For Sunday, September 20th

A Note from our Clergy

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

Stewardship.  It’s an idea or concept which, at times, befuddles us.  I am reminded of the title of that Dickens classic, A Tale of Two Cities.  “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times. . .”  We live in an in between town, between what was normal and what the new normal will be.  It used to be, in the old normal, in the fall of the year (toward the end of Pentecost, late September through October), we would begin stewardship campaigns throughout the church.  Let us remember, it is not about money, but offering to God a portion of all that we have.  It is about time, talent, and treasure.

This current pandemic, of which we are all so aware, has put a tremendous strain on the entire Coachella Valley.  Because this area – this valley – is so dependent on service industries and tourism, it has taken a hard hit from quarantine and disease.  We are called as followers of Jesus in gratitude for all we have received – from the air we breathe to the roof over our heads and the food we eat – to offer back a portion in Thanksgiving.

We each have been given the same twenty-four hours in every day.  We each have been given talents or gifts to be used for the upbuilding of the Body of Christ.  Treasure is often understood as monetary.  There is a famous quote by Amy Semple McPherson of Angelus temple fame, “I only want to hear the crinkle of bills, not the jingle of coins.”  If we wish to have the air conditioning running when it’s warm (HOT!) in the summer and the heat on in the winter; if we want bulletins that look professional; if we want to broadcast our services during these difficult times – then, that dollar and cents thing, it’s so important.  If you lost your job, you may want to speak to the Treasurer about adjusting your giving.  But giving in Thanksgiving is so very important.  Think about these things.

It seems I say the same thing every time I prepare a piece for The Abundant Life – we’re in this together; stay safe; wear your mask; wash your hands.

Blessings and love to you all,

Victoria+

(The Rev’d Canon) Victoria T. Hatch

Weekend Worship Services

Our weekend worship service broadcasts have been expanded and are now available for viewing any time after 4:00 PM Saturday. Please tune in at a time that works best for you.

Join us on our Home Page , YouTube Channel or Facebook Page

Camping Ministry

St. Paul’s Camping Ministry is leaving home!  We are heading to Black Rock Campground in Joshua Tree National Park, Friday, September 18.  If you can spend the night – or if you just want to come by for a shared meal, contact Bonnie Stroock, 760.324.7949

Weekly Bible Sharing

With the Rev. Canon Eric H. F. Law

Thursday, September 24th
12:00 p.m.

Join via Zoom: Click here to join meeting.
Password: 085627

Or, join by phone: (408) 638-0968
Meeting ID: 101-690-960#
Password: 085627

Hispanic Heritage Month

This annual celebration pays tribute to the many American Latinos who have positively influenced and enriched our nation and society. The observance begins September 15th and ends October 15th.

On the West Coast the observance has been celebrated as Mexican Independence Day (September 16th). However, other Spanish colonies in Central and South America, the Caribbean and elsewhere joined in winning their independence from Spain. We honor Latino contributions, diverse cultures, and the history of the Americas.   Viva La Independencia!  Roberto Thais – The Latino Ministry Committee

Book Club is Zooming!

The next Book Club meeting will be held on Tuesday, October 6, 2020, at 1:00 PM via Zoom.  Meeting information will follow later. For October, Book Club has selected The Book of Longings: A Novel by Sue Monk Kidd.

This is a story set in first-century Galilee, of one woman’s bold struggle to realize the passion and potential inside her, while living in a time, place, and culture devised to silence her. This novel is grounded in meticulous historical research and written with a reverential approach to Jesus’s life that focuses on his humanity.

New members are always welcome at Book Club meetings. For more information contact Alan Zimmerman at alanzimmerman@icloud.com.

Prayers of the Church

For the Anglican Communion, and for the Archbishop of Canterbury, The Most Rev. and Rt. Hon. Justin Welby; pray for the Province of the Episcopal Church of South Sudan, The Most Rev. Justin Badi Arama, Bishop of Juba and Archbishop of the Province of the Episcopal Church of South Sudan.

 For the Episcopal Diocese of Southwestern Virginia, The Rt. Rev. Mark Allen Bourlakas, Bishop.

For the Diocese of San Diego, The Rt. Rev. Susan Brown Snook, Bishop; pray for the clergy and people of St. Mark’s, San Diego; for Diocesan Institutions and Organizations – The Bishop’s School, Episcopal Community Services, Jubilee Centers.

For our Parish in Transition: Almighty God, giver of every good gift: Look graciously on your Church, and so guide the minds of those who shall choose a rector for this parish, that we may receive a faithful pastor, who will care for your people and equip us for our ministries; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen (BCP p. 818)

For those commended to our prayers:  Larry Burrell, Mollie Gray, Mildred Scott, Harvey & Suzanne Trackman, Neal Leiffer, Brian Nealy, Barbara Nussbaum, Norma Westaway, and for all those for whom no prayers have been said.

For those who have died: Dorothy Mayfield Tucker, Betty Muhleck, Rabbi Joseph Hurwitz, Rose Kasee, Vera Ruggiero, Sr. Mary Seraph (aka Ann Jones), Jill Borak, Willie Durias, Lacy Archie, Elizabeth Zentner.

For those with Birthdays:  September 21: Andy Jessup, Joe Lopez; September 24: Edwin Clock, Frank Stahl, Roland Lampela, Richard Kiker; September 25: Jessica Scott.

For those celebrating anniversaries:September 24: Andy Johnson & Robby Robinson; September 26: Kay & Leon Walker.

Send us your Prayer Requests via email — You may request prayers, “For those commended to our prayers” or “For those who have died,” by sending requests to announcements@stpaulsps.org

For this Sunday’s Lectionary readings Click Here. From the calendar, select September 20th.

St Paul on Facebook

St. Paul in the Desert has a new Facebook email address.Is there an event, or someone or a group you think deserves attention, recognition and/or promotion?  St. Paul’s now has a portal where you can present your suggestions:  media@stpaulsps.org.  This email address is set up to receive your newsworthy submissions.  Please include a brief narrative and, if possible and appropriate, enhance your text with a digital photo or some graphic art.  (Always be sure to have permission to use the artwork submitted.)  We look forward to hearing from you!

Daughters of the King Prayer List Requests

St. Paul’s Order of the Daughters of the King chapter maintains a confidential prayer list, praying daily for our families, friends, congregation, and the world. If you would like to ask the Daughters to pray for you or someone else, email your requests to dokstpaulsps@gmail.com.  Confidentiality of this list means that names on our list are not shared beyond our chapter members and Chaplain.

Questions? Contact Patty Kiker, 214.497.3034

August 12, 2020

The Transition Teams have been busy creating final drafts of both the Parish Profile and the Office of Transition Management Form. These documents will be critical as we move forward through the Rector search/selection process.  Both contain considerable, in-depth information that will help introduce our parish to future Rector candidates. After the draft documents are finalized by the Transition Teams, they will be reviewed by Vestry leadership and Parish Administration, and then passed along to the Diocese for approvals.  It is a lengthy and deliberative process. We ask for your continued prayers.

The Parish Profile and Search Process Teams


A Gift of Prayer for Transition from the Daughters of the King: Almighty and ever living God, hear our prayers for this parish family. You renewed us during Advent to receive Christ’s presence and You are preparing our parish for a renewed mission and vision. We thank you for the leadership of our interim rector, our Vestry and the members of our Transition Committee. We invite you, Holy Spirit, to guide and empower us and our Transition Committee as we begin the tasks of choosing a new rector for this parish. Grant that these servants become faithful companions to each other, to the vestry and to this Parish. We pray that you grant all of us the wisdom and discernment to choose a faithful pastor, who will help us continue to share the abundant life of Jesus Christ. This we pray in the name of Jesus Christ our Lord.  Amen.

View the Transition Updates Archive

Be informed – know your risk during COVID-19

We borrowed this risk chart from the Texas Medical Association.  It is intended as a guide, prepared by physician experts, to help people make smart and educated choices of activities to pursue amid the COVID-19 pandemic.  The chart was prepared by the TMA COVID-19 Task Force and the TMA Committee on Infectious Diseases.  Please assume that participants in these activities are following currently recommended safety protocols when possible.

Click image to enlarge.

covid-risk-chart

Fraud Email Alert

A recurring threat to churches is email-based impersonation scams targeting key personnel. The scheme involves cybercriminals mimicking clergy or other staff through the use of phishing emails. Criminals typically pose as personnel in positions of authority and ask victims to perform money transfers, pay invoices, or to send the attacker sensitive data. Scammers will often manipulate the “from” email address and name so that it appears to be coming from someone you know.

Churches and dioceses across The Episcopal Church and across other denominations have been a target of these email impersonation attacks. Scammers use a free email account (such as Gmail) and register it with an impersonated name. They then send an email to an unsuspecting recipient asking for immediate help in order to get a task done (such as purchasing a gift card or wiring money). Attention to detail can be a lot of help in combating cases of impersonation. Users should check sender details carefully. Any suspicious email message should be investigated before replying. Also, proper attention should be given to the message content, including attachments and URLs.

While there is no way to stop these scams, you can minimize risk by taking these steps:

  • Check the return email address. If the address doesn’t match the name of the sender, be wary.
  • Never open attachments from unknown sources.
  • Be wary of generically addressed emails like “Dear Friend” or Dear Customer.”
  • If there are links in the email, hover over them without clicking on them. This will show where the link will actually take you.
  • Be wary of email with grammatical or spelling errors in the text.
  • Check the address at the bottom of the email. If it says ”Pastor Jim” and Jim never goes by “Pastor,” it’s fake.

Finally, if after all these steps it looks safe and the sender is asking for money or access to secure data, call the person directly to get verification.

Your best defense for this is to simply delete the email; do not click on any links or reply to the sender.

Episcopal News Service

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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

Due to the COVID-19 health crisis, the Parish Office is closed to the public until further notice.

Office phone: 760.320.7488

If you call, please leave a message.  In case of emergencies, a priest will return your call.

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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