FATHER MARK’S ANNOUNCEMENTS
1) Tonight we begin our 3-day service marking the last night, final day, and
first morning of the Passion of the Christ. All of us growing up came to know
and anticipate the joy of Easter Morning in our homes. It would be years before
I understood that as meaningful and joyous it was to celebrate the day with
eggs and baskets and candy, there was a deeper spiritual joy that comes from
the memory and the mystery of the empty tomb. Again, it was many more years
later that I first entered into that mystery through the church celebration of
the Triduum — Maundy Thursday, Good Friday, and the Great Vigil of
Easter — where I heard the stories read and felt the great impact of taking
them seriously. If you want to join me in this moving annual event, come to
church tonight at 6:00 P.M., and come back tomorrow at noon or 6:00 and
then Saturday night or Sunday morning. You will be amazed at how differently
you see and experience Easter.
2) Speaking of Easter Morning — since seating in the sanctuary is still
limited to 50 or so, it might be best to consider taking advantage of the
Saturday night Vigil or the early 8:00 A.M. service, both of which will not be
full to capacity. If you plan to come at 10:00 A.M. Sunday, I would advise
arriving a little earlier than usual. There will be overflow seating in the parish
hall in any event.
3) As we start to think about further re-openings in our church, the first areas on
our minds are those which can be done safely by small groups in large
areas. Bible Studies and discussion groups will start to regather soon,
probably in the parish hall, as will other meetings of groups, teams, and
guilds. Obviously zoom meetings will continue to be an option for any groups
who find that best. At this point, we are thinking Youth Group, Godly Play,
and Nursery will not regather until Fall.
4) While we plan which groups and meetings to restart, we are also committing
to a number of new ideas and projects focused on the community and
outreach. Watch for more information on those things in the weeks and months
to come. Overall, it feels like we are in a good place and should rest here for a
bit before moving forward. This is what progress feels like, and I am deeply
grateful for it.
5) Our Wednesday Sandwich Ministry is growing — in the past several
months we have seen more and more demand and we are now running out of
sandwiches in fifteen minutes. So we have decided to up our number to 50 bag
lunches every other week. Thanks so much to our great volunteers who shop,
make the lunches, and distribute them every other week. If you’d like to help,
call Gina and she’ll get you connected.
6) The Bishop will be here and we will celebrate Holy Eucharist in the
church Wednesday evening, May 19th, at 6:00 P.M. He will be Confirming
and Receiving candidates at that time, so if you would like to be Confirmed (or
Received if you were Confirmed in another tradition) please let Gina or myself
know ASAP. There is still time to get you on the list.
7) Many thanks to Rick Anderson and Steve Shaw, who built our new flower
tables in the sanctuary. You’ll be able to enjoy them this Sunday as they will be
holding beautiful Easter Lillies.
Dan Dickinson April 1
Dante Anderson-Saenz April 3
Scott Harvey April 4
Prayer Requests ** Please make sure your request is received by
Wednesday of each week. You may call (308)632-4626 (leave a
message), email firstname.lastname@example.org or mail to:
St. Francis Episcopal Church
P.O. Box 1201
Scottsbluff, NE 69361
Forward Day by Day Booklets
We still have some of the Forward Day by Day’s for February, March &
April in regular and large print.
We just received the Forward Day by Day’s for May, June and July in
regular and large print.
If you would like any of these mailed to you, please email or call the
DAUGHTERS OF THE KING
This is a National Group of Episcopal Women who commit to pray and
work regularly for the mission and ministries of their local parish and the
wider church. I have personally seen the fruits of having a DOK Chapter –
both for the parish and for the women involved – and so am very happy to
announce a diocesan discernment/training to be offered via Zoom by
Omaha members Sandra Squires and Carol Ott. Our own Beth McKibbon.
Beth leads our small but growing DOK group and will be your local
contact. Here is the information about the meetings:
“Discernment classes will meet 10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. on Monday
mornings starting April 5. Sandra will start promptly at 10 a.m. If someone
needs assistance with joining Zoom, Sandra or Carol Ott will practice with
them before April 5th.
The meeting dates are: April 5, 19, 26, May 3,17, 24, June 7, 21
(Note that there will not be sessions on April 12 and May 10, and May 31
which is Memorial Day.)”
For more information you can email Beth at email@example.com
APRIL FOOLS’ DAY HISTORY
We would be fools to think we knew precisely when April Fools’ Day was
originally celebrated. However, April Fools' Day shares similarities with
other days full of fools, tricks, and merry-making.
Some believe the day is celebrated in honor of the trickery Mother Nature
plays on us this time of year with her unpredictable weather. Another
possible connection is the Indian tradition of Holi. The day is celebrated on
March 31st and practices the same foolery as April Fools’ Day. So does
the Roman festival of Hilaria which was celebrated on March 25th.
The earliest known reference to April Fools’ Day is in Chaucer’s 1392
Nun’s Priest’s Tale. Even so, the reference is so vague, and possibly not
even occurring on the first of April, leaving doubt as to whether it is the
Other scholars point to the reformation of the calendar by Pope Gregory
and the Gregorian calendar we used today in the 1500s in France. The
new year would take place in April, not January as it does now. The theory
is that those who continued to celebrate the new year on April 1st were
called Poisson d’Avril (April fish) and pranks would be played on them.
In 1582, France accepted the Gregorian calendar, but reforms had already
been taking place.
In Britain in 1776, there is a clear and reliable reference to April
foolishness in an article in Gentlemans Magazine. Reference to a custom
in the kingdom of making fools of people on the first day of April. It
addresses the day being the culmination of an eight-day feast and the
beginning of a new year.
Newspapers, television, radio and social media have had their fun on April
Fools’ Day. Check out all this April 1 foolishness:
early soon realized who the donkeys on display really were.
publications of the first-ever published picture of a real flying saucer.
Gina’s Office Hours
Tuesday 9:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.
Wednesday 9:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.
Thursday 9:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.
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Rev. Erin Rath
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