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The AFP emblem depicts the world, held in praying hands and raised to the Holy Spirit, which is represented by a Dove descending  toward the world.

Anglican Fellowship of Prayer

Partners in Prayer

Easter 2010

Newsletter of the Anglican Fellowship of Prayer

Our Mission:  The Anglican Fellowship of Prayer serves the church by encouraging, facilitating, and promoting the understanding and discipline of prayer in the Anglican Communion. 


Dear Friends,

I have never spent any time in the Southern Hemisphere, but, from time to time, I have wondered what it might be like to experience seasons opposite from those we experience here in the Northern Hemisphere. I especially think about this during Christmas and, right now, the Easter Season . Here we are talking about Spring, singing hymns about Spring, and experiencing Spring while those below the equator are thinking Autumn. Our hymn,” Welcome Happy Morning” has these lines,

“Months in due succession, days of lengthening light”, and
”Earth her joy confesses, clothing her for Spring”.

Even the word Lent refers to Spring.

Below the equator it is interesting to realize the congregations are singing about Spring when it is really Fall. No doubt they experience the same feeling at the Christmas Season. My guess is that those Christians in Australia, New Zealand, southern Africa, Hawaii, South America, etc. do not concentrate on the seasons other than to acknowledge that that was the way it was in Jerusalem at that time.

Yes, it is Spring here, but Easter is not actually about a season for it could have occurred in any season. Christianity is about an EVENT, an EVENT unique among all of the religions of the world. Without Easter and the Resurrection there would be no Christianity. It would be just another religious philosophy built around a person, his life and/or his sayings, and we would be trying to reach God by our own merits and deeds, not by Christ’s redeeming love and sacrifice for us. What we need to do is receive it and give thanks for it.

Easter is an East-West event not a North-South event. As the sun rises around the globe each time zone begins to celebrate Christ’s Resurrection whether above or below the equator in what the Rt. Rev. Donald M. Hultstrand refers to as the Great Easter Procession. Let us draw close to the empty tomb and experience the
resurrection anew in our own lives. Whether Spring or Fall we can say Alleluia, Christ is Risen. Yes, Christ is Risen, indeed! Welcome Happy Morning!

Faithfully,
William C. Williams, President, U.S. Council, A.F.P.


AFP NEWS AND NOTES

Diocese of Northwestern Pennsylvania

The Episcopal Church Women of the Diocese of Northwestern PA are planning their annual meeting May 7-8 at St. James Episcopal Church, Titusville. The morning speaker May 8 will be Diane Pyle, Diocesan Representative of the AFP. She will tell about her "Bagpipe Journey," which began when a speaker at a diocesan retreat asked "What would you like to do if you were in God's orchestra?" "Be a bagpiper," was the
answer that came to her, and she got instruction. Her journey next led her to Holy Island in Lindisfarne, England, which she had read about in an article by AFP president Will Williams in a newsletter. He had said Lindisfarne was the "cradle of Christianity" in England. Thither she went, and played her "practice chanter" looking out over the sea, returning to the US inspired to play the bagpipe often. Lunch will be followed by a
talk on the history of the Anglican Fellowship of Prayer, by AFP Board member Celinda Scott (Diocese of Pittsburgh).

The next ECW event in the Diocese of Northwestern PA will be a retreat September 23-24 at the Episcopal House in Chautauqua, New York. It will be led by the Rt. Rev. Donald Hultstrand, past executive vice president of the AFP, and currently Bishop in Residence at Christ Episcopal Church, Greenville, SC. He and his wife, Ann, spend their summers in Minnesota. He is the author of a number of books on the spiritual life
and prayer, including The Praying Church. Please call Enid Bishop at 814-455-9681 if you are interested in attending either event. All are welcome.

The Rev. Carol Carlson, rector of The Episcopal Church of the Holy Cross in North East, Pennsylvania (near Erie in the Diocese of Northwestern PA), has written a hymn inspired by the Gospel lesson for the Fifth Sunday in Lent (Mark 14:1-9). It's the story of the woman who anointed Jesus with the "alabaster flask of ointment of pure nard," which some of the disciples objected to because the money it cost "could have been given to the poor." Jesus says "Let her alone; why do you trouble her? She has done a beautiful thing to me…you can do good to them (the poor) always," and reminds them of his coming death. The last two verses of Carol's hymn read in part " 'What she's done for me is beautiful; what she's done for me is good. I must die; I won't be long
here--she's done for me what she could….Everywhere you tell my story, tell this prophet's story too.' Gathered here, round Jesus' table, may we hear her tale anew. May remembrance keep our hearts pure, not dividing good from good; may they say of us disciples that we, too, did what we could."

Anglican Church of Bermuda
Archdeacon emeritus of the Anglican Church of Bermuda, the Venerable Dr. Arnold Hollis, has been active for many years in the Anglican Fellowship of Prayer in Bermuda, where he is rector of St. James Church in Sandys Parish. This August 29 he has been invited to be honored Guest Speaker in Atlantic City, New Jersey during
the 110th anniversary celebration of St. Augustine Episcopal Church. Dr. Hollis was rector there from 1970-77. Please contact Cheryl Browne at St. Augustine's (609-345-0718) if you can come. Another happy event: Dr. and Mrs. Hollis's daughter Joanna is the first woman from Bermuda to be ordained as an Anglican priest. In an interview in Bermuda's Royal Gazette Jan. 7, 2010, Joanna says that growing up, she wanted to be either a social worker like her mother or a priest, like her father. When she made the decision to start the discernment process for the priesthood, Dr. Hollis "supported her from the very beginning." Joanna was in California at the time, earning a master's degree in Japanese (she had taught English to middle school students in Japan) at the
Monterey Institute of International Studies. She then attended the Church Divinity School of the Pacific, was ordained deacon and then priest, and is presently associate rector at Trinity Church in Santa Barbara.


OTHER CONFERENCES

The Rt. Rev. William Frey, assisting bishop in the Diocese of Rio Grande, will be the leader of the 40th anniversary conference of Faith Alive, to be held at Kanuga June 3-6. AFP members may remember conferences he has led that we have sponsored. He and Bishop Katharine Jefforts-Schori discussed "Who is Christ for Me" in December in Dallas, and found much common ground. Bishop Frey expressed his faith at a
recent Faith Alive conference. Referring to the grounding he finds in the Bible, he said: "Conservative? I suppose so. But it isn't a partisan position. Family values come neither from the left or the right, but from above. Besides, if you want to go out on a limb, you'd better make sure that the tree has deep roots." For further information about the conference, contact the Faith Alive office at FAOfficeNM@aol.com. AFP President Dr. Will Williams and his wife, Nancy, of the Diocese of Virginia, are planning to attend.

The Order of St. Luke is holding its International Healing Conference in British Columbia, Canada, June 21- 25. Keynote speakers include the Rev. Nigel Mumford, Diocese of Albany, NY. See the OSL website at<www.osl2010.ca> if you are interested. AFP Board member Mary Leberknight (Diocese of Idaho) plans to
attend, and AFP Board member Pat Hayes (Diocese of Oregon) hopes to be there also.


SPECIAL DAY

Helen Shoemaker, co-founder of the AFP and wife of the Rev. Dr. Samuel Shoemaker, said "my husband taught me to pray." Dr. Shoemaker is now included in "Holy Women, Holy Men" in the calendar of The Episcopal Church; his feast day is January
31. A special celebration of his feast day was held this year at Calvary Episcopal Church, Pittsburgh, where Sam spent the last decades of his ministry. He died in 1963. At the Adult Forum which preceded the Eucharist, "young people" --now in their 70s
and 80s--remembered how Sam brought them to Christ through his sermons, personal conversations, and small groups for Christian witness, similar to the small groups Helen was developing in the Anglican Fellowship of Prayer.

 


HOW YOU CAN HELP CARRY OUT THE MINISTRY OF THE AFP
1. Pray, and encourage others to pray. As Partners in Prayer we are called to prayer for each other and for the Body of Christ.
2. Form a diocesan network of intercessors. We will have more about this in the next newsletter.
3. Let us know your ideas about how AFP can be of better service, and tell us what you are doing in your diocese.

Note: We are collecting e-mail addresses for AFP members who would like occasional e-mails with news and special prayer requests. Please contact the corresponding secretary at <celinda@fastmail.fm>if you would like
your name and address to be added. From our AFP US Council president, Dr. Will Williams: as always we appreciate your prayers for this ministry that it might be a Christian witness to a hurting world, and if you are so moved, we would appreciate
any donation you might be able to make to support the ministry, and the publication and mailing of the newsletters. Please send to AFP, 1106 Mansfield Ave., Indiana, PA 15701.

 

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