Welcome to St. Mark’s Episcopal Church! We are delighted that you are interested in learning more about our community. Whether you are new to the Christian faith and are full of questions, or have much experience in the Church, we believe that there is a place for you in this community.
Youth Sunday and Sunday School Picnic
June 14, 2015
A special thank you to all of the youth for your preparation, leadership, and participation during the service on Sunday, June 14. Thanks also to Jackie Adams, Jane Shero, the mentors, and parents for your guidance and assistance. You all did a wonderful job.
One of the highlights of the morning, was the homily by Lauren O’Hear. Lauren worked with Deacon Michelle to gather her thoughts and ideas. Since many of you commented on Lauren’s inspiring words, here is the transcript of her homily. Enjoy.
Good morning everyone. I’m going to ask you a few questions and I just want you to answer them in your head. Okay? Here we go.
Do you have blonde hair?
Do you have clear skin?
Are you muscular looking or skinny?
Do you have “pretty” or unique eyes?
Are you tall?
Good. I’m going to keep going now.
Do you have a lot of acne?
Do you have a big nose?
Are you short?
Do you consider yourself overweight?
Do you have bad posture?
Very good. You may have noticed that all of these questions had something in common. They were all based on appearance. You may have also noticed that the first five I asked were considered attractive physical traits and the second five were the opposite.
Now I’m going to ask you one more question. Remember one of the first five features. These were in the “attractive” category. Now, think of someone you know with this trait and remember when you first met them. Before you even spoke to that person, your brain leapt to conclusions. The first impression. When you judged this person just by their appearance and noticed this attractive trait, was your first impression positive or negative? What if you noticed only a negative trait?
And you can really see a good example of this in today’s Old Testament.
So, God sends Samuel to find this guy Jesse and god told Samuel that one of his sons was to be king. Samuel goes Bethlehem to find Jesse and Jesse and Samuel go to sacrifice to the Lord with seven of Jesse’s eight sons.
And Samuel goes down the line, asking God each time if that son is to be king. He starts out with Eli’ab, who was probably pretty muscular and tall but God says something very interesting. He says, “Do not look on his appearance or the height of his stature, because I have rejected him.” And Samuel is a little confused because here is this tall, strong handsome guy and God is saying “nope, he can’t be king of Israel.”
Then God tells Samuel something even more interesting.
“The Lord does not see as mortals see; they look on outward appearance, but the Lord looks on the heart.”
This is something that as people, we forget a lot of the time. So much of our time and energy is consumed by worrying about how others or we people look or what people will think of us when they see how we look. And we forget that God doesn’t even notice our clothes or hair and what he sees matters more than other peoples first impressions of us. And that’s pretty cool.
Then Samuel goes on down the line of Jesse’s sons but God rejects each one. And finally, Samuel asks Jesse if he has any more sons and Jesse sends for David his youngest son who had been keeping the sheep. A Shepherd. By now, you probably know who God chose, but the amazing part is, out of all Jesse’s sons—some of whom were tall and strong and important looking—God chose the youngest, a shepherd boy. And that shepherrd boy turned out to be David, King of Israel.
I’m going to ask you a few more questions now but this time, if the answer applies to you, I want you to raise your hand. Okay? Here we go.
If you love or loved someone, please raise your hand.
If you have ever worked hard to accomplish a goal and felt unstoppable afterward, please raise your hand.
If you ever helped someone even when you didn’t benefit at all, please raise your hand.
If you have ever said you were sorry, please raise your hand.
I want you to realize that almost everybody in this church raised his or her hand for every single question. I also want you to realize that every person in this church looks different. Therefore, it is possible to infer that appearance doesn’t define what we are capable of. In fact, it is impossible to draw 100% accurate conclusions about a person just based their physical appearance.
So let me ask something of you. None of us are God and we can’t see into peoples souls, but next time you meet someone, don’t look at them in the face and judge them, look them in the eyes and understand that the only way to really see who they are is to get to know them.
Downer Classic and Corn Roast
June 27, 2015
Thanks, as always, for your support of St. Mark’s and our Outreach Ministries.