All Saints' Blog

All Saints' Episcopal Church, Lakeland, Florida.
Kathy Hulin

Pledge2Pray

Archbishop Justin Welby is leading our Anglican Communion to set aside these next 10 days to be intentional about praying for others and our world. The website is www.thykingdomcome.global/?thankyou=1#Pledge2Pray where you can let the Archbishop know that you are participating, and there are many resources for your personal prayer time or for your familes or teens. There are videos sent to your email which share a good word each day.

Charles and I are committing to praying together toward this cause and we began this morning. We chose 5 people for whom to pray with the hopes of reaching people who don't have a relationship with Jesus.

I hope you'll consider looking at one of the links shared below and praying as an individual or with your family. The resources are varied and unique and well produced.

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Kathy Hulin

Stability during the seasons of transitions

May can be a challenging month for families as the end of the school year brings about a series of transitions and changes. Some students are graduating and preparing for next steps; some students are preparing for being at a new school in the fall so they are already preparing themselves for leaving their current school and the friends they have there; some younger children will be getting ready to leave daycare and start a formal school setting. Then there are the transitions to the summer schedule and what that will mean for the family routine with more time at home, or summer camps and family vacations. Here at church we help see our students promote to the next small group such as Kids' Club, God Squad, Middle School Youth Group, and High School Youth Group, as well as new Sunday School classes. Thankfully, our hands-on leaders Priscilla Baez in the nursery, Carrie Kotal in the children's area, and Stephanie Paul with our teens are steady and consistent with our children and teens and will help welcome them as they move. Transitions are everywhere!

As always, during these seasons of transition, we know that we have God as our solid foundation upon whom we put our trust. He guides us through all of the changes, especially as we remain faithful to his leadership and call in our lives. For me personally, I am glad that God has brought me to All Saints' Church. I know that God has brought me here for this season in the church's life, and I have every reason to believe that God wants me here for many years to come. I continue to be in the discernment process with the Diocese of Central Florida toward Holy Orders and there has been much affirmation during this journey. 

I am still on God's timing and planning for the priesthood, but Lord willing, I should be at All Saints' to serve as a clergy member in the future to continue being part of the wonderful team and family that is All Saints' Parish. This is readily and openly affirmed by Fr. Reid and I am grateful that others are excited, too. I covet your prayers for the variety of ministry opportunities that are available for our children and teens as our Family Ministries team of staff and volunteers come alongside our families to encourage our students to love Jesus and put him first in their lives.

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Dr. Rickey Cotton

The Pure in Heart

Matthew 5:8:  “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.”

When you just focus on just it alone, separate from the other Beatitudes, this beatitude is startling. Of course this is true for all the Beatitudes. So often we simply read all of them together as a package and don’t make ourselves fully present and open to them individually. In this short reflection, let’s be present and open to this one by itself, slowing down and fully engaging it. It is a striking statement: “The pure in heart...shall see God.” Wow, what a promise! And what a challenge! I don’t think this just refers to when we are in heaven. I think this beatitude calls for us to be wholly, completely, singly, fully connected to God now. In our lives now, to not be divided, fragmented, partial in our relating to him. In doing this, it is vital that we don’t seek to see God with our natural eyes or merely natural reasoning, nor that we strive with our own strength. Instead we surrender to God’s grace and seek to see him with the eyes of our hearts, by love. That’s why our hearts must be pure. For as Jesus said, “The pure in heart...shall see God.” This is the calling, this is the direction, the heart of our spiritual lives.

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Kathy Hulin

Experiencing Holy Week

Family,

I am looking forward to our week together as we move from today's Palm Sunday celebration to Maundy Thursday, Good Friday, Holy Saturday, and Easter Sunday. I think about our opportunities to gather for worship each day (and multiple times on some days!). I think about our opportunities to be with our young people (on Wednesday evening, Thursday evening, and Saturday morning) to encourage and teach them about the importance of this week. I think about our personal reflections in scripture and daily devotions to walk each day of this week with Jesus. 

As I think about Jesus' final days, I reflect upon the persecution that he faced. And Christians throughout the ages and in various parts of the globe have suffered in the name of Christ. Non-believers simply cannot accept Jesus as fully God and fully man. They cannot accept his grace, love, and mercy. The novel/movie Silence helped to illustrate this reality of rejection, and just this morning we read or heard about Coptic Christians in two different locations in Egypt who were killed in their houses of worship as the result of a terrorist strike from non-Christians. Also, last week I received an email from English clergy friends who are currently serving an Anglican Chaplaincy in Sicily and they expressed that they don't feel safe wearing their clergy clothing in Palermo. We live in times where persecution of Christians makes our headlines and it is something we should consider with prayerful hearts. The world in which we raise our families is global and we can't forget that.

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Dr. Rickey Cotton

The Promise of Easter

The Promise of Easter, 2 Key Verses: (1) Colossians 3: “1Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. (2) Romans 7: “24…Who will rescue me from this body that is subject to death? 25 Thanks be to God, who delivers me through Jesus Christ our Lord!

We know that Easter is the celebration of Jesus being raised from the dead. But we should also remember that it is the celebration of our new life, too, of our resurrection, for we have been raised with Christ, as Colossians 3 says. By embracing Jesus, we have died to our old self-involved, ego-dominated ways of living—and been delivered from living according to our own strength and our own understanding. The struggle between the old self and the new self is a repeated theme throughout the New Testament. The old self is self-centered and self-oriented. But the resurrection of Jesus provides us with a new self, one centered in God, not in our ego. Receiving our resurrection self is simple; it just costs everything. We surrender all that we are and all that we have. Then we can declare along with Romans 7:25, “Thanks be to God, who delivers me through Jesus Christ our Lord!”

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Scripture Readings for Sunday, May 28

First Lesson Acts 1:6-14
Psalm Psalm 68:1-10, Psalm 68:33-36
Second Lesson 1 Peter 4:12-14, 1 Peter 5:6-11
The Holy Gospel John 17:1-11

bible reading

Upcoming Events

28
May
Date: 28 May 2017
Luke 19:1-10

28
May
Date: 28 May 2017
Luke 19:1-10

28
May
Date: 28 May 2017
10:50 a.m. Service

30
May
Date: 30 May 2017
Woman's Bible Study is a weekly study following The Gospel Project for adults, led by Kathy Hulin

31
May
All Saints'
-
Lakeland
Date: 31 May 2017
By Dan Bridgeford - Mark Classroom

31
May
All Saints'
-
Lakeland
Date: 31 May 2017
By Dan Bridgeford - Mark Classroom

31
May
Date: 31 May 2017
By The Rev. Dr. L. Reid Hensarling - John Classroom

31
May
Date: 31 May 2017
By Susan Waldron - Luke Classroom

31
May
Date: 31 May 2017
By Phil Mays - Moses Hall

02
Jun
Date: 02 June 2017
Rising 6th graders through our seniors are invited to the Tomkow Lodge for an overnight lock-in. Sign up

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