Parish Meeting on August 6, Festival Hymn Sing on July 28, and

The vestry and I would like to invite you to attend a Parish Meeting on Sunday, August 6, immediately following the 10:00 service. The intent is to provide the members of Ascension the opportunity to ask questions as well as share any of your thoughts with me and the vestry regarding the parish at this time. Additionally, we will provide you with any updates that we might have. If you are not able to attend but have some questions or thoughts, please email them directly to me at horle@msn.com or Phillip Weiss at phillipweiss@me.com.

 

Thanks to everyone who made Mass on the Grass such a success.  And blessings to Doris and Eric as they embark on their marriage journey and thanks for including all of us in your blessed beginnings.  As you enjoy time for recreating and re-creating don't forget your Church.  Pray for us when you are unable to attend and bring your friends when you can come.  Please try to be here August 6 as above.

 

Garry+ 

 

 

Music with Dan Romero
 

Mass on the Grass on Sunday - Bring a Chair, and Memorial for

A Word from Dan Romero
 

 

Mass on the Grass, this Sunday, Bring a Chair!


This Sunday we will be having our annual "Mass on the Grass". For the 10:00 service we will be having church in Little Cheesman Park, near the corner of 8th Avenue and High Street. Please join us for this annual summertime observance and enjoy worshipping outside in the beauty of God's creation. 

This year we are asking everyone to bring a chair (or several) from home for you to sit on during the service. This can be a folding chair, lawn chair, or camping chair. Anyone who is able to bring a few extra chairs will be greatly appreciated to share with those who cannot bring one. We will be bringing a few chairs from the church but not as many as last year. This greatly cuts back on the work involved in setting up our outdoor church service.

For those of you who do not wish to join us in the park, the 8:00 a.m. service will still be in the church, as usual. 

 

Please join us for this fun summertime event!

 

Memorial Service for JoAnne Kyhl, July 8, 4:00 p.m.

 

Tomorrow, Saturday, July 8, at 4:00 p.m., we will be having a memorial service for our dear friend, JoAnne Kyhl. JoAnne passed away back in March after a long battle with cancer. She was a devoted member of our parish choir, and a consummate musician and composer. Please join us for this service to celebrate her life, followed by a reception in the parish hall. 

 

Upcoming Music Events


Festival Hymn Sing, Coming this Summer, Date TBA
Once again we will be holding our popular "Festival Hymn Sing" sometime this summer. For a donation of $50.00 prior to the event we can guarantee that your favorite hymn or religious song is included. All proceeds benefit Ascension Friends of Music. Last year's event was a great success. The selection of hymns and songs was very eclectic and this reflects the diversity of our parish and the many different Christian traditions that we all come from. More information in the weeks to come! Please join us for this fun event for the whole family.

 

Youth and Children's Update

Joseph Wolyniak, July 4 Weekend, and Summer Sunday School

Genesis 22: 1-14 The testing of Abraham (The sacrifice of Isaac)

 

God tested Abraham. He said to him, "Abraham!" And he said, "Here I am." He said, "Take your son, your only son Isaac, whom you love, and go to the land of Moriah, and offer him there as a burnt offering on one of the mountains that I shall show you." So Abraham rose early in the morning, saddled his donkey, and took two of his young men with him, and his son Isaac; he cut the wood for the burnt offering, and set out and went to the place in the distance that God had shown him. On the third day Abraham looked up and saw the place far away. Then Abraham said to his young men, "Stay here with the donkey; the boy and I will go over there; we will worship, and then we will come back to you." Abraham took the wood of the burnt offering and laid it on his son Isaac, and he himself carried the fire and the knife. So the two of them walked on together. Isaac said to his father Abraham, "Father!" And he said, "Here I am, my son." He said, "The fire and the wood are here, but where is the lamb for a burnt offering?" Abraham said, "God himself will provide the lamb for a burnt offering, my son." So the two of them walked on together. 

 

When they came to the place that God had shown him, Abraham built an altar there and laid the wood in order. He bound his son Isaac, and laid him on the altar, on top of the wood. Then Abraham reached out his hand and took the knife to kill his son. But the angel of the Lord called to him from heaven, and said, "Abraham, Abraham!" And he said, "Here I am." He said, "Do not lay your hand on the boy or do anything to him; for now I know that you fear God, since you have not withheld your son, your only son, from me." And Abraham looked up and saw a ram, caught in a thicket by its horns. Abraham went and took the ram and offered it up as a burnt offering instead of his son. So Abraham called that place "The Lord will provide"; as it is said to this day, "On the mount of the Lord it shall be provided." 

 

Our Hebrew Bible lesson for this Sunday is one of the toughest, most controversial stories in all of Scripture. It tells the account of God asking Abraham to sacrifice his only son Isaac.  As Abraham is about to complete the task God stops the madness.  The passage raises many questions such as who is this God, what kind of man would murder his son, what does God require of us?  And so many more. I commend this passage to you for study, reflection and meditation.  You will be joining a long list of scholars, theologians, and artists who have studied, commented and written of this story for hundreds of years.

 

Sunday we welcome The Rev Dr. Joseph Wolyniak as Preacher and Celebrant.  Many of you will remember Joseph's time with us our theologian in residence.  Since then he has completed his Doctorate, been ordained Priest, and accepted a position as College Chaplain at Princeton University.

 

Don't forget that July 9 is our annual Mass on the Grass at little Cheesman Park.

 

Garry+ 


 

A Word from Deacon Tim
 

On Wednesday, June 28, Church of the Ascension partnered with NOVO Coffee for our second annual "Blessing of the Bikes" on Bike to Work Day. We offered free coffee and iced tea, delicious baked goods, hearty homemade breakfast burritos, hospitality from members of the parish, and the opportunity for Father Dennis Kennedy to bless both bicycle and rider. Overall, we had about fifty cyclists drop by, and about half of them asked to be blessed. A heartfelt thanks to everyone who gave their time and energy to make this happen. This is a great way to maintain our visibility in the community and greet neighbors new and old. And as we went forth to love and serve the Lord, we met the Risen Christ in the smiling faces of the cyclists who stopped to grab some breakfast and share their stories with us. I look forward to doing this again next year. 

 

 Thanks again!

Tim

Summertime Happenings at Ascension

Fr. Garry is on retreat this week in California, however he will be back us on Sunday, July 2. Please keep him in your prayers as he takes some time for spiritual renewal and rest.

A Prayer for Clergy and People

Almighty and everlasting God, from whom cometh every good and perfect gift: Send down upon our bishops, and other clergy, and upon the congregations committed to their charge, the healthful Spirit of thy grace; and, that they may truly please thee, pour upon them the continual dew of thy blessing. Grant this, O Lord, for the honor of our Advocate and Mediator, Jesus Christ. Amen.

A Prayer for Travelers

O God, our heavenly Father, whose glory fills the whole creation, and whose presence we find wherever we go: Preserve those who travel; surround them with your loving care; protect them from every danger; and bring them in safety to their journey's end; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
 

Music with Dan Romero
 

 

Lots of things happening this Summer!

This week I thought I would highlight some of the musical events (or at least events that involve music in one way or another) and happenings. In spite of the summer being a "quieter time" at church, we still have many things going on. I do hope that many of you will participate as you are available. Remember, all are always welcome.

Summer Choir, beginning July 2 at 9:00 a.m.
Starting on Sunday, July 3 will be our summer choir. During Sundays in the July simply show up at 9:00 to rehearse an easy anthem with the choir and then we will sing for the10:00 service. This is a great way to try out singing in the choir and everyone is most welcome.

The choir may also be doing some more difficult music this summer that will require some rehearsals. These plans are still being formulated, but stay tuned. Anyone interested will be most welcome to join us for rehearsals for some good music above and beyond what we usually do for summer choir.

Mass on the Grass, Sunday, July 9, 10:00
We will be having church in Little Cheesman Park on July 9 for the 10:00 service. Please join us for our annual "Mass on the Grass" and enjoy worshipping outside in the beauty of God's creation. For those of you who do not wish to join us in the park, the 8:00 service will still be in the church, as usual. 
 

Festival Hymn Sing, Coming this Summer, Date TBA
Once again we will be holding our popular "Festival Hymn Sing" sometime this summer. For a donation of $50.00 prior to the event we can guarantee that your favorite hymn or religious song is included. All proceeds benefit Ascension Friends of Music. Last year's event was a great success. The selection of hymns and songs was very eclectic and this reflects the diversity of our parish and the many different Christian traditions that we all come from. More information in the weeks to come! Please join us for this fun event for the whole family.

Fathers' Day and Summertime Happenings

Green is the color of God's creation this time of year and it is into the green season we go. It is also the time when many of us re-create by recreating.  I encourage you to take advantage of our beautiful state and city. Visit a park for a picnic, camp and hike, be outside walking or biking. Take advantage of the beauty that surrounds us and rest and relax as needed.  But don't forget your Church and the worship that Glorifies God and fills your soul.

 

Carol and I will be leaving Monday for Bishops Ranch, a property of the Diocese of San Francisco in Healdsburg California. This for a week of Benedictine meditation, study and worship.  We will be observing the rule of silence for much of the day and all evening and night.  We have three sung and two spoken services a day with a daily Eucharist in both the Episcopal and Roman tradition. It is our experience that it is a wonderful, refreshing, recharging time and beside the food is excellent. The Church of the Ascension, its people, its staff, and its Rector will be in our daily prayers. I will be back in the office the 29th.  We have limited cell phone and wireless time and reception is spotty at best. Please call Celeste if the need arises.

 

Faithfully,

 

Garry+

Trinity Sunday

Here we are on the brink of the celebration of that great Christian mystery, The Trinity. On Sunday we will give thanks To Father, Son and Holy Ghost or if you prefer Creator, Redeemer. Sustainer. By whatever names you use it remains the pervasive mystery of our faith.  How to explain One Holy God in three persons each fully God and fully and wholly one not three? Our words are inadequate and the Greek words of the original formulations meaningless to us. Yet this non-biblical word expresses a deep understanding and revelation which came to the early church as an expression of their experience of God.  And it is the same with us.  On a head level it makes very little sense, on our deepest feeling level it explains part of the mystery of God.  Mystery it is and mystery it shall be, we need only to enter into it to discover its power, its glory and its comfort.

 

This Sunday marks a change of seasons for the church and with that change our liturgy will also undergo a small change.  We will be moving to Eucharistic Prayer B for the summer. It is fully reprinted in the bulletin so check it as we go along.  Many blessings and see you in Church.

 

Garry+

Pentecost, this Sunday!

Jesus said to them again, "Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, so I send you." - John 20:21

 

Pentecost is one of the most important holidays on the Church calendar.  The day honors the coming of the Holy Spirit, the sending out of the Disciples into the world, and the birth of the Church.  It is meant to be a festive and celebratory day that empowers us with that same Holy Spirit and that same shove to ministry and engagement with the world.  So let us also join with the generations of people before us and with the thousands around the world who joyfully receive the very good news of the presence of the Spirit within us and around us.  At the Church of the Ascension we can do that by wearing red to church as our own "tongues of fire", enjoying the participation of our children at the 10 O'clock service and by coming to the Make Ascension Bloom catered tea following that service.  We look forward with joyful anticipation to your presence and participation.

 

Garry+

A Change of Seasons

John 17:11 And now I (Jesus), am no longer in the world, but they are in the world, and I am coming to you. Holy Father, protect them in your name that you have given me, so that they may be one, as we are one.

 

As we move from Easter through Pentecost into the Season after Pentecost sometimes referred to as Ordinary time there are lots of housekeeping and new items to consider.

 

Pentecost June 4:  Remember to wear red to Church in celebration of the tongues of fire representing the Holy Spirit descent upon the Apostles and us.  Pentecost is also considered the birthday of the Church so it is appropriate that this will be a Youth Sunday.  Bring all your kids so that they can participate in the Service.  They will be invited to the altar during the Eucharistic celebration so they can see what is going on up close and personal.  It is also appropriate to celebrate by Making Ascension Blossom.  A catered tea will follow the 10:00 service where the plans to re-do the landscaping on the 6th Avenue front. A freewill offering will be collected at this time to assist with the cost. If you cannot make it, a check made out to the Church noted "Make Ascension Blossom" would gladly be accepted.

 

Bible Study:  It seems the men's and women's bible study groups have fallen on tough times and have faded away.  If there is any interest in reviving these groups for at least the summer please contact me at the office or at 303-523-1601.

 

Adult Education: Starting the Sunday after Pentecost, I would like to gather a group after the early service in the Parish Hall to discuss some possible adult education to take place between services for the Summer Season.  If you are interested please meet me there.

 

Fr. Garry+

Ascension Day, this Thursday, May 25

"And see, I am sending upon you what my Father promised; so stay here in the city until you have been clothed with power from on high." Then he led them out as far as Bethany, and, lifting up his hands, he blessed them. While he was blessing them, he withdrew from them and was carried up into heaven. And they worshiped him, and returned to Jerusalem with great joy; and they were continually in the temple blessing God. - Luke 24:49-53



Dear members of the Church of the Ascension,

On Thursday we celebrate the Feast of the Ascension, our name day.  This festival marks Jesus earthly leaving of his Disciples.  As he does so he promises that they will be "...clothed with power from on high." And then he blessed them and withdrew.  We are similarly blessed by God both in our Church Community and in our fellowship with one another.  This is our first chance to be together following the news of the illness and temporary absence of our Rector Lucas. I urge you to attend our Festival Eucharist at 6:00 PM and follow it with a potluck dish of your choosing. Let us make the most of this opportunity to gather together and share the contents of our hearts.

I also want to let you know about my regular office hours.  I will be sure to be in the office on Tuesdays from 8:00 AM (Morning Prayer) thru 4:30 PM and Wednesdays from 11:00AM thru 6:00PM.  Of course I am available to you by appointments as is possible for you.  You can always call me at 303-523-1601. I will be in the office at most other times during the week but I may be out on a pastoral or hospital call.  I encourage you to drop in and chat if you are in the neighborhood.  I love to hear your hopes and dreams as well as you joys and sadness.  If you don't have access to the church ring the bell or call so you can be let in.  My office is on the second floor.

Peace and Love,

Garry+ 
 

Baptisms this Sunday

This Sunday at the 10:00 a.m. service we will baptize Warren James Knowlton and Abigail Rowena Nagle. Please join us to welcome these as the newest members of our Christian community.  

 

 

Warren James Knowlton

 

 

 

 

Abigail Rowena Nagle

 

 

Sounds and Memories of Ascension Day


Our senses are very closely tied to our memories. It is remarkable how a certain smell or touch can bring back memories of a past event. Sounds can do this as well and music certainly can. I think this is especially true for musicians because musicians dive into a piece of music and become very emotionally connected to it after hours and hours of practice. This is certainly true for me.

As I write this article I am in the midst of preparation for our Ascension Day service, which happens this Thursday, May 25, at 6:00 p.m. Ever since I arrived at Ascension I have chosen the choral anthem, "God is gone up", by Gerald Finzi as the offertory anthem for Ascension Day, and this was the case four years ago when we celebrated Ascension Day on Sunday, May 12. The music of this glorious anthem enveloped my mind for many days following and now it brings back very specific memories. I remember being filled with joy on that Ascension Day celebration.

As I made reference to in last week's email, it was early in the morning that very next day, Monday, May 13, that a fire broke out in our lovely church building. I was awakened by frantic phone calls from people telling me that there was a fire in the church. I remember going to the church on Monday morning to see the devastation for myself. I remember how shocked and sad I was by all this, such a contrast to our joyous Sunday morning. And while all of this was happening the music of "God is gone up", was going through my head, as though it was haunting me, possibly because I find it a very haunting piece of music, but maybe also because God was reminding me that I needed to continue rejoicing, even amidst this tragedy. Maybe this is the lesson: that we need to always be rejoicing and thankful because even in the worst situations God is still with us and blessing us. It may be difficult to see, but I believe it's true.

Performing this piece of music once again brings back all of those memories, both the good and the bad. But right now I certainly feel joy because we can look back and see how far we've come. As I mentioned last week, in an ironic way that fire brought all of us as a parish together. Today Ascension is a vibrant place and there's lots of hope for the future. Thanks be to God for bringing us through difficult and trying times, and for all the blessings that have been given to us!

 

That all said, join us this Thursday, to celebrate our feast day;

 

Ascension Day

Thursday, May 25

6:00 p.m. Service

7:00 p.m. Parish Potluck

 

The Feast of the Ascension is our patronal feast day and our feast of title. We will celebrate it with a choral mass sung by our Parish Choir along with festival anthems and hymns telling of Christ's Ascension into heaven forty days after Easter. There will be a parish potluck supper following the service at 7:00 p.m. Please join us in celebrating our feast day!

 

Upcoming Events

 

Festival Hymn Sing
Coming up this summer we will be holding our annual festival hymn sing. For a donation of $50.00 prior to the event we can guarantee that your favorite hymn or religious song is included. Proceeds go to Ascension Friends of Music. Please join us for this fun event for the whole family. Date and time will be announced soon.

 

Baptism of Katherine Weigand

This Sunday, we are excited to welcome Katherine Weigand into the body of Christ! Katherine will be baptized at the 10am service and we will welcome her with great joy. Holy Baptism is a beautiful and sacred part of our life together as the Ascension community and it is an honor and a privilege to be present for this sacrament.  See you on Sunday!

 

Faithfully in the Risen Lord Christ,

 

Fr. Lucas+

 

Together We Can Make Ascension Blossom!

Blessings on your Sunday and the week that is to come.  This is a very special announcement from long time parishioner Hazel Stevens Price.  Ever since the fire in 2013, the south side landscaping of the church just hasn't been the same.  Hazel is hosting a special "Make Ascension Blossom" tea on Sunday, June 4th, after the 10am mass in order to celebrate our landscaping and to beautify it! 

This will be a catered tea after the 10am service and all are invited and welcome!  Please see the announcement below.  This is a chance for all to gather, to enjoy fellowship and food, and to pitch in for the beautifying of our parish in the neighborhood.  Please RSVP by replying to this e-mail and mark your calendars for this very special event!

 

 

 

Together we can make Ascension blossom!
June 4th, after the 10am Mass

Please help me celebrate turning 60-and beautify Ascension at the same time! I am hosting an English Tea Party to inspire you to join me in making the south side of Ascension blossom!
 

Catered by House of Commons
 

This is a freewill offering, everyone is welcome to enjoy the food and community while learning about the plans to landscape the 6th Avenue side of Church of the Ascension.
 

If you can't join us please feel free to send a donation to the church office designated to:

"Make Ascension Blossom".

Hazel Stevens Price

RSVP by replying to this e-mail! 

 

 

 

 

 

Contact Information

 

Church of the Ascension
600 Gilpin St.
Denver, CO 80218
www.ascensiondenver.org

Please contact us at admin@ascensiondenver.org






 

Christ our Good Shepherd and our Gate

"Very truly, I tell you, I am the gate for the sheep...Whoever enters by me will be saved, and will come in and go out and find pasture."  John 10

 

When I was 10 years old, my family lived on the rural edge of Idaho Falls in eastern Idaho, an already very rural and agricultural place.  Our home sat on an acre of land and next to the house was a pasture and a barn.  Doing what all kids in that place and at that age did, I was enrolled in 4-H, to learn about animal husbandry and to gain some life lessons in responsibility.  And behold, I found myself caring for my very own lamb.  This was new territory for me as I had not been raised on a farm, and compared to my peers, I had a lot of catching up to do.  I had to take the responsibility of feeding the lamb, administering medication and vaccines, daily mucking out the barn, and making sure the animal was clean and content.  My overall memory of this time was that of being overwhelmed!  Here I was, a young and inexperienced boy, faced with caring for the life and wellbeing of this creature on a daily basis, learning as I went.  I remember the lamb being obstinate; it would butt its head at me and run away as I tried to examine it for ticks (of which it ended up having many!).  It would flee equally as passionately as I attempted to give its medication.  It would even look at me with suspicion as I would go to open the sheep gate for it to get some exercise and to feed in the green pasture.  And all of this was ultimately leading up to me being ready to "show" the lamb at the Bonneville County Fair in the hopes of presenting a nicely fattened animal so that it could be shorn for wool and so that I might take home a blue ribbon (I think I got an honorable mention).  That was my one and only real foray into the world of shepherding...if you could call it that...but I learned a great deal.

            

Caring for a lamb was immensely challenging.  And so when I read our Gospel from John this week about Jesus being the Good Shepherd, who cares for many sheep, I am enlightened with some real perspective.  I think the Evangelist is on to something when we are likened to sheep in need of a shepherd.  We, too, can be obstinate.  We, too, can butt our heads at people and situations we'd rather not be a part of, though they may well be for our own good.  We, too, get dirty and afflicted by our surroundings and would often times rather wallow in it rather than receive a good cleansing.  We, too, shirk the medicine that is so needed and good for us.  And if one lamb does all that under the care of a ten year old, I marvel at the work of real shepherd with hundreds of sheep, and indeed, the work of our Good Shepherd, Jesus.

Our Gospel this Sunday (John 10:1-10; The Good Shepherd) isn't there to accuse us of being obstinate sheep.  Most of us are already fairly well versed in and aware of our failings and our weaknesses.  Instead, the Gospel of the Good Shepherd is there to remind us that we are under the care, and the guiding hand, and the loving presence of a skilled shepherd.  Even at our most obstinate; even when covered in proverbial, spiritual ticks; even when we shirk the medicine most needed; even when we look with wary eyes at the promise of greener pastures; The Good Shepherd is always by our side to gently guide us right.  Maybe one way of looking at this Gospel story is to turn it upside down.  Yes, being a shepherd is hard work and takes practiced skill and the patience of the angels.  But maybe its also OK to admit that being a sheep is hard.  The dangers out there are many.  We tend to sabotage ourselves.  We don't like to listen, even when we should.  But in facing these realities and not just running away, we come to realize we are under the care and guidance of someone who loves us beyond all measure.  When these two realizations match up, it's at that moment when we discover that we are invited to enter the sheep gate, and, as the Gospel describes, we are able to find pasture, and to be saved.

 

"I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly."

 

Yours faithfully in Christ the Good Shepherd, and the Gate,

 

Fr. Lucas+

            

 

The Joy and Gifts of Easter, Baptism and Evensong this Sunday

The joy and the gifts of Easter continue to surround us!  So once again, Alleluia, Christ is Risen, and Happy Easter!  

 

Plan to join your parish family this Sunday as we welcome Norah Atiyeh Coombe into the family of Christ through the sacrament of holy baptism.  She was born to Carrie Atiyeh and Jeff Coombe last year and we will welcome her with love and joy this Sunday at the 10am service.


 

 

 

Also, don't miss out on the final Choral Evensong of the season, this Sunday at 4:30pm. It's another joy and spirit filled Sunday in the season of Easter here at Ascension and all are welcome and invited to share.

 

Yours faithfully in the risen Lord Christ,

 

Fr. Lucas


 

Holy Week Begins on Sunday

Dear Friends in Christ, 


Holy Week begins this Sunday, April 9th with Palm Sunday.  The liturgies of Holy Week recall for us the story of Jesus'  Passion, Death, and Resurrection.  Each one is profoundly moving and they brin g us deep into the heart of the Christian Gospel.  Below is the schedule of services.  Be sure to mark your calendars! Prayers for all, and a special blessing on your week. 

  

 

Faithfully in Christ,


Fr. Lucas+

 

PALM SUNDAY
 

April 9th, 8am and 10 am.

We will celebrate Jesus' triumphant entry into Jerusalem with the passing of palm branches and, at the 10 a.m. service, the Church of the Ascension's annual Palm Sunday procession, led by the Colorado Youth Pipe Band.
 

MAUNDY THURSDAY
 

April 13th, 7:00 p.m.

This service commemorates the institution of the Lord's Supper and honors Jesus' command to love one another with the washing of feet.  The altar and sanctuary is then stripped of all decor as we move towards Christ's Crucifixion, death, and burial on Good Friday.

MAUNDY THURSDAY ALL NIGHT PRAYER VIGIL
 

"Could you not watch with me one hour?". On Maundy Thursday evening, we invite everyone to come and pray for an hour during the night after the service from 9pm through 8am Good Friday morning. A sign-up sheet is on the ushers table or email admin@ascensiondenver.org.

GOOD FRIDAY
 

April 14th, 12:00 noon.

A solemn liturgy to commemorate the Crucifixion of Jesus Christ.  Holy Communion from the Reserved Sacrament.
 

April 14th, 7:00 p.m. - Tenebrae, A Service of Darkness
 

EASTER VIGIL
 

April 15th, 7:00 p.m.

We mark the beginning of Easter in this ancient service in which we welcome and proclaim the Resurrection of Jesus Christ.
 

EASTER SUNDAY & EASTER EGG HUNT
 

March 16th, 8:00 a.m. and 10:00 a.m.

The culmination of Holy Week, Easter Sunday celebrates the Resurrection of Christ. There will be a celebratory Coffee Hour after the 10:00 a.m. service and an Easter Egg Hunt for all the parish children in Little Cheesman Park. 

 

Family Worship Sunday and One Week Until Holy Week!

Dear Friends in Christ, 

This Sunday is the first Sunday of the month so we celebrate on Sunday with Family Worship Sunday as we involve children and youth as worship leaders at the 10am service.  It is always a joy to see our young ones hold such a sacred space with their talent and voices and presence as they remind us of the fullness of the Kingdom of God.  Sue Richardson says more about this Sunday in her article below.  Please take a look and come worship with all ages at the 10am.

And, so no one forgets...

Holy Week begins one week from this Sunday on Sunday, April 9th with Palm Sunday.  The liturgies of Holy Week recall for us the story of Jesus'  Passion, Death, and Resurrection.  Each one is profoundly moving and they brin g us deep into the heart of the Christian Gospel.  Below is the schedule of services.  Be sure to mark your calendars! Prayers for all, and a special blessing on your week. 

  

 

Faithfully in Christ,


Fr. Lucas+

 

PALM SUNDAY
 

April 9th, 8am and 10 am.

We will celebrate Jesus' triumphant entry into Jerusalem with the passing of palm branches and, at the 10 a.m. service, the Church of the Ascension's annual Palm Sunday procession, led by the Colorado Youth Pipe Band.
 

MAUNDY THURSDAY
 

April 13th, 7:00 p.m.

This service commemorates the institution of the Lord'sThis service commemorates the institution of the Lord's Supper and honors Jesus' command to love one another with the washing of feet.  The altar and sanctuary is then stripped of all decor as we move towards Christ's Crucifixion, death, and burial on Good Friday.
 

MAUNDY THURSDAY ALL NIGHT PRAYER VIGIL
 

"Could you not watch with me one hour?". On Maundy Thursday evening, we invite everyone to come and pray for an hour during the night after the service from 9pm through 8am Good Friday morning. A sign-up sheet is on the ushers table or email admin@ascensiondenver.org.
 

GOOD FRIDAY
 

April 14th, 12:00 noon.

A solemn liturgy to commemorate the Crucifixion of Jesus Christ.  Holy Communion from the Reserved Sacrament.
 

April 14th, 7:00 p.m. - Tenebrae, A Service of Darkness
 

EASTER VIGIL
 

April 15th, 7:30 p.m.

We mark the beginning of Easter in this ancient service in which we welcome and proclaim the Resurrection of Jesus Christ.
 

EASTER SUNDAY & EASTER EGG HUNT
 

March 16th, 8:00 a.m. and 10:00 a.m.

The culmination of Holy Week, Easter Sunday celebrates the Resurrection of Christ. There will be a celebratory Coffee Hour after the 10:00 a.m. service and an Easter Egg Hunt for all the parish children in Little Cheesman Park.

The Lord is My Shepherd

This Sunday marks our midway through Lent.  

Last week, I had the opportunity to take a continuing education course with the National Outdoor Leadership School (NOLS).  The course certified me as a Wilderness First Responder.  By NOLSs standards, I am now prepared to assess and treat wounds and medical incidents in the wilderness. These are good skills to have, though I hope I never have to use them.

Our Psalm this Sunday is one of our most beloved; Psalm 23.

It speaks of walking through the wilderness of life.  And the First Responder is the Lord.

If you are hurting, if you are in need, if you are struggling, know that the Lord is here and by your side.

If you are tired, if you are angry, if you are weak, know that the Lord revives the soul.

If you are hungry, know that Lord spreads a banquet table before you.

The path through life is not an easy one.  But we are blessed to know the Lord Jesus, and to know one another.  

Care for each other.  Respond to one another.  We can't do this alone.

Yours faithfully in Christ,

Lucas+
 

Psalm 23
 

Dominus regit me
 

1. The Lord is my shepherd; *
I shall not be in want.

2. He makes me lie down in green pastures *
and leads me beside still waters.

3. He revives my soul *
and guides me along right pathways for his Name's sake.

4. Though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
I shall fear no evil; *
for you are with me; 

your rod and your staff, they comfort me.

5. You spread a table before me in the presence of those who trouble me; *
you have anointed my head with oil,
and my cup is running over.

6. Surely your goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life, *
and I will dwell in the house of the Lord for ever.

 

Music with Dan Romero
 

 

Laetare Sunday and Psalm 23

 

This Sunday is called Laetare Sunday. This, the fourth Sunday of Lent, marks halfway through Lent. The name "Laetare" comes from the first word of the Gregorian Chant Introit for this day, which means rejoice. We will sing an English translation of this introit on Sunday. 

The 23rd psalm is the psalm for this Sunday. The music will include several versions of it. These settings include an arrangement of a southern American tune sung by John Burrows, an Anglican Chant by C. Hylton Stewart, and the beloved hymn, "The King of love my shepherd is." Each of these settings is sung according to a different translation. Here are several different translations of the beloved Psalm. I find it interesting how these different translations add nuance and even change the meaning of the text. 

King James Version
The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want. He maketh me to lie down in green pastures; he leadeth me beside the still waters.  He restoreth my soul; he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; Name's sake, for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff, they comfort me. Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies; thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over. Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the Lord for ever.

Coverdale Version (traditionally used in older versions of the BCP)
The Lord is my shepherd : therefore can I lack nothing.  He shall feed me in a green pasture : and lead me forth beside the waters of comfort. He shall convert my soul : and bring me forth in the paths of righteousness, for his Name's sake. Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil : for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff comfort me. Thou shalt prepare a table before me against them that trouble me thou hast anointed my head with oil, and my cup shall be full.  But thy loving-kindness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life : and I will dwell in the house of the LORD for ever.

Metrical Paraphrase of Psalm 23 by Isaac Watts
1. My Shepherd will supply my need: Jehovah is His Name; In pastures fresh He makes me feed, Beside the living stream. He brings my wandering spirit back When I forsake His ways, And leads me, for His mercy's sake, In paths of truth and grace. 

2. When I walk through the shades of death, Thy presence is my stay; A word of Thy supporting breath Drives all my fears away. Thy hand, in sight of all my foes, Doth still my table spread; My cup with blessings overflows, Thine oil anoints my head. 

3. The sure provisions of my God Attend me all my days; O may Thy house be my abode, And all my work be praise! There would I find a settled rest, While others go and come; No more a stranger, nor a guest, But like a child at home. 

 

Metrical Paraphrase of Psalm 23 by Henry Williams Baker

1. The King of love my shepherd is, whose goodness faileth never;
I nothing lack if I am his, and he is mine for ever.

2. Where streams of living water flow, my ransomed soul he leadeth,
and where the verdant pastures grow, with food celestial feedeth.

3. Perverse and foolish oft I strayed, but yet in love he sought me,
and on his shoulder gently laid, and home, rejoicing, brought me.

4. In death's dark vale I fear no ill with thee, dear Lord, beside me;
thy rod and staff my comfort still, thy cross before to guide me.

5. Thou spread'st a table in my sight; thy unction grace bestoweth;
and oh, what transport of delight from thy pure chalice floweth!

6. And so through all the length of days thy goodness faileth never: 
Good Shepherd, may I sing thy praise within thy house for ever.

 

 

Please join us for Choral Evensong, this Sunday, March 26, at 4:30 p.m.

According to our usual observance, we will have Choral Evensong for the last Sunday of the month, which is Laetare Sunday, the Fourth Sunday of Lent. Choral Evensong is the traditional sung version of Anglican Evening Prayer, sung in the English Cathedral tradition. The parish choir prepares a significant amount of choral music for these services, which provides for an especially beautiful and artistic form of worship. The music will be especially fitting for Lent. Please join us for this additional opportunity for prayer during Lent!

 

 

Upcoming Events

 

Organ Recital

I will be giving an organ recital on Wednesday, March 29, 12:15 p.m., at First Presbyterian Church in Boulder, 1820 15th Street, Boulder. This program that will feature a works by Bach, Durufle, Gerre Hancock, and Jean Langlais. 

 

The Choir, in Concert, April 25, 2017

The Choir, an alternative Christian rock band will be in concert here at Ascension on the evening of April 25. Tickets are $20 for the 7:30 p.m. show, VIP tickets are available for a 6:00 p.m. pre-show performance and reception. Tickets are available on The Choir's website: thechoir.net.

 

Lenten Musical Opportunities and Youth and Children's Update

Fr. Lucas is at an educational course in Idaho this week, however he will be back us on Sunday, March 26. Please keep him in your prayers as he takes some time for learning in preparation for his upcoming sabbatical.
 

A Prayer for Clergy and People
 

Almighty and everlasting God, from whom cometh every good and perfect gift: Send down upon our bishops, and other clergy, and upon the congregations committed to their charge, the healthful Spirit of thy grace; and, that they may truly please thee, pour upon them the continual dew of thy blessing. Grant this, O Lord, for the honor of our Advocate and Mediator, Jesus Christ. Amen.
 

A Prayer for Travelers
 

O God, our heavenly Father, whose glory fills the whole creation, and whose presence we find wherever we go: Preserve those who travel; surround them with your loving care; protect them from every danger; and bring them in safety to their journey's end; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

 
 

 

 

 

Music with Dan Romero
 

 

Lenten Musical Opportunities
 

Along with Lent this year comes many extra opportunities for music, prayer, and worship. Please partake of some or all of these opportunities, I can assure you that they will be beautiful, prayerful, and spiritually renewing.

 

To begin, a little bit a shameless less promotion for myself. I will be giving two organ recitals. The first one is this Tuesday, March 21, 6:30 p.m., at First Plymouth Congregational Church, 3500 S. Colorado Blvd., in Englewood. I will be playing a wide variety of music to demonstrate the versatility of the organ. It will include music by David N. Johnson, Gerre Hancock, J.S. Bach, Jean Langlais, Herbert Howells, and Charles Tournemire.

 

The second recital that I'm giving is on Wednesday, March 29, 12:15 p.m., at First Presbyterian Church in Boulder, 1820 15th Street, Boulder. This is a shorter program that will feature a larger selection of pieces by J.S. Bach, because the organ there is well suited for Bach.

 

François Couperin's Leçons de ténèbres

On Wednesday, March 22, at 7:30 p.m., The Denver Early Music Consort will present François Couperin's Leçons de ténèbres pour le mercredi saint (Tenebrae lessons for Holy Wednesday) here at Ascension. The musicians will preform this music on Baroque period instruments, joined by fantastic vocalists. This music will be performed in the form of a Tenebrae service, including the extinguishing of candles. This should be a beautiful, moving event, perfect for Lent.

 

Choral Evensong, Sunday, March 26, at 4:30 p.m.

According to our usual observance, we will have Choral Evensong for the last Sunday of the month, which is Laetare Sunday, the Fourth Sunday of Lent. Choral Evensong is the traditional sung version of Anglican Evening Prayer, sung in the English Cathedral tradition. The parish choir prepares a significant amount of choral music for these services, which provides for an especially beautiful and artistic form of worship. The music will be especially fitting for Lent. Please join us for this additional opportunity for prayer during Lent!

 

 

Upcoming Events

 

The Choir, in Concert, April 25, 2017

The Choir, an alternative Christian rock band will be in concert here at Ascension on the evening of April 25. Tickets are $20 for the 7:30 p.m. show, VIP tickets are available for a 6:00 p.m. pre-show performance and reception. Tickets are available on The Choir's website: thechoir.net.

 

Listening in Lent

In our Gospel reading this Sunday, we hear the story of Nicodemus (John 3:1-17).

 

There was a Pharisee named Nicodemus, a leader of the Jews. He came to Jesus by night and said to him, "Rabbi, we know that you are a teacher who has come from God; for no one can do these signs that you do apart from the presence of God." Jesus answered him, "Very truly, I tell you, no one can see the kingdom of God without being born from above." Nicodemus said to him, "How can anyone be born after having grown old? Can one enter a second time into the mother's womb and be born?" Jesus answered, "Very truly, I tell you, no one can enter the kingdom of God without being born of water and Spirit. What is born of the flesh is flesh, and what is born of the Spirit is spirit. Do not be astonished that I said to you, 'You must be born from above.' The wind blows where it chooses, and you hear the sound of it, but you do not know where it comes from or where it goes. So it is with everyone who is born of the Spirit." Nicodemus said to him, "How can these things be?" Jesus answered him, "Are you a teacher of Israel, and yet you do not understand these things?"

 

I sympathize with Nicodemus in this Gospel reading.  He is asking honest questions about the spiritual life.  And he is getting honest answers from the Son of God.  Perhaps not the easiest conversation to have.

 

The season of Lent is here, and most of us try to ask some deeper spiritual (and practical) questions about where we are in life, about where we are in our relationship to God, about where we are in relationship to one another.  I recently sat down with a friend and mentor to ask some of my own questions, and to try to be ready to hear some of his answers.  It isn't always easy.  In fact, growth and progress in our lives is only made when we are prepared to hear the deeper truths.  I am often asked what I am doing for Lent.  And my answer this year is an attempt to listen deeper to the people around me.  To listen to the truths that are around us, to the Truth that is within us, by virtue of our baptism.  My Lenten journey this year is to listen, even when the truth is hard to hear, confusing to hear.

 

The Sunday Gospel concludes with the famous and beloved words of Jesus:

 

"For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him may not perish but may have eternal life.  Indeed, God did not send the Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him."

 

And the good news this Lent, and always, is that our belief, no matter how challenging life can be, will give us ears to listen, and ears to hear.  And what we will hear is not condemnation, but a path that leads us deeper into the love of God and one another.

 

Yours faithfully in Christ,

 

Fr. Lucas+