St. Margaret's Episcopal Church

The Seventeenth Sunday after Pentecost, September 27, 2020

St. Margaret’s Episcopal Church, Emmaus, PA

Reflections on The Season of Pentecost

The Seventeenth Sunday after Pentecost, September 27, 2020

By Rev. Jane Bender

Dear St. Margaret’s Family,

Greetings to each of you as we continue our journey through this season of Pentecost in this unusual time of pandemic.  I pray that you are staying the course, keeping the faith, keeping perspective and saying your prayers.  

St. Margaret's Episcopal Church, Emmaus, PA

Prayer as a disciplined commitment is always, it seems to me, a daily challenge.  How about you?  I know that it needs to be as natural a part of the day as brushing one’s teeth!  Apologies if this is too simplistic an analogy! (One must keep a sense of humor.)  It needs to be habit – not something for which we simply wait to be inspired.  Inspiration is always good – but I don’t wait to be inspired to brush my teeth – it is habit!   

This week I’d like to briefly reflect on the Collect appointed for the 17th Sunday after Pentecost.  

A Collect is a prayer appointed each Sunday, prayed at the beginning portion of the liturgy.  It is a time when we come together to corporately Collect our Prayers, if you will.  I always pause prior to reading the Collect because, I know that everyone present is already quietly praying in their hearts……and when we launch into the Collect – all these prayers are also swept up together.

“O God, you declare your almighty power chiefly in showing mercy and pity: 

Grant us the fullness of your grace, 

that we, running to obtain your promises, 

may become partakers of your heavenly treasure; 

through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns 

with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.”

This is one of my favorite Collects in the church year.  It speaks of God’s power as being chiefly shown in mercy and pity. It also speaks of the fullness of God’s grace.  It encourages us to be proactive – NOT to wait – that we run to obtain God’s promises!  And there is the underlying assumption that we are becoming, more and more, partakers in God’s heavenly treasure.  What riches we enjoy in our life in Christ. What joy!   My prayer for you this week is joy in your prayer life with the loving God of all.

God bless you and keep you in God’s loving embrace,


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