St. John Parish Weblog

This post will always be the first post you see.  To see the rest of the blog posts, just scroll down.  They are in order from newest  posts to oldest posts.

Eagles are most majestic in flight and soaring. Christians are most effective when engaged in ministry in Jesus’ Name and in the power of the Holy Spirit (Mark 1:7-11; Acts 1:8; Acts 19:1-7; 1 Corinthians 12).

This is the Parish weblog for St. John’s, Tulare, CA.  If you are interested in assisting with this blog, please leave a message for Brewster Bird. And feel free to leave comments.

We  are working on updating the weblog to include weekly excerpts from the sermons  and including portions of the Revised Common Lectionary, plus scheduled activities of our parish. Remember, that like all parishes and missions in the Episcopal Church, Diocese of San Joaquin, we are welcoming and affirming.

22nd Sunday after Pentecosr

See you there!
Brewster Bird, Junior Warden
Proper 24
Sunday, October 16, 2016
Year (cycle):


The Collect:

Almighty and everlasting God, in Christ you have revealed your glory among the nations: Preserve the works of your mercy, that your Church throughout the world may persevere with steadfast faith in the confession of your Name; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

Old Testament:

Jeremiah 31:27-34 [Alternate: Genesis 32:22-31]

27 The days are surely coming, says the Lord, when I will sow the house of Israel and the house of Judah with the seed of humans and the seed of animals. 28And just as I have watched over them to pluck up and break down, to overthrow, destroy, and bring evil, so I will watch over them to build and to plant, says the Lord. 29In those days they shall no longer say:
‘The parents have eaten sour grapes,
and the children’s teeth are set on edge.’
30But all shall die for their own sins; the teeth of everyone who eats sour grapes shall be set on edge.

31 The days are surely coming, says the Lord, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and the house of Judah. 32It will not be like the covenant that I made with their ancestors when I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt—a covenant that they broke, though I was their husband, says the Lord. 33But this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, says the Lord: I will put my law within them, and I will write it on their hearts; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. 34No longer shall they teach one another, or say to each other, ‘Know the Lord’, for they shall all know me, from the least of them to the greatest, says the Lord; for I will forgive their iniquity, and remember their sin no more.


22 The same night he got up and took his two wives, his two maids, and his eleven children, and crossed the ford of the Jabbok. 23He took them and sent them across the stream, and likewise everything that he had. 24Jacob was left alone; and a man wrestled with him until daybreak. 25When the man saw that he did not prevail against Jacob, he struck him on the hip socket; and Jacob’s hip was put out of joint as he wrestled with him. 26Then he said, ‘Let me go, for the day is breaking.’ But Jacob said, ‘I will not let you go, unless you bless me.’ 27So he said to him, ‘What is your name?’ And he said, ‘Jacob.’ 28Then the man said, ‘You shall no longer be called Jacob, but Israel, for you have striven with God and with humans, and have prevailed.’ 29Then Jacob asked him, ‘Please tell me your name.’ But he said, ‘Why is it that you ask my name?’ And there he blessed him. 30So Jacob called the place Peniel, saying, ‘For I have seen God face to face, and yet my life is preserved.’ 31The sun rose upon him as he passed Penuel, limping because of his hip.


Psalm 119:97-104 [Alternate: Psalm 121]

97 Oh, how I love your law! *
all the day long it is in my mind.
98 Your commandment has made me wiser than my enemies, *
and it is always with me.
99 I have more understanding than all my teachers, *
for your decrees are my study.
100 I am wiser than the elders, *
because I observe your commandments.
101 I restrain my feet from every evil way, *
that I may keep your word.
102 I do not shrink from your judgments, *
because you yourself have taught me.
103 How sweet are your words to my taste! *
they are sweeter than honey to my mouth.
104 Through your commandments I gain understanding; *
therefore I hate every lying way.


1 I lift up my eyes to the hills; *
from where is my help to come?
2 My help comes from the Lord, *
the maker of heaven and earth.
3 He will not let your foot be moved *
and he who watches over you will not fall asleep.
4 Behold, he who keeps watch over Israel *
shall neither slumber nor sleep;
5 The Lord himself watches over you; *
the Lord is your shade at your right hand,
6 So that the sun shall not strike you by day, *
nor the moon by night.
7 The Lord shall preserve you from all evil; *
it is he who shall keep you safe.
8 The Lord shall watch over your going out and
your coming in, *
from this time forth for evermore.


2 Timothy 3:14-4:5

14But as for you, continue in what you have learned and firmly believed, knowing from whom you learned it, 15and how from childhood you have known the sacred writings that are able to instruct you for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. 16All scripture is inspired by God and is useful for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, 17so that everyone who belongs to God may be proficient, equipped for every good work.

1In the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, who is to judge the living and the dead, and in view of his appearing and his kingdom, I solemnly urge you: 2proclaim the message; be persistent whether the time is favourable or unfavourable; convince, rebuke, and encourage, with the utmost patience in teaching. 3For the time is coming when people will not put up with sound doctrine, but having itching ears, they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own desires, 4and will turn away from listening to the truth and wander away to myths. 5As for you, always be sober, endure suffering, do the work of an evangelist, carry out your ministry fully.


Luke 18:1-8

1 Then Jesus told them a parable about their need to pray always and not to lose heart. 2He said, ‘In a certain city there was a judge who neither feared God nor had respect for people. 3In that city there was a widow who kept coming to him and saying, “Grant me justice against my opponent.” 4For a while he refused; but later he said to himself, “Though I have no fear of God and no respect for anyone, 5yet because this widow keeps bothering me, I will grant her justice, so that she may not wear me out by continually coming.” ’ 6And the Lord said, ‘Listen to what the unjust judge says. 7And will not God grant justice to his chosen ones who cry to him day and night? Will he delay long in helping them? 8I tell you, he will quickly grant justice to them. And yet, when the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on earth?’

Twenty-first Sunday after Pentecost

Dear followers of Saint John’s,

your scribe has missed several days of writing in the blog. the 9th  of October this year is the 21st Sunday  after Pentecost. Last Sunday was the Episcopal Church’s  ‘Social Media Sunday’ encouraging us to share  our church with others via social media. Twitter users are encouraged to use #episcopalian to find out what the greater church is doing. This week we are placing an abbreviated  version of the Daily Lectionary  in the blog today and attempt to reflect our priest Rev. Dr. John Day’s  Homily or Sermon in relation to the Gospel and the  Scriptural lessons read by our congregation.


Proper 23
Sunday, October 09, 2016
Year (cycle):


The Collect:

Lord, we pray that your grace may always precede and follow us, that we may continually be given to good works; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

Old Testament:

[Alternate: 2 Kings 5:1-3, 7-15c]



1Naaman, commander of the army of the king of Aram, was a great man and in high favour with his master, because by him the Lord had given victory to Aram. The man, though a mighty warrior, suffered from leprosy. 2Now the Arameans on one of their raids had taken a young girl captive from the land of Israel, and she served Naaman’s wife. 3She said to her mistress, ‘If only my lord were with the prophet who is in Samaria! He would cure him of his leprosy.’ 7When the king of Israel read the letter, he tore his clothes and said, ‘Am I God, to give death or life, that this man sends word to me to cure a man of his leprosy? Just look and see how he is trying to pick a quarrel with me.’

8 But when Elisha the man of God heard that the king of Israel had torn his clothes, he sent a message to the king, ‘Why have you torn your clothes? Let him come to me, that he may learn that there is a prophet in Israel.’ 9So Naaman came with his horses and chariots, and halted at the entrance of Elisha’s house. 10Elisha sent a messenger to him, saying, ‘Go, wash in the Jordan seven times, and your flesh shall be restored and you shall be clean.’ 11But Naaman became angry and went away, saying, ‘I thought that for me he would surely come out, and stand and call on the name of the Lord his God, and would wave his hand over the spot, and cure the leprosy! 12Are not Abana and Pharpar, the rivers of Damascus, better than all the waters of Israel? Could I not wash in them, and be clean?’ He turned and went away in a rage. 13But his servants approached and said to him, ‘Father, if the prophet had commanded you to do something difficult, would you not have done it? How much more, when all he said to you was, “Wash, and be clean”?’ 14So he went down and immersed himself seven times in the Jordan, according to the word of the man of God; his flesh was restored like the flesh of a young boy, and he was clean.

15 Then he returned to the man of God, he and all his company; he came and stood before him and said, ‘Now I know that there is no God in all the earth except in Israel.”


[Alternate: Psalm 111]



1 Hallelujah!
I will give thanks to the Lord with my whole heart, *
in the assembly of the upright, in the congregation.
2 Great are the deeds of the Lord! *
they are studied by all who delight in them.
3 His work is full of majesty and splendor, *
and his righteousness endures for ever.
4 He makes his marvelous works to be remembered; *
the Lord is gracious and full of compassion.
5 He gives food to those who fear him; *
he is ever mindful of his covenant.
6 He has shown his people the power of his works *
in giving them the lands of the nations.
7 The works of his hands are faithfulness and justice; *
all his commandments are sure.
8 They stand fast for ever and ever, *
because they are done in truth and equity.
9 He sent redemption to his people;
he commanded his covenant for ever; *
holy and awesome is his Name.
10 The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom; *
those who act accordingly have a good understanding;
his praise endures for ever.


2 Timothy 2:8-15

Remember Jesus Christ, raised from the dead, a descendant of David—that is my gospel, 9for which I suffer hardship, even to the point of being chained like a criminal. But the word of God is not chained. 10Therefore I endure everything for the sake of the elect, so that they may also obtain the salvation that is in Christ Jesus, with eternal glory. 11The saying is sure:
If we have died with him, we will also live with him;
12 if we endure, we will also reign with him;
if we deny him, he will also deny us;
13 if we are faithless, he remains faithful—
for he cannot deny himself.

14 Remind them of this, and warn them before God that they are to avoid wrangling over words, which does no good but only ruins those who are listening. 15Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved by him, a worker who has no need to be ashamed, rightly explaining the word of truth.


Luke 17:11-19

11 On the way to Jerusalem Jesus was going through the region between Samaria and Galilee. 12As he entered a village, ten lepers approached him. Keeping their distance, 13they called out, saying, ‘Jesus, Master, have mercy on us!’ 14When he saw them, he said to them, ‘Go and show yourselves to the priests.’ And as they went, they were made clean. 15Then one of them, when he saw that he was healed, turned back, praising God with a loud voice. 16He prostrated himself at Jesus’ feet and thanked him. And he was a Samaritan. 17Then Jesus asked, ‘Were not ten made clean? But the other nine, where are they? 18Was none of them found to return and give praise to God except this foreigner?’ 19Then he said to him, ‘Get up and go on your way; your faith has made you well.’


The Rev. Dr. John Day led us in  opening his sermon with the following:

“May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be always acceptable in your sight, Oh Lord my Strength and Redeemer”.

He discussed the Gospel reading concerning the ten lepers, how 9 followed The Law, and how only one came back to thank Jesus ( yet broke all the rules of Law). Fr. John also asked us in the congregation about what the story might really be about.  Words such as Faith, Hope, Gratitude came up in the ensuing discussion. The scribe noticed  the Samarians in the Old Testament and Samaritans in the New Testament are similar and both were considered outcasts and below The People of the Law, yet God answered and met their needs ( New Testament) and used the Samarians  to put the Prophet in an unlikely place ( What! not at the King’s side?) and the leper in the Old Testament story was a great warrior, but was ‘put out’ when he was told to visit The Prophet in Samaria. The King was so upset he rent his clothes ( tore them) . Fr. John then related stories about a homeless prostitute who visits his other parish ( Church of the Saviour, Hanford, CA) ( ) regularly; talking about her hand written envelope with her offering of thirty seven cents. Relating the Gospel to those of us who feel as if we are outside the box or outside the Love of Christ is a direct link to the Gospel story. So, do we feel as if we are outcast as the Samaritans were made to feel by The People of The Law? or are we The People of The Law ignoring the needs of the outcast?


The Church of the Saviour runs an interdenominational soup kitchen that operates 6 days a week located at 519 North Douty Street, Hanford, California.

Our church, Saint John’s Episcopal Church, missions to preschoolers in Tulare, with some students from Visalia and Hanford.

The Learning Center’s on the web at the following :



The Episcopal Church education tradition is deep and ancient in the tradition of the greater Anglican tradition, Our Learning Center encourages youngsters to develop responsibility and care and concern for others and themselves.  The youngsters meet weekly for chapel services to learn more about Jesus and the greater Body of Christ.


Yours in Christ!,


Brewster Bird, Jr. Warden,

Saint John’s Episcopal Church



Tyndale and Coverdale Celebrated Today!

Dateline Europe- William Tyndale and Myles Coverdale were Martyrs for the vernacular Bible translated into English! The English Crown sought them for their treasonous acts against the state Church! Yet their seeming failure to complete the Anglicizing of the Holy Bible by their Martyrdom allowed fruition of the  now famous King James Authorized Version and the Geneva Bible ( God bless those Calvinists!).

So below we publish the Collects for the Day and the readings ( Courtesy of the 1979 Book of Common Prayer, Church Publishing  Society 1979)

William Tyndale and Myles Coverdale: Translators of the Bible, 1536, 1568

Thursday, October 06, 2016
The Collect:

Rite I:
Almighty God, who didst plant in the heart of thy servants William Tyndale and Miles Coverdale a consuming passion to bring the Scriptures to people in their native tongue, and didst endow them with the gift of powerful and graceful expression and with strength to persevere against all obstacles: Reveal to us, we pray thee, thy saving Word, as we read and study the Scriptures, and hear them calling us to repentance and life; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

Rite II:
Almighty God, you planted in the heart of your servants William Tyndale and Miles Coverdale a consuming passion to bring the Scriptures to people in their native tongue, and endowed them with the gift of powerful and graceful expression and with strength to persevere against all obstacles: Reveal to us your saving Word, as we read and study the Scriptures, and hear them calling us to repentance and life; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

Old Testament:

Proverbs 8:10-17

10 Take my instruction instead of silver,
and knowledge rather than choice gold;
11 for wisdom is better than jewels,
and all that you may desire cannot compare with her.
12 I, wisdom, live with prudence,
and I attain knowledge and discretion.
13 The fear of the Lord is hatred of evil.
Pride and arrogance and the way of evil
and perverted speech I hate.
14 I have good advice and sound wisdom;
I have insight, I have strength.
15 By me kings reign,
and rulers decree what is just;
16 by me rulers rule,
and nobles, all who govern rightly.
17 I love those who love me,
and those who seek me diligently find me.


Psalm 119:89-96

89 O Lord, your word is everlasting; *
it stands firm in the heavens.
90 Your faithfulness remains from one generation to another; *
you established the earth, and it abides.
91 By your decree these continue to this day, *
for all things are your servants.
92 If my delight had not been in your law, *
I should have perished in my affliction.
93 I will never forget your commandments, *
because by them you give me life.
94 I am yours; oh, that you would save me! *
for I study your commandments.
95 Though the wicked lie in wait for me to destroy me, *
I will apply my mind to your decrees.
96 I see that all things come to an end, *
but your commandment has no bounds.


1 Corinthians 15:1-11

1 Now I should remind you, brothers and sisters, of the good news that I proclaimed to you, which you in turn received, in which also you stand, 2through which also you are being saved, if you hold firmly to the message that I proclaimed to you—unless you have come to believe in vain.

3 For I handed on to you as of first importance what I in turn had received: that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the scriptures, 4and that he was buried, and that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the scriptures, 5and that he appeared to Cephas, then to the twelve. 6Then he appeared to more than five hundred brothers and sisters at one time, most of whom are still alive, though some have died. 7Then he appeared to James, then to all the apostles. 8Last of all, as to someone untimely born, he appeared also to me. 9For I am the least of the apostles, unfit to be called an apostle, because I persecuted the church of God. 10But by the grace of God I am what I am, and his grace towards me has not been in vain. On the contrary, I worked harder than any of them—though it was not I, but the grace of God that is with me. 11Whether then it was I or they, so we proclaim and so you have come to believe.


John 12:44-50

44 Then Jesus cried aloud: ‘Whoever believes in me believes not in me but in him who sent me. 45And whoever sees me sees him who sent me. 46I have come as light into the world, so that everyone who believes in me should not remain in the darkness. 47I do not judge anyone who hears my words and does not keep them, for I came not to judge the world, but to save the world. 48The one who rejects me and does not receive my word has a judge; on the last day the word that I have spoken will serve as judge, 49for I have not spoken on my own, but the Father who sent me has himself given me a commandment about what to say and what to speak. 50And I know that his commandment is eternal life. What I speak, therefore, I speak just as the Father has told me.’


And now from Wikipedia and Mr. James Kiefer:



William TyndaleWilliam Tyndale was born about 1495 at Slymbridge near the Welsh border. He received his degrees from Magdalen College, Oxford, and also studied at Cambridge. He was ordained to the priesthood in 1521, and soon began to speak of his desire, which eventually became his life’s obsession, to translate the Scriptures into English. It is reported that, in the course of a dispute with a promminent clergyman who disparaged this proposal, he said, “If God spare my life, ere many years I will cause a boy that driveth the plow to know more of the Scriptures than thou dost.” The remainder of his life was devoted to keeping that vow, or boast. Finding that the King, Henry VIII, was firmly set against any English version of the Scriptures, he fled to Germany (visiting Martin Luther in 1525), and there travelled from city to city, in exile, poverty, persecution, and constant danger. Tyndale understood the commonly received doctrine — the popular theology — of his time to imply that men earn their salvation by good behavior and by penance. He wrote eloquently in favor of the view that salvation is a gift of God, freely bestowed, and not a response to any good act on the part of the receiver. His views are expressed in numerous pamphlets, and in the introductions to and commentaries on various books of the Bible that accompanied his translations. He completed his translation of the New Testament in 1525, and it was printed at Worms and smuggled into England. Of 18,000 copies, only two survive. In 1534, he produced a revised version, and began work on the Old Testament. In the next two years he completed and published the Pentateuch and Jonah, and translated the books from Joshua through Second Chronicles, but then he was captured (betrayed by one he had befriended), tried for heresy, and put to death. He was burned at the stake, but, as was often done, the officer strangled him before lighting the fire. His last words were, “Lord, open the King of England’s eyes.”

Miles Coverdale (see below) continued Tyndale’s work by translating those portions of the Bible (including the Apocrypha) which Tyndale had not lived to translate himself, and publishing the complete work. In 1537, the “Matthew Bible” (essentially the Tyndale-Coverdale Bible under another man’s name to spare the government embarrassment) was published in England with the Royal Permission. Six copies were set up for public reading in Old St Paul’s Church, and throughout the daylight hours the church was crowded with those who had come to hear it. One man would stand at the lectern and read until his voice gave out, and then he would stand down and another would take his place. All English translations of the Bible from that time to the present century are essentially revisions of the Tyndale-Coverdale work.

The best summary I know of Tyndale’s writings on grace is found in C S Lewis’s English Literature in the Sixteenth Century, Excluding Drama, Oxford UP, 1954), pp 187-191. [Note: this book has been reissued as Poetry and Prose in the Sixteenth Century.] I will go out on a limb and say that any Christian who reads English and is interested in the theological questions of the Reformation ought to read large portions of this work. In particular, I recommend pages 32-44, 157-221 (or at least 157-165 and 177-192), and 438-463.

by James Kiefer

Miles CoverdaleMyles Coverdale (Also spelt Miles Coverdale) (c. 1488 – 20 January 1569) was a 16th-century Bible translator who produced the first complete printed translation of the Bible into English.

From 1528 to 1535, he appears to have spent most of his time on the Continent. In 1535 he published the first complete English Bible in print, the so-called Coverdale Bible. As Coverdale was not proficient in Hebrew or Greek, he used ‘five soundry interpreters’ in Latin, English and ‘Douche’ (German) as source text. He made use of Tyndale’s translation of the New Testament (following Tyndale’s November 1534 Antwerp edition) and of those books which were translated by Tyndale: the Pentateuch, and the book of Jonah. The publication appeared in Antwerp and was partly financed by Jacobus van Meteren. In 1537, his translations were included in the Matthew Bible. In 1538, he was in Paris, superintending the printing of the “Great Bible,” and the same year were published, both in London and Paris, editions of a Latin and an English New Testament, the latter being by Coverdale. That 1538 Bible was a diglot (dual-language) Bible, in which he compared the Latin Vulgate with his own English translation. He also edited the Great Bible (1540).

His translation of the Psalter is used in the Book of Common Prayer, and is the most familiar translation of the psalms for many Anglicans all over the world. As a consequence, many musical settings of the psalms make use of the Coverdale translation.

(more from Wikipedia)

20th Sunday after Pentecost

Twentieth Sunday after Pentecost

 Rev.  Gail E. Bernthal Officiating, Rev. Deacon Teri Van Huss, Sermon
Below are all the reading options for the 20th Sunday after Pentecost. Sermon Synopsis follows readings.


October 02, 2016

Year (cycle):


The Collect:

Almighty and everlasting God, you are always more ready to hear than we to pray, and to give more than we either desire or deserve: Pour upon us the abundance of your mercy, forgiving us those things of which our conscience is afraid, and giving us those good things for which we are not worthy to ask, except through the merits and mediation of Jesus Christ our Savior; who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

Old Testament:

Lamentations 1:1-6 [Alternate: Habakkuk 1:1-4, 2:1-4]

1 How lonely sits the city
that once was full of people!
How like a widow she has become,
she that was great among the nations!
She that was a princess among the provinces
has become a vassal.
2 She weeps bitterly in the night,
with tears on her cheeks;
among all her lovers
she has no one to comfort her;
all her friends have dealt treacherously with her,
they have become her enemies.
3 Judah has gone into exile with suffering
and hard servitude;
she lives now among the nations,
and finds no resting-place;
her pursuers have all overtaken her
in the midst of her distress.
4 The roads to Zion mourn,
for no one comes to the festivals;
all her gates are desolate,
her priests groan;
her young girls grieve,
and her lot is bitter.
5 Her foes have become the masters,
her enemies prosper,
because the Lord has made her suffer
for the multitude of her transgressions;
her children have gone away,
captives before the foe.
6 From daughter Zion has departed
all her majesty.
Her princes have become like stags
that find no pasture;
they fled without strength
before the pursuer.


1The oracle that the prophet Habakkuk saw.
2 O Lord, how long shall I cry for help,
and you will not listen?
Or cry to you ‘Violence!’
and you will not save?
3 Why do you make me see wrongdoing
and look at trouble?
Destruction and violence are before me;
strife and contention arise.
4 So the law becomes slack
and justice never prevails.
The wicked surround the righteous—
therefore judgement comes forth perverted.

1I will stand at my watch-post,
and station myself on the rampart;
I will keep watch to see what he will say to me,
and what he will answer concerning my complaint.
2 Then the Lord answered me and said:
Write the vision;
make it plain on tablets,
so that a runner may read it.
3 For there is still a vision for the appointed time;
it speaks of the end, and does not lie.
If it seems to tarry, wait for it;
it will surely come, it will not delay.
4 Look at the proud!
Their spirit is not right in them,
but the righteous live by their faith.


Lamentations 3:19-26 or Psalm 137 [Alternate: Psalm 37:1-10]

19 The thought of my affliction and my homelessness
is wormwood and gall!
20 My soul continually thinks of it
and is bowed down within me.
21 But this I call to mind,
and therefore I have hope:
22 The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases,*
his mercies never come to an end;
23 they are new every morning;
great is your faithfulness.
24 ‘The Lord is my portion,’ says my soul,
‘therefore I will hope in him.’
25 The Lord is good to those who wait for him,
to the soul that seeks him.
26 It is good that one should wait quietly
for the salvation of the Lord.


1 By the waters of Babylon we sat down and wept, *
when we remembered you, O Zion.
2 As for our harps, we hung them up *
on the trees in the midst of that land.
3 For those who led us away captive asked us for a song,
and our oppressors called for mirth: *
“Sing us one of the songs of Zion.”
4 How shall we sing the Lord’s song *
upon an alien soil?
5 If I forget you, O Jerusalem, *
let my right hand forget its skill.
6 Let my tongue cleave to the roof of my mouth
if I do not remember you, *
if I do not set Jerusalem above my highest joy.
7 Remember the day of Jerusalem, O Lord,
against the people of Edom, *
who said, “Down with it! down with it!
even to the ground!”
8 O Daughter of Babylon, doomed to destruction, *
happy the one who pays you back
for what you have done to us!
9 Happy shall he be who takes your little ones, *
and dashes them against the rock!


1 Do not fret yourself because of evildoers; *
do not be jealous of those who do wrong.
2 For they shall soon wither like the grass, *
and like the green grass fade away.
3 Put your trust in the Lord and do good; *
dwell in the land and feed on its riches.
4 Take delight in the Lord, *
and he shall give you your heart’s desire.
5 Commit your way to the Lord and put your trust in him, *
and he will bring it to pass.
6 He will make your righteousness as clear as the light *
and your just dealing as the noonday.
7 Be still before the Lord *
and wait patiently for him.
8 Do not fret yourself over the one who prospers, *
the one who succeeds in evil schemes.
9 Refrain from anger, leave rage alone; *
do not fret yourself; it leads only to evil.
10 For evildoers shall be cut off, *
but those who wait upon the Lord shall possess the land.


2 Timothy 1:1-14

1 Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God, for the sake of the promise of life that is in Christ Jesus,

To Timothy, my beloved child:

Grace, mercy, and peace from God the Father and Christ Jesus our Lord.

I am grateful to God—whom I worship with a clear conscience, as my ancestors did—when I remember you constantly in my prayers night and day. 4Recalling your tears, I long to see you so that I may be filled with joy. 5I am reminded of your sincere faith, a faith that lived first in your grandmother Lois and your mother Eunice and now, I am sure, lives in you. 6For this reason I remind you to rekindle the gift of God that is within you through the laying on of my hands; 7for God did not give us a spirit of cowardice, but rather a spirit of power and of love and of self-discipline.

Do not be ashamed, then, of the testimony about our Lord or of me his prisoner, but join with me in suffering for the gospel, relying on the power of God, 9who saved us and called us with a holy calling, not according to our works but according to his own purpose and grace. This grace was given to us in Christ Jesus before the ages began, 10but it has now been revealed through the appearing of our Saviour Christ Jesus, who abolished death and brought life and immortality to light through the gospel. 11For this gospel I was appointed a herald and an apostle and a teacher, 12and for this reason I suffer as I do. But I am not ashamed, for I know the one in whom I have put my trust, and I am sure that he is able to guard until that day what I have entrusted to him. 13Hold to the standard of sound teaching that you have heard from me, in the faith and love that are in Christ Jesus. 14Guard the good treasure entrusted to you, with the help of the Holy Spirit living in us.


Luke 17:5-10

The apostles said to the Lord, ‘Increase our faith!’ 6The Lord replied, ‘If you had faith the size of a mustard seed, you could say to this mulberry tree, “Be uprooted and planted in the sea”, and it would obey you.

‘Who among you would say to your slave who has just come in from ploughing or tending sheep in the field, “Come here at once and take your place at the table”? 8Would you not rather say to him, “Prepare supper for me, put on your apron and serve me while I eat and drink; later you may eat and drink”? 9Do you thank the slave for doing what was commanded? 10So you also, when you have done all that you were ordered to do, say, “We are worthless slaves; we have done only what we ought to have done!” ’


Synopsis of Rev. Teri Van Huss’ sermon:


Deacon Teri shared on three points of the calling of Christ and the service to Him therein. She used the word “Pericopy” several times. Pericopy is a set or grouping of verses, statements or thoughts around a central or unified theme ( The Free Online English Dictionary) . Yet  pericopic verses help clarify the Gospels, make our Book of Common Prayer what it is and help us organize books such as Proverbs, Psalms and other sacred texts into manageable  and topical information. We often use pericopy to help us remember certain parables of Jesus.

Deacon Teri  describes her pericopy as  follows:

  1. Servant-hood

2. Grace

3. Vow

She led us to page 538 of the Book of Common Prayer reading the vows of the Diaconate. The reading tied all of us to Service and Love of Jesus Christ.  “we do what is right because it is right”.  We are “engaged to conform” as part of our Baptismal Vows, even moreso as part of our vows taken during the Steps to Ordination.. Rev. Deacon Teri even tied into the Gospel reading, paraphrasing Jesus teaching on the “Mustard Seed of Faith”. Deacon Teri said ” Faith is Faith ” or as author Katarina Whitley stated in her recent sermon (taken from the Episcopal Church’s website)  “Tiny Faith”.  Teri even described that sometimes we have no faith,  which is true for many of us..if we are honest.. Our tiny Faith can bring all three points of Teri’s pericopic boundaries to us, in our own way, and make Jesus real to each of us!


( above was corrected by Rev. Deacon Teri’s correction of my hearing another word “Periphany” which means something else..)


Thanks be to God!


Peace be to Thee,


Brewster Bird





Rev. Fred Risard, LCSW, B.D., Sermon and thoughts on the Gospel reading from Luke

Fr. Fred was our communicant  Sunday 25 September 2016

He keyed in on the Epistle and the Gospel readings which follows:

1 Timothy 6:6-19

6Of course, there is great gain in godliness combined with contentment; 7for we brought nothing into the world, so that we can take nothing out of it; 8but if we have food and clothing, we will be content with these. 9But those who want to be rich fall into temptation and are trapped by many senseless and harmful desires that plunge people into ruin and destruction. 10For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil, and in their eagerness to be rich some have wandered away from the faith and pierced themselves with many pains.

11 But as for you, man of God, shun all this; pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, endurance, gentleness. 12Fight the good fight of the faith; take hold of the eternal life, to which you were called and for which you made the good confession in the presence of many witnesses. 13In the presence of God, who gives life to all things, and of Christ Jesus, who in his testimony before Pontius Pilate made the good confession, I charge you 14to keep the commandment without spot or blame until the manifestation of our Lord Jesus Christ, 15which he will bring about at the right time—he who is the blessed and only Sovereign, the King of kings and Lord of lords. 16It is he alone who has immortality and dwells in unapproachable light, whom no one has ever seen or can see; to him be honour and eternal dominion. Amen.

17 As for those who in the present age are rich, command them not to be haughty, or to set their hopes on the uncertainty of riches, but rather on God who richly provides us with everything for our enjoyment. 18They are to do good, to be rich in good works, generous, and ready to share, 19thus storing up for themselves the treasure of a good foundation for the future, so that they may take hold of the life that really is life.


Luke 16:19-31

19 ‘There was a rich man who was dressed in purple and fine linen and who feasted sumptuously every day. 20And at his gate lay a poor man named Lazarus, covered with sores, 21who longed to satisfy his hunger with what fell from the rich man’s table; even the dogs would come and lick his sores. 22The poor man died and was carried away by the angels to be with Abraham. The rich man also died and was buried. 23In Hades, where he was being tormented, he looked up and saw Abraham far away with Lazarus by his side. 24He called out, “Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus to dip the tip of his finger in water and cool my tongue; for I am in agony in these flames.” 25But Abraham said, “Child, remember that during your lifetime you received your good things, and Lazarus in like manner evil things; but now he is comforted here, and you are in agony. 26Besides all this, between you and us a great chasm has been fixed, so that those who might want to pass from here to you cannot do so, and no one can cross from there to us.” 27He said, “Then, father, I beg you to send him to my father’s house— 28for I have five brothers—that he may warn them, so that they will not also come into this place of torment.” 29Abraham replied, “They have Moses and the prophets; they should listen to them.” 30He said, “No, father Abraham; but if someone goes to them from the dead, they will repent.” 31He said to him, “If they do not listen to Moses and the prophets, neither will they be convinced even if someone rises from the dead.” ’


Father Fred keyed in on “Money is the root of all evil” and how love of money can be misused. He gave good examples of how to rightly use our assets in the story of the Somali ex-pat who has made good in America and is putting his wealth to good use in providing some affordable housing to the housing stressed in Kings County, California.   Questions asked of us were “Are we using wisely our assets at this time and place?” Are we reaching out to the poor? He also used examples of his work with the homeless in Hanford at the Church of the Saviour’s soup kitchen.. Challenges that keep us thinking..


An aside, but one of Thanksgiving for our Deacon, Teri V.H. who has been assisting in sheparding us through our challenges. We have a scholarship given to youths who major in Agriculture in college from our small town-the Heffelfinger Scholarship. Thank You Tulareans for your support!

If you are reading this for the first time, Thank You, come visit us!


Yours in Christ,

Brewster Bird


Last week’s Share ( from Diocesan newsletter) by Rev. Dr. John Day

Radical Welcoming and Sending
The Rev. Dr. John Day
St. John’s, Tulare


St. John’s is a congregation that finds itself at a crisis point in its walk with Jesus on The Way. The Vestry was informed in January by the Treasurer that there were sufficient funds on hand to maintain operations for about three years. Since January the Vestry has been working with me to answer three fundamental questions,
Who are we?
What is God calling us to do?
Who is our neighbor?
Since our last Vestry Meeting I have been working on a congregational study which will use targeted statistical data that will enable us to understand who our neighbor is. Once we know the makeup of our neighborhood we can begin a discernment process that will result in targeted outreach to our neighbors. We believe that this second step in the process will bring us to an understanding of what God is calling us to do? Finally, we will face the very tough question of who we are compared to who our neighbor is. Does the current makeup of our congregation reflect the makeup of our neighborhood or do we have some work to do.
Working through these three questions will help us to discern where we are being called and who we are called to reach out to. Once this has been accomplished we will have to face the toughest question of all: Are we up to the challenge and do we have the necessary resources of time, talent, and treasure to be effective?
Radical Welcoming and Radical Sending. We are working diligently to discern what that means for St. John’s, Tulare.
John E. Day
Priest in Charge
In last week’s Friday Reflection The Rev. Dr. John Day wrote how St. John’s, Tulare is conducting a congregational study which uses targeted statistical data that will assist  St. John’s  to understand who their neighbor is.

This information for your community can be found on The Episcopal Church website at:

The study is quite extensive and well done.. It takes time to get through it, but is well worth it.
Yours in Christ,
Brewster Bird