The Abundant Life – August 24, 2017


The Abundant Life


August 24, 2017                                     For Sunday, August 27th



From The Rector


Mercy Calls and Transforms Us


We have been reading from Paul’s letter to the Romans for several weeks and will continue for three more. This is a carefully crafted defense of Paul’s understanding of a united Christian Faith, in the face of different kinds of divisions. In this week’s portion, the calling to mature or complete faith is based  squarely on God’s orientation to us – on divine mercy.


We are called or invited to live out that mercy not only by our thoughts and prayers, but by our actions. God invites us to imitate this God-like core value by challenging our thinking. Humility or thinking realistically about ourselves is the starting point. “Don’t think of yourself more highly than you ought to think.” Finding the right balance is critical. 


God’s mercy helps us take this balanced step. When we begin to believe that we are truly and deeply loved, the motivation driving our actions can be transformed from seeking approval to confidently responding to God’s love and mercy by acting for the benefit and blessing of others.


Next, we realize that God is directing his mercy to us so that we can discern our gift and become one part of the body blessing all humanity. We are not alone. “Be reasonable since God has measured out a portion of faith to each one of you.” God is calling everyone who is open to this transforming faith. None of us have it all and none of us are superfluous.


Each one of us makes our share of response, knowing we are essential, yet knowing that our response is incomplete without the faithful participation of others. Paul offers what I assume is a partial list of the collaboration of gifts or roles so that the recipients of his letter might understand their interactions with each other and him as a part of the whole plan of God mercy.


In church it is hard to see this, because we are often unbalanced and/or untransformed. Not all gifts are honored regularly; too often, the gifts that are recognized seem to belong to the individual and not to the whole.


In our worship, we might do a thought exercise. How many gifts are represented when we gather to pray? How many gifts can you see? What is yours? What gifts are not present or which have been forgotten? Then we might pray to be transformed by God, like the bread and wine. So that we we might be a living offering for God’s mission in the world. Join us.


Fr. Andrew





Featured Scripture


Romans 12:1-8 (CEB)


So, brothers and sisters, because of God’s mercies, I encourage you to present your bodies as a living sacrifice that is holy and pleasing to God. This is your appropriate priestly service. Don’t be conformed to the patterns of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your minds so that you can figure out what God’s will is—what is good and pleasing and mature.


Because of the grace that God gave me, I can say to each one of you: don’t think of yourself more highly than you ought to think. Instead, be reasonable since God has measured out a portion of faith to each one of you. We have many parts in one body, but the parts don’t all have the same function. In the same way, though there are many of us, we are one body in Christ, and individually we belong to each other. We have different gifts that are consistent with God’s grace that has been given to us. If your gift is prophecy, you should prophesy in proportion to your faith. If your gift is service, devote yourself to serving. If your gift is teaching, devote yourself to teaching. If your gift is encouragement, devote yourself to encouraging. The one giving should do it with no strings attached. The leader should lead with passion. The one showing mercy should be cheerful.





Save the Date

Sunday, September 10th!


Kathy Kilmer and Br. John invite all members of the Altar Guild and Altar Ministers and, all those interested in serving in one of these Ministries, to save the date of Sunday, September 10th, for St. Paul’s Altar Guild/Altar Ministers’ Annual Kickoff Meeting. The time is set for 12:30 pm at 849 Restaurant, around the corner from the church. There will be a special, 2-course menu at a very reasonable cost. If you’re interested in joining one of these Ministries, either at the Altar or behind the scenes, we’d love to have you attend! For more information, please connect with Kathy at or Br. John at




Outreach to the Homeless and Working Poor


Services For the Homeless – Volunteers and Donations Needed – St. Paul’s Social Justice Committee is expanding our Parish’s outreach to the homeless and working poor by coordinating deliveries of clean underwear, socks and other necessities with Well in the Desert.  Volunteers to help deliver and distribute these items, as well as cash donations to support their purchase, are much needed.  Please consider sharing your time and resources with those in need.  Simply drop a check in the Sunday collection plate with “Social Justice” on the “memo” line or contact Chris Kelly at 760-406-2978 for information on how you can volunteer your time.”  




Come to Diocesan Convention


The 44th Annual Diocesan Convention will take place on Friday & Saturday, November 10 & 11 at St. Bartholomew’s, Poway. All are welcome to attend workshops and participate in the diocesan wide food packing service project. Our goal is to pack 25,000 meals with our own hands. Our theme this year is “Hand in Hand in Christ.” Won’t you join hands and attend? Learn more and register today:


50,000 meals project – As described above, delegates and volunteers at the Diocesan Convention in November plans to build 50,000 meals for the hungry in partnership with Family and Friends Community Connections (FFCC), a San Diego based organization with a long history of service to the homeless and seniors locally and beyond. Fr. Andrew and the Vestry hope that St. Paul’s parishioners will help us raise $2,500 to assist in paying for the materials needed for this project. Please consider supporting this important event. If donating by check, note 50k meals in the memo line.



Sunday School Resumes on September 10th


Sunday School resumes on September 10th @ 10:30 a.m. Sunday School will be offered on the first three Sundays of each month. The fourth Sundays of the month the 10:30 service will be children’s services. 






The Parish Life Ministry – Circle Suppers


We will be organizing new Circle Supper potluck groups soon.  Sign up for these fun, small group potluck suppers in the back of the church or the parish hall.  If you are interested but out of town, please email Fred at  The fall groups will be in place from October through December.  Sign up today!




St. Paul’s Logo T-Shirts Available


Special Events/Parades will be taking orders for St. Paul’s new logo T-Shirts! Suggested donation is $10.00. You can also call the office with your order. These shirts can be used by participants in future events and parades we are planning. 





Hospitality Ministry



Please join us in the Parish Hall after each Sunday service for coffee and refreshments.

 Please consider sponsoring a coffee hour this summer!




Communion at Windsor Court



The next communion service at Windsor Court is Wednesday, September 13th at 10:15 am. The priest and the residents are always happy to have parishioners attend.





Parish Life Book Club



The Parish Life Book Club (PLBC) will not meet in August. You’ll want to join them at their next meeting on Tuesday, September 5th at 1 pm in the Parish Library to discuss Martha Hall Kelly’s debut novel “Lilac Girls.” Here’s what Lisa See had to say in her NY Times review, “Inspired by actual events and real people, Martha Hall Kelly has woven together the stories of three women during World War II that reveal the bravery, cowardice, and cruelty of those days.”





St. Paul’s Facebook Page:  


If you are a Facebook user, please “friend” Church of St. Paul in the Desert. You’ll be surprised to find many interesting articles and news about us and the Episcopal Church. Committee Chairs are encouraged to submit pictures and your ministry’s news and events for Facebook posting. Sending your information to for the website, bulletin and Facebook. We extend our gratitude to Nathan DePetris or taking on this ministry.







Sundays @ 9:15 am


AT ST. PAUL’S IN THE LIBRARY – The Episcopal Cafè                        





8/27        Building the Church of Christ: Reflection on Matt. 16:13-20.

                 Led by Audrey Spencer     Read about it




 9/3         20 Ways to Live a Thankful Life: A Reflection on Romans 12:9-2
                Led by Gary Scott    Read about it
9/10        On–Going Love: A Reflection on Matthew 18:15-20  
                Led by Alan Zimmerman    Read about it 
9/17        You Be the Judge (Not!): Reflections on Romans 14: 1-12
                 Led by Craig Ewing Read about it
9/24        Smile, Though Your Heart Is Aching: Reflections on Philippians 1:21-30.
                 Led by Jerry Di Noto    Read about it




Tuesdays @ 7PM



There will be no Tuesday evening sessions in August.  Sessions resume September 5th.
Biblical Wisdom Literature: A study of the Book of Proverbs
9/5         Intro. To Wisdom Literature & the Place of Proverbs
               Facilitated by Jerry Di Noto
9/12      Collections of Proverbs
               Facilitated by Gary Scott
9/19       The Poems of the Book of Proverbs.
                Facilitated by Craig Ewing
9/26       The Relation of Proverbs to the Covenant
                Facilitated by Alan Zimmerman




Report Misconduct
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 incidences are taken seriously and investigated thoroughly and confidentially. If you believe you have experienced misconduct of any kind, please contact Mr. John Seitman,, 858-793-4555 or the Rev. Janet Wheelock,, 952-240-8067.






Office Hours are 9 am – 4:30 pm Tuesday through Thursday.  Friday office hours are 9 am – 11:30 am through summer. The office is closed on Mondays.

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.




Print a copy of The Abundant Life?


Click here




Sunday Worship Childcare
Childcare is available for both the 8:00 a.m. and the 10:30 a.m. services.




The Prayer Shawl Ministry invites you to join our circle on Wednesday’s from 10 am-1 pm 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.




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 because of our understanding of what it means to follow Jesus.  Please let Jesus’ command to love your neighbor as yourself be your guide.
“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.





The Church of St. Paul in the Desert

Local: 760.320.7488   //  Fax: 760.416.2441
Email:  Website:

125 West El Alameda

Palm Springs, California 92262

Categories Newsletters | Tags: | Posted on August 23, 2017

Comments are closed.

close window

Service Times & Directions

Weekend Masses in English

Saturday Morning: 8:00 am

Saturday Vigil: 4:30 pm

Sunday: 7:30 am, 9:00 am, 10:45 am,
12:30 pm, 5:30 pm

Weekend Masses In Español

Saturday Vigil: 6:15pm

Sunday: 9:00am, 7:15pm

Weekday Morning Masses

Monday, Tuesday, Thursday & Friday: 8:30 am

6654 Main Street
Wonderland, AK 45202
(513) 555-7856