This coming Sunday, the Second Sunday after Easter, is known by the nickname, if you will, of “Good Shepherd Sunday.” The Gospel lesson we will hear is St. John’s account of Jesus saying, “I am the Good Shepherd.” We will read Psalm 23: “The Lord is my shepherd; therefore can I lack nothing.” And we will hear the comfort of St. Peter’s words that we have “returned to the Shepherd and Bishop of your souls.” These images down through the ages have been translated in so many ways, especially in art, that many times the idea of Christ the Good Shepherd is overwhelmed by sentimentality and devolves into the idea of, as one priest wrote, “Gentle Jesus, come and squeeze us!” The Church in her infinite, Spirit-guided wisdom has placed these Scripture lessons on the Second Sunday after Easter to urge us to look at these images in light of the Resurrection, and so we must. Because of the Resurrection, we are to see Jesus, the Divine Shepherd, leading his flock…us…from death to life. Because of the Resurrection, we are now able to live in sure confidence of his Good Shepherding, God’s Shepherding, God’s Providence, “which surrounds us and upholds us in every instant, which brings good out of evil, and life out of death. That lesson is…the very basis and starting-point of Christian spiritual life, and a lesson of the utmost relevance for every one of us…We have many substitutes for it, of course, many other grounds of security and confidence, but they are really nothing but hirelings, and when the wolf comes, they vanish pretty quickly (The Recollected Pastor).”
We have several things that are ready to kick back into gear now that we have had some time to relax and enjoy this Easter season. Read on…
Wednesday Bible Study & Dinner
Bible Study and fellowship Dinner return this coming Wednesday, April 18. We will begin to work our way through the Minor Prophets in the Old Testament. There are 12 minor prophets and we find them at the end of the Old Testament, after the Book of Daniel. This week we will have an overview and perhaps launch into the Book of Hosea.
Tuesday Book Study
Beginning Tuesday, April 24, our Tuesday Book Study will begin discussing a biblical fiction work: Cain: The Story of the First Murder and the Birth of an Unstoppable Evil. One reviewer writes about this book, “Cain is a wonderful novel that explores the ‘what ifs’ of the world’s first family. Brennan McPherson explores the questions we’ve all had about Adam and Eve. ‘What happened to Cain?’ is just the beginning.” The cost per book is $5.00. Pick up your copy this weekend.
Adult Sunday School
Sunday School for everyone is back in session this coming Sunday, starting at 9:45 a.m.
We are happy to report that All Saints was able to provide $3880 for the building of a school for the Dalit children in our Diocese of Andhra Pradesh in India. Thank you all very much for your generosity in helping lift our children in India out of the poverty in which they find themselves.
Ladies Primrose Tea
On Saturday, May 5, the Ladies of All Saints will gather at Sally Blackburn’s home for their annual Primrose Tea. There is a sign-up sheet on the bulletin board. Please let us know if you will be there that day. If you would like to contribute a dish, please sign-up for that as well. This is one of our highlight events of the year, so plan on joining us and bring along a friend!
News of Note
Betty Parkinson was re-admitted to the hospital this week, due to a low heart rate. She faces some challenges in her medical care over the coming weeks. Please continue to keep her in your prayers, as well as all those who care for her, as she moves forward. She is in very good spirits and would certainly welcome a visit. She is presently at Pardee Hospital.
News of Note #2
Kathy Willis continues her treatment for cancer. Last week it was discovered that her tumor markers had dropped considerably, surprising her doctors. We give thanks to God for that good news. I urge you to keep on praying for Kathy in her situation that our Lord will provide a full healing both of body and soul.
News of Note #3
Meg Brinley had cataract surgery a couple of weeks ago. Unfortunately, the procedure caused swelling in her cornea, which has caused much difficulty in being able to see properly and so is limiting her activity. Please pray she heals quickly and that she may return soon to church.
The construction universe is plagued with all sorts of weird things that happen. We were expecting the footers for our administrative building to be dug and laid in this week. Unfortunately, when Bob Brooks and our General Contractor tried to contact the sub-contractor on Monday to confirm that the scheduled work would begin Tuesday, they were unable to contact or locate him. As of today, they still do not know where he is. Bob has engaged another sub-contractor to handle the work for us and he has scheduled us for Wednesday of this coming week, weather permitting of course! Once the foundation is laid and the county signs off, work will then move forward at a rapid pace.
Also, the contract was executed and deposit made for the fabrication of our bell tower by Dave Steel Company up in Asheville. That work should take approximately 2 months.
You may or may not be aware but the rock wall surrounding our cemetery had fallen into serious disrepair. Over the past several weeks, a rock mason has been working on that wall and that work is now complete.
We now have a fully functioning dishwasher in our kitchen. Many thanks to Paul Sewrey, who happens to be a plumber by trade, for installing it for us. The new dishwasher has been in place for a few weeks but there was an electrical issue that needed to be fixed, and so it was yesterday.
It is that time again when we are going to be blessed with a Shakespeare production by our young people and the students of Classical Scholars. A performance is scheduled for Sunday, May 6, at 12:45 p.m. for us here at All Saints. If you have never seen one of these productions, you absolutely MUST be here to see it! This year’s play is A Midsummer Night’s Dream.
That is about it for this week. As always, pray for one another and for this parish as we remain rooted and built up in our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!
This Week in the Parish
Sunday, April 15, Second Sunday after Easter
· 8:30 a.m., Holy Communion
· 9:45 a.m., Sunday School
· 11:00 a.m., Holy Communion
· 12:45 p.m., Fellowship Lunch
Wednesday, April 18
· 6:00 p.m., Holy Communion
· 6:30 p.m., Fellowship Dinner
· 7:00 p.m., Bible Study
· 7:00 p.m., Choir Practice