The Abundant Life – October 12, 2017


The Abundant Life


October 12, 2017                                     For Sunday, Oct. 15th


From The Rector



Practice Wholeness


This week’s reading from Paul’s letter to the Philippians is one of the most joyful and positive that we read. It is important as a statement of our Christian values and practices.


In all circumstances – but especially in times of stress, conflict, and loss – remember that “the Lord is near.” This is the beginning for practicing wholeness. We are not alone and there are practices that can enhance our experience until it becomes second nature. Paul was writing this during one of several times of imprisonment and his practice of encouragement was part of his experiencing the “peace,” the wholeness that he writes about.


I want to emphasize three practices that Paul encourages. “Let your gentleness show in your treatment of all people.” I suggest that we might practice this by being specifically thoughtful in our interactions with people, that we “take a step back” and breathe as we consider them. We might diffuse conflict or fear by making our encounters more attentive to the other person.


Second, Paul encourages his readers “to pray” comprehensively – about everything – bringing all concerns and thanksgivings to God. This practice is not to craft a prayer until it is perfect, but to make our conversation with God constant and comprehensive. This prayerful approach to life is less about the hoped for results of prayer, and more about the opportunity that prayer offers to build deeper relationships with God and with those for whom we pray.


Finally, focus on what is admirable and excellent. This practice is one of careful, prayerful choosing what we invest our attention in. When we invest our attention generously in justice and truth, we become more like what we seek. By diligently seeking the truth and by standing for God’s promise of justice that flows to all, like a river flowing down a hill, we become more truthful and justice grows. The very fabric of our community becomes more whole and begins to experience “the peace that exceeds all understanding… .”


In our worship together each week, each of these practices is more or less evident. For example our formal prayers are more of an invitation to offer prayer by the wider congregation, than to capture the appropriate petition for each topic. Join us as we grow in wholeness, as we grow in the peace of God.


Fr. Andrew





Featured Scripture


Philippians 4:4-9 (CEB)


Be glad in the Lord always! Again I say, be glad! Let your gentleness show in your treatment of all people. The Lord is near. Don’t be anxious about anything; rather, bring up all of your requests to God in your prayers and petitions, along with giving thanks. Then the peace of God that exceeds all understanding will keep your hearts and minds safe in Christ Jesus.


From now on, brothers and sisters, if anything is excellent and if anything is admirable, focus your thoughts on these things: all that is true, all that is holy, all that is just, all that is pure, all that is lovely, and all that is worthy of praise. Practice these things: whatever you learned, received, heard, or saw in us. The God of peace will be with you.






Thanks to your generous giving, we will be sending a check for over $6000 to Episcopal Relief and Development for hurricane relief.






We’re looking for dedicated volunteers with time on their hands during the week to help with St. Paul’s new outreach to the homeless through Well-in-the-Desert, UCR Mental Health and HUD. Contact Chris Kelly at 760.406.2978 for details. Get involved, make new friends and help to serve Christ in others!




Pastoral Care Team


St. Pauls is forming a Pastoral Care Team to visit/contact members who are shut-in, in the hospital, or sick. Are you called to care for those who are sick? Participation in this ministry requires an interview with the Rector, completion of the Diocese of San Diego Safeguarding God’s People training, and specific training by local experts. This is a ministry of prayer and presence to build the spiritual wellbeing of our parish. This ministry will work in coordination with the Eucharistic Visitor Ministry, and Parish Clergy. Please contact Fr. Andrew at 760.320.7488 x 233 or




 “St. Paul’s 101” – Welcome!


If you want to join St. Paul’s or learn more about the parish, come to “St. Paul’s 101.”  The next single session class with Jerry Di Noto is Sunday, October 29, at 9:15 am in the Conference Room in the Parish Office.  In this informal setting, you will have the opportunity to ask questions about St. Paul’s and learn how to become a member.






Desert AIDS Walk – Sign Up Now! 


The Desert AIDS Walk is celebrating 31 years of “Walking to Make a Difference.” Each year since 1987, when the historic first steps were taken, the Desert AIDS Walk, along with more than 2,500 community members have walked united to raise funds for the vital services provided by Desert AIDS Project (D.A.P.). The Desert AIDS Walk makes it possible for D.A.P. to provide their patients and clients with an unparalleled range of services including: medical and dental care, medications, housing, behavioral health counseling, back to work training and much more all under one roof. St. Paul in the Desert has participated and donated every year in support of the work at D.A.P. Join us in support of our community by signing up in the parish hall after each service to either walk or donate. The walk is Saturday October 21st at Ruth Hardy Park. Gather at the church at 8:00 a.m.



We are now taking sign-ups for the Desert AIDS walk on Saturday, Oct 21, The Pride Parade on Sunday on Nov 5th, and the Veteran’s Day Parade on Saturday, Nov 11th.


Wear your St. Paul’s t-shirt and join the parish contingent in one or all of these events.  If you don’t have your St. Pauls t-shirt yet, there’s still time to get one. Sign-up sheets are in the Parish Hall. 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.​




St. Paul’s Choir


Members of our choir will be sing at the Fall Festival of Faith celebrating the 500th anniversary of the Reformation on Sunday, October 29th at 6:00 pm at Hope Lutheran Church, 45900 Portola Avenue in Palm Desert.  This choral service, presented by The Mark Thallander Foundation, will be comprised of various choirs from local Desert Churches under the direction of Mack Wilberg, director of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir. Fred Swann will be the Festival Organist. There is no charge and all are invited to attend. Contact Nathan Ensign for further details. 




All Saint’s Day Observed – Sunday October 29th 


In our annual observance of All Saints’ Day, we recognize and celebrate our relationship with those who have gone before us. We invite you to offer the names of loved ones who have passed within the last 12 months. The names will be celebrated during All Saints’ Day services the weekend of October 29. You can submit names by adding them to registers located in the Parish Hall and Narthex, or by phoning the Parish Office at 760.320.7488. (Note: If you have submitted names in past years, you need not re-submit them. They are part of a permanent parish record and will be remembered along with those newly added.) 


Deadline for submitting names is Sunday, October 22.





Taizé Services Return



The Next Taize service of meditation and chant will be at 7:00 pm on Thursday, November 2nd in the Church. All are welcome at this quiet service in a setting of religious art and candles, chants, personal reflection and prayer. Contact Nathan Ensign for more details at 760-320-7488 ext. 225.





Parish Life Book Club


Parish Life Book Club meets on the first Tuesday each month at 1 PM in the Library. New members are always welcome. The Book Club meets again on November 7 and is reading Nothing to Envy: Ordinary Lives in North Korea by Barbara Demick. Published in 2010, Barbara Demick follows the lives of six North Korean citizens over fifteen years—a chaotic period that saw the rise to power of Kim Jong-Il (the father of Kim Jong-Un), and a devastating famine. This book is an account of life inside the closed world of North Korea and brings to life what it means to be living under a repressive regime. The Book Club is a group of people who enjoy reading and talking about the books they read. For more information please contact Jackie Freeburn at







Thursday, November 2nd is the date of the next Parish Potluck. In addition to great food, fellowship and reunions with friends returning to the desert – you won’t want to miss our own renowned musician John Granet, PhD, who will perform several pieces on the piano. In order not to conflict with the Taize service at 7:00 pm, the potluck begins at 5:30 pm instead of 6:00 pm. Doors open at 5:00 pm to bring your contributions and get settled. Beginning this weekend, you’ll find signup sheets in the Church lobby and in the Parish Hall. We promise a cooler environment than was the case for our August potluck!




Communion at Windsor Court



The next communion service at Windsor Court is Wednesday, November 8th at 10:15 am. The priest and the residents are always happy to have parishioners attend.




Hospitality Ministry



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


James Kyle is sponsoring the coffee hour after the 10:30 service

Sunday in thanksgiving and in celebration of his 80th birthday!


 Please consider sponsoring a coffee hour this summer!







Sundays @ 9:15 am


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

10/15        Alien Ideas: Reflection on Isaiah 25: 1-9 
                   Led by Alan Zimmerman  Read about it
10/22        God Gets Work Done Anyway God Can: Reflection on Isaiah 45:1-7 
                   Led by Jerry Di Noto  Read about it
10/29        Holiness: Reflection on Leviticus 19:1-2, 15-18 
                   Led by Audrey Spencer  Read about it 




Tuesdays @ 7PM



Beginning in October: An Overview of the Reformation: Key figures and issues:
Commemorating the 500th Anniversary of Martin Luther’s posting of the Ninety-five Theses.   
10/17     Martin Luther: Led by Ron Geikow  
10/24     The Swiss Reformation: Led by Alan Zimmerman    
10/31     The Anabaptists: Led by Jerry Di Noto




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 Friday. 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 October 12, 2017

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