Bulletin for May 22

9AM Zoom online gathering: We use slides during worship that contain most of this information, but some prefer to follow along on paper.

Bulletin for May 22

The link for the Zoom gatherings is available in our weekly E-news, in our Facebook group St. Dunstan’s MadCity, or by emailing Rev. Miranda:  .

THREE WAYS TO USE AN ONLINE BULLETIN…
1. Print it out!

2. Open the bulletin on one device (smartphone or tablet) while joining Zoom worship on another device (tablet or computer).

3. On a computer, open the bulletin in a separate browser window or download and open separately, and view it next to your Zoom window

Sermon, May 15

Love, like Death, hath all destroyed –

Rendered all distinctions void: 

Name, and sect, and party fall; 

Thou, O Christ, art all in all. 

That verse was written by Charles Wesley, the great 18th-century poet and hymn writer.  I came across it last week and it’s been knocking around in my head ever since. 

Love, like Death, hath all destroyed – rendered all distinctions void… 

In this provocative verse about Love, the Destroyer, Wesley is playing with this important thing Paul says in a couple of his letters: There is no longer Jew nor Greek, slave nor free, male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.

It may be hard for us to fully understand what a radical statement this really was, in the first century. Even if we only focus on “neither Jew nor Greek”! “Greek” here means “Gentile” – non-Jews in general. The first Christians and church leaders were all Jewish, formed in the faith of the First Testament. And they initially understood the Way of Jesus as a new kind of Judaism. Opening the doors for non-Jews to join the movement – on equal terms! – was a big deal.  And like most big changes, it took time, and listening, and arguing, and praying, to get there. 

Today’s lesson from the Acts of the Apostles shows us one chapter of this story. When I first looked at the assigned passage last week, I felt annoyed. Because what we have here is Peter’s brief summary of a story that is told in full in the previous chapter – Acts 10. There are lots of details in that version that we miss, here. For example: The Gentile whom Peter visits isn’t just any Gentile. He’s a centurion, a leader in the Roman army that occupies Peter’s homeland. His name is Cornelius. And though he’s a Gentile, he’s a man of prayer and generosity. 

I don’t know why Peter doesn’t tell the church leaders in Jerusalem that his new convert is a Roman soldier. Maybe a Gentile is a Gentile and it doesn’t really matter. Or maybe it would have made it a bridge too far for some folks, so he just… neglects to mention it. 

There are other things that we miss in Peter’s retelling. Like the delightful detail that when the vision comes to him, he’s very hungry and waiting for lunch. Or the wonderful thing Peter says as all of this comes together for him in a lightbulb moment: “I truly understand that God shows no partiality! God has no preferences, no favorites; but in every nation or people, anyone who honors God and does good is acceptable to God.” 

Love, like Death, hath all destroyed! Rendered all distinctions void! … 

So at first, when I looked at today’s lesson, I was a little grumpy. I wanted the whole story, not this little Cliff’s Notes version. 

But then I noticed what’s happening here. This isn’t just a summary of what’s happened already. It’s the next chapter in the story – and it’s an important chapter. 

Peter’s heart has been changed.  He’s come to a new understanding about whom God is calling to join the Way of Jesus. But it’s not all up to Peter. He’s a leader in the nascent Christian community; but he’s not THE leader. 

There’s a group of apostles and elders in Jerusalem who are trying to guide the movement and keep it on track and faithful to the teachings and witness of Jesus. And while God has no preferences or favorites, people do. The Jerusalem leaders are skeptical about Gentile converts. This isn’t just bigotry; it’s partly that they honor and treasure their Jewish faith and heritage, and fear that it may be lost. We may grieve what Love destroys! 

They hear about what happens in Caesarea, this group of Gentiles whom Peter has actually baptized into the church! – and they call Peter back to Jerusalem to explain himself. Why did you go to uncircumcised men – to people outside God’s ancient covenant with the Jewish people – and eat with them?

I love the next verse: “Then Peter began to explain it to them, step by step.” 

What he’s doing here is actually a best practice for talking with someone with opposing views: Talk about your experiences. Don’t argue about the big ideas – Gentiles belong! Gentiles don’t belong! – but share what you have seen and heard, and how you came to understand things the way you do.

Peter tells them about what was going on outside of him, at Cornelius’s house: seeing this group of Gentiles seized by the Holy Spirit, in a way that looks a lot like what happened to the disciples at Pentecost. 

He also tells them about what was going on inside of him: He sees the Spirit at work, he remembers Jesus’ words, he knows God sent him to meet these people and witness this moment, and all of that becomes metanoia, a turning of the heart: Whom am I to hinder God? 

Peter’s conversion, his change of heart, matters. But Peter’s testimony to these leaders matters even more. Peter has some standing in this group, as one of Jesus’ closest friends, whom Jesus appointed as a church leader… But everyone also knows that Peter has a tendency to go off half-cocked, so that may work against him! 

When he’s finished speaking, the leaders are quiet for a while. Imagine the suspense in the room. And then someone says, “So God has given even to Gentiles a turning of the heart toward life.” And they celebrate. 

Love, like Death, hath all destroyed, rendered all distinctions void. Name and sect and party fall… 

In the vision of John of Patmos, in today’s Revelation text, the Holy One seated on the throne says, “See, I am making all things new.” And Jesus tells the disciples in today’s Gospel, “I am giving you a new commandment.” Our God is a god who brings forth new things and leads us to new understandings. 

It’s important to say that new stuff isn’t intrinsically better just because it’s new – just like old stuff isn’t better, or worse, just because it’s old. There’s plenty of bad new stuff in the world. But what we see here isn’t Peter seizing the new for new’s sake. He hears God nudge him to pay attention, to respond. I get nudges like that, though perhaps not as dramatically! Then Peter goes into the situation with eyes and ears open. And he weighs what he sees against the teachings of Jesus. This is a process of discernment – of seeking God’s will or God’s purposes. 

And once Peter discerns that God has called these Gentiles into the church – he doesn’t just tolerate them. He goes to bat for them. He makes their full inclusion part of his witness, his agenda. And he sticks with it for the long term. 

The question of Gentiles in the church comes back in Acts chapter 15 – which takes place as much as a decade later.  A group of Jewish Christians are telling everyone that for Gentiles to become Christian, they essentially have to first become Jews – including circumcision, a fairly drastic step. Basically, it’s been accepted that Gentiles can become Christian – but the question now is on what terms. Can they join the church as they are? Or do they have become something else, to be fully included? 

So there’s another gathering of church leaders in Jerusalem to talk it out and settle the matter. Peter is there, and he harks back to this experience and to what it taught him about God’s welcome for Gentiles: “In cleansing their hearts by faith God has made no distinction between them and us.”

There’s discussion and debate and it probably drags on for days. But finally James, the brother of Jesus, speaks up and settles the matter: “We should not burden those Gentiles who are turning to God.” The Church will be a church of both Jews and Gentiles, on more or less equal terms. 

The issue at stake in Acts is: who belongs in the church, and how. As people of the church, we continue to face those frontiers. There’s a movement in the Episcopal Church today to deepen our understanding and affirmation of transgender and non-binary people – perhaps finally coming to grips with Paul’s insight that in Christ there is no longer male and female. 

We’re working to not just welcome and include people of color, but reckon with the ways racism is embedded in our liturgies, institutions and culture. 

I think – I hope – that our larger church is beginning some real work on the the true welcome and inclusion of those living with mental illness; those with disabilities; and neurodivergent people.

I believe we will look more like the church God intends us to be when we have learned, together, to receive one another in the fullness of our humanity, without asking anyone to become something else first in order to be fully included. 

But what Peter models for us here isn’t just for church. This is a story about a group wrestling with who it’s for, and it’s an oddly timeless story – one we might find ourselves in at any time. I certainly have. 

Maybe you’re Peter, meeting someone who blows open your sense of who matters or who belongs. 

Maybe you’re one of the Jerusalem leaders, weighing the implications of changing standards and opening doors. 

Maybe you’re Cornelius, simply witnessing to your human worth to somebody who’s never really talked to someone like you before.

This oddly mundane story that’s threaded through the book of Acts, of an organization revising its membership requirements – it’s a reminder that holy work takes many forms.Sometimes it’s courageous witnessing. Sometimes it’s prayerful listening. Sometimes it’s the grind and stress of working for cultural and institutional change. Through it all, the Love that formed the universe and knows us each by name is working, working, working, beside and among and within us. 

Love, like Death, hath all destroyed –

Rendered all distinctions void: 

Name, and sect, and party fall; 

Thou, O Christ, art all in all. 

Amen. Alleluia. 

 

Announcements, May 12

Spring Diaper Drive, May 8 – June 19: Imagine having to choose whether to pay rent, pay utilities, buy food, or buy diapers for your baby or toddler. Nearly 1 in 3 American families struggle to afford enough diapers, which cannot be purchased with food stamps. For several years St. Dunstan’s has done a spring Diaper Drive from Mother’s Day through Father’s Day to help provide diapers to local food pantries. Sizes 4, 5, and 6 are always especially in demand! Volunteer diaper shoppers in the parish buy and deliver diapers to organizations who can get them out into the community, such as Middleton Outreach Ministry, the Allied Drive Pantry, Karen’s Essential Center, Healing House, and others. This year’s Diaper Drive will run from Mother’s Day through Father’s Day. Please write a check to St. Dunstan’s with “Diapers” in the memo line, or make a gift through our donation website at this link: donate.stdunstans.com . Thank you for your support! New volunteers to help with shopping and/or delivery are also welcome – contact Mary Rowe.

Celebration of New Ministry, Good Shepherd, Sun Prairie, Saturday, May 14, 3PM: The people of Good Shepherd–Buen Pastor, Sun Prairie and St Luke’s, Madison invite you to a joint celebration of new ministry. The Rt. Rev. Bishop Lee will preside and the Rev. Canon Scott Leannah will preach at a liturgy to mark the beginning of a shared ministry covenant between the two parishes. The Rev. Don Fleischman has been called to oversee both parishes. The liturgy will take place at 3 pm and will be followed by a reception. This celebration will take place at St Luke’s Episcopal Church, 4011 Major Avenue, Madison WI 53716. All are invited. The festal color for the day for clergy is white.

Spring Grounds Work Day, Sunday, May 15, 11:30 – 1PM: Come help tend St. Dunstan’s grounds! Most work is outdoors, though we have some potential indoor tasks too. Please wear a mask when indoors, and outdoors when close to people from other households. We will have a task list to direct folks to things that need doing. There are tasks for people of all ages and abilities. We’ll also be starting to line up volunteers who’d like to tend particular garden beds now and then, over the summer. We plan to offer some hearty snacks, and end with a treat at 1PM. If you’d enjoy helping out on the grounds sometime but can’t make it that day, contact Krissy Mayer , Adam McCluskeyor Rev. Miranda know  and we’ll loop you in on other plans!

The Outreach Committee Meeting, Saturday May 21, 9:30AM:   All are welcome to attend and discuss hands on ways to serve our neighbors and connect with local organizations who work to welcome the stranger, feed the hungry, house the homeless, and comfort the afflicted.   We will be focusing on connecting with local organizations supporting refugee resettlement as well as local organizations supporting people living on the streets and public areas in Dane County.

Weekly Scripture Reflections Available: Father John Rasmus writes weekly reflections on the Sunday lectionary texts and sends them out to those who would like to receive them. If you’d like to join his email list, contact him and he’d be glad to add you! If you would like to receive the reflections by postal mail, or know someone else who might appreciate them, contact the office at or 608-238-2781. We have sent them out by mail in the past and would be happy to return to that practice if it would be helpful to anyone.

St Dunstan’s Day & Rogation Day, May 22:  St. Dunstan’s Day, the feast day of our patron saint, is May 19; we will celebrate it on Sunday, May 22. Rogation Days are special days for praying for crops, farming, and the health and fruitfulness of the land in general. We will observe Rogation Day with a brief (optional!) procession around the grounds, punctuated by prayer, at the end of our 10AM in-person service.

Saturday Book Club, June 4,10 AM: Our book this month is The 1619 Project: A New Origin Story created by Nikole Hannah-Jones
Though this is a long book, each chapter is self-contained, written by different authors, and focused on different issues, e.g., democracy, citizenship, punishment, inheritance. So even if you only read a few chapters, and not necessarily in sequence, do come and share your views on what you have read.
The Wednesday Group is also reading the book and we hope they will join us. They meet weekly and read a chapter or so at a time.
Those at the last meeting all preferred to continue meeting on Zoom. If, however, you’d rather meet in person at St Dunstan’s for the June meeting, we can arrange this as a hybrid meeting. Join by using this link: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/81731129473

At-home Rogation prayers available: Rogation Days are special days for praying for crops, farming, and the health and fruitfulness of the land in general. Rev. Miranda has a lovely set of Rogation Day poems and prayers for individual or household use, developed in 2020 as a pandemic resource by a parish in Connecticut. If you would like this document emailed to you, to use at your leisure, let Rev. Miranda know.

Funeral for Sue Lloyd, Saturday, June 11, 1PM: The funeral for Sue Lloyd will be held on Saturday, June 11, at St. Dunstan’s. All friends of Sue are invited to attend. A light reception will follow; contact Connie Ott to contribute to the reception or help with setup or cleanup.

Bulletin for May 15

9AM Zoom online gathering: We use slides during worship that contain most of this information, but some prefer to follow along on paper.

Bulletin for May 15

The link for the Zoom gatherings is available in our weekly E-news, in our Facebook group St. Dunstan’s MadCity, or by emailing Rev. Miranda:  .

THREE WAYS TO USE AN ONLINE BULLETIN…
1. Print it out!

2. Open the bulletin on one device (smartphone or tablet) while joining Zoom worship on another device (tablet or computer).

3. On a computer, open the bulletin in a separate browser window or download and open separately, and view it next to your Zoom window

Sermon, May 8

 

 

 

 

Today, the fourth Sunday of Easter, is known as Good Shepherd Sunday. But who is this good shepherd? 

Well: the Old Testament, the Hebrew Bible, says that God the Creator, the God of Israel, the Living One, is the good shepherd.We hear that in Psalm 23: “The Lord, ADONAI, is my shepherd; I need nothing more. God gives me rest in green meadows, near calm waters; God guides me along safe paths; and even when I walk through dangerous places, God’s shepherd’s staff guards and comforts me.”

And we hear it other places too – like the 34th chapter of the book of the prophet Ezekiel: “Thus says the Lord God:… As shepherds seek out their flocks.., so I will seek out my sheep. I will rescue them from all the places to which they have been scattered on a day of clouds and thick darkness…. They shall lie down in good grazing land, and they shall feed on rich pasture on the mountains of Israel. I myself will be the shepherd of my sheep, says the Lord God.”

The word Sheep occurs 190 times in the Old Testament, in the New Revised Standard Version; the word Shepherd appears 97 times. Those numbers are a mix of stories about actual sheep and shepherds, and metaphorical uses like those I’ve just quoted. 

Why so many sheep? 

Well: Tending sheep and goats – what anthropologists call pastoralism – was the culturally foundational way of life of God’s people Israel. Even as they settled into agriculture, urbanization, trade and so on, they still thought of themselves as a sheep-herding people at heart. Maybe a good analogy is the way small family farms have a kind of symbolic status as “the real American way of life,” even though very few Americans have lived that way for a long time. 

So: In the Old Testament, God the Father is the good shepherd. And in the New Testament, Jesus, God the Son, takes on that role. We hear that in today’s text from the Gospel of John, when Jesus says: “My sheep hear my voice. I know them, and they follow me. I give them eternal life, and they will never perish. No one will snatch them out of my hand.” This is just a portion of a longer speech in which Jesus describes himself as the Good Shepherd; the lectionary gives us a piece of it on this Sunday each year of our three-year cycle. 

Jesus knew the Hebrew scriptures well; he is riffing on texts like Ezekiel and Psalm 23, here, as he describes himself as the good shepherd who will tend his sheep, even at cost of his own life. 

So, then, who are the sheep? In the Old Testament, the sheep are the people Israel, God’s chosen flock. In this passage from John’s Gospel, and elsewhere in the New Testament, the sheep are Jesus’ followers – all those who respond to the voice of the Good Shepherd.

But also: Jesus himself is a sheep. Or at least: a lamb. The idea of Jesus as a sacrificial lamb may have begun because his execution was close to the Jewish feast of Passover. In the Passover story – the Exodus story – God tells the people Israel, enslaved in Egypt, to kill a perfect lamb and use its blood to mark the doors of their homes. The lamb’s blood will protect them from the angel of death, as it swoops across Egypt, to pressure Pharaoh to set God’s people free. The New Testament writers explore the image of Jesus as Passover lamb, whose blood saves God’s people from bondage and death. 

The book of the Revelation of John in particular leans in hard to the idea of Jesus as Passover Lamb – AND as the true Shepherd of God’s people.  In our text today it puts them side by side:  “The Lamb at the center of the throne will be their shepherd.” A lamb who is also a shepherd? It’s an intentional paradox. 

These early church leaders and writers are playing with this pastoral imagery that pervades their tradition, to find ways to talk about who they are coming to understand Jesus to be. Fully God and fully human. At once both sheep and shepherd.

But Jesus isn’t the only one for whom sheepness and shepherdness are a little jumbled up. It can happen with God’s people too. 

Most of us – maybe all of us? – don’t have a lot of contact with sheep. We tend to think of them as sort of an undifferentiated fluffy white mass. Our cultural associations with sheep involve unthinking conformity – consider the word “sheeple.” But the scriptural tradition thinks there are differences among sheep. That among sheep as among people there are leaders and followers, winners and losers, those who help and those who harm. 

In that text from Ezekiel, God speaking through the prophet accuses Israel’s leaders of being lazy, cruel, self-serving shepherds. But God also accuses the sheep of harming one another. Some of the sheep have been greedy, at the expense of others. To them, God says, “Because you pushed with flank and shoulder, and butted at all the weak animals with your horns until you scattered them far and wide, I will save my flock, and they shall no longer be ravaged; and I will judge between sheep and sheep.”

And then there’s Peter’s role – the apostle Peter, who becomes the greatest leader of the early church. Last week we heard the risen Jesus telling Peter – three times – to  show his love for Jesus by tending Jesus’ sheep. So who is Peter, then? The lead sheep – the bellwether? A junior shepherd, serving by the divine Good Shepherd? A little of both? 

Either way, in this week’s reading from the book of the Acts of the Apostles, stories of the early church after Jesus returned to God, we see Peter tending Jesus’ flock, fulfilling that call, by responding quickly and compassionately to the people who come from Joppa to seek his help, as they grieve the loss of a beloved pillar of their community. Sheep can hurt each other… or help each other. 

We are God’s sheep, Jesus’ flock. But we’re not an undifferentiated fluffy mass. We’re not sheeple. I’ve heard many a sermon on the stupidity of sheep. I’m pretty sure I’ve preached one myself. But that’s not an emphasis in the Bible.

What does the Bible tell us about sheep, and thus, about ourselves? That we’re vulnerable – to dangerous environments, to predators, to bad shepherds who profit off of us instead of caring for us. To being scattered or lost or stolen. 

That we’re interdependent. When there’s lots of lush grass and fresh water, we all flourish. When resources are scarce, we don’t. 

That left to ourselves, we’ll hurt each other. The stronger sheep will bully the weaker sheep and push them away from food or water. 

That we need to be tended. Found and gathered. Guided. Fed. Protected. Comforted. That deep down, we know the voice of our true Shepherd, and will respond and follow. 

All of that seems true to me. All of that makes me feel pretty sheep-ish. 

I’m glad to know that we are in the ultimate care of the Good Shepherd. That someone is watching over us, guarding and guiding. But trusting in the Good Shepherd doesn’t mean that I, and we, don’t have our own sheeply responsibilities. We, too, will face moments when we’re called to show our love of Jesus by tending Jesus’ sheep. We, too, will face moments when the stronger sheep are ganging up on the weaker sheep, and we have to choose sides – or walk away, which is also choosing a side. 

But I’ll tell you one more thing about sheep – something the Bible doesn’t bother to talk about because it takes it for granted: Sheep are tough. 

Pastoralism is a way to live in environments too harsh or hilly for agriculture. Sheep can handle high altitudes, cold weather, and rough terrain. They graze on steep hill and mountainsides, where there’s no way you could grow crops. Sheep are mobile; when one area is grazed out they move on to the next area. The wool that makes them so useful to humans also protects them from bitter cold and wind. 

Sheep find what they need, in dry and craggy places, in the valley of the shadow of death, and turn it into wool and milk and lambs. They appreciate a nice flat, green pasture… but they don’t absolutely need one. 

I lived around sheep for one summer, in 2000. I was hired to help with a project in Eskdale, in northern England. It’s a beautiful green valley surrounded by very steep, rocky hills. And – yep – it’s sheep country. 

I remember jokes about how Eskdale sheep – a hardy breed called Herdwicks – would develop legs that were shorter on one side, from constantly grazing on steep hillsides. 

I’d honestly kind of forgotten the Eskdale Herdwicks until this week. I found some photos online that brought back memories. My favorite is a sheep standing tall against the sky on the lichen-covered boulders of Hardknott Pass. I remember Hardknott Pass; we hiked up it one day. The road over that pass is the steepest road in Great Britain, ascending 1200 feet at a 33% grade. Challenging for humans and cars. No sweat for sheep. 

The world doesn’t feel like a place of green pastures and still waters at the moment. Bossy sheep and bad shepherds abound.

I think what I need from Good Shepherd Sunday this year is the reminder that with a loving Shepherd to guard and guide them, sheep can handle a lot. Sheep can stick together and find what they need, in harsh environments and hard seasons. 

May the Lamb who is our loving Shepherd protect us, tend us, and equip us for the landscape ahead. 

Amen. Alleluia. 

Bulletin for May 8

9AM Zoom online gathering: We use slides during worship that contain most of this information, but some prefer to follow along on paper.

Bulletin for May 8

The link for the Zoom gatherings is available in our weekly E-news, in our Facebook group St. Dunstan’s MadCity, or by emailing Rev. Miranda:  .

THREE WAYS TO USE AN ONLINE BULLETIN…
1. Print it out!

2. Open the bulletin on one device (smartphone or tablet) while joining Zoom worship on another device (tablet or computer).

3. On a computer, open the bulletin in a separate browser window or download and open separately, and view it next to your Zoom window

Announcements, May 5

Vestry Transition: Elvice McAlpine has retired early from the Vestry due to vision problems that made it difficult to participate fully. We are pleased to announce that Eric Brown has agreed to join the Vestry and complete Elvice’s term, ending in January of 2023. Eric moved to Indiana last year but has continued to be a regular member of the Zoom congregation. We hope that his presence on the Vestry at this time will help represent our Zoom congregation as we discern what it looks like to continue as a hybrid church. Thank you, Elvice, and welcome, Eric!

Weekly Scripture Reflections Available: Father John Rasmus writes weekly reflections on the Sunday lectionary texts and sends them out to those who would like to receive them. If you’d like to join his email list, contact him and he’d be glad to add you! If you would like to receive the reflections by postal mail, or know someone else who might appreciate them, contact the office at or 608-238-2781. We have sent them out by mail in the past and would be happy to return to that practice if it would be helpful to anyone.

At-home Rogation prayers available: Rogation Days are special days for praying for crops, farming, and the health and fruitfulness of the land in general. Rev. Miranda has a lovely set of Rogation Day poems and prayers for individual or household use, developed in 2020 as a pandemic resource by a parish in Connecticut. If you would like this document emailed to you, to use at your leisure, let Rev. Miranda know .

Vaccination Clinic at MOM: Do you need your vaccine or your vaccine booster/s? or Do you know someone who has not been able to get vaccine or boosters because of lack of insurance or other methods of payment or having difficulty with timing for being seen?There will be 2 Covid vaccine sites at Middleton Outreach Ministry on Monday May 16 from 1-3 PM – No appointment needed, no insurance needed – all 3 types of vaccine available and also boosters are available. The clinic will be held in the warehouse behind the MOM office building and there is good signage. The location is 3502 Parmenter St. (behind the Kwik trip on corner of Airport Rd. and Parmenter)

NEW GROUP: Aging Together, 10AM, Friday, May 6, Zoom: Aging is hard – logistically, emotionally, physically. We are exploring gathering a group to meet regularly to share ideas, resources, and most importantly, mutual support. If this sounds interesting or helpful to you, join us on Zoom for an initial conversation about how this group would like to gather – times, topics, frequency of meeting, etc. All 70+ friends and members welcome!  Join with this link: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/84280344235?pwd=K2pLZlduU3MxOFl6TkxXNjVlb2Vudz09

Spring Diaper Drive, May 8 – June 19: Imagine having to choose whether to pay rent, pay utilities, buy food, or buy diapers for your baby or toddler. Nearly 1 in 3 American families struggle to afford enough diapers, which cannot be purchased with food stamps. For several years St. Dunstan’s has done a spring Diaper Drive from Mother’s Day through Father’s Day to help provide diapers to local food pantries. Sizes 4, 5, and 6 are always especially in demand! Volunteer diaper shoppers in the parish buy and deliver diapers to organizations who can get them out into the community, such as Middleton Outreach Ministry, the Allied Drive Pantry, Karen’s Essential Center, Healing House, and others. This year’s Diaper Drive will run from Mother’s Day through Father’s Day. Please write a check to St. Dunstan’s with “Diapers” in the memo line, or make a gift through our donation website at this link: donate.stdunstans.com . Thank you for your support! New volunteers to help with shopping and/or delivery are also welcome – contact Mary Rowe.

Planning Meeting for Summer In-Person Worship, Wednesday, May 11, 7:15PM:  Join Rev. Miranda for some brainstorming and planning about our in-person worship this summer (and beyond). Where should we take the next step back towards pre-pandemic normal? Where can we take the next step into the “new normal” we’re creating now? What’s the next step in our intergenerational worship work? We will meet in person (masked) so we can see and walk around our Nave as we talk. All interested folks (including kids and youth) are welcome!

Celebration of New Ministry, Good Shepherd, Sun Prairie, Saturday, May 14, 3PM: The people of Good Shepherd–Buen Pastor, Sun Prairie and St Luke’s, Madison invite you to a joint celebration of new ministry. The Rt. Rev. Bishop Lee will preside and the Rev. Canon Scott Leannah will preach at a liturgy to mark the beginning of a shared ministry covenant between the two parishes. The Rev. Don Fleischman has been called to oversee both parishes. The liturgy will take place at 3 pm and will be followed by a reception. This celebration will take place at St Luke’s Episcopal Church, 4011 Major Avenue, Madison WI 53716. All are invited. The festal color for the day for clergy is white.

St Dunstan’s Day & Rogation Day, May 22:  St. Dunstan’s Day, the feast day of our patron saint, is May 19; we will celebrate it on Sunday, May 22. Rogation Days are special days for praying for crops, farming, and the health and fruitfulness of the land in general. We will observe Rogation Day with a brief (optional!) procession around the grounds, punctuated by prayer, at the end of our 10AM in-person service.

Spring Grounds Work Day, Sunday, May 15, 11:30 – 1PM: Come help tend St. Dunstan’s grounds! Most work is outdoors, though we have some potential indoor tasks too. Please wear a mask when indoors, and outdoors when close to people from other households. We will have a task list to direct folks to things that need doing. There are tasks for people of all ages and abilities. We’ll also be starting to line up volunteers who’d like to tend particular garden beds now and then, over the summer. We plan to offer some hearty snacks, and end with a treat at 1PM. If you’d enjoy helping out on the grounds sometime but can’t make it that day, contact Krissy Mayer, Adam McCluskey or Rev. Miranda and we’ll loop you in on other plans!

Funeral for Sue Lloyd, Saturday, June 11, 1PM: The funeral for Sue Lloyd will be held on Saturday, June 11, at St. Dunstan’s. All friends of Sue are invited to attend. A light reception will follow; contact Connie Ott to contribute to the reception or help with setup or cleanup.

Evening Church Camp for Kids and Youth: Save the Dates – July 19 – 23! Plans are taking shape for an Evening Church Camp focused on theater and drama. Acting out Scripture stories has become a regular practice at St. Dunstan’s; we will use this camp to lean into that and build some skills that may not only expand what we can do here, but give kids who participate a boost if they want to get involved with theater at school or elsewhere! Kids are very welcome to invite friends. We’d love to offer options for kids who prefer not to act, such as music and sound effects, costume, makeup, set design – we’ll see how our team takes shape. We plan to meet 5:30 – 7:30 (dinner included) on Tuesday, July 19 through Saturday, July 23; we may start earlier on Saturday, and end with a performance open to the congregation. Sound like fun, but you’re not a kid? There’s lots of scope for adults in the parish to join in and help out with this camp, on one night or many. If you’re interested, reach out to Rev. Miranda and she’ll loop you in as we plan. Questions and ideas welcome too!

Creation Care at St. Dunstan’s: Our commitment to creation care ranges from tending our grounds, to planning parish or community studies or learning opportunities, to seeking out and promoting ways to reduce our church’s and our members’ environmental impact. We are an informal network that gathers a couple of times a year to work on plans and priorities, then gathers (online and/or in person) for particular interests or projects at other times. Would you like to learn more or get involved? Contact Rev. Miranda.

Seeking Adult Helpers for High School Youth Trip! 
We are planning a mission trip for our high school youth group this summer, from Thursday, July 28 through Sunday, July 31. We’re really excited to finally be planning a trip for these kids. And we’re looking for 2 – 3 more adults to join our team!

  • We’ll be doing service work (TBD) during the days, with fellowship and reflection time in the mornings and evenings.
  • Adults should be available for the full four days (with the possible exception of someone doing meal prep, which could be helpful for one or two days at a time).
  • If coming on the trip would represent a financial burden for you (losing paid work time; child or pet care; etc.) we can provide compensation. Let’s talk!
  • We’ll probably travel (by car) to somewhere within a 3 – 4 hour radius of Madison. You should be able to provide your own vehicle, and ideally be willing to drive kids around.
  • We are required to do a background check for all adult volunteers (at the church’s expense).
  • Covid rates will likely rise and fall in unpredictable ways in the coming months. As we begin planning sites and activities, and recruiting our team, we will be trying to plan the trip to be as “Covid-proof” as possible, with mitigations and alternatives built into the plan.
  • No previous experience with the youth group or youth ministry is required; just an enthusiasm for getting to know these young people and being part of a team doing good in the world and deepening our fellowship and faith together.

This is an opportunity to work, play, learn, and grow with a pretty neat group of youth! To learn more, talk with Rev. Miranda.

No Mow May 2022

This year St. Dunstan’s is doing No Mow May! This means we will not mow our grassy areas until the beginning of June. This will let dandelions, clover, and other flowers grow, to provide food (nectar and pollen) for bees and other pollinators early in the season.

This is one way of living out our Creation Care Mission Statement.

No Mow May began as a movement in the UK and took off in Appleton, Wisconsin. It’s now spreading around Wisconsin and the country. Click here for an article to learn more! 

Click here for a website about No Mow May.

Announcements, April 28

Vaccination Clinic at MOM: Do you need your vaccine or your vaccine booster/s? or Do you know someone who has not been able to get vaccine or boosters because of lack of insurance or other methods of payment or having difficulty with timing for being seen?There will be 2 Covid vaccine sites at Middleton Outreach Ministry on Monday May 2 and Monday May 16 from 1-3 PM – No appointment needed, no insurance needed – all 3 types of vaccine available and also boosters are available. The clinic will be held in the warehouse behind the MOM office building and there is good signage. The location is 3502 Parmenter St. (behind the Kwik trip on corner of Airport Rd. and Parmenter)

NEW GROUP: Aging Together, 10AM, Friday, May 6, Zoom: Aging is hard – logistically, emotionally, physically. We are exploring gathering a group to meet regularly to share ideas, resources, and most importantly, mutual support. If this sounds interesting or helpful to you, join us on Zoom for an initial conversation about how this group would like to gather – times, topics, frequency of meeting, etc. All 70+ friends and members welcome!  Join with the zoom link in the e-news.

Spring Diaper Drive, May 8 – June 19: Imagine having to choose whether to pay rent, pay utilities, buy food, or buy diapers for your baby or toddler. Nearly 1 in 3 American families struggle to afford enough diapers, which cannot be purchased with food stamps. For several years St. Dunstan’s has done a spring Diaper Drive from Mother’s Day through Father’s Day to help provide diapers to local food pantries. Sizes 4, 5, and 6 are always especially in demand! Volunteer diaper shoppers in the parish buy and deliver diapers to organizations who can get them out into the community, such as Middleton Outreach Ministry, the Allied Drive Pantry, Karen’s Essential Center, Healing House, and others. This year’s Diaper Drive will run from Mother’s Day through Father’s Day. Please write a check to St. Dunstan’s with “Diapers” in the memo line, or make a gift through our donation website at this link: donate.stdunstans.com . Thank you for your support! New volunteers to help with shopping and/or delivery are also welcome – contact Mary Rowe .

Spring Grounds Work Day, Sunday, May 15, 11:30 – 1PM: Come help tend St. Dunstan’s grounds! Most work is outdoors, though we have some potential indoor tasks too. Please wear a mask when indoors, and outdoors when close to people from other households. We will have a task list to direct folks to things that need doing. There are tasks for people of all ages and abilities. We’ll also be starting to line up volunteers who’d like to tend particular garden beds now and then, over the summer. We plan to offer some hearty snacks, and end with a treat at 1PM. If you’d enjoy helping out on the grounds sometime but can’t make it that day, contact Krissy Mayer , Adam McCluskey or Rev. Miranda know and we’ll loop you in on other plans!

Funeral for Sue Lloyd, Saturday, June 11, 1PM: The funeral for Sue Lloyd will be held on Saturday, June 11, at St. Dunstan’s. All friends of Sue are invited to attend. A light reception will follow; contact Connie Ott to contribute to the reception or help with setup or cleanup.

Seeking Adult Helpers for High School Youth Trip! 
We are planning a mission trip for our high school youth group this summer, from Thursday, July 28 through Sunday, July 31. We’re really excited to finally be planning a trip for these kids. And we’re looking for 2 – 3 more adults to join our team!

  • We’ll be doing service work (TBD) during the days, with fellowship and reflection time in the mornings and evenings.
  • Adults should be available for the full four days (with the possible exception of someone doing meal prep, which could be helpful for one or two days at a time).
  • If coming on the trip would represent a financial burden for you (losing paid work time; child or pet care; etc.) we can provide compensation. Let’s talk!
  • We’ll probably travel (by car) to somewhere within a 3 – 4 hour radius of Madison. You should be able to provide your own vehicle, and ideally be willing to drive kids around.
  • We are required to do a background check for all adult volunteers (at the church’s expense).
  • Covid rates will likely rise and fall in unpredictable ways in the coming months. As we begin planning sites and activities, and recruiting our team, we will be trying to plan the trip to be as “Covid-proof” as possible, with mitigations and alternatives built into the plan.
  • No previous experience with the youth group or youth ministry is required; just an enthusiasm for getting to know these young people and being part of a team doing good in the world and deepening our fellowship and faith together.

This is an opportunity to work, play, learn, and grow with a pretty neat group of youth! To learn more, talk with Rev. Miranda.

Bulletin for May 1

9AM Zoom online gathering: We use slides during worship that contain most of this information, but some prefer to follow along on paper.

Bulletin for May 1

The link for the Zoom gatherings is available in our weekly E-news, in our Facebook group St. Dunstan’s MadCity, or by emailing Rev. Miranda:  .

THREE WAYS TO USE AN ONLINE BULLETIN…
1. Print it out!

2. Open the bulletin on one device (smartphone or tablet) while joining Zoom worship on another device (tablet or computer).

3. On a computer, open the bulletin in a separate browser window or download and open separately, and view it next to your Zoom window

6205 University Ave., Madison WI

St. Dunstan's Episcopal Church