For Sunday, February 17th

From the Rector

Some Of It Is True

This week we read Luke’s version of the beatitudes. They are less “spiritualized” than Matthew’s and have matching “terribles” attached. It is uncomfortable reading.

The last line stands out for me as I begin to transition away from being the Rector or Sr. Pastor at St. Paul’s. “How terrible for you when all speak well of you. Their ancestors did the same things to the false prophets.” I have always been uncomfortable receiving praise, but this verse adds a “righteous” quality to my discomfort. I have often managed this with humor. When greeted by someone who says, “I’ve heard great things about you.” I respond with, “Some of it is true.”

As I ponder this I am struck by how much our reading from Luke is describing the space of happiness and terribleness by defining the extremes. Most of us don’t live at the extremes. I am neither poor nor rich, by Palm Springs standards, but Jesus’ words have a proportional claim on me. I am neither the best, nor certainly not the worst of pastors: “some of it – the good and the bad – is true.”

One of the members of our Men’s Bible Study, who has been a Methodist Pastor, offered a helpful – if disconcerting – standard. He heard someone describe him as “good enough.” I love that descriptor! It catches the ambiguity of having both good and bad as people’s experience of my ministry. It assumes that, however ambitious I was, I never saw being the best as something I had attained. Looking forward, I can always improve. Looking back, I am quite satisfied with having been good enough. That takes the burden of perfection off me, and perhaps off those whose experience of me was not superlative.

I invite those of you who have experienced my ministry, to share with me a story about how my ministry affected you – for good or bad. Just a story, not an apotheosis nor a diatribe, is what I am soliciting. Nothing anonymous will get to me, but no names will be shared beyond me without your approval. I do have an ego, so the submissions will be screened so that I don’t get scorched.

Address them to “Good Enough Project”

St. Paul’s
125 West El Alameda
Palm Springs, CA 92262
For a submission or a brief Cell Phone Video.

Accepting that “Some of it is true” is a path for me, and for each of us, to receive and share God’s abundant life that will never end. We actually celebrate it every week as we gather together at the table. The good, the bad, and lots of the good enough are sharing the meal. Join us.

Fr. Andrew

Featured Scripture

Luke 6:17-26 Common English Bible (CEB)

Jesus came down from the mountain with them and stood on a large area of level ground. A great company of his disciples and a huge crowd of people from all around Judea and Jerusalem and the area around Tyre and Sidon joined him there. They came to hear him and to be healed from their diseases, and those bothered by unclean spirits were healed. The whole crowd wanted to touch him, because power was going out from him and he was healing everyone.

Jesus raised his eyes to his disciples and said:

“Happy are you who are poor,
because God’s kingdom is yours.
Happy are you who hunger now,
because you will be satisfied.
Happy are you who weep now,
because you will laugh.
Happy are you when people hate you, reject you, insult you, and condemn your name as evil because of the Son of Man. Rejoice when that happens! Leap for joy because you have a great reward in heaven. Their ancestors did the same things to the prophets.

But how terrible for you who are rich,
because you have already received your comfort.
How terrible for you who have plenty now,
because you will be hungry.
How terrible for you who laugh now,
because you will mourn and weep.
How terrible for you when all speak well of you.
Their ancestors did the same things to the false prophets.”

Baroque Music Concert

Tomorrow – Friday, February 15, 7:00 PM, in the Parish Hall, Desert Baroque presents “A Perfect Match – Music and Instruments” performed by two fortepianists (Monica Jakuc Leverett and Meg Irwin-Brandon), on two rare instruments based on Viennese models dating from around 1800. Works by Haydn, C.P.E. Bach and Mozart will be performed.

Also, a master class will take place from 2:30 – 4:00 PM (in the Parish Hall) with Professor Randall Love of Duke University. Modern pianists will find this an opportunity to play period instruments.

Concert tickets are $25 ($35 reserved)
Master class admission is $60 (advance registration), $70 at the door.

For more details check our St. Paul’s website or visit

Women’s Bible Study

Women of the Parish and their friends are invited to join us as we study and reflect on Paul’s Letter to the Romans. We meet on Thursdays from 2:00 PM to 3:00 PM. For our study, we are following The Good Book Club’s suggested readings.

This Thursday (February 14) we will discuss Romans 12-13:10. To prepare for our discussion, you may use your own bible or find the readings online at

We will meet at the home of Sharon Strong. For more information, please contact Sharon at 760.285.8910.

Shrove Tuesday Pancake Supper

The Parish Life Team invites you to the Shrove Tuesday Pancake Supper to be held in the Parish Hall March 5th, 5:30-7:30. Our renowned chef, Rick Tinsley, has a great menu planned with pancakes, crepes, fruit salad, pork and veggie sausage, coffee, lemonade and iced tea.

There are signup sheets in the back of the church (Narthex) and in the Parish Hall. An accurate head count is essential, so we can prepare enough but not an unnecessary excess of food for our diners. The suggested donation to attend is $5.00 payable at the door. Come and enjoy great food and a chance to get to know someone new. Please seek out people you don’t yet know.

Coming in April…

Thursday April 11: Spring Pot Luck: 5:30 PM-7:30PM

Black History Month Parade

Saturday, February 23rd

Our PARADES / SPECIAL EVENTS TEAM is organizing our contingent in this event. Parade begins at 11 AM downtown Palm Springs -Arenas/Palm Canyon. Your support and participation in demonstrating who we are as a faith community by our involvement in this public event is greatly appreciated. Walkers, riders and drivers are needed.

Sign-up sheets for this parade are in the Narthex (church lobby), in the Parish Hall and the Office. There will be some seats available in cars for individuals who need. Oh, don’t forget to wear the Parish Tee Shirt, please see an usher if you need to purchase a tee-shirt.

A Cabbello in Concert

On Sunday, February 24 at 4:00pm we will present ‘A Cabbello’ men’s ensemble with Rich Cook, Director, in a concert titled “Vintage Vocals for the Soul.”

The performance will feature selections from Palestrina to Andrew Lloyd Webber and Gospel favorites. This lively and entertaining group is one of Palm Springs’ several men’s choirs. More information on them can be found at Donations will be graciously received at the door. Reception to follow.

Latino Ministry

Do you enjoy speaking Spanish? Are you interested in Latino culture? St. Paul in the Desert is forming a Latino Ministry and could put your Spanish language and leadership skills to good use.

Please join us Monday, February 25, at 6:00 PM for a ministry program planning session. The session will be held in the Parish Office Library and will begin with a complimentary dinner, followed by a short meeting and a Spanish Compline service. RSVP by February 22 to, or call Bonnie Stroock, 760-324-7949.

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 5, 2019, Book Club has selected Everything I Never Told You by Celeste Ng. This novel is a moving family portrait, involving secrets and longing, that uncovers the ways families seek to understand one another.

Book Club is a group of people who enjoy reading and talking about the books they read. For more information please contact Alan Zimmerman at

The Palm Springs Library has 3 books and 1 audiobook to loan.

Mural Project

Click the image for full-size.

Palm Springs Public Arts Commission, has commissioned a mural for the South-East side of the church facing My Little Flower Shop. Bernard Hoyes is the artist and his mural is called “Cast Your Bread Upon the Waters.” The mural celebrates iconic images of St. Paul the Hermit, Water, Agriculture, Hollywood-Palm Springs connections and the images of three local clergy who worked with Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and on Civil Rights in Palm Springs. There will be an image from the Agua Caliente tribe, and affirmation of several of the cultures that are an important part of our community.


Adult Faith Formation

Sundays at 9:15 AM in the Library: The Episcopal Café
These sessions are designed to facilitate discussion of Sunday scripture readings.

2/17: Blessed by Trust: Reflection on Jeremiah 17

2/24: Reconciliation/Revenge: A reflection on Genesis 45

Tuesdays at 6:00 PM, through March 12th, in the Parish Hall

Renewing our Lives and Accepting God’s Gift of Faith
This seven-week spiritual enrichment program is designed to review and enhance our beliefs and confirm or receive new members.

2/19: Our Beliefs Part 2: Seasons of the Church Year, Book of Common Prayer.

2/26: The Christian Life: Walking the Walk, Prayer, Gifts, Community & Service.

3/5: Questions and Responses: Episcopal language, Questions/Issues/Concerns.

3/12: Instructional Eucharist: Step by step instruction on the Eucharist Service, liturgical elements and procedures.

Coffee Hour after Services

We hope you will join us for coffee and conversation in the Parish Hall following our Sunday morning services.

And, please consider volunteering to be a Coffee Hour Host sometime during this new year. It can be a great way to honor and celebrate a birthday, anniversary or other special occasion. There are still many Sundays available. The Sunday Hospitality Sign-Up Book is on the table at the Parish Hall entrance.

Report clergy 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 John Seitman, 858-793-4555 or Equilla Luke, 760-583-0485.

Compassionate Care Task Force

Our diocesan task force on compassionate care for victims of clergy sexual misconduct seeks to connect with those who have experienced misconduct. If you have reported clergy sexual misconduct and have information about the reporting or post-reporting experience that could be helpful to their work, please refer to the task force members, all of whom are listed on the diocesan website: Task-Force. Information on how to report misconduct is available here.

Church Office Hours

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

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

Sunday Worship Childcare

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

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.

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