WELCOME FROM HAYWOOD STREET:
Morning Prayer at Haywood happens Mondays – Thursdays at 8:00 am, and generally lasts about 30-40 minutes. Mike leads us on Tuesdays and I do so on the other days.
It has been a blessing to begin my days in community with Haywood friends and I am delighted that some companions may be joining us. I wanted to share more about morning prayer in hope that you may want to join us.
We loosely follow the Morning Prayer in the Episcopal Book of Common Prayer and use the Daily Office scriptures. For those who are unfamiliar, the Daily Office offers scripture readings for each day that include a Psalm, Hebrew Scripture, Epistle/Letter, and a Gospel reading.
Here is our general outline:
– Invoking phrase
– Prayer of Confession
– Psalm reading
– Hebrew Scripture/Epistle reading and reflection: we read the text and offer brief reflection,
sort of a very mini lectio divina.
– Gospel Reading and reflection. same
– Community Prayers
– Lord’s Prayer, usually a contemporary version and sometimes traditional.
We usually end by 8:30 – 8:45 and have begun our day in the company of great saints who are loved.
Looking forward to seeing who might join us! You can access all Morning Prayer sessions via this link.
1. Upcoming Companion Zoom Hours:
March 4 @ 3:00 PM – Bryan Mitchell will be there to give vision for the building and grounds and share updates and answer questions
March 18 @ 3:00 PM – Father Mike Reardon will be there to visit, share updates and answer ministry questions.
3. During this lenten season, please feel invited to spend time in the Haywood Street sanctuary for prayer and contemplation. You may make an appointment by emailing April.
A HAYWOOD STREET SERMON BY: KALEB
Haywood Street Community Residents have the opportunity to explore many aspects of the ministry. Often, our Residents, like Kaleb, will wish to work on the craft of constructing a sermon. With the guidance of Father Mike, Kaleb has created the beautiful sermon below.
We are lucky enough to have Kaleb through May of 2021 and then he is off to Duke Divinity to Pursue his Masters in Divinity and ordination in the UMC.
A New Commandment
“Jesus Christ, we speak your name. Let’s all say a prayer. Heavenly Father, thank you for giving us this opportunity.” These words were spoken by a group of rioters that breached the senate chamber, rifled through papers on desks and claimed to do so in the name of our savior. Let us not forget the image of our brothers and sisters praying to a wooden cross just before marching to the capitol to incite violence. January 6th, 2021– A day that will be remembered in our nation’s history forever, it will be talked about in public schools, and discussed for centuries to come. On this day many people stormed our nation’s capital. Breaking down barriers, assaulting law enforcement, and breaking windows to take control of the capitol building. Some had the intent to enact violence on our nation’s leaders and attack American Democracy. Hate rhetoric, conspiracy theories, violence and Christian Nationalism filled the streets of our nation’s capital on January 6th.
I can’t seem to shake the image of the Christian flag being paraded through the senate floor, or a flag reading “Proud American Christian”, as well as many flags with the words “Jesus 2020”. How did we get here? How did we get to the point of today, of so much hatred? Events like the Capitol riot leave you awestruck and confused. I still have not found the words to express how I felt on that day and probably never will. My body went numb as I tried to grapple with the violence, we all witnessed. It is troublesome and a hard pill to swallow knowing that so many of our Christian friends felt convicted to take this type of violent action.
In our scripture from the Gospel of John we see Jesus leave his disciples with a new commandment. To love just as he has loved them. I wonder, what is Jesus teaching us about love?
John 13:31-38 As soon as Judas left the room, Jesus said, “The time has come for the Son of Manto enter into his glory, and God will be glorified because of him. And since God receives glory because of the Son, he will give his own glory to the Son, and he will do so at once. Dear children, I will be with you only a little longer. And as I told the Jewish leaders, you will search for me, but you can’t come where I am going. So now I am giving you a new commandment: Love each other. Just as I have loved you, you should love each other. Your love for one another will prove to the world that you are my disciples.” Simon Peter asked, “Lord, where are you going?” And Jesus replied, “You can’t go with me now, but you will follow me later.” “But why can’t I come now, Lord?” he asked. “I’m ready to die for you.” Jesus answered, “Die for me? I tell you the truth, Peter—before the rooster crows tomorrow morning, you will deny three times that you even know me.
Here we see betrayal, denial, confusion, and the harsh reality of a for coming death. In the thirteenth chapter of John Jesus begins his last discourse. He has just washed his disciple’s feet, and Judas has betrayed him. Let this sink in, he knew that Peter and Judas were soon to betray him. After all this time they were about dismiss their entire journey together. Despite this, Jesus still takes the time to pour water into a basin and slowly wash their feet. Washing in between the toes, the hairs on their feet and the rugged cracked heels of a traveling disciple. This has to be troubling for Jesus, to address the dignity in his disciples, wash their feet, even when he knows they will soon betray him. Soon after this he speaks of glorifying God through him, and physically leaving his disciples to do so. When Jesus addresses his physical being leaving them, he is warning them about his death that is to come on the cross.
After washing his disciple’s feet Jesus sits with them. He sits with Peter, knowing he will soon betray him. This is a true act of love. Can you imagine kneeling down to wash the feet of someone being fully aware that they will soon betray you and then sitting alongside them to address your fore coming death? What makes this a pure act of love is the weightiness of what is happening. Jesus often challenged his disciples to think about things in a new way. Even love. He teaches us to love our enemies, and to love those who curse us. We often relate love with getting something in return. We love our friends, family, spouse, or kids because we hope they will reciprocate this love. Here Jesus knows that there is nothing in it for him. He is mentally preparing himself to be crucified, while washing the feet of his disciples two of whom will deny him completely. He is encountering his betrayers by intimately washing their feet while dealing with his own emotions surrounding his fore coming death on the cross. He exemplifies the type of love he expects us to lean into. Jesus shows us that love is messy, difficult, and often not our initial reaction towards those that cause us pain. If we are to follow Jesus fully, we must follow his lead and love especially when it is difficult.
Jesus then leaves his disciples with a simple new commandment. “Love each other. Just as I have loved you, you should love each other.” The word love is mentioned three times. This type of love Jesus speaks of is much different than our secular view on love. We are drawn to love those who will reciprocate our love. Jesus opposes this view and shows us that pure love is just the opposite. The challenge is to love those who harm us, to love those we disagree with, and to love when it doesn’t make sense to love. It is understandable to react to the events on Jan. 6thwith cynicism, resentment, hostility, and hatred. That is our very human nature, here we see Jesus calling us to disobey human nature. We are called to love our Christian siblings who felt convicted to participate in the violence that took place at the Capitol. That is our new commandment, to love just as Jesus loved. By washing the feet of his betrayers Jesus left us with a pure example of the love we are to demonstrate to the world.
Similar to the commandment we see here, in the book of Mark Jesus tells us to love our neighbors as ourselves. We must love ourselves before we can pour out love to others. This is important to recognize here, if we forget to about our own needs and actively love those who harm us, we easily succumb to emotional abuse. We have a big challenge ahead of us to love those who cause us pain, but in this challenge, we cannot forget to tend to our own well-being first.
Our challenge is to love when it is difficult. Loving those we disagree with or harm us may bring forth new understanding. Let our hope be found in the love Jesus demonstrated. Let us cling to love so that we may better understand our neighbors. Let us find common ground so we may heal as a nation divided. Let us wrestle with this truth, that we must love even when it is unnatural.