Dear GSAC family,What a beautifully mild Friday we are enjoying here in North Texas!Let no one say, “We had no autumn this year”…because it’s happening right now! Thank God for Texas autumns…in December!!Let’s move on to Advent and beyond!! +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
(A) TOMORROW’S VIBRANT QUIET DAY: 8 A.M. TO NOONTomorrow at 8 a.m., we will begin four hours of meditations and holy silence in the Main Church. Fr. Kenneth MacKenzie- a dear friend of mine- is once again conducting this Advent Quiet morning. I am so impressed by the vibrant possibilities of this time of quietness, that I have directed our Confirmation Class of Candidates and Sponsors to gather with me at 10:30 a.m. to get prepared for spending the final hour of the quiet morning together in the Main Church. If YOU have never experienced “holy silence” (which is so much more than the absence of noise!), I beseech you to give this ‘gift’ to yourself in Advent. (Remember, as well, that the priests present are available for either Spiritual Direction or sacramental Confession throughout the 4 hours.) As Andrew said to Peter, “Come & See!” (B) JOHN THE BAPTIST IS VISITING THESE TWO SUNDAYSThe second and third Sundays of Advent bring John the Baptizer right into our midst. His life and teaching reverberate down through the centuries since he first proclaimed, in the desert, the coming of the Kingdom of God. His message of repentance is seldom heard correctly…and even less often obeyed!! Come and hear the sweet, good news that is wound up in the bitter confrontation of John’s cry in the Wilderness. Though “repent” may sting, it brings with it the healing properties of Truth and Mercy. Good medicine for us sophisticated sinners, eh?! (C) THE COURT CASE…UPDATEDYesterday, the Texas Supreme Court heard our objection to the lower, appellate Court’s decision in favor of the TEC Diocese. The Diocesan web page (fwepiscopal.org) carries a link to the recorded live-streaming of the entire 45 minutes of the hearing. So, if you are interested, surf on over and see/hear for yourself. My initial reaction was that our attorney- Mr. Scott Brister- did a superb job of making our case. But, one never knows what a Court will decide. The Supreme Court is likely (but not required) to make a decision by June of 2020. This 10 year walking nightmare must end…it would seem. Pray that God’s Justice will prevail.
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ May God bless each and every one of you as we pray through this Holy Season of Advent. Don’t let the merchandisers rob you of your peace and serenity in Christ. “Be still, and know that I am God”- the Psalmist reports from the LORD. To which I can only add: AMEN!Love in Christ,Fr. Stuart Smith
In the good old, bad old Days, Anglican Christians waited until their Confirmation before they received their 1st Holy Communion. The logical (but not “theological”) reasoning was that until a person reached the ‘age of accountability’ (variously said to be 12 or 13 yrs. old), that person could not receive the mysteries of Christ’s Body and Blood with enough maturity to fully comprehend the Sacrament. Accordingly, the Confirmation Rite was, in part at least, a rite of passage from non-communion to full communion for those who were Confirmed. This meant that Confirmation was also a tie-in by the Bishop to the Day of 1st Communion…not a bad connection between Bishops and newly confirmed communicants. However, upon reflection, the Church (in the 1970’s) untied the knot between Confirmation and subsequent 1st Communion. Though we continue to carefully prepare every young Christian for their 1st Communion, that preparation no longer has to wait until a child reaches an alleged “age of accountability”. After all, who among us adults can honestly claim to have a fully, completely thought-out mature understanding of the Mysteries of the Blessed Sacrament? If, in the natural family, a child may benefit from receiving three meals a day with or without an adequate understanding of nutrition, why is it that a child in the Super-natural Family of God (‘The Church’) cannot benefit from receiving the Bread from Heaven, and the Cup of Salvation before Confirmation? So: at GSAC, though we continue recommending that the minimum age of Confirmation is 12 yrs. old, we will grant 1st Communion to any baptized Christian whose parents desire it and who are willing to attend at least three “1st Communion Classes.”
The Rt. Rev. Ryan S. Reed was consecrated to be Bishop Coadjutor of the Diocese in a service Saturday, Sept. 21, at Arborlawn United Methodist Church in Fort Worth before a congregation of more than 1200 clergy, lay people, and guests.
Plano, TX – Late afternoon on Friday, June 14, the Anglican Church in North America’s College of Bishops consented to the election of the Very Rev. Ryan Reed as the Bishop Coadjutor for the Diocese of Fort Worth.
Reed was elected by the Fort Worth convention on June 1.
Last summer, the current bishop of Fort Worth, the Rt. Rev. Jack Iker, who has served the diocese in this capacity for over 25 years, announced his coming retirement. In the same announcement, Iker also called for the election of a bishop coadjutor to enter as an assistant with the expectation of taking over the position when he retires. Reed will fill this role and take over for Iker at the end of the year.
A native of Nebraska and raised in Houston, Reed is well-known in the Fort Worth diocese. He was ordained to both the diaconate and priesthood by Iker in 1996 and 1997, respectively. His entire ordained ministry tenure has been within the Diocese of Fort Worth, most recently as Dean of St. Vincent’s Cathedral, the location of the Inaugural Assembly of the Anglican Church in North America in 2009.
The consent to Reed’s election comes just days before the province enters into its 10-year anniversary Assembly. “There’s a lot of history here,” Reed said. “To be a part of the development of the province over the last 10 years is incredible. I’m excited to see where God’s Spirit is leading us and excited to be a part of the College of Bishops. You can feel the grace and the love in the gathering of bishops; to be seated with them is mind-blowing.”
Iker expressed his approval of the consent on behalf of the diocese. “We are excited about the transition to new leadership by our new Bishop-elect, and that process has already begun. Dean Reed brings to us many pastoral gifts and a fresh vision for the mission of our diocese.”
The Most Rev. Dr. Foley Beach, archbishop and primate of the Anglican Church in North America, shared in the joy of the day saying, “Bishop-elect Reed is a Christ-centered priest who has already served his diocese and the province well. I believe he will continue to do so faithfully. The College is grateful to Bishop Iker for his faithful and steady leadership over the years, and we are excited for the future of the Diocese of Fort Worth.”
Today, Bishop Iker blessed the wonderful new Retable and Altar Candlesticks for our Historic Chapel next to Acton Cemetery. (3600 Fall Creek Hwy., Granbury, TX 76049) One of our assisting priest, Fr. Bill Bloodgood handcrafted these wonderful items. First picture is of Fr. Stuart Smith, Rector of Good Shepherd with Bishop Iker, and Fr. Bill Bloodgood. The final photo is the candlesticks sitting in their new home in our chapel. Let’s give Fr. Bill a big “Shout Out” for the wonderful job he did creating these beautiful works of art. Soon, we hope to begin having our Morning Prayer Services and Wednesday Mass return this beautiful little building.
This edition of “Friday
Fanfare” is a bit special.
Instead of simply
presenting what’s happening in our parish family, or introduce some unique
event or opportunity, today I want to offer an invitation to Dream and to Give
to the life of your parish family Good Shepherd Anglican Church.
After the “Dreaming”
presentation, I will drop in a ‘plug’ for an Inventory (B) and for a series of presentations on the Sundays of
August which relate to the “Dreaming” (C).
A Season for Dreaming and for Giving
When was the last time
you gave yourself permission to dream about the future of our parish?
One of God’s prophets
once proclaimed: “Without a vision, the People perish”.
I’d like to share a
dream…a vision if you will… about the future for Good Shepherd Anglican Church.
I dream of a parish that
is so committed to Jesus Christ and His Love that it just won’t die a peaceable
death. In the face of shrinking to the
size of a mission (not self-supportive; dependent on the Diocese), this parish
wakes up to say instead, ‘I am going to give until this parish thrives! Give of my time and effort, give of my
spiritual and natural gifts, give of my precious finances, even!’ This parish I’m dreaming of sees Giving
as a hilarious opportunity to see God move…not Giving as a heavy burden
of guilt. What I see is a bright future,
a vibrant community of Christians seeking to learn new tricks…even by us “old
dogs”! Christians learning how to tell
the story of Christ (“TELET, anyone?”) and welcome the stranger with kindness
and Good News.
What’s your dream? What’s your vision?
Your Vestry will be
circulating a “Basic Church Profile Inventory”, which will give each
member of our parish an opportunity to begin this envisioning work by looking
at Who we now are, and leaning forward to consider, “what more…what else” might
we want to do…to BE? I’m asking you to
go the extra mile and fill out this inventory and return all but the cover page
to the Vestry member who gives it to you, or drop it off at the Church next
time you stop in. (Your responses are
anonymous.) Let’s think together, pray together, dream together for the
future of Good Shepherd. We know that
Jesus Christ is the Lord of the Church.
We know that the Church is His blood-bought Bride. So: What
is the Dream that Christ Jesus is giving to us for our future life?
The first sermon I ever
gave at GSAC began this way, “the only lasting value in my ministry together
with you will be those things that are soaked in prayer”.
Therefore: Let us Pray for our Future Life
together. Let us Dream…and Let us GIVE.
Fr. Stuart Smith
(B) A CHURCH PROFILE TO BEGIN OUR DREAMING PROCESS
CHURCH PROFILE INVENTORY
As we look toward the future of Good Shepherd, this moment
provides an important opportunity for us all to share together in assessing who
we are and where we see ourselves going.
Please take a few thoughtful moments to fill out the survey
that will be handed to you, starting this Sunday. A member of the vestry should contact you
about the importance of this project.
Your responses are anonymous.
Just remove the cover page and return pages 2-15 that are stapled
together in the basket at the back of the Church or the basket in Parish Hall
before August 17th.
AUGUST SUNDAYS: 4 WAYS TO RESPOND TO OUR
During the Christian Formation time (after refreshments),
GSAC will be blessed with presentations from 4 representatives of outreach
missions. Each of them is a ministry to which our Parish sends monthly financial
contributions. As we envision our future,
we want to be aware of and responsive to the needs of these excellent missions.
Here they are, Sunday-by-Sunday:
Mrs. Kim Erwin will speak about the mission and ministry
of Brazos Pregnancy Center.
Mrs. Janet Craig will bring with her a young person
involved in the Camp Crucis Equestrian Program to describe that vital
Fr. Robert Gresser and his family will give us a report on
their challenging and exciting mission to the Diocese of Northern Malawi.
Mrs. Brenda King and her husband will share with us the
exciting reading mentoring program known as “BEAM” (“Baccus Elementary Adult Mentors”), a
ministry in which 8-10 members of our parish have participated over the past 5 years.
As you can see, we have much to do over the next month. Our diocese will be consecrating a New Bishop
in September. Our parish is embarking on
a season of reflection, planning and…yes…Dreaming together. I can’t wait to see what God (and you, the
members of GSAC) have in store for the year(s) to come!
Last Sunday, the 23rd of June our Parish was blessed to have guest preacher and celebrant, Fr. Tom Hightower. Father Tom, long-time rector of the Church of Saint Peter & Saint Paul in Arlington, Texas (now retired), assists, as his availability allows, the Sunday services and teaching Adult Christian Education classes. He has been active in a number of diocesan positions, not the least of which has been his leadership of the Ft. Worth Diocesan Commission on Ministry. It was a delight to have him with us, and we hope he will return again. Thank you, Fr. Hightower. It was a true joy and blessing to have you as our supply priest.
Summer Camp 2018 Schedule June 24 – June 30 Sr. High 9th – 12th July 1 – July 4 Family Camp All Ages July 8 – July 13 Confetti 1 K – 5th July 15 – July 20 Confetti 2 K – 5th July 22 – July 28 Jr High 6th – 8th July 29 – August 4 Sr Confetti 6th – 12th
Each week our Congregation will Pray for the Campers at Camp Crucis, especially campers from our Parish.
This Week (July 1 – July 4) – Emma and her Mother, Natalie Campbell will be participating in Family Camp. Remember, Emma and Natalie in your prayers. May God shower them with His Love, Grace, and Blessings as they explore camp and fellowship with other families in Christ.
Fun was had by all at our English Tea. If you did not get a chance to come, you missed a good time. Hope to see all of you next spring when we do this again. Thank you, Stuff NNonsense for a wonderful style show and a real big shout out to Tea Punk Teas that provided the tea and several of the sweet treats. Thank you to all the people that worked real hard to make this a great success. Thank you for everyone and every business that donated to this great cause. Thank you everyone that attended. I love you all, Kat.