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The Abundant Life


November 26, 2015                       For Sunday, November 29th


From The Rector

Reconciliation Begins With Us
Advent begins this weekend. A new year of following the life and witness of Jesus as a tool to assist us in living God’s Mission. As we prayed last week, the mission is reconciliation. We are called to be a part of reconciling all people to God and to one another. The hope that guides our faith is that healing and renewal, forgiveness and rebuilding are possible even in the most dire circumstances. But the reconciliation of everything and everyone can be an overwhelming goal, in practice.
Rather than be overwhelmed, I think that we are called to start very close to home. In the reading from 1st Thessalonians selected for the first Sunday of Advent, the author overflows with encouragement for the readers of this letter.
This portion on the letter is filled with thanksgiving and affection. Paul, the author, is relating the joy and gratitude that he feels when contemplating and praying for the people of this community. The encouragement that follows is also a challenge. I think Paul is saying that this joy, gratitude, and encouragement is the way each of us should begin our interactions with each other. 
I know that I must make a conscious effort to begin with joy and gratitude. Too often, I seem bound by cynicism, suspicion, or fear. Yet, this conscious effort to choose joy and gratitude is a spiritual practice that strengthens my connection with God and others, and builds the foundation of reconciliation.
Paul recounts his prayerful affection for the people of this community of faith in Thessalonika. He intends is as an example of their interaction with each other, and their intention to connect that joy and gratitude to all.
Spiritual practices like this may appear naive when one is conscious only of the beginning of the practice and the end goal – as if the committed progress were automatic. The practice of joy and gratitude are the first steps in a lifetime of building reconciliation. Likewise, forgiveness and healing are practices that grow over a lifetime. But they begin with the first steps taken by each of us
Join in the new beginning of Advent as we follow Jesus and learn to choose joy and gratitude.
Fr. Andrew



Featured Scripture


     1 Thessalonians 3:9-13 (CEB)
How can we thank God enough for you, given all the joy we have because of you before our God? Night and day, we pray more than ever to see all of you in person and to complete whatever you still need for your faith. Now may our God and Father himself and our Lord Jesus guide us on our way back to you. May the Lord cause you to increase and enrich your love for each other and for everyone in the same way as we also love you. May the love cause your hearts to be strengthened, to be blameless in holiness before our God and Father when our Lord Jesus comes with all his people. Amen.




Calling All Elves!
CALLING ALL ELVES! It’s time to “deck the halls” for Christmas!
Tuesday, December 22, starting at 9:00 a.m.
We’re Looking for jolly holiday volunteers to decorate the interior of the church.
If you would like to help, please call the Parish Office @ 760.320.7488 to sign up.


African Team Ministries


Next week, the African Team Ministries will display wonderful gifts for purchase in our Parish Hall. This year they will offer men’s crosses, women’s crosses, jewelry, musical instruments and a host of other hand-crafted items. Please remember these unique and wonderful gifts you can purchase at this annual event. In the process you will be helping the people and our ministry in Africa. Thank you for supporting this ministry. 






Many worshipers wonder how to become a member of St. Paul’s.  If you’re one of them, join Fr. Andrew in the Parish Library on Sunday, November 29th at 9:15 am. In this single-session class, you will hear interesting facts about St. Paul’s, plus, learn all you need to know about becoming a member of the Parish.  (Note:  this is not the same as the Inquirers’ Class.)  If you are already a member, this class is not for you.




Sunday Mornings at 9:15 AM

Episcopal Café in The Chapel


11/29  The Sea Calls Out for Justice.
            Led by Craig Ewing.
12/6   Keeping Advent.
          Led by Rev. Canon Victoria Hatch  
          Read about it here
12/13 Shadows of Advent.
          Led by Craig Ewing 
          Read about it here
12/20 Speaking to the Soul: Merry Christmas.
          Led by Br. John Charles
          Read about it here
12/27 Christmas Recess: NO SESSION



Tuesdays at 7:00 PM

Meets in the Church
Taizé Prayer Services
12/1   Taizé Prayer Service. Led by Nathan Ensign
12/8   Taizé Prayer Service. Led by Nathan Ensign
12/15 Taizé Prayer Service. Led by Nathan Ensign
12/22  Christmas Recess: NO SESSION
12/27  End of Year Celebration & Reflection: 
          Parish Hall 7 PM 
           All Program participants and Team members are invited; dine,                        celebrate and reflect on the Adult Faith Formation Program.


Christmas for the Homeless


It’s time once again for our annual Christmas fundraiser for the homeless men, women and children at Roy’s Desert Resource Center. In the past, we have used donated funds to buy Walmart and Revivals gift cards which Roy’s residents can use to purchase essentials, and we’re planning the same for 2015. Our target this year is to raise $2,000 (for 85 gift cards) between now and December 25, so please consider a contribution to this worthy cause. Simply drop your check payable to St. Paul’s into the plate any Sunday and make sure to write “Roy’s Christmas” on the memo line. Don’t hesitate to contact Chris Kelly at (760-406-2978) with any questions or for more information on how you can help our ongoing outreach to Roy’s.



At the Church of

St. Paul in the Desert


. . . we welcome all worshipers to a place free of violence, bullying, and abuse. Physical, verbal or emotional violence against others or against oneself is not acceptable because of our understanding of what it means to follow Jesus.  Please let Jesus’ command to love your neighbor as yourself be your guide.





Our mission statement calls us to be “a welcoming, empowering and supportive community.” We are currently forming a new ministry at St Paul’s to support that mission.  Volunteers are needed from all three services to donate approximately 90 minutes of their time per month.  That time is split into 3-30 minute segments: 30 minutes before and 30 minutes after the service you attend, once per month, to support the Welcoming Table located in the Narthex and another 30 minutes a month assisting with name badge organization.  If you are able to lend a hand, please contact Mike Funke at 760.-409.0986 or mike.funke@yahoo.com!

Help us live our mission statement!



Bullying Behavior Not Welcome Here


At St. Paul in the Desert we welcome all worshipers to a place that is free of violence and bullying.


Physical, verbal or emotional violence against others or against oneself is not acceptable.


“It Gets Better” is a series of video messages to encourage Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, or Transgender youth and let them know that they are loved as they are.


“A Blessing for Those Who Are Bullied” was written by the Rt. Rev. Steven Charleston, a Bishop of the Episcopal Church.


It is not enough to say “NO” to bullies. It is important to stand up for people and to provide resources for those who have been the targets.




Baked Goods Donations for


– See more at: http://stpaulsps.org/#sthash.je9rkb97.dpuf





Need to Print a Copy of

The Abundant Lite?


Click here to receive a Printer Friendly (text only) version.







The church office is open Tuesday through Friday, 8:30 am to 4:30 pm with a lunch break from 11:30 am until 1:00 pm.


Should you call on Monday when we are closed to the public, please leave a message.  In case of an emergency, a priest will return your call.







Taizé style meditation services are returning for 3 Tuesdays in Advent. Our next Taizé service will be held on Tuesday, December 1st  at 7:00 PM.  To learn more, contact Nathan Ensign at:  760.320.7488, Ext. 225.  NOTE: we are looking for a few volunteers to assist in setting up for the services.






We will soon be preparing the ballot for the next vestry elections.  Please give thoughtful consideration to who you would like to see serving in this capacity and submit their names (even your own!) for consideration by the vestry nominating committee.


There’s no need to ask individuals if they are willing to serve.  The committee will do that.   Submit names soon to any vestry member. 


Click here for the Vestry Member E-mail list.






“A Church Grows in the Desert”


A riveting history of St. Paul in the Desert from 1939-2014, are still available at the office. This well illustrated and thoroughly researched book makes a super gift or stocking stuffer. Cost is $25.00.







Our Sunday School sessions are active and exciting for the new school year! We look forward to having the children attend the 10:30 Sunday School Program.  We are still looking for volunteers to be a storyteller or a doorkeeper. If you are interested, please contact Ted Barajas at 760-902-1014 or email at tedbarajas1@yahoo.com.






Holy Communion at Windsor Court, 201 South Sunrise Way, Palm Springs, is hosted by the Nursing Home Ministry on the second Wednesday of the month, next, on December 9th, at 10:15am. The Presiding Priest always welcomes assistance from parishioners.





Join us in the Parish Hall for coffee and fellowship after each service today. The Coffee Hour after the 8:00 service is hosted by Jack Moore. The Coffee Hour after the 10:30 service is hosted by Linda Curea.


There are several Sunday hospitality opportunities available through the end of the year. Please consider hosting  a Coffee Hour after the 8:00 or 10:30 services with family or friends. Sign-up binders are on the large table on the right as you enter the Parish Hall.


If you have questions, call Ray or Cheryl Kelley at 760.778.1725.



The Prayer Shawl Ministry invites you to join our circle on Wednesday’s from 10am -1pm in Hogarth Hall. Whether  you wish to learn to knit or crochet or are an  expert needleworker, we welcome you. Needles, hooks and yarn are provided. Please drop in  to create and enjoy our prayerfully made creations.



Episcopalians Against
Gun Violence


. . . is an ad-hoc group of bishops, clergy and lay people disseminating information about Episcopalians who are working, collectively and individually, to curb gun violence. For further information, click here.





As part of our ongoing commitment to creating a safe haven for everyone, our diocese trains people in the prevention of misconduct and encourages all to report misconduct. All reported incidents are taken seriously and investigated thoroughly and confidentially. If you believe you have experienced misconduct of any kind, please contact John Seitman, at jseitman@pacbell.net or 858-793-4426.



November 26, 2015 in Newsletters by

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Saturday, November 28th

Holy Communion

4:00 p.m.

The Rev. Andrew Green


Sunday, November 29th

Holy Communion

8:00 a.m.

The Rev. Andrew Green

Holy Communion
10:30 a.m.

The Rev. Andrew Green


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Saturday Vigil: 4:30 pm

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Sunday: 9:00am, 7:15pm

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