They are like trees planted by streams of water, bearing fruit in due season, with leaves that do not wither; everything they do shall prosper. (1:3)
In the morning, LORD, you hear my voice (5:3)
The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not be in want. (23:1)
Deliver me from death, O God, and my tongue shall sing of your righteousness, O God of my salvation. (51:15)
I lift up my eyes to the hills; from where is my help to come? (121:1)
LORD, you have searched me out and known me; you know my sitting down and my rising up; you discern my thoughts from afar. (139:1)
The Book of Psalms was Jesus’ Prayer Book – these poems and prayers shaped Jesus’ prayer during his life and ministry along with his own understanding of God. This collection of poems in our scriptures capture the essence of what it means to be human, including the entire full breath of human experience - from rejoicing over God's goodness, to the sorrow of sin, despairing over the evil in the world to feelings of personal suffering, to hearing God speak to us in the still places of our soul or gazing at a mountaintop. The psalms, you might say, are as human as it gets. At the same time, they are centered upon the one and only living God, who desire relationship with God’s people.
This Summer, we are all invited to read the book of Psalms together. In total there are 150 Psalms – some are short, some or long. Reading each day from Memorial Day to Labor Day means reading 1-3 Psalms per day. This is something that can be done where ever you are – on vacation, sitting on the beach, at your desk at work or waiting for your kids on a bench at Kennywood. It’s a spiritual practice we can all share together as a community – wherever we may be. We have developed a schedule and resources to guide our daily prayers. It can be picked at St. Paul’s, or download it from our website, viewed online here, or ask us to mail it to you. You can use a bible or a Book of Common Prayer or an online resource to read the Psalms. We also have a free "trade paperback" version of the Book of Common Prayer you can pickup at church to use. Each Sunday there will be a gathering, led by various members of our clergy and staff, to discuss what we are reading and praying. Our first gathering will be led by our Bishop, Dorsey McConnell on Sunday, June 3rd.
This summer we will continue our summer combined worship schedule with services at 6PM, 8AM and 9:45AM. This will give us an opportunity to come together as one community, connect inter-generationally and worship and play together. There is a special event after church almost every week, so please see the summer calendar for more details. Many Sunday also will have special musical offerings and allow us to try different things in worship. We also are blessed to have two interns with us this Summer, Mia Benjamin and Jack Brownfield, and I am so grateful that their voices will be added to our common life.
Blessing and peace as we celebrate and serve together this summer!
The Reverend Noah H. Evans, Rector