Weekly Word for March 11, 2016

March 10th, 2016

Daylight Savings Time Begins Sunday

Don’t forget to set your clocks forward tomorrow night! But we know this is probably what you’re thinking:



The Case Study of Detroit Churches

Dear Epiphany,

I often describe Seattle as the Detroit of the 20th century. A hundred years ago Detroit was booming. The auto industry was THE industry. Money was being made. Beautiful homes were being built. Art and music were flourishing. And churches were strong and dynamic. Today Seattle is the boom city. I hope we will be thriving in a hundred years, but who knows? After all, in 1978 the billboard read: “Will the last person leaving Seattle — Turn out the lights?”

Kate and I were recently at the Consortium of Endowed Episcopal Parishes conference in Denver, and there were quite a few parishes from the Detroit area there. A hundred years ago these parishes were well endowed by the families who attended them. Today, these parishes, having weathered crisis after crisis in their city, are now the primary institutions left standing to rebuild Detroit. There are a few reasons why.

First, church is missional. That means the church goes out. It goes out, because it was formed to represent and participate with the God that goes out. God is love, love is other-oriented, and that is the mission and the movement of church. So when church is being its most authentic self, it is moving beyond itself. That is what the Episcopal churches are doing in Detroit today.

Second, churches remember. For most of history the church has been the repository of culture, holding fast to a way of life that is passed down from one generation to the next. And while this makes churches slow to change, when they do change they then hold to the new norms and pass them on. The churches of Detroit remember the city the way it was. Much of that was not so great, but much of it was terrific. The churches of Detroit today are reminders of the city as it was, both the good and bad, and leading in the invigoration of the good. Churches remember.

Third, churches worship, and everything else is fair game. In addition to worship, the mandate of church is as broad as the human imagination. Churches can fix cars, run schools, care for the elderly, have art camps, dig ditches, and more. Where God is, the church goes, and in times of crisis, finding God is foremost on people’s minds. So churches become the gathering places to ask: “What do we do now?” That is what they are asking at the churches in Detroit.

Fourth, churches include everyone. So everyone is invited into the conversation. Everyone is invited to look for God in his or her circumstances, and see the works they are doing as little victories for the kingdom of God. These victories are being named, blessed, and celebrated by the churches in Detroit.

Finally, churches have leaders. I have met a few of these Episcopal Church leaders from Detroit here in Denver and they are very impressive indeed.

In a hundred years, God willing, there will still be operas, orchestras, art museums, and universities in Seattle. There are in Detroit. But it is the churches that are leading there today. That is what they are designed to do, particularly, maybe even especially, when things are tough. That has always been the case, and that is the case in Detroit today, and that will be the case in the future wherever things may be tough, maybe even here in Seattle. Our capacity to lead in the future, like the Detroit churches are leading today, very much depends on how we manage our assets and endowments. A little financial planning today might go further than we could imagine in the life of Seattle tomorrow.


The Lenten Afternoon of Quiet

Twice a year, we set aside time and space for quiet at Epiphany. Spend an afternoon (Noon–5 pm) meditating, praying, listening, and expressing your spirituality. We will have an orientation in the Fireside Room at the beginning, but feel free to come for any part or all of this experience. There will be:

+ Art supplies in the Fireside Room
+ Guided meditation with Pieter Drummond
+ Tea, coffee and snacks in the Fireside Room
+ Lunch buffet
+ Prayer exercises and art examples for inspiration
+ Evening Prayer at 4:30 pm

When we commit to a quiet time with God, the stress and busyness of regular life falls away. The deeper, more peaceful parts of ourselves emerge and in that stillness, we feel more in touch with the Divine. In Lent, quiet time is especially precious as we ponder the deeper meaning of Jesus’ sacrifice and shine light in our dark corners. It’s also wonderful to be in silence in community. By honoring each other’s response to the call to silence, a new connection often emerges.

Questions? Please contact Diana Bender. No need to register, just show up.

Guided Meditation Intensive with Pieter Drummond

Holy Week, if approached with clear intentions, can be life-changing. To prepare you for this process, we will be offering silent meditations for five consecutive mornings of the week before Holy Week.

Monday, March 14–Friday, March 18
7:45–8:15 am and/or 8:30-9 am in the Church Chancel

These meditations will guide you to explore the person you are and to set clear intentions leading to the person you will become. Be still and know.


Is the “spiritual journey” obsolete in today’s world? Although we have instant access to the best information on raising our children, building relationships, and advancing our careers, ironically, stress is almost constant, and we still struggle to fully appreciate our time with ourselves and with those closest to us. To begin a spiritual journey is to begin a spiritual practice. Meditation is a practice that transforms not only our relationship with others but also our relationship with each moment of life.

After the intensive, join us for weekly meditation on Wednesdays and Fridays at 7:45–8:15 am and 8:30–9 am in the Chapel.

—Pieter Drummond

Help Us Prepare for Holy Week

Can you believe that Holy Week is right around the corner? At Epiphany we love our Holy Week liturgical traditions—from palm processions to Taizé to the Alleluia bells at the Vigil. Are you excited to remember the Passion of Christ in our newly renovated, acoustically sound Church? Find out everything that’s happening the week after next in the official Holy Week Guide.

You are also invited to help us prepare for Holy Week by signing up to share food or drink at one of our events or to donate to the Flower Fund.

Sign Up to Bring Food and Drink to an Event

In addition to loving the high liturgy of the season, we also love our food traditions during Holy Week—the Agape Meal on Maundy Thursday, the Easter Vigil reception on Holy Saturday, and the Easter Brunch! You are invited to sign up to bring a dish or a beverage to share to one of these events. Just email Diane Carlisle or call the Parish Office (206-324-2573) to let us know what you’d like to bring.

Agape Meal
The Agape Meal dates to apostolic times and celebrates our Christian love for each other. For the meal, we are asking for:

– Soup
– Bread & Cheese
– Olives
– Fruit

Easter Vigil Reception
After all the Alleluias and bell-ringing at the end of the Easter Vigil service, come to the Great Hall for a grand reception. Please sign up to bring:

– Champagne or Wine
– Sparkling Cider or Water
– Dessert

Easter Brunch
We didn’t have an Easter Brunch last year because of construction, but this year, it’s back on! We are planning on serving egg dishes and fruit. Let us know if you would like to share a dish. And if there is a special dish you associate with Easter, feel free to bring that too!

Sign up by emailing Diane Carlisle or calling the Parish Office (206-324-2573).

Donate to the Easter Flower Fund

This Easter Sunday, the highest celebration of our Christian year, you can remember a special person or event by donating towards our Altar Flower Fund. Perhaps you would like to acknowledge the birth of a baby, or a marriage, or a loved one now departed. You may donate towards one or more lilies, but you are not limited to Easter. Any date during the year we can decorate the altar with a floral arrangement on the Sunday closest to that date.

Complete the form and send your check to the church office or add it to the collection plate. Remember that during Advent and Lent only greens are used on the altar.

Thank you for your consideration of the Altar Flower Fund.

Click here to download the Flower Donation Form.

Parish Prayer List

Click here to download this week’s prayer list.

Sunday Lectionary Corner

March 13, 2016
Fifth Sunday of Lent
Isaiah 43:16–21
Philippians 3:4b–14
John 12:1–8
Psalm 126

Upcoming Events in the Life of Epiphany

Click here to view the calendar on the website.

This Week at Epiphany

March 12: Second Saturday All Threads Together
On the second Saturday of every month, the “knitters” get together for an extra morning of crafting for causes! If you’ve always wanted to come on a Thursday, but work during the day, feel free to join the fun at 10:30 am–12:30 pm in the Christie House Library.

March 12: Lenten Afternoon of Quiet
Instead of an entire day, we’re setting aside an afternoon (12:30–5 pm) of silence on Epiphany’s campus for reflection, meditation, and rest. Click here for details!

March 13: Adult Forum – Not in God’s Name, Part 3
Join the Rev. Doyt Conn in the Great Hall at 10–10:45 am to study the book by Rabbi Jonathan Sacks about the phenomenon of religious extremism and violence committed in the name of God. This is the last in the series, but you can still come if you miss the first forums.

March 13: Tour and Fireside Chat with Doyt
You are invited to attend a campus tour and fireside chat with Doyt after the 5 pm service. We will meet in the Great Hall around 6:30 pm. If you would like to attend, please RSVP to Emily. We will cap the group at 15 people. If this tour is full, or if this date doesn’t work for you, there are other tours and chats scheduled in March and April. Click here for a list of dates.

March 14: Guided Meditation Intensive with Pieter Drummond Begins
Holy Week, if approached with clear intentions, can be life-changing. To prepare you for this process, Pieter Drummond will offer guided meditations for five consecutive mornings. These meditations will guide you to explore the person you are and to set clear intentions leading to the person you will become. Join us at 7:15-8 am in the Church Chancel on any or all mornings from Monday, March 14, to Friday, March 18.

March 16: Palm Cross Making
Join Peggy Wilton in making palm crosses for the Palm Sunday procession at 3:30 pm in the Christie House Library. She will bring the materials, so all you have to do is weave away! A great activity for families!

March 16: Evening Prayer and Community Meal
We’re trying something new here at Epiphany in March. What if we came together just for the sake of being together? No book study, no agenda—just some prayer and some food. You are invited to Evening Prayer at 5:30 pm in the Church, followed by a community meal in the Christie House Library. RSVP to Emily Linderman if you’d like to come to the meal.

Upcoming Events

March 20: Adult Forum – Pilgrim Report
On Palm Sunday at 10–10:45 am in the Great Hall, several of the recent Epiphany pilgrims to the Holy Land will share about the most impactful experiences they had in Israel/Palestine in February. As part of the pilgrimage, they walked where Jesus walked, an experience simulated by the Stations of the Cross service on March 21 in the Chapel, and through the retelling of the Passion on Good Friday.

March 20-27: Holy Week 2016
Holy Week is the time the Church sets aside to remember and celebrate the Passion of Christ. Between Palm Sunday and Easter, there is a service every evening, along with other special events. Click here for the basic schedule to start planning, download a Holy Week Guide, or look for one in the back of the church and the Great Hall.

Community Events

March 25: Seven Sisters Sharing the Last Seven Words of Christ
Plymouth United Church of Christ is hosting an ecumenical observance of Good Friday at noon on March 25. Structured around the seven last words that Jesus spoke before his death, seven ministers, including our own Emily Linderman, will reflect on Jesus suffering and death through the lens of today’s issues of justice. Download the flyer here.