March 22, 2019: Gratitude at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine

From Fr. Steven

Lord, help me be grateful for what I have, remember that I don’t need most of what I want, and that joy is found in simplicity and generosity. 

This Contentment Prayer from Adam Hamilton's book Enough is a lovely prayer and certainly an appropriate one for this season of Lent. It expresses a fine Christian sentiment, which also agrees with many of the world's religious traditions: material goods can never give us happiness. 

But if I can be honest, I find the self-consciously "pious" and self-congratulatory tone of the Contentment Prayer to be a little grating.  

If you are someone who truly believes that material goods will give you happiness, is this prayer really going to do the trick? Or does the prayer only "preach to the choir" and just reinforce the values we already hold as Christians, allowing us to feel good for holding them?

But the last thing we Christians need are more reasons to feel good about ourselves. Especially in this season of Lent, what we need is someone to set fire to our egos, illusions, and endless "self-improvement" schemes, and help us realize that we are no better than those hypocrites we love to denounce. What we need is someone like Janis Joplin.

The Rev. Steven Lee

From Marsha and Tim

Lent and Cathedral Community Cares

During Lent the Congregation is collecting hygiene products for CCC. A box is set up at the Welcome table and you may leave your donations in the box.  Bring soap, toothpaste, toothbrushes, deodorants, hand lotion and shampoos.   Another option is to order such supplies and have them delivered(I have done that with soap and detergent).  The delivery should be to

Thomas Perry
Cathedral Community Cares
1047 Amsterdam Avenue
New York, NY 10025

Thomas and the people he and his staff serves are grateful for your continued support!

Astonished by Grace 10:00 a.m. Cathedral Nave

Last Sunday the Vicar launched Astonished by Grace: a Bible Study with the Vicar. People formed a circle in the nave and were led in conversation by Father Lee who is focusing on Matthew 5 – 7.  Consider coming early or staying late (depending on which service you attend) to enjoy this challenging view of scripture.

Wednesdays in Lent with our Harlem church neighbors

Last Wednesday members of the twelve Harlem Churches came to a lovely service and meal in the nave of the Cathedral.  It was St. Saviour’s turn to host this movable feast.  About 100 people attended a quiet Eucharist Service followed by a hearty chicken dinner.  It was a wonderful opportunity to get to know our neighbors over a meal. If you have not already participated in one of these dinners, it is a truly rewarding thing to do. Next Wednesday the feast moves toSaint Ambrose Church, 9 West 130thStreet.  The service begins at 7:00 p.m.  All are welcome!

New Member Welcome, March 24

If you want to find out more about the Congregation or if you are a member who would enjoy greeting and telling new and prospective members about the Congregation, come to St. Saviour chapel after the 11:00 a.m. service for a light brunch. The normal coffee and cookie angel provided sweets will continue as usual in the nave.

Many blessings,
Tim and Marsha