Happy Ground Hog Day, or Happy Feast of the Purification of the Virgin Mary and the Presentation of Jesus in the Temple, or Happy Candlemas. If you were at church for Cinnamon Bun Sunday you will have heard that at one time, today marked the end of the Christmas Season and you should take down your Christmas decorations if you have not already done so. Today is also the second day of the United Nations Interfaith Harmony Week, and in light of what has happened in our country this past week, it is a time when we really need to think about how we relate to those of other faiths in our troubled world.
This Sunday – February 5th
This Sunday the Gospel readings is again from the “Sermon on the Mount,” an address/sermon given by Jesus early in his ministry in which he outlines the divine vision for “Kingdom of God” and its citizens. This week’s reading is the familiar passage about being salt and light. In the passage, Jesus talks about the uselessness of salt that has lost its taste. It has been pointed out to me that salt losing its taste or saltiness is a chemical impossibility, I may share what some commentators have shared on this point. But I will focus more on the command to “let your light shine.” We will also be looking a passage from the prophet Isaiah which almost defines what it means to let your light shine. I had the honour of being present at the vigil held Monday night at the Alberta Legislature for the victims of the shooting at the Centre Culturel Isalmique de Québec. It was a candlelight vigil, and even in the wind that blew across the grounds, people tried bravely to keep their candles burning. Light is the only thing that can push back the darkness.
The Readings for Sunday are Isaiah 58: 1-9a and Matthew 5: 13-20. In the Time for All Ages, I will be talking about how “God feeds us.” I have called my sermon, “Your light shall shine.”
This Sunday will also be a celebration of Holy Communion.
MEMORIAL SERVICE FOR EMILY LAMONT (Colleen F.’s mother)
The Memorial Service for Emily Lamont will take place at the church tomorrow (Friday, Feb 3) at 11:00 am.
WORLD DAY OF PRAYER (planning meeting)
On Friday, March 3, Spirit West will be hosting the World Day of Prayer Service for this area of Edmonton. This service is part of an international day of prayer, spearheaded in Canada by the Women’s Interchurch Council. The resources for the 2017 service have been prepared by women of the Philippines. There will be a planning meeting at the church tomorrow (Friday, Feb 3) at 2:00. Any of the women of the church who would like to be part of this service are invited to attend. For more information call Margery W. 780-419-3224.
Court Whist Night
The Whist Night scheduled for this Saturday has been POSTPONED. Watch for it later.
Ladies Group Valentine Social and Meeting
Ladies, mark your calendars for our annual Valentine Luncheon at 11:30 am on Sat, Feb. 11th at the Homefire Grill Restaurant, 18210 – 100 Ave. Cost is $20.00 per person which includes food and gratuity. Reservations and payment can be made through Diane L. Good food and valentine surprises! All women welcome!
SPIRIT WEST UNITED CHURCH CONGREGATIONAL MEETINGS
There will be a Congregational Budget Meeting after Church on Sunday, February 12, 2017. The purpose of this meeting is to discuss and approve the 2017 Budget for Spirit West United Church. There will be a Congregational Meeting after Church on Sunday, February 26, 2017. The purpose of this meeting is to receive and discuss the Annual Report, to discuss and approve a Business Plan for Spirit West United Church (a proposed Business Plan will be sent out next week), and to discuss and confirm (or not) the recommendations of the Church Board on General Council Remits 1 and 2 (see below).
GENERAL COUNCIL REMITS
At the Church Board meeting last night, Remit 1- The Three Council Model from the General Council was discussed and voted on. Remit 2- Elimination of Transfer and Settlement will be dealt with at the February Board Meeting. It is however, the desire of the Board to allow for the fuller engagement of the congregation in the Remit Process. Therefore, Remits 1 and 2, along with the results of the vote by the Board will be presented at the Congregational Meeting on February 26 for discussion and confirmation. Remits 3 and 4 will be dealt with by the Board in March and April and the results will presented to the Congregation at a later date. Information about all the Remits can be found online at gc42.ca/remits.
Volunteers Needed for Jasper Place Wellness Centre
As has been our practise at Spirit West Outreach during the last few winters, we will again be cooking and serving a hot meal on Saturday evenings to those in need during January, February and March at Jasper Place Wellness on Stony Plain Road and 152 St. Our church, together with five other churches, will be sharing the preparation and serving of these meals. We need help cooking and serving on March 4 and 11. If you can help with this very worthy cause, please call Doreen Olynyk at 780-487-5372. For those who cannot participate on these dates but still want to be involved, a cash donation is always appreciated.
CHALLENGES TO MOBILITY?
Spirit West has a Walker (Evolution Xpresso Lite) that is available for use at the church. The walker can also be borrowed by those whose mobility is temporarily challenged. For more information about the Walker, please contact the Church office (780-481-1406).
RIDE TO CHURCH?
From time to time we encounter people who would like to come to church at Spirit West, but are unable to because they do not have means of transportation. Can you give a ride? If you would be willing to make yourself available to provide a ride to church please call the church office. Do you need a ride? Would you like to come to church at Spirit West, but are unable to because you have no ride, please call the church office. (780-481-1406)
Spirit West Prayer Chain
The Spirit West Prayer Chain is a group of people who have committed to continue our prayers of concern from Sunday through the week. To be part of this ministry, email your request to email@example.com . You may also email a request for prayer to the same email address. If you would prefer to talk to someone, you can call the church or call Edina T. at 780-481-3508
SPIRIT WEST ONLINE!
Our Website is at www.spiritwest.org .
Our Facebook page is https://www.facebook.com/SpirtWestUnitedChurch
- Monday to Friday 9:30 – 2:30
- Norma => 9:30 am to 2:30 pm, Monday to Thursday
- Larry => 9:30 am to 2:30 pm, Tuesday to Friday
(Rev.) Larry K. Wright, CD, BA, MDiv
Spirit West United Church