesus,
“so that you may discern what is the will of God -- what is good and acceptable and
perfect” (Romans 12:2). Within the community of Calvary, God is made real through our
love for one another. It is through our active gratitude for God’s love that we know
what God wants -- all people to succeed in life. Being a disciple involves an active
choice to respect the worth and dignity of all people, to see an enemy as a friend no
matter how difficult that may seem.
We gather at Calvary to be reminded of how much we are loved. Within our church
home, grace abounds when we fall short of living like Jesus. In our commitment to
Calvary, we know and love one another because God knows and loves us. As we
imitate Jesus together in seeking out the success of others, we find meaning to our
existence and purpose to our lives. Each Sunday, the loud, frustrating, confusing and
not-so-loving world falls away and we remember that we are on a journey going
wherever He leads us.
For what it's worth, here's my two cents...
September - National Recovery Month
September is National Recovery Month, a national
observance that educates Americans on the fact that
addiction treatment and mental health services can enable
those with a mental and/or substance use disorder to live a
healthy and rewarding life. Calvary will participate in raising
awareness of the damage of addictions through Sunday
sermons, special speakers & activities and in Wednesday
night forums throughout September.
Other Upcoming Events
Children’s Sunday School -Sign Language Classes Sunday - August 4
Sign language classes will start on August 4 during the children’s Sunday school hour.
All children are welcome to come and learn how to sign the Lord’s Prayer.
Sunday School - Teachers Needed
As we have mentioned on Sunday mornings, the children of Calvary are in desperate
need of Sunday school teachers and helpers. We have a goal of 10 adults who will be
placed on a rotation. Many have agreed to participate. It is diocesan policy that at least
2 adults supervise our children and must submit to a background check for safety
reasons. If you are interested, if you have children who attend Sunday school and
would like to give back to this important program, if you wish to see Calvary grow in its
commitment to raising compassionate and caring children through the teachings of
Jesus Christ, see Fr. Chuck or contact church office.
Blessing of the Backpacks - September 8 - 10 AM
September means back to school. Blessing of the Backpacks Sunday will be September
8 at 10AM
PRO-ACT Recovery Walk - Saturday, Sept. 21
The 12th annual Recover Walk will take place on Saturday,
September 21. PRO-ACT is the Pennsylvania Recovery
Organization—Achieving Community Together, a well-
respected, highly visible, and vibrant grassroots
organization for people affected by substance use
disorders and their families. PRO-ACT works throughout
Southeastern Pennsylvania to promote recovery through
community programs and activities, shape public policy at
all levels, and reduce the stigma of addiction.
The 1.75 mile route will pass many noteworthy buildings in
downtown Pennsylvania including Independence Hall and
Carpenter’s Hall. The children of Calvary will be
participating in the Pro-Act Recovery Walk in Philadelphia
along side the diocese of Pennsylvania on Saturday,
September 21. All are invited to participate.
Calvary Cares Weekend - September 21-22
Pennsylvania Walk4Hearing - Sunday, Sept. 22
The Hearing Loss Association of America's (HLAA)
Walk4Hearing is the largest walk of its kind taking place in
multiples cities across the country. Every spring and fall
thousands of walkers - children and their families, young
adults, young at heart and everyone in between - form
teams and walk in their communities to increase public
awareness about hearing loss, help eradicate the stigma
associated with it and raise funds for programs and
The children of Calvary will be participating in the
Walk4Hearing at Ridley Creek State Park on Sunday,
September 22. What can you do to help? You can walk with
us! You can support a walker (more information will be
coming about how to do this.) You can help serve coffee to
the participants. This is a good way to show that Calvary
cares. T-shirts will be donated by Maggie Quail. If you wish
to participate in either or both the walks please let Maggie
know and give her your size no later then August 30. She
can be reached at 610-459-9163.