The Abundant Life – February 8, 2018


The Abundant Life



February 8, 2018                                     For Sunday, February 11th


From the Rector




Listen to the Beloved


Each year we transition from the season after the Epiphany to Lent with a reading about Jesus’ transfiguration on the mountain top. Mark portrays Jesus in dazzling garments that are brighter than earthly cloth. And he is meeting with Moses and Elijah as symbols of the Law and the Prophets.


But we are invited to focus not on the event’s brightness and symbols, but on God’s voice from the clouds. C. Clifton Black, Otto A. Piper Professor of Biblical Theology at Princeton Theological Seminary, says what is heard is critical: “This is my Son, the Beloved; listen to him!” Black notes that this is the second of three times in Mark that Jesus is acknowledged as God’s son: at his baptism, at the transfiguration, and at his death.


In this week’s reading, the disciples are directed to listen to God’s beloved son. Jesus is affirmed as one dearly loved by God, not as one who is powerful or superior, but loved.


That is how the disciples are valued. Their response to Jesus’ mentoring in discipleship is spotty at best, but they are loved. They are loved so that after Jesus’ death and resurrection, they recognize him by the signs of his love. Some, like Mary Magdalen, will hear it in the gentleness of her spoken name. Some, like Thomas, will see it in the wounds of Jesus’ hands and side. It is that love recognized that will send the disciples out following Jesus’ way.


We are invited to listen to the beloved of God and to share his love. God loves us and values us because he created us and we belong to him – we are the protected and nurtured family of the Father. And we are asked to live and love in the same way: according basic love and respect to all, because they are made by God as well. Scripture gives us the vision of Jesus with Moses and Elijah, but in my personal vision I imagine Jesus not with the prophets and disciples, but with the ones who need God’s love the most today. I imagine the Beloved loving the homeless, the immigrant, the difficult and rude, the braggart, and those who are mentally ill.


Then I imagine the people of God loving them, too, and more besides. Join us in worship as we listen to the Beloved and learn to love one another and everyone in need.


Fr. Andrew




Featured Scripture


Mark 9:2-9 (NRSV)


Jesus took with him Peter and James and John, and led them up a high mountain apart, by themselves. And he was transfigured before them, and his clothes became dazzling white, such as no one on earth could bleach them. And there appeared to them Elijah with Moses, who were talking with Jesus. Then Peter said to Jesus, “Rabbi, it is good for us to be here; let us make three dwellings, one for you, one for Moses, and one for Elijah.” He did not know what to say, for they were terrified. Then a cloud overshadowed them, and from the cloud there came a voice, “This is my Son, the Beloved; listen to him!” Suddenly when they looked around, they saw no one with them any more, but only Jesus. As they were coming down the mountain, he ordered them to tell no one about what they had seen, until after the Son of Man had risen from the dead.




Ash Wednesday


Ash Wednesday is the first of the forty days of Lent, named for the custom of placing blessed ashes on the foreheads of worshipers at Ash Wednesday services. The ashes are a sign of penitence and a reminder of mortality, and may be imposed with the sign of the cross. Ash Wednesday is observed as a fast in the church year of the Episcopal Church. Join us for Ash Wednesday services February 14th at Noon and 6:00 PM.




Funeral Service Scheduled



A Requiem Eucharist Funeral Service for well-known parishioner Kaye Clemons will be held at St. Paul’s on Saturday, February 17th, at 11:00 AM.  A reception will follow in the Parish Hall.




Katherine Lee  Clemons (Kaye)

November 19, 1924 – January 26, 2018









Sundays at 9:15 AM in the Library

The Episcopal Cafè                        




2/18        God’s Bow in the Clouds: Reflections on Genesis 9:8-17

                 Led by Audrey Spencer


2/25       Out of Our Hands: A Reflection on Romans 4:13-25

                 Led by Gary Scott




Sundays @ 6:00 PM in the Library — Accepting God’s Gift of Faith


Preparing for Confirmation, Reception or Reaffirmation — The Adult Faith Building team will assist in facilitating this seven-session program designed for those wishing to be confirmed or received in the Episcopal Church. Instructional preparation for candidates will include seven consecutive two-hour Sunday evening sessions beginning February 4th, 6:00 – 8:00 PM through March 18th. All are welcome to attend any of these sessions as part of your Lenten renewal, whether or not you are seeking confirmation, reception or reaffirmation.




2/18      The Christian Life: — Led by Br. John Charles and Audrey Spencer


2/25      Our Beliefs – Part 1: — Led by Jerry Di Noto and Ron Geikow.


If you would like more information or wish to become a candidate or a sponsor, contact Jerry Di Noto at 760.320.7488 ext. 224 or Fr. Andrew at 760.320.7488 ext. 223. The Rt. Rev. Katharine Jefferts Schori will preside at Baptisms/Confirmations/Receptions and Reaffirmations during her Visit on March 25, 2018.




Gun Violence in 2017


The facts are in for Gun Violence in 2017: There were 46,451 gunshot deaths and 31,234 injuries, 732 children and 3,234 teens injured or killed, and there were 345 mass shootings. So far this year (as of 1/26/18) there have been 14 mass shootings, 3,644 shooting incidents, 1,010 deaths, 1,801 injuries, 43 children and 194 teens killed or injured. And of these, 11 were school shootings. The CDC and the AMA recognize we have an epidemic of gun violence in our nation. Please contact our senators and representatives and ask that they push for sensible gun regulations:


Senator Dianne Feinstein: (202)224-3841,
Senator Kamala Harris: (202) 224 3553,
Representative Dr. Raul Ruiz: (202) 225-5330,


You can also support a variety of organizations that are working to achieve this goal:


Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence:

Faiths United to Prevent Gun Violence:
Women Against Gun Violence:
Coalition to Stop Gun Violence:




“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.” This is a single session class with Fr. Andrew. In this informal setting, you will have the opportunity to ask questions about St. Paul’s and learn how to become a member. The next session with Fr. Andrew will be Sunday, February 25th at 9:15 am, in the Conference Room in the Parish Office.





Next Taizé Service



Join us for our Taize service on Thursday, March 1st, at 7:00 pm. As one person said, “Taize is a deeply spiritual service by candlelight with music, quietude and prayer. It is a wonderful opportunity to center your day and your life while expressing gratitude.”  For more information, contact Nathan Ensign at 760.320.7488 x225.​





The Good Book Club


The Good Book Club – Presiding Bishop Curry invites and encourages us to join The Good Book Club, a study of Luke during Lent, and Acts during Easter season.  St. Paul’s offers two options for those who wish to participate:

  • Individual Study – Beginning Sunday, February 11, you can obtain materials from if you choose to pursue the study at your own pace. A free Bible study is available for download, as is a “toolkit.”                                                                     
  • Group Study – St. Paul’s Chapter of DOK will host group study sessions using “A Journey with Luke” by Marek Zabriski, editor. The book includes reflections, study questions and prayers by Episcopal Church clergy and lay professors and theologians. It is useful, but not required for the study group as there will be multiple resources available. Group sessions begin Tuesday, February 20, at 1:00 PM in the office conference room.






Mardi Gras Parish Pot Luck Dinner: Tuesday, February 13th. 5-6:45 p.m. in the Parish Hall.


Bring your favorite dish; enjoy fellowship and entertainment. Sign-up sheets are in the Narthex and Parish Hall. Please indicate what you will be bringing and if you are able to stay and help clean up.




Communion at Windsor Court



The next communion service at Windsor Court is Wednesday, February 14th at 10:15 am. The priest and the residents are always happy to have parishioners attend.




“Let the Good Times Roll”…. Save the Date


Sunday, February 18th at 4:00 PM – We are delighted to present the BRASS ROOTS TRIO. This trio is a fusion of classical, jazz, Americana and Latin styles. With trumpet, French horn and piano, they have won acclaim for their breathtaking virtuosity, artistic passion and adventurous programming since 2004 – definitely not your stuffy classical concert. Your donations are graciously accepted at the door and a reception will follow in the Parish Hall.




United Thank Offering


The United Thank Offering is a ministry of the Episcopal Church to promote thankfulness andmission in the whole Church. Known worldwide as UTO, United Thank Offering grants are awarded for projects that address human needs and help alleviate poverty, both domestically and internationally. Information on UTO grants for 2017 will be available, as will envelopes and boxes in the pews, the Narthex and Parish Hall of St. Paul’s by February 18. Ingathering will be March 11. St. Paul’s chapter of DOK is again pleased to facilitate this ministry.







St. Paul’s will be participating in the annual Palm Springs Black History Month Parade on Saturday, February 24th. Please sign-up to join us as we celebrate our diversity and God’s inclusive love. We will be assembling in our parking lot at 9:15 AM or you can go to the parade line-up area at Arenas/Palm Canyon (at Lulu’s). A community Fair will be held at Francis Stevens Park following the parade. Sign-up sheets are in the Narthex and Parish Hall.





Parish Life Book Club


Parish Life Book Club meets on the first Tuesday each month at 1 PM in the Library and new members are always welcome. On March 6, 2018, Book Club has selected Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng. This is a riveting novel that traces the intertwined fates of a picture-perfect family and the enigmatic mother and daughter who upend their lives. Little Fires Everywhere is a bestseller and 2017 awards winner. Book Club is a group of people who enjoy reading and talking about the books they read. For more information please contact Jan Wacker at




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?


Print a copy



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 February 8, 2018

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