FROM THE RECTOR: GOD’S GLORY
In the story of the raising of Lazarus, Jesus said to Martha, “Did I not tell you that if you would believe you would see the glory of God?” (John 14:40). Martha, and all the others who were with her, saw her brother Lazarus rise from the dead. But Lazarus’ rising is not God’s glory. God’s glory is God himself; God’s glory is Jesus. The word ‘glory’ captures the rich meaning of the Greek word doxa as well as one word can.
At the Red Sea, God’s glory is something very different than the person of God’s Son. There, the Lord tells Moses, “I will harden Pharaoh’s heart, and he will pursue [you] and I will get glory over Pharaoh and all his host; and the Egyptians shall know that I am the Lord” (Exodus 14:4). In the Revised Standard Version, ‘glory’ translates the Hebrew word for “honor”—more literally, “will be honored.” Honor and glory in Exodus are signs of a God understood to be apart from the world. God’s relationship to humankind changed for ever when God revealed God’s self to us in Jesus.
The monument in the cloisters of Canterbury Cathedral for Arthur Michael Ramsey (1904-1988) is inscribed with words of Irenaeus, bishop of Lyon (died c.202), “The Glory of God is a living man and the life of man is the vision of God.” Irenaeus famously wrote against Gnosticism, a school of thought within second century Christianity which valued knowledge of God as the vehicle for salvation. In the gnostic view, God’s creation, including humankind, would pass away. Christians confess the resurrection of the dead.
You and I can never replace the fallen nature of our humanity in our lives in the life we know in this world. Like the patterns of our mind that are fixed in childhood, this fallen nature is always in a real sense with us—and it makes us who we are. When Jesus came into this world and shared his life with humankind, he altered humanity for ever.
In the gospel accounts many people probably thought they were unchanged as they saw him, heard him and walked away from him, but they were wrong. God’s presence in any life constantly changes the equation of that life. When we humans are particularly aware of that presence, it establishes a relationship. This relationship can be close; it can be distant. It can also be confused. But relationship is there, and so is the invitation to glory.
At the Red Sea, God’s glory, God’s honor, meant the slaughter of the Egyptians. On Calvary, God had no honor, but he had the glory which is eternal life. Jesus died on the cross so we might believe and share that life.
Baptism is the sign of our awareness and faith in that new relationship that God’s presence has made in our lives. Eucharist is the sign that nurtures this relationship for the life we share here with God. Jesus showed us that God’s glory is life and the purpose of any life is to enjoy God for ever. Stephen Gerth
YOUR PRAYERS ARE ASKED FOR Joan, Sean, Ciara, Terry, Donna, George, Vera, Patrick, James, Tatiana, Marcia, Al, Kenneth, Gayle, Kean, Helen, Joyce, Susan, Mary, Lee, Wayne, Betty, Gerald, Amy, Gloria, Barbara, Chandra, Sharon, Arpene, Ann, Ruth, Dorothy, Richard; for the members of our Armed Forces on active duty, especially Gene, Matthew, Mark, and Rob; and for the repose of the soul of Paul Lynch . . . GRANT THEM PEACE . . . April 22: 1917 Benjamin Richardson; 1939 Charles Frederick Mainpoting.
IN THIS TRANSITORY LIFE . . . Paul Lynch, the son-in-law of parishioners Donna and Terry O’Dwyer, died suddenly on Wednesday, April 18. Please keep Paul, his wife Joan, their children Sean and Ciara, Terry and Donna, Paul’s family and friends, and all who mourn, in your prayers.
THIS WEEK AT SAINT MARY’S . . . The Adult Forum will meet on Sunday, April 22, at 10:00 AM, in the Mission House. Dr. Dennis Raverty will give a presentation on “Rembrandt’s Depiction of the Jews of Amsterdam” . . . The Board of Trustees will meet on Monday, April 23, at 6:30 PM in the Mission House . . . Wednesday, April 25, Saint Mark the Evangelist, Sung Mass 12:10 PM, Said Mass 6:20 PM . . . The Wednesday Night Bible Study Class will meet on April 25 at 7:00 PM in the Mission House, after the evening Mass. The class is reading the Letter to the Hebrews. The class is led by Father Jay Smith . . . Father Smith will hear confessions on Saturday, April 21. Father Jim Pace will hear confessions on Saturday, April 28.
AROUND THE PARISH . . . Parishioner George Handy is now at the Kateri Residence, 150 Riverside Drive at 87th Street. Please keep him in your prayers . . . April 25, the Feast of Saint Mark the Evangelist, is the eighteenth anniversary of the life profession of Sr. Deborah Francis, C.S.J.B. and the fourteenth anniversary of the consecration of the Right Reverend Mark S. Sisk as bishop coadjutor of the diocese of New York. Bishop Sisk has served as the bishop of New York since September 29, 2001 . . . The Right Reverend Richard F. Grein, XIV Bishop of New York, will preach at the Solemn Mass on Ascension Day . . . Attendance: Last Sunday 306.
FROM THE MUSIC DIRECTOR . . . The prelude before the Solemn Mass is Chorale by William Mathias (1934–1992). The setting of the Mass ordinary is Missa brevis, Op. 57, by Lennox Berkeley (1903–1989). Berkeley was professor of composition at the Royal Academy of Music in London, and among his famous pupils are William Mathias (1934–1992) and John Tavener (b. 1944). He wrote this setting for the choir of Westminster Cathedral, London, in 1960. At the ministration of Communion, the choir sings the motet The Lord is my shepherd, Op. 91, No. 1, by Berkeley, which was written for the 900th anniversary of the foundation of Chichester Cathedral. It was commissioned by Walter Hussey, then dean of the Cathedral, a man who was responsible for an extraordinarily large number of significant commissions from such prominent composers as Benjamin Britten, Leonard Bernstein, and Henry Moore . . . On Sunday afternoon at 4:40 PM, Janet Yieh will play the organ recital. Janet is a student at The Juilliard School. Her program includes music by César Franck (1822–1890), Charles–Marie Widor (1844–1837), and Louis Vierne (1870–1937). James Kennerley
THE ANNUAL MEETING OF THE CONGREGATION will be held following the Solemn Mass on Sunday, May 6, 2012. The meeting will receive reports from parish organizations, staff and the board of trustees. The meeting will elect two delegates and two alternate delegates to serve as our representatives to the annual diocesan convention.
MARK YOUR CALENDAR . . . Tuesday, May 1, Saint Philip and Saint James, Mass 12:10 PM and Mass 6:20 PM . . . Wednesday, May 16, Eve of Ascension Day, Solemn Evensong 6:00 PM . . . Thursday, May 17, Ascension Day, Sung Matins 8:30 AM, Noonday Prayer 12:00 PM, Sung Mass 12:10 PM, Organ Recital 5:30 PM, Solemn Mass 6:00 PM . . . Monday, May 28, Memorial Day. The parish will observe its federal holiday schedule.
AIDS WALK 2012 . . . The Saint Mary’s AIDS Walk team is in action again, our seventh year in a row, walking in the 27th AIDS Walk New York on Sunday, May 20. Our team will raise money, and most of us will walk on Saturday, May 19, in order to be in church the following day. We are small but successful: in 2011, there were only 10 of us, we raised over $16,000, and we ranked 32 among 3,641 teams in the Walk! We need your help to do even better this year. Join our team or contribute to our team by clicking here. To join, click on “Join our Team.” To contribute, in the Team Members box next to our picture, click on “General Team Donation” (if you prefer to write a check made out to AWNY, you can give it to Father Smith or to MaryJane Boland). Team members raise money from their friends and colleagues. Ask questions of our team by e-mailing the team leader MaryJane Boland or speak to her or Father Smith on Sunday.
SUNDAY ADULT FORUM . . . On Sunday, April 22, Dr. Dennis Raverty, art historian and good friend of Saint Mary’s, will lead a class entitled “Rembrandt and the Jews of Amsterdam” . . . On Sunday, April 29, Father Jim Pace, assisting priest here at the parish, will lead a class on the Rosary. He will discuss the history and practice of this devotion and will look at both the Anglican and Roman Catholic rosaries and will discuss the differences between the two . . . On May 6, 20, and 27, Father Jay Smith will continue his series, “What Do Episcopalians Believe?”
WEDNESDAY NIGHT BIBLE STUDY CLASS . . . The class, which is reading the Letter to the Hebrews will meet on April 25 (at 7:00 PM, following the 6:20 PM Eucharist), and on May 2, 9, and 23 (at 6:30 PM). On May 23, the final class of the 2011-2012 academic year, the members of the class will share a potluck supper. All are invited to join us for these final classes—and for the potluck dinner! Jay Smith
CONCERTS AT SAINT MARY’S . . . Saturday, April 21, 8:00 PM, Miller Theatre Early Music Series, Treasures of the Renaissance, with Stile Antico . . . Friday, April 27, 2012, 1:00 PM/Lunchtime Concert, Roseville Area High School Cantus Certus, Dean Jilek, director. Admission Free.
OUTREACH AT SAINT MARY’S . . . We continue to collect non-perishable food items for the Saint Clement’s Food Pantry. Please consider making a regular donation to the Food Pantry. Look for the basket in the back of the church or in Saint Joseph’s Hall. You may make a cash donation as well. If you would like more information about how the Food Pantry works or if you would like to volunteer, please speak to Sister Deborah Francis, C.S.J.B., or Father Smith . . . Father Smith resumes his Book Sale on Sunday. All proceeds are used to benefit the Food Pantry and others who are in need.
AWAY FROM THE PARISH . . . December 7, 2011–May 14, 2012, Transition to Christianity: Art of Late Antiquity, Third to Seventh Century AD, at the Onassis Cultural Center, Olympic Tower, 645 Fifth Avenue, entrances on 51st and 52nd Streets, between Madison and Fifth Avenues . . . February 3–May 20, 2012–Walls Speak: The Narrative Art of Hildreth Meière, at the Museum of Biblical Art, 1865 Broadway at 61st Street. This exhibition presents the liturgical work of Hildreth Meière (1892–1961), who was one of the best known and most prolific Art Deco muralists of the twentieth century.