Weekly Flame for Thursday, November 7, 2019
From Our Rector
O blessed communion, fellowship divine!
We feebly struggle, they in glory shine;
Yet all are one in thee, for all are thine.
Alleluia, Alleluia! – For All the Saints, the Hymnal 1982, 287
Last week we celebrated what is sometimes called the Fall Triduum, the combination of All Hallows' Eve, All Saints and All Souls on October 31st, November 1st and 2nd. Our Sunday celebration lifted up all our beloveds who have died. Some of us brought photographs. Others called out their names during the prayers of the people. We prayed a litany for all the saints, evoking the whole wide range of the people of God. Our music at the 10 AM was graced by the presence of Patrice Haan of the powerful ministry Healing Muses. She joined Barry Koron in accompanying the choir for their anthem 'For All the Saints,' and also played a Prelude and Postlude. This time of All Saints is thought of by many as an especially holy time, a “thin space” where the veil between this world and the world to come is more permeable, more porous, than usual. Part of that holiness lies in how the day lets us collectively grieve and celebrate those whom we love but see no longer. There is something about the character of All Saints, how it holds our losses and loved ones in a larger container, that I find especially moving. All Saints has a way of bringing us into the very heart of the Good News, an expression of alleluia that allows us to catch a glimpse, a fleeting iota of God’s perspective on us, on life in all its fullness and frailty, including our very mortality. 'We feebly struggle, they in glory shine,' intones verse four of the hymn “For All the Saints.” Yet even in our contrast from the saints—whether from their virtue or their location on the other side of the veil – 'all are one in thee, for all are thine.' All of us are united in a communion of belonging, infinitely larger than we can imagine. All of us are being joined, gathered in, changed from glory into glory, caught up in a communion much larger than ourselves. I take comfort in that deep truth.
I could feel that upholding truth this week at Diamond Diners. As some of you know, one of our neighbors who had been attending Diamond Diners as well as our food pantry for several years passed away unexpectedly last month. This was also the second recent loss of a member of the food pantry community. We acknowledged this most recent loss this week as we gathered around a delicious meal of baked chicken, salad, and mashed potatoes. At one point a guest asked if I would offer a prayer for her, so I did, acknowledging that in that space we come from a variety of religious and spiritual traditions. I gave thanks for her life, her gifts, and her presence. I am grateful for the interconnection – that “fellowship divine,” as the hymn puts it – in that community space.
I look forward to further fellowship in next week’s Community Circles, known now as “Stronger Together 94131”. We gathered for a foretaste of these gatherings in September. Now this coming Thursday, November 14th at 6:30pm we have an opportunity to connect further, as the below blurb explains further. There will be food, stories, and an opportunity to connect to neighbors you may or may not know.
And more immediately, we look forward to this year’s Dymphna musical comedy, 'The Elves of Pressley.' This is the weekend (Nov. 8-10), so come Friday or Saturday night at 7:30 PM or Sunday for the matinée at 2 PM. I’ve overheard some of the singing which sounds excellent, and the props and especially the costumes look amazing. So many people have poured their hearts into this production, and I’m looking forward to seeing it.
In the midst of all of this interwoven activity and energy, we are also preparing to shift seasons in the Church year. This will be our third year observing an extended, seven-week Advent. We are part of a growing number of churches across the country who are taking up this experiment (including this year, I recently read, the Cathedral Church of St. Paul in Boston, in my former diocese).
As we move into this new season together, may we feel ourselves upheld and more deeply rooted in that blessed communion.
The Elves of Presley, Nov. 8, 9 and 10
St. Aidan’s Church will be presenting The Elves of Presley, its 16th original musical comedy with familiar tunes on Nov. 8 and 9 at 7:30 pm and Nov. 10 at 2:00 pm at St. Aidan’s. This year’s show is another nutty play written and directed by John Wilk, Theatre Professor, City College of San Francisco. Scrumbly Koldewyn returns as music director. Deborah Shaw, director and choreographer of City College’s spring musicals, will stage the dancing. Actors in the large cast join parishioners Anne Benninger, Dave Frangquist, Christine Powell and Nancy Sabin.
Get ready for Christmas in November. Elphus, king of the elves from Presley, a town 50 miles south of the North Pole leads the elves in rehearsing St. Dymphna’s (the play’s fictitious home) extravaganza fundraiser. Mother Mary and the elves must convince Sadie to drop her bah, humbug attitude by staging an intervention with ghosts and Sadie’s sad memories from the past.
Tickets will be available soon on Brown Paper Tickets, on Sunday mornings at the 10 am service starting October 20 and at the show. Tickets will be general admission – $25 Adults, Children (5 – 18) - $10, Priority seating Friday & Saturday evenings - $35.
Please invite your family and friends. Help raise funds for St. Aidan’s community programs. Please contact Betsy Eddy, for more information.
Volunteers Needed for The Elves of Presley Shows Nov. 8, 9 and 10
Many volunteers are needed each year to make the shows a success and raise funds for St. Aidan’s. Volunteer roles include: photographer for cast and show photos, provide simple meals as a thank you for the cast for one of three shows, coordinate the no host bar, serve as bar tenders, set up and monitor the complimentary charcuterie and cheese table, sell tickets at the shows, and welcome people and pass out programs. Please contact Betsy Eddy, if you would like to volunteer.
Stronger Together 94131- join neighbors from throughout the 94131 zip code in a two-part Community Circles series. On Thursday, November 14th and December 5th from 6:30-8 PM, we will gather for a simple supper and small-group intentional conversations. It is our desire to share stories about our beloved San Francisco, create connections, and explore possibilities for building a stronger community that we can achieve together, because it is impossible to do it alone. Come, be part of this moving, hopeful series of conversations, and invite friends!
Faith in Action Citywide Meeting, Tuesday, November 19 - 5 pm – 7 pm
St. Anthony de Padua – 3215 Cesar Chavez Street @ Folsom (Parish Hall)
Faith in Action is hosting a citywide potluck and planning session for the next action in December. This will be a great opportunity to meet people of faith from across the city working for social justice together. If you’d like some company, contact Barbara (firstname.lastname@example.org, 415.452.2621) or Cameron and we can go together.
Thanksgiving at St. Aidan's - Noon meal - come!
Thanksgiving is coming up in three weeks on Thursday, November 28th! As in years past, we will be hosting a neighborhood Thanksgiving Dinner at St. Aidan's, featuring wonderful food from Small Potatoes Catering: Turkey, mashed potatoes, candied yams-- all the fantastic foods of Thanksgiving. It starts at noon, is free to attend, and you are very much invited. Please come and bring friends!
Diocesan Convention, October 25-26: Last Friday and Saturday, the Diocese of California held its annual convention at Grace Cathedral. About 250 delegates and clergy from around the diocese gathered to hold elections, debate resolutions, and hear reports from various commissions and diocesan leaders. Bishop Marc, who usually presides, was unable to be present for medical reasons, and the Rev. Jill Honodel, president of the Standing Committee, did an excellent job of presiding, with much coaching from the secretary (me) and the parliamentarian (Christopher Hayes). This was my last convention as secretary, but St. Aidan's will continue to be well represented in diocesan leadership: Cameron Partridge was elected as one of our four clergy deputies to the 2021 convention of the whole Episcopal Church, the convention confirmed the appointment of Will Crockett to the Commission on Ministry, and Charlie Mader will continue as a member of the Executive Council (diocesan board of directors).
The Convention adopted the following five resolutions, which will be described in later Flame articles:
#1: Sabbatical Leave Policy for All Clergy
#2: Carbon Offsets
#3: Diocesan Liturgical Commission
#4: Task Force on Disability and Deaf Access
#5: Single-Use Non-Biodegradable Plastics
Convention Delegate &
(the antiracist) New Jim Crow Book Group- Our next meeting is Dec. 1, 4-6 pm, and we’re reading Washington Black by Esi Edugyan. Please join us! Questions – contact Deacon Margaret, email@example.com.
From the Bishop's Office:
Traveling this summer and want to find an Episcopal Church nearby? Check out the "Find a Church Map"created by The Episcopal Church at episcopalchurch.org/find-a-church!
We need volunteers to help with Harry Potter Day on Saturday, November 16. There will be three online meetings: July 17, July 29, and August 11. If you can make one or all of these meetings, email Caren Miles at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Curious about upcoming events in the diocese? Visit diocal.org/dio-calendar for more!
Healing Touch San Francisco invites all Healing Touch students and practitioners in the Bay Area to a convenient Sunday afternoon monthly support group to meditate and share HT treatments. For those coming by BART please let Kathleen know if you would like to be picked-up at the Glen Park Bart Station. A $5-10 donation is requested to cover costs. Please bring a massage table if you can. RSVP to Kathleen Wyckoff at email@example.com or 415.577.8359.
Further future dates include Sundays, 2pm- 4pm: October 20, November 17, December 15
Contemplative Prayer: Tues/Thurs 9-10am
All are welcome to participate in a space of quiet, contemplative prayer. You may come either or both days at any time between 9-10am!
Sacred Cup 1st & 3rd Saturdays, 10am
Through Bread & Pastry 248 Church St, San Francisco
Join our Sacred Space Minister for a conversation about 'letting go' and other topics over a cup of coffee or tea and perhaps a tasty treat! Click here for information.
St. Aidan's Gourmet Book Group - note change in schedule!
The St. Aidan's Gourmet Book Group does not always adhere to its usual last Monday of the month meeting time so please note the dates carefully! Bring your favorite sweet and savory finger food and book suggestions for future meetings.
Home of Elaine Mannon 295 Urbano Drive, SF
RSVP: 415- 469-9832
Monday, November 25, 2019: The Library Book by Susan Orlean. The 1986 Los Angeles Central Library fire sparks Orlean’s imagination as she writes about the history of libraries, including the terrifying practice of groups destroying books to amplify their ideology.
NO MEETING IN DECEMBER
Monday, January 27, 2020: Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens. A coming-of-age crime drama about a girl growing up alone in the marshes of North Carolina. As Owens said, “I wanted to write about the effect isolation and loneliness can have on a person.”
ECS Shelter Dinners
Join us in helping the kitchen staff to serve dinner at the Episcopal Community Services shelter at 8th & Howard every 4th Saturday. Tasks include serving food cafeteria-style, & cleaning the dining room after. You are needed! It's purposeful time with good friends & conversation - a great way to spend the evening! You can sign up here: http://doodle.com/poll/zti2775bth37fwrs - Lee
To add an announcement to the weekly bulletin of the Flame,
please send your edited text no later than 11:00 am Tuesday to firstname.lastname@example.org