Blog: “Dispatch from the Edge”:  February 24, 2017

Blog Post Author

Anita Sorenson

February 24, 2017    7th week after Epiphany

“Lent is not intended to be an annual ordeal during which we begrudgingly forgo a handful of pleasures. It is meant to be the church’s springtime, a time when, out of the darkness of sin’s winter, a repentant, empowered people emerges.

Put another way, Lent is the season in which we ought to be surprised by joy. Our self-sacrifices serve no purpose unless, by laying aside this or that desire, we are able to focus on our heart’s deepest longing: unity with Christ. In him—in his suffering and death, his resurrection and triumph—we find our truest joy.”

Dorothy Sayers, Bread and Wine: Readings for Lent and Easter

Lent begins next week on March 1st with Ash Wednesday, when you may come to the sanctuary anytime between 6 AM and 6 PM for prayer and reflection and the receiving of ashes. As we enter into the Lenten season, we invite you to seek after God with renewed intention. Some may commit to fasting or choose to give up something that may be a distraction from full attention to God. Others may take on a discipline or practice that deepens their commitment to Christ.

A few favorite devotional books for Advent:

•    God For Us: Rediscovering the Meaning of Lent and Easter - This is my favorite Lenten devotional. The full-color artwork is gorgeous and the writings include authors like Scott Cairns, Kathleen Norris, Richard Rohr, Luci Shaw, James Schaap and Lauren Winner. 

•    Bread and Wine: Readings for Lent and Easter - Culled from the wealth of twenty centuries, the selections in Bread and Wine are ecumenical in scope, and represent the best classic and contemporary Christian writers. Includes approximately fifty readings on Easter and related themes by Thomas à Kempis, Frederick Buechner, Oswald Chambers, Alfred Kazin, Jane Kenyon, Søren Kierkegaard, Thomas Merton, Henri Nouwen, Christina Rossetti, Edith Stein, Walter Wangerin, William Willimon, Philip Yancey, and others.

•    Let Us Keep the Feast: Living the Church Year at Home (Advent and Christmas) is a simply-gathered collection of ideas for living out the liturgical year with your family.  This book is especially geared toward families with young children.

•    Living the Christian Year: Time to Inhabit the Story of God by Bobby Gross is a great devotional for the entire year.

The Jesus Storybook Bible: Every Story Whispers His Name by Sally Lloyd-Jones -  "The Moonbeam Award Gold Medal Winner in the religion category, The Jesus Storybook Bible tells the Story beneath all the stories in the Bible. At the center of the Story is a baby, the child upon whom everything will depend. Every story whispers his name. From Noah to Moses to the great King David---every story points to him. He is like the missing piece in a puzzle---the piece that makes all the other pieces fit together. From the Old Testament through the New Testament, as the Story unfolds, children will pick up the clues and piece together the puzzle. A Bible like no other, The Jesus Storybook Bible invites children to join in the greatest of all adventures, to discover for themselves that Jesus is at the center of God's great story of salvation---and at the center of their Story too."

 Grace and Peace,

 Anita Sorenson

Pastor for Spiritual Formation

 Keep these opportunities to gather together in mind over the next few weeks:

Family-Friendly Potluck: February 26th

Community Family-Friendly Potluck is Sunday, February 26th, 4pm, at the home of the Heuers. 

Women's Book Club: February 28th

We will meet Tuesday, February 28, from 7:30-9pm in the Corner House to discuss "Defending Jacob". Newcomers are always welcome. For more information, please contact Jennifer Mawhorter (.(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)).  

Lenten Focus: Neighborhood Listening

During Lent our all-church, inter-departmental emphasis will be on listening to our neighbors.

Neighborhood Treasure Hunt

Sat., Feb. 25th • 10-2 pm • Gathering Place

For the whole church—all ages!

Explore our neighborhood to find hidden treasures we overlook every day (there will be shorter & longer walks available). Bring $$ for lunch as we'll eat out. We'll finish our fun event by "mapping" our neighborhood & choosing new spiritual disciplines of listening & noticing.

 • Feb. 26th thru April 15: Lenten disciplines: groups of 2 or more practice disciplines to notice & listen.

 • 9 am Sundays, Feb. 26th thru April 9th: Journey to the Cross, photo edition!PasCov youth team up with kids' for photo scavenger hunts; bring a digital camera.

 • Neighborhood BBQ: Sat., April 22nd 10-2 pm: We will invite our neighbors to join us for a BBQ in the parking lot. We need lots of volunteers to help!

Ash Wednesday: March 1st 

On Ash Wednesday, March 1, from 6am-6pm, the sanctuary will be open to the public for meditation and prayer. Contact Dan Huang (.(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)) for more info.

Sanctuary of Women: March 5 - April 16

Images of God in Scripture include feminine metaphors as a midwife, a woman in labor, and a breastfeeding mother. Join us for a prayerful, contemplative 7 week class (starting March 5 and culminating on Easter Sunday, April 16) in which we hope to center ourselves on these feminine metaphors and connect with Mother God in new ways. We will meet in the Corner House, starting promptly at 8:45am and ending at 10:15am. More information will follow soon, but please contact Brittany Burian (.(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)) or Lisa Carruthers (.(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)) with questions or if childcare is needed.

Memorial Information for John Wood

Friday, March 3


Viewing at Oakdale Mortuary, open to anyone who wishes to come and go or stay as long as they want during that time.

Oakdale Memorial Park and Mortuary

1401 S. Grand Ave.

Glendora, CA 91740

(626-691-2000; "funeral director": Juan Velasco)

Saturday, March 4


Graveside service at Oakdale (John Notehelfer)


Memorial service at Pasadena Covenant Church

followed by a lunch reception

Koinonia Prayer & Praise potluck: March 5th

Koinonia Prayer & Praise potluck is Sunday, March 5th, 6pm, at the Atherton. 

Serving our Community: March 6th – 10th

Madison Elementary Library has a book fair planned for March 6th – 10th.  Librarian Nancy Stuckey could use help any of those days between the hours of 8 and 3. As part of the annual Dr. Seuss Read Across America week volunteers are invited to come on Friday, March 3rd from 8:30 a.m. – noon to read to the students.  

Men’s Club: March 9th 

Men's Book Club meets in the Corner House Thurs., March 9, 7-9pm, to discuss THE HUNDRED YEAR WALK, by Dawn Anahid MacKeen. For more information, please contact Rich Doyle at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

Upcoming Preacher Schedule:

February 26th – Rob Johnston

March 5th – Jean Chang Gorman

March 12th – Ron Short