November 30, 2018: World AIDS Day at St. John the Divine and more

From Fr. Steven 

Many years ago, I served as an active lay leader at a large and very famous church in another denomination. This church was so complex that it had several different levels of elected lay leadership: one could be elected to a committee, a commission, or the council. 

As an elected member of a commission, my job was to evaluate and vote on different ministry proposals. What this meant is that the most committed and active members of the church, like me and my fellow commission members, spent most of our time in meetings talking about ministry, rather than actually going out and engaging in ministry.

Actually, it was even worse than that because, most of the time, the commission voted against the ministry proposals. So all that discussion would be for naught. 

In frustration, I started to vote "yes" on every proposal that was presented--no matter how crazy or unrealistic or expensive. I felt that since saying "no" didn't seem to be helping the church, doing the exact opposite couldn't hurt.

As you may have guessed, I've brought a bit of this attitude to my first few months here as your vicar. I have tried, within reason, to say "yes" to as many ideas that you have had--whether about ministry, programs, mission, newcomer engagement, or all of the above.

This Sunday is the start of Advent, the traditional beginning of the church year. For this new church year--which will be our first full year working together--I'd like our theme to be "Saying Yes."

I'd like us to say "yes" to as many ideas as possible. I'd like us to hold our fears, especially our fear of failure, as lightly as possible. I'd like us to try everything, observe what resonates with our neighbors and connects with our local community, and thereby discern where the Holy Spirit is now calling us to go.

The Rev. Steven Lee

Christmas and New Year's Eve at the Cathedral

***To receive free passes to the 10:30pm Christmas Eve service, please fill out this online form or email Hope Chang.

***To purchase tickets for the New Year's Eve Concert for Peace (no passes are available), click here:

Christmas Eve
Monday, December 24

4 pm - Christmas Eve Lessons and Carols
The Cathedral Choristers are joined by members of the Cathedral Choir in this family-friendly service, featuring readings, Christmas carols, and larger-than-life puppets to tell the Christmas story.

10:30 pm - Christmas Eve Festal Eucharist
Prelude music begins at 10 pm. The Bishop of New York celebrates the Eucharist and preaches. The Cathedral Choirs and Orchestra perform a festive mass setting and anthems, as well as classic Christmas carols.

Christmas Day
Tuesday, December 25

10:30 am - Christmas Day Choral Eucharist
The Dean preaches and the Cathedral Choir sings. This will be the only liturgy this day.

New Year's Eve
Monday, December 31

7 pm - New Year's Eve Concert for Peace
Founded by Leonard Bernstein in 1984, the annual New Year’s Eve Concert for Peace is a signature Cathedral event.

11 pm - New Year's Eve Watchnight Service
Join the Cathedral community in ringing in the New Year with this special late-night service.

From Marsha and Tim

CRAFTS FAIR is going on now

“Bless the creators, O God of creation, who by their gifts make the world a more joyful and beautiful realm.”
We give thanks for the exhibitors who worked hard to create beautiful crafts of all kinds and are filling our nave and crossing with their work. We thank everyone who worked on getting this show off the ground, to the volunteers, to the staffs of Productions, Visitor Services, Security, Facilities and Programs who supported the Congregation in this effort. The show continues today, Friday, 11 – 8 p.m., Saturday 11 – 6, and Sunday after the 11:00 a.m. service through 6 p.m. We hope everyone has a chance to see the lovely work made by hand by 85 amazing artists. 
WORLD AIDS DAY, Friday November 30, St. James Chapel 6 – 8 p.m.

Please join us as we commemorate the 30th Anniversary of World AIDS Day and the 30th Anniversary of the first national display tour of the AIDS Memorial Quilt. Names of those lost to HIV/AIDS will be read, Lavender Light will perform, and a reception will follow. Three panels from the AIDS Memorial Quilt will be in the final days of display in the Cathedral nave. The event will be held in partnership with GMHC.
Support the CCC TOY DRIVE and COAT DRIVE.   

Bring a new unwrapped toy for children—infants to age 16-- to church through December 16. The toys will be presented on December 20. CCC is also running a coat drive through December 31. Bring coats, hats, scarves, gloves. Please note that on Sunday, December 2, a table will be set up near the 6 door in the Cathedral to receive toys and coats.


Come to Cathedral House to join the Sage Table folks signing holiday cards for young adults who receive services from the Ali Forney Center, the largest LGBT community center helping homeless youth in the United States, as well as for the adult clients of Cathedral Community Cares. A representative from Ali Forney Center is scheduled to be on hand to give a brief overview of its clients and services. Materials for the holiday cards will be provided. Dinner is a "pot luck" approach. Kindly contact Timothy Farrell to let him know if you can attend and what food or beverage you plan to bring.

SECOND SUNDAY, December 9 will be our early CHRISTMAS PARTY, Cathedral House

Second Sunday of the month, the second Sunday of Advent, come to Cathedral House after the 11:00 a.m. service to enjoy delectable food prepared by our stalwart hospitality committee. Fresh off providing food in the Crafts Fair Café they promise us a delightful meal and good conversation. (Actually, the conversation is up to us!)

Have a blessed Advent,
Marsha and Tim