This Sunday in the Parish of Blandford

The Baptism of the Lord

January 17, 2021

The Parish of Blandford Worshiping at Saint Barnabas – Morning Prayer

Sunday Bulletin – Scroll Down.

Parish of Blandford

Aspotogan Peninsula, Municipality of Chester, Nova Scotia

Striving to be a Christian Community

of Worship, Welcome and Care.

If you know someone who cannot access this document on line, print it for them or pick one up at the rectory. Please Remember – if you are concerned about transmission of the virus on surfaces: Wash or sanitize your hands before handling the document. I will be doing so as I print them.

Contact Information: Telephone: (902)228-2761, Email: ministry@parishofblandford.ca, Website: parishofblandford.ca

Rector: Reverend Louis Quennelle, Rector, Phone: (902)521-5169, E-mail: louisq@eastlink.ca

Our Wardens: All Saints: Malcolm Boutilier (902)228-2961, St. Cuthbert: Ken Miller, (902)204-1000, Saint Barnabas: Claudia Zinck (902)228-2091

Diocese of Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island

Anglican Church of Canada

The Baptism of the Lord – Morning Prayer

Collect: Eternal Father, who at the baptism of Jesus revealed him to be your Son, anointing him with the Holy Spirit, keep your children, born of water and the Spirit, faithful to their calling; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

First Reading: A READING FROM THE BOOK OF GENESIS. In the beginning when God created the heavens and the earth, the earth was a formless void and darkness covered the face of the deep, while a wind from God swept over the face of the waters. Then God said, “Let there be light”; and there was light. And God saw that the light was good; and God separated the light from the darkness. God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And there was evening and there was morning, the first day. The Word of the Lord. Thanks be to God. GENESIS 1:1-5

Psalm Refrain: The Lord shall give his people the blessing of peace.

Ascribe to the Lord, you gods, ascribe to the Lord glory and strength. Ascribe to the Lord the glory due his name; worship the Lord in the beauty of holiness. R

The voice of the Lord is upon the waters; the God of glory thunders; the Lord is upon the mighty waters. The voice of the Lord is a powerful voice; the voice of the Lord is a voice of splendour. R

The voice of the Lord breaks the cedar trees; the Lord breaks the cedars of Lebanon; He makes Lebanon skip like a calf, and Mount Hermon like a young wild ox. R

The voice of the Lord splits the flames of fire; the voice of the Lord shakes the wilderness; the Lord shakes the wilderness of Kadesh. The voice of the Lord makes the oak trees writhe and strips the forests bare. And in the temple of the Lord all are crying, “Glory!” R

The Lord sits enthroned above the flood; the Lord sits enthroned as king for evermore. The Lord shall give strength to his people; the Lord shall give his people the blessing of peace. R PSALM 29

Second Reading: A READING FROM THE BOOK OF ACTS. While Apollos was in Corinth, Paul passed through the interior regions and came to Ephesus, where he found some disciples. He said to them, “Did you receive the Holy Spirit when you became believers?” They replied, “No, we have not even heard that there is a Holy Spirit.” Then he said, “Into what then were you baptized?” They answered, “Into John’s baptism.” Paul said, “John baptized with the baptism of repentance, telling the people to believe in the one who was to come after him, that is, in Jesus.” On hearing this, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus. When Paul had laid his hands on them, the Holy Spirit came upon them, and they spoke in tongues and prophesied – altogether there were about twelve of them. The Word of the Lord. Thanks be to God. ACTS 19:1-7

Gospel: THE HOLY GOSPEL OF THE LORD JESUS CHRIST
ACCORDING TO MARK. Glory to you, Lord Jesus Christ. John the baptizer appeared in the wilderness, proclaiming a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins. And people from the whole Judean countryside and all the people of Jerusalem were going out to him, and were baptized by him in the river Jordan, confessing their sins. Now John was clothed with camel’s hair, with a leather belt around his waist, and he ate locusts and wild honey. He proclaimed, “The one who is more powerful than I is coming after me; I am not worthy to stoop down and untie the thong of his sandals. I have baptized you with water; but he will baptize you with the Holy Spirit.” In those days Jesus came from Nazareth of Galilee and was baptized by John in the Jordan. And just as he was coming up out of the water, he saw the heavens torn apart and the Spirit descending like a dove on him. And a voice came from heaven, “You are my Son, the Beloved; with you I am well pleased.” The Gospel of Christ. Praise to you, Lord Jesus Christ. MARK 1:4-11

Prayers of the People:

Celebrating the coming of the One who brings the reign of God to all people, let us pray for the world God loves, the Church God calls, and all people according to their needs, saying, Lord, in your mercy, and responding, Hear our prayer.

God of light and darkness, through water and Word you shine your light into the darkness of our lives. We give thanks for this incredible gift. Lord, in your mercy, Hear our prayer.

God of love and hate, your love comes in spite of our animosity; you bring reconciliation to those who are divided. We pray for better relations between Canada and its native peoples. We pray for reconciliation throughout the world, and especially for our neighbours in the United States. Strengthen us to be peacemakers. Lord, in your mercy, Hear our prayer.

God of hope and fear, you walk with us through the challenges which surround us. Wash away our anxiety by your promised presence,

and set us free from despair. Give us hope throughout this time of Pandemic. Lord, in your mercy, Hear our prayer.

God of church and world, in baptism you unify yourself with our world,

and bring your reign into being. Keep us from seeing your love as a hiding place. Motivate us to infuse the world with your justice. Lord, in your mercy,
Hear our prayer.

God of health and illness, there is nothing that separates us from your love. In this time of Covid 19 crisis, inspire us to bring your health to the sick, your encouragement to the discouraged, your promise to the dying, especially those we name before you now. [Long pause] Lord, in your mercy,
Hear our prayer.

God of life and death, all that exists is from you, and for you. Enable us to trust your baptismal promise, and serve this hurting world. Today we remember in prayer Ernie Wills and Mike Stott. May they rest in peace and rise in Glory. Lord, in your mercy, Hear our prayer.

God who shines in the darkness, receive these prayers and the prayers of our hearts, in the name of the one who is your light, Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Prayer over the Gifts: God of life and freedom, we celebrate the revelation of Jesus as the Christ who makes all creation new. Accept all we offer you this day and make us new in him, who is Lord for ever and ever. Amen.

 

Our Life Continues in the Parish of Blandford

2021 Week of Prayer for Christian Unity: January -18 Abide in my love and you shall bear much fruit (John 15:5-9)

The 2021 theme calls us to pray and to work for reconciliation and unity in the church, with our human family, and with all of creation. Drawing on the Gospel image of vine and branches, it invites us to nourish unity with God and with one another through contemplative silence, prayer, and common action. Grafted into Christ the vine as many diverse branches, may we bear rich fruit and create new ways of living, with respect for and communion with all of creation. You are invited in whatever way you pray throughout the week to include prayer for unity of faith and purpose and especially in the Love of Christ. May our unity bear fruit and bring God’s Reign to our World.

Parish Council Meeting: Advance Notice: January 26, 7:30 at All Saints. Copies of the Minutes of our November Meeting are available at service today & next week.

Evening Prayer – St. Cuthbert: Weather permitting all are invited to St. Cuthbert for a short (cool) evening prayer at 6:45, January 26.

Annual General Meeting: February 21, after Sunday Service – location to be announced. There will be at least one position to be filled as a Member at Large for All Saints. Please consider if God is calling to serce your parish in this ministry.

Bible Study & Reflection: There will be no Bible Study this week.

Pastoral Presence during Uncertain Times: Rev. Louis is available by telephone or email anytime. He will be in the parish on Thursday and Friday this week, January 21 & 22.

Food Bank Donations: A small donation box is be available at the service for Monetary Donations ONLY to the Chester Food Bank. No food donations will be accepted at this time. If you wish to make food donations, please do so as you have done since the beginning of Covid 19 restrictions.

How you can continue to contribute to the parish at this time: Checkout our website (parishofblandford.ca) or contact Rev. Louis for different options available.

Diocesan Prayer Partner: King’s College Chapel

Diocesan Cycle of Prayer: Milton and Rustico, Prince Edward Island: The Reverend Ralph Moore and Bonnie, St. John the Evangelist, Milton; Crapaud, Prince Edward Island: The Reverend Margaret Collins, On Leave, The Reverend Cathy Pharo, Priest-in-Charge, St. John the Evangelist; Crapaud: New London, Prince Edward Island, The Reverend Margaret Fagan and Darroch, St. Mark’s, Kensington, St. Stephen’s, Burlington, St. Thomas’, Spring Brook, St. Elizabeth’s, Springfield

Anglican/Lutheran Cycle of Prayer: ACC: Executive Director, Will Postma, and staff of the Primate’s World Relief and Development Fund

ELCIC: Executive Director, Karin Achtelstetter, and staff of Canadian Lutheran World Relief

ACC/ELCIC: The Week of Prayer for Christian Unity

Rector’s Reflection

Baptism of the Lord

Rector’s Reflection

The Baptism of the Lord – Reflection, January 17, 2021

And just as he was coming up out of the water, he saw the heavens torn apart and the Spirit descending like a dove on him. And a voice came from heaven, “You are my Son, the Beloved; with you I am well pleased.”

I know I’ve said some of this before, but I’ll just repeat as a reminder that the Gospel of Mark tends to tell the story of Jesus life, ministry, passion, death and resurrection in a very direct way without embellishment or frills. Today’s opening of the Gospel is the classic picture of the Gospel of Mark. It is the oldest Gospel, very much concerned only with the essential message of Jesus & the Salvation he brings. It was written around 70AD or shortly thereafter – so, close to 40 years after Jesus death & Resurrection. It is short, precise, exact, to the point. It uses powerful image & language. For Mark, today’s reading is the true beginning of Jesus’ life – his birth story and the “prequels” found in other Gospels are not important.

Let’s look at another beginning. Do you remember what you were doing on the 3rd Sunday of January 5 years ago? If you were at church that Sunday, it was a beginning for you – as it was a beginning for me. It’s hard to believe that today, the third Sunday of January, 2021 is the beginning of my 6th year among you in ministry. It was not your beginning in faith, ministry and worship in this parish. It was not my beginning in faith ministry & worship in my life either. However, that day 5 years ago was the beginning of a journey together which has led us down some unexpected paths – some not so great, but many wonderful ones.

When we look at this beginning in Jesus’ life today, we know, no matter what Mark does or does not say this was not the beginning of Jesus’ life either. We presume from the other Gospel versions that John already knew Jesus as his relative. Unlike in Matthew’s and John’s Gospel, here John the Baptist does not appear to recognize Jesus beforehand as the Messiah. The revelation comes after he has accepted John’s Baptism. It marks the beginning of 3 years ministry which will end with the passion, death and Resurrection.

So let’s talk about this beginning & and what God obviously approves of as a good start. So, what was God so pleased about. Whenever we try to understand God’s mind, God’s motives, it is always impossible to know them completely and perfectly, but with what has been revealed and in faith, we can make some good, educated guesses. Possibly, part of it was that Jesus was a good practising Jew. Maybe lived well, took care of his family, and was good to his friends. One of my guesses is that it had to do with God approving of Jesus beginning as he means to go on. He begins his ministry by being washed – making sure that everything is right between him and God – answering the call by John to repentance, whether he needed it or not. If this were the most important reason in God’s mind, the response might then be “OK, you’ve made a good start, now go out and do it.” God’s response though does not say that. The immediate response is one of a declaration of love & of acknowledging Jesus as Son, not based on what Jesus has done or will do – but rather simply on who he is. Acknowledgement & Love from God come first. They are not based on accomplishment. They are not earned, they are given.

We too are given this acknowledgement and love. The love is there from the moment of our Creation. The public acknowledgement, for most of us, came at our Baptism as a child. This Baptism is symbol of a new beginning and can indicate a making of things right with God, of starting as we mean to go on. Mostly though baptism for us as Christians has much more in it than the call to repentance of John’s Baptism. It has to do with the acknowledgement of God’s love and the love gift of the Holy Spirit to the the one being baptized – by their very existence. For most of us the actual work comes much later in our lives, but there is no condition on this love for us, any more than there was for Jesus.

Today’s reflection on beginnings in Ministry seems appropriate. Earlier, I compared the beginning of Jesus’ ministry to the beginning of my ministry here, our ministry together. Maybe that seems a bit of a presumption on my part; maybe it seems a little large in the head – comparing my ministry to that of Jesus, comparing all your ministries to that of Jesus? It is though precisely the message I believe we are meant to get from today’s Gospel. This comparison is not a presumption – it is a given. At our baptism God says to each of us that we are sons and daughters and the pleasure God takes in us is in the fact that we are – not what in what we do. What we do comes later, like it does for Jesus, as a response to who we are to God and that we have been wanted, loved and acknowledged FIRST!

At our Baptism, God spoke to each one of us here. It was a public acknowledgement of the relationship of love that already existed from the moment we were called into being. God said: “You, …….. are my Son/Daughter, my Beloved; with you I am well pleased.” There many understandings and symbols in Baptism, but today this is the understanding I want to underline. It does not matter when in life we are baptised because in this sense of Baptism, what is marked is what already is. And, it becomes the symbol of all the new beginnings we will make throughout our lives of faith.

So what about Jesus’ ministry, yours & mine – and everything that follows from Baptism. At the time Baptism, even at the time of the writing of the Gospel of Mark, there is little indication that the ministry of Jesus will be as significant and world changing as it has become. Look, though, at what his 3 years of ministry, death and resurrection have accomplished? I have had many new beginnings in ministry in my life. Truly one of the most significant ones 5 years ago, was here in this parish, among you. I have no illusions that in 5 years I have accomplished anywhere close to what Jesus has done in 3 – but then his efforts have 2000 years on me in time to mature and grow and be passed on. Who knows what effect my ministry will have in 2000 years? Who knows what effect your ministry will have in 2000 years? You too have probably had many new beginnings in your ministry since your baptism – whenever that happened.

No matter how many fits and starts we have had throughout our lives, no matter how small or large our accomplishments, no matter where we are in our life journeys; there is no reason not to have another new beginning right now, to begin a new ministry – to respond to the love of God by loving others and giving our lives in that service. We know that God has already welcomed us and saved us and raised us as Jesus was, is and will continue to be raised in God’s love always. There is no reason not to remember that we are loved and ACKNOWLEDGED to be loved by God, with no conditions. Like a marriage with no pre-nuptual agreement – with God’s love there is no “pre-life agreement”.

Today, on this anniversary for us together, on this recognition of Jesus in his Baptism as the beloved one of God, I pray that we can also continue to love and acknowledge each other as the beloved ones of God by how we continue to live with each other, within our parish and communities and with all the beloved ones of God who journey now in this world which God has given to us all.

Worship in our Buildings – relaxing of COVID 19 Restrictions – The Plan

Parish of Blandford

Revision July 25 in Light of new Public Health Directives Effective July 31

All those participating in the service will be required to wear masks at all times. See Link: https://novascotia.ca/coronavirus/docs/Faith-based-gatherings-guidelines.pdf

Worship in our Buildings – relaxing of COVID 19 Restrictions

June 23. 2020

Prior to gathering for worship:

  1. Planning group: Bev & Curtis McDonald, Jackie Cleveland, Alfred Gates, Ken Miller, Louis Quennelle

  2. Where do we gather: In order to accommodate as many as possible with physical distancing, until this is no longer necessary, we propose that all services be in Saint Barnabas.

  3. Proposed time line:

    1. Cleaning and sanitizing in the church prior to resuming services to be completed by early in the week following July 05 (Alfred will put together a team to do this.)

    2. Measuring and marking out space in building for safe physical distancing and welcoming as many people as possible (Week of July 6-11).

    3. Sunday July 12 – information and run through for those who will be ministering as greeters/ushers inside and outside.

    4. Sunday July 19 – Service of Morning Prayer

  4. Identifying and obtaining supplies required:1 box of 50 disposable face masks and 4 bottles X 750ml of alcohol based sanitizer have been purchased. Still needed – pumps (like liquid soap pumps) for dispensing sanitizer. Possibly towels for use in wiping down high contact areas.

Plan for Gathering Safely for Worship:

  1. Preparation in advance:

    1. Cleaning – as above

    2. Making physical adjustments to space as necessary – chairs for ushers one near door one near Baptistry.

  2. Gathering for Worship:

    1. Identifying and preparing individuals as greeters/ushers: 3 each Sunday. We will need an absolute minimum of 6 (ideally 10-12 trained) of these people to prepared to perform these ministries so that no one person has to be on duty every week. Those who volunteer can choose to volunteer for any one of or all these ministries:

      1. Outdoor greeter: Will welcome people, explain the process of entering the building, assist them in maintaining physical distancing while they wait to enter and distribute masks if they are needed. After the service begins will sit near the door to greet and assist any late arrivals.

        After service will encourage worshippers to move away from the door to allow others to leave safely.

      2. Indoor Greeter: Will welcome, point out offertory plate, Food Bank Donation box, distribute bulletin, answer any questions and and ensure people wait for usher to show them to their pew. Check the names of parish members on list provided as they enter. Ask for name and contact information from visitors for contact tracing purposes in case of Covid outbreak.

        After service will assist people in leaving the building, allowing the doorway to clear for safe distancing.

      3. Usher : will welcome & assist people in getting to their pew – to the extent possible accommodating their preferences in where they will sit, explain as needed the physical distancing requirements, pointing out taped markers which will help them to maintain the physical distancing.

        After service will assist people in leaving in an orderly way, ensuring that there is not a build up of people near the exit.

        These persons will wear gloves and masks as they may not be able to maintain physical distance of six feet from members of the congregation at all times.

    2. Readers: Those proclaiming Scripture & leading in prayers will do so standing at their place.

    3. Informing the congregation in advance: Document welcoming people back to our worship space and explaining how we will gather will be prepared by July 10 weekend and available by email, website and print with the weekly bulletin. It will also be used to help to prepare the greeters/ushers for the first services.

    4. Members of the assembly will be encouraged to sit with members of their immediate family or bubble group to maximize the number of people we can welcome to worship. All will stay at their place for the entire service. If someone needs to leave for any reason, when possible, they will indicate their intention to the greeters/ushers. In case of emergency – falls, fainting, etc. The Usher should attend first, if possible, as they will be gloved and masked. In any emergency First Aid principles apply – the idea is to prevent further injury and to get help. Although avoiding possible transmission of COVID is still important, it is secondary to the emergency.

    5. Music during the service: Will be instrumental (organ, guitar, etc.) or singing by soloists. Anyone singing will be seated in the front right pew (facing the chancel) for the service and sing from that corner to the right of the pulpit facing the congregation.

    6. (When Service includes Communion

      1. preparation of the altar before service

      2. procedures for Eucharistic prayer at the Altar

      3. procedures for distributing/receiving communion.

        Our first 2 services, at least, will be Morning prayer. The Rector with the planning group will work out detailed procedures as per directives from Archbishop Ron Cutler, Public Health and the limitations of our space.)

Record Keeping:

  1. Contact Tracing Names and contact information of those worshipping will be kept in case of COVID spread. These will be kept in the parish office and only shared with Public Health if necessary to assist in contact tracing.

Reviewing Procedures:

  1. Feedback from congregation is welcome in helping us to streamline procedures to make our services prayerful, joyful, and safe.

Resuming Services together in an Indoor Worship Space

Parish of Blandford

July 2020 – Revised July 25

Resuming Services together in an Indoor Worship Space.

Due to the space restrictions of 6 feet (2 meters) physical distancing, for the time being, services will be held in Saint Barnabas only to allow for as many people as possible to worship together.

How we can worship together while following Public Health Measures to prevent the spread of COVID 19?

  1. This is not just “back to normal”!

    In the same way as our lives have changed permanently – or at least long term temporarily when we go to the Grocery Store, the Doctor or pretty much anywhere else, our gathering in Christian Community for worship on Sundays will also change as we resume our common worship indoors. The procedures and safety measures implemented are for EVERYONE’S safety & health. We not only pray, but we do everything within our power to ensure that our worship will not become a way that this virus is spread. In order to do that, we not only need the procedures in place, we also need the co-operation of everyone who comes together for worship.

  2. Should I (WE) even come to church?

    1. If you are in any way unsure

    2. if you feel your health is in danger

    3. if you feel ill in any way –

    4. If you are unable to wear a mask through the entire service. (as of July 31)

    you should not come to common worship. You are part of our community. We will continue to have the services available by email or in bulletin form and can continue to pray together with our parish at your home. We are called together to pray, but we can pray together no matter where we are. God will understand whatever you decide is best for you.

  3. What can I expect if I come to our morning service:

    1. Before you get there the church will have been cleaned. There will be Sanitizer available for your hands & towels if you want to wipe down your pew as you enter it and when you leave it. Please Note: The cleaning of the church and using the towels are additional safety precautions since we will only have one service each week and the virus, if it is present, will not live on surfaces for 7 days.

    2. Outside: After parking as you walk to the church building, please maintain physical distancing. You will be greeted & welcomed by a member of our parish wearing mask and gloves. Please follow this person’s instructions in how and when to enter the church.

    3. Beginning July 31 all members those worshiping together inside the church building are required to wear a mask throughout the service . (Revised from: Since physical distancing of 6 feet (2 meters) is not possible when entering and leaving the building, you will be asked to wear a mask AT LEAST while entering and leaving the building. We strongly encourage that you wear the mask during the entire service if possible. Disposable masks will be available from the person who greets you outdoors if you do not have your own.)

    4. Inside the church as you enter you will be welcomed by another greeter who will let you know where you can leave your offering for the Parish or money for the Chester Food Bank if you wish. (No food donations in church for the time being please.)

      They will also give you a service bulletin if you did not print your own off from the email which will continue to be sent.

      Your name will be checked off on a copy of the parish list for contact information in case someone who attends our service ever contracts the virus. (If someone is visiting with you they will be asked for their name and contact information for contact tracing as well.)

    5. Please wait at the entrance until an usher comes to show you to your seat.

    6. You might not get your “usual” pew. Due to physical distancing requirements not all pews will be available. An usher will show you to your seat and will try to accommodate your request for where you will be during the service. We encourage people in the same family or the same “group bubble” to arrive together and sit together, if possible, so that there will be room for everyone.

    7. Once you are in your pew, please stay there for the entire service. Please participate in the prayers and responses as usual. Unfortunately, because of the additional distance needed to stop communication of the virus while singing, there will be no congregational singing at this time during our services. A sign of peace will be suggested which respects the Public Health requirements.

    8. If you need to leave at any time, you may of course do so. Please remember to continue to wear your mask and maintain physical distancing, where possible, as you leave.

    9. At the end of the service please wait until the usher indicates that you may leave. This is to help in maintaining physical distancing. The rector will not greet you as you leave. If you are among the first to leave, please move away from the door so that others may also safely leave.

    10. The Greeters & Ushers are providing a ministry of WELCOME and SAFETY for us all. Please respect their requests and each other. We have waited a long time to come back together. Let us celebrate WELL and SAFELY. Smiles, nods and hellos are welcome – and very much a part of our Christian calling.

    11. Our first 2 or 3 services will be Morning Prayer in order to help keep things simpler as we get used to these new procedures. Additional information will be available when we meet for Holy Eucharist (Communion) once again.

As we prepare for this next part of our Christian journey. Let us thank God that we are safe. Let us pray to God for those who are ill and those who mourn the loss of their loved ones. Finally, let us remember that whether we gather in buildings, in open spaces, or in spirit, we will be recognized as followers of Jesus by the love we have for one another and for all!

This we pray in the name of Jesus our Brother and Redeemer. Amen.

How you can continue to contribute to the parish at this time

You can continue to contribute to the parish in any of these ways:

Your contribution may be dropped off at the home of Brian & Anne Stott (5480 – Hwy #329).

On Line Banking: If you use on line banking, you may now deposit money directly to the Parish of Blandford Chequing Account.  Simply send the donation to the following email address – treasurer@parishofblandford.ca. This email address is linked to the parish account. The money will automatically be deposited to the parish account. If you have a parish envelope linked to your name, please include the envelope number in the message section. Your donation will be registered with that envelope number. If you do not have a parish envelope, you can indicate if you wish to register the donation to a particular church for accounting purposes only. If you do not indicate a particular church, the donation will be registered to the Parish of Blandford. Your particular financial institution may require additional security steps.  Please follow the procedures as they  indicate.

Pre Authorized Remittance: The Diocese offers the opportunity for you to make financial offerings to your parish directly from your bank account. If you want more information on this process and how to sign up for it, please contact Tammy Cummins – tcummins@nspei.ca If you do not have an email and wish to speak to Tammy about this option – with your permission, Rev. Louis will forward your phone number to her & she will call you.

Parish Ministries during COVID19 Outbreak

Parish of Blandford.

Parish Ministry During COVID19 Corona Virus Outbreak

  1. All parish Liturgical services, group studies & meetings are cancelled until AT LEAST Palm Sunday, April 05.
  2. Notification will be given by or before Friday April 3 concerning  Palm Sunday & Holy Week services.
  3. Reverend Louis will be available Friday afternoons from 1 – 5pm at the rectory and as needed on an ‘on call’ basis. (Email: ministry@parishofblandford.ca, Phone: 902-521-5169)
  4. If you wish to meet with Rev. Louis individually, that is certainly possible.  Personal meeting procedures will follow the most Current Public Health Guidelines.
  5. The Sunday Bulletin with the week’s Scripture Readings, Parish News, Prayer Intentions, and a weekly Reflection from Rev. Louis will be available as of 5PM, Fridays in the Porch at the Rectory (#4821 – Hwy 329) and on the parish website (parishofblandford.ca). It will also be sent out to the regular email list.
  6. Copies of Archbishop Ron Cutler’s latest letter will be in the Rectory Porch.
  7. As you may remember, some services were cancelled earlier this winter and attendance at others was reduced by poor road conditions.  As a consequence of these cancellations, parish contributions are down significantly for the first two months of the year. With at least 2 more weeks’ services cancelled, this is likely to continue for the month of March .  Please remember that whether services happen on Sunday or not, most parish expenses do not change.  Your contribution is important to the continued ministries of our parish.  You can drop off your contribution to the Home of Brian and Anne Stott, at the Rectory or to one of our Parish wardens.
  8. If you have any neighbours, friends, or family members in the parish who do not have internet access please pass on this information to them and ask them if they would like any of these items dropped off at their home.
God Bless you and keep you all safe and healthy during this difficult time.

Louis +

Rector, Parish of Blandford

Doctrine of Discovery – Stolen Lands, Strong Hearts

Truth & Reconciliation, another beginning –Postponed Until Further Notice

For more than three decades, the Anglican Church of Canada has been on a journey of listening, truth-telling, repentance and healing with Indigenous Peoples, both within and outside the church. There is an urgent need for further healing and justice-seeking across the land, and we all have a role to play. (From the introduction to The Reconciliation Toolkit on the Anglican Church of Canada website)

The Parish of Blandford hopes to provide the opportunity for us to begin to study and reflect on the “Truth” part of Truth & Reconciliation using the documentary film:

Doctrine of Discovery, Stolen Lands, Strong Hearts

Doctrine of Discovery, Stolen Lands, Strong Hearts” is a challenging, truthful documentary. It is meant to educate people on the Doctrine and create an awareness of its legacy. We will reflect on this documentary using a prepared study guide in order to allow us an opportunity to discuss and ask questions about the subject of the video. At the first session, the video will be viewed in its entirety (67 minutes) and then broken down into discussion and reflection by chapter at the following sessions. If there are topics which stimulate more discussion and require more time, we will not rush through just to cover the material for that evening. If necessary additional sessions will be scheduled for after Easter.

Prayer and scripture that speaks to the concerns which are raised by the documentary will be included as part of the study. The message is important and will give understanding to the current state of Indigenous affairs on Turtle Island or North America. Understanding the Doctrine of Discovery and its manifestations are important as we strive for reconciliation.

The video was produced by the Rev. Canon Virginia “Ginny” Doctor, Mohawk from the Six Nations and the indigenous ministries coordinator for the Anglican Church of Canada. It is presented from a Christian perspective in the Anglican Tradition but is for anyone.

When: To Be Announced AFTER COVID19 restrictions have been lifted.                           Where: Parish Rectory

Please contact Rev. Louis by phone at 902-228-2761 or by email at ministry@parishofblandford.ca if you are interested in participating.

Christmas Schedule 2019

Services for the Christmas Season – 2019

December 08

Second Sunday of Advent Holy Eucharist at All Saints, 10am

December 15

Third Sunday of Advent Holy Eucharist at Saint Cuthbert, Ocean Swells, 10 am

December 22

Service of Advent Lessons and Carols/ Lighting of the Memorial Tree at Saint Barnabas, 10 am.

December 24

Christmas Holy Eucharist at 4 pm at Saint Barnabas (family service)

Christmas Holy Eucharist at 8 pm at All Saints.

December 29

Service of Christmas Lessons and Carols at All Saints, 10am.

January 05

The Epiphany of our Lord at Saint Cuthbert/Ocean Swells, 10 am.

‘Till Christmas in the Parish of Blandford

Coming Events in and around the Parish of Blandford

Bible Study & Reflection: Next Sunday’s readings – JEREMIAH 23:1-6; CANTICLE 19 (LUKE 1:68-79); COLOSSIANS 1:11-20; LUKE 23:33-43

Home Visits: If anyone would like a visit or communion at home from Rev. Louis OR if you know anyone who may wish to receive a visit or communion, please contact him in person, by e-mail or phone. Rev. Louis will be in the parish this week on Tuesday and on vacation from November 20 – 26.

Christmas Bazaar: Saturday, November 23, 11-1:30 at the Blandford Community Centre. Admission Free. Bake Table, Handwork, Fudge, and more. Lunch (Soup or Chili, dessert, tea or coffee) available: Adults $8, Youth (6-12) $5, Children 5 and under free. Proceeds to the Saint Barnabas Guild.

Country Christmas Music Concert (Christmas and Gospel) with Matt Balsor, NS Hall of Famer, Sunday November 17th, 2019 – 2:30pm to 4:30pm ( doors open at 1:30) at The Chester Basin Legion,.$10.00 in advance or $12.00 at the door. Tickets available: at the Hair Salon #6 Pig Loop Rd Chester 275-5966 or Sheila Hirtle / Lynn Hatt or Jessica Sawler. New Ross Credit Union Limited or Roger 275-4142
Bake table / cookie sale~ 50/50 ~ Christmas basket tickets ~ Door Prizes ~Canteen. Proceeds to the Canadian Cancer Society’s The Lodge that Gives. Let there be Christmas ~ Christmas Everywhere!

Decorating the Church & Tree; preparation for Christmas Eve Family Service: Sunday December 15, 4PM – Saint Barnabas Church. For the young and the young at heart. Start Spreading the word!