St. Gabriel’s, Portland Featured in Book about Expanded Advent

Liturgical Seasons

Stories From The Diocese

St. Gabriel’s, Portland Featured in Book about Expanded Advent

Did you know St. Gabriel Episcopal Church in Portland is featured in a new book “What Are We Waiting For? Re-imagining Advent for Time to Come?”

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A Celtic Cross in a Graveyard with the Sun Shining on it

Remembering and Living with the Dead

Remembering the significance and rituals of Halloween, All Saints’ Day, and All Souls’ Day.

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An Eastertide Blessing

A call to practice Resurrection for the entire Easter season.

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Confession is Good for the Soul

Confession: an opportunity to examine, repent, and receive forgiveness.

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Walking in Light

Bishop Michael calls us to be present in the light and worship of our communities as we prepare for Holy Week and Easter.

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As Lent Begins

Bishop Michael shares a prayer practice that we carry out daily in the diocesan office, and an encouragement for you in Lent.

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Let Us Break Bread Together

Meals and conversations are essential ways we gather and discuss the issues that give us passion and those that divide us. A meal shared can give us hope and can open new pathways to solutions for problems we have in families, in church communities and in the wider society.

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Holding to the Light

As we move toward Christmas I am reminded that this is a time for stories of love and hope. Certainly that is a central message of the story of the birth of Jesus. Jesus arrived in unexpected circumstances, given to unprepared parents, and celebrated by a cast of surprising individuals. He who is the hope of the world invites us to love one another as he has loved us.

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How We Live

Just as John knew that he was simply the opening act, if you will, preparing the world for the coming of the Messiah, we need to keep in mind that none of us is the be all, end all of anything. While some may find this disheartening, I find it comforting. Feeling like we have to always be the best, that everything depends on us, is not only exhausting, it’s wrong. Nothing we accomplish is without God’s help after all.

So as we prepare our homes and hearts for the coming of the Christ child at Christmas we would do well to remember John’s humility.

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The Interruptions of the Season

My dog is looking out the window at the snow. He is not used to seeing snow, as he is an Oregonian. But he does like it and I suspect is thinking even now of the squirrels he will chase when he goes out later. If he sees a squirrel he will start barking to be let out! So far, so good.

We all react to the snow here in Oregon in different ways. Some of us love it, some do not. Some enjoy the challenges it brings, and others would just as soon it never snow. And, of course, some of us are better at driving in the snow than others! Twenty years in Minnesota will give you an attitude about such things.

I am willing to bet that many of you reading this have had your schedules disrupted by weather this season. It is a challenging time of year to be sure. And it is not only the weather! The Advent and Christmas seasons are times of deep joy and of great sadness. As we age we recall with fondness past Christmases that delighted us, and we remember those we loved who are no longer with us. We mark the years and we pray for such things as peace on earth and good will toward all. We make contributions to those causes that promote what we believe will bring these things to pass.

We once again experience the birth of Jesus, the coming of the Messiah of God in human form. God with us and for us and calling us to live as Christ in the world. May you be blessed this day, may the snow (if you have snow where you are) delight you. May whatever is outside your window call you to your better self and may you experience the love of God in your life.

+Michael

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