In today’s Gospel we are given the challenge to proclaim our faith. “Go into the whole world and proclaim the gospel to every creature.” We can proclaim the Gospel because we have been given the Spirit by Jesus Christ.
As we prepare to celebrate the great solemnity of Pentecost, we begin with the challenge of the Ascension: Jesus goes up to heaven. Jesus is now at the right hand of God. Jesus will send us the Spirit in a special way on Pentecost. As people who believe, we are challenged to proclaim our faith in our words, in our actions and in our thoughts.
0900 Morning Prayer
1830 Evening Prayer
1930 SOLEMN MASS
Would you join us in This novena (nine days) of prayer?
By Mother Miriam CSM (Community of St Mary)
I have heard many stories of the good old days, somewhere between the Depression Era and the revolutionary 1960s, when our Sisters were invited to many parishes between the feasts of the Ascension and Pentecost to speak about the religious life and lead a novena of prayer with the congregation. They would ask God for increase and sanctification of those called to the monastic life.
The Church has a sense of a variety of personal charisms that includes the monastic life as being a gift of God to balance the active ministry of the laity and the pastoral and liturgical leading of the clergy. Not everyone is called to the priesthood, and not everyone is called to lay ministry in our parishes. Without a fulcrum of monastic prayer in the midst of the Church, the seesaw between works and faith seems to be more of a guilty tug of war between proving our love for God through our active service of his people or as, the Epistle of James rightly challenges us, letting our service in the Church show our faith.
One of the ways of discerning the health of the Church is the balance of human vocation between clerical, monastic, and lay callings. It is misleading to see the three callings as a ranked hierarchy. However, seeing them as a mysterious trinitarian gift encompassing all human action lends depth and richness in understanding humanity made in the image of God.
Today only a handful of Anglican communities have more than a single-digit number of life professed members. I hear so often, when I visit parishes, “I didn’t know we had religious orders in the (church of England) .” It is a sad reality of the poverty of our Church and demonstrates the need to ask God to raise up more vocations, even as we monastics work to share the message of our continual sacrifice of prayer and worship on behalf of the whole Church.
ALL SAINTS CHURCH
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