Updated: Jul 5
As we celebrate our national Independence Day I am mindful that the blessings of liberty are always in tension with its risks and dangers. It seems certain to me no one would celebrate the liberty of "recess" if it meant simply being vulnerable to the bullies in the play yard. Without institutions powerful enough to provide stability and restrained enough to both protect the minority and allow for vigorous dissent and protest, independence becomes a curse to many of us...
This Sunday at Christianity and Culture W&L Professor of History, Emeritus, Holt Merchant will reflect on James Madison's Federalist Papers No. 10, a defense of the proposed Constitution's republican form of government's ability to protect private rights against a majority that seeks to take them away, and at the same time to preserve the spirit and the form of popular government.
Of course a republican form of government and the protection of private rights against a majority was not given on July 4, 1776, or gained through the battles of any war. Statesmen like Madison, Jay, and Hamilton argued us into good government through assemblies of peers and a free press directed toward a population educated enough to read and understand their arguments.
Even so, the work of our republic was only begun when Rhode Island ratified the Constitution May 29, 1790. Throughout our history the work of debating and clarifying and protecting rights has been long and arduous, including the 19th Amendment August 18, 1920, the Voting Rights Act of 1965, and Marriage Protection December 8, 2022.
And the struggle continues. As does the reasoning and wisdom of Madison, Hamilton, and Jay in the Federalist Papers. And the teaching of scholars like Holt Merchant. And the mercy of God.
Happy Independence Day.
Tuck Bowerfind (he/him/his)
Rector, Grace Episcopal Church
Worship Services | Proper 8 | Sunday, July 2
Holy Eucharist | 8 a.m.
In-Person & Zoom
Holy Eucharist | 10:30 a.m.
In-Person & YouTube
Labyrinth Presentation | 5 p.m.
Morning Prayer | Monday–Friday 8:30 a.m.
In-Person & Zoom
Last Week's Service at Jordan's Point
Our service and picnic at Jordan’s Point last Sunday was well attended and filled with grace. Thank you to our parishioners for all the delicious side dishes!
A Dialogue Circle is a group of 4-10 people who co-create a trustworthy space to do inner work in community. Sacred Ground is a film based dialogue series on race and faith. The SG curriculum includes a set of documentary films and short videos, available for free to registered dialogue groups via streaming in a password-protected area on this site; a set of readings, also available for free to registered dialogue groups as PDFs in a password-protected area on the Sacred Ground site.
We will start a Sacred Ground Dialogue Circle when we have 4-10 people willing to commit to the curriculum. The Dialogue Circle will agree to its own schedule of meetings.
Camp Grace: “Make Us Instruments of Peace.”
Guess what! We’re doing that “summer camp thing” at Grace, August 7-11!! Based on a prayer attributed to St. Francis, the 2-5 p.m. camp is open to rising Kindergartners through rising 6th graders. An extra “Excited to Write!” component for rising 7th-rising 8th graders will finish the day 5:00-7 p.m. and include light dinner...
What is it? It’s mission with kids! Each day will include art activities, music activities, listening activities, and time learning about things such as the Labyrinth. The planning team includes Martha Burford, Marjorie and David Connolly, Carol Dent, Melanie Griffis, Jules Grimes, Anne Sauder, Heidi Schweizer, and Emma Vasquez. We will ask families for a donation of 50.00 per child for the week. Limited scholarships will be available. Rationale: Outreach to families. Enriching our community/communities. That last week before school starts, this year, August 7-11, is a week many camps have shut down, and is a week families seek activities for children before school starts. Our goal is to help families in that limbo week and also to help kids get excited about the beginning of the school year. This camp, and another one called “The Winter Star” during winter break, culminating in a performance on Epiphany, will focus on outreach to families with children. (More on “Winter Star” later.) Since you’re itching to be part of this: We would LOVE more help in this effort that springs from the named desire in Grace’s corporate life: to invite, welcome, and connect to families and children. We will need your help getting the word out. Martha, personally, would love help from someone good at spread sheets as we set up the daily schedule. Extra adult bodies in the rooms, help with snacks, help with drop off and pickup: there are lots of ways you can be involved for small amounts of time in this effort to welcome children. To jump into this joy, just run to your email and send firstname.lastname@example.org a note, or call her at 804-514-8839. *Important note: 9/10 or more of the planning team will have completed online abuse prevention training in Praesidium Academy. While completion of the diocesan advised course won't be required for all volunteers, we encourage folks to consider taking it, especially as we gear up for focus on welcoming children.
Camp Grace Planning Team
Independence Day Celebration
July 4th from 5:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. block party on White St (between Jackson Ave. and Jefferson St.) Community party & cookout band music, food & fun! Burgers & hot dogs for all (or bring alt. item for us to cook) BYOB & side dish (open tables & chairs or bring folding chairs)
Labyrinth Presentation and Community Labyrinth Walk
Sunday July 02, 2023 | 5 p.m. – 6 p.m. | Come learn about the history of labyrinths and practice of labyrinth walking. We'll meet in the Parish Hall for a brief presentation, and then take a guided walk together on the garden labyrinth located just behind the sanctuary.
Upcoming "Music in the Garden" Concerts at Boxerwood
Upcoming Music Events
The Mission and Outreach Committee of the Gadsden Trust
Third quarter grant requests can be sent to Gail Dickerson, Chair, and must be received by September 1, 2023. The Gadsden Trust grant request application can be found here. The third quarter meeting of The Mission and Outreach Committee of the Gadsden Trust is scheduled for September 12, 2023, at 4 p.m. in the Parish Hall.
Bellfry Strength for the Journey Retreat
July 7–9 will be our summer retreat time at the Bellfry in Lexington, Virginia. Registration is now open! Please remember, space is limited and we do fill up quickly. Registering early will secure a space for those who wish to attend. Would you prayerfully ask the Lord who among those you know, who might be in need of such a refreshing weekend and then invite them? Perhaps there is someone you would like for me to contact. Simply provide their contact information and I will reach out. Of course you are always welcome to return if you need a refresh and connect deeper with God. God has been faithful to this ministry over the years and He continues to provide comfort and reassurance of His presence and He continues to meet so many where they are on their life journey. Supporting each other during difficult times is important. Visit our website here.
Please pray for the wider Church and intercessions requested by our Congregants: The Diocese of Southwestern Virginia, and our Bishop, The Rt. Rev. Mark Bourlakas. Pray today for the Lay Employees and Volunteers of the Diocese of Southwestern Virginia. Pray for Brendon (friend of the Brooke family), Michael Murphy, John Thomas, Timmy, Rick Alexander, Bradley Fairchild and Karen Junkin (friends of the Gibsons), Gloria June Perry (mother of Michael Perry), Glen Jones (friend of the Riethmillers), Patricia Brown Boyer (sister of Madison Brown), Dolly Shumate (friend of the Lewis’), Carolyn Glenn (friend of Judy Schram), Jack Hershbell, Helen Kostel, Laura Stearns, Carl & Rachel Pattison, Tom Strickland, Worth & Katie Burnes (friends of the Smiths), Amelia Dull, Barb Ostrander (cousin of John Milford), Stephen DeMaria, Annie Campbell, Polly Lawrence, Betty Cadden, Jeff Mason, Joe Irby, Kent Wilson, Ginny Dunaway Ferguson, Mike Robblee and Rosemary Phillips (siblings of Paul Robblee), Glenn Szarzynski, the Hotchkiss Family, and those we name aloud or in our hearts. Pray for those who have died, especially Farris Hotchkiss. In Thanksgiving for the marriage of Jane Lee Forster and Schuyler Clark and for the 50th wedding anniversaries of Anna & Roger Crockett and Melissa & David Cox. Pray for the people of Sudan, Haiti, Ukraine.
In Thanksgiving for July Birthdays
7/5 Tom Vinson, Elise Brooke, Adam Webster, Harold Hill
7/6 Jay Crawford, David Wade
7/7 Benjamin Holston
7/8 Sue Shultis
7/10 Joe Simcoe
7/11 Mary Wilson, Elizabeth Grist, Mary Wilson Grist
7/12 Otis Mead
7/13 Mary Stuart Gilliam, Caroline Webster
7/18 Carla Henson
7/19 Jeff Mason
7/20 Lisa Tracy
7/21 Catharine Gaylard
7/23 Miss D Penick
7/28 Paul Robblee, Susan Minor
7/29 John Brooke
7/31 Margaret Haberman
We're so glad you're here! If you or someone you know is new to Grace and would like more information about Parish life, follow the link below.
Rockbridge NAACP Freedom Fun’d Raiser
“Community United: Spotlight on Glasgow” | 2 – 5pm Saturday, August 19, 2023 | James R. Thompson Sr. Community Center | Glasgow, VA | Donate now at www.rockbridgenaacp.com
Hosting Ukrainian Families
A humanitarian outreach effort organized by citizens of Lexington, Buena Visa, and Rockbridge County, we aim to pave the way for sponsoring temporary re-settlement of families who qualify for entry according to the laws of the United States.
The mission of Hosting Ukrainian Families is based upon love, compassion, and humanitarian concerns for families seeking to live in peace. Accordingly, a call is issued to each person joining in this effort to set aside all political, culturally divisive viewpoints, and all differences which may hinder or defeat these goals. To donate, click the link below.