We seek to "worship the Lord in the beauty of holiness," following the Anglican liturgy found in the Book of Common Prayer (1928) and the Anglican Missal.
NOTA BENE: Beginning this week and continuing until Saturday, March 6, we will have NO WEEKDAY SERVICES at St Joseph’s and our parish offices will be closed. Tanya Wilcox is recuperating from major surgery and during that time she will not be able to drive. I’ll be at home during the whole of this time, caring or her or reading (not necessarily in that order). I am grateful to Deacon Lee, who will be bringing me to Sunday services each of these weeks, so THERE WILL BE NO CHANGE IN OUR SUNDAY SCHEDULE. Please remember Tanya in our prayers. Her doctor told me she’ll be in considerable pain during the weeks of her recuperation.
Until further notice, due to the pandemic, on Sundays Morning Prayer will be read at 9.00 AM, the Holy Eucharist offered at 9.30, and Evening Prayer will be read at 1.00 PM.
On Wednesdays, Thursday, and Fridays, Morning Prayer is read at 11.45 AM, the Holy Eucharist is offered at noon, and Evening Prayer is at 7.00 PM
Our Schedule (after the Pandemic is over) is:
7.35 AM Morning Prayer
8.00 AM Holy Eucharist (said)
9.15 Bible Class
10.30 AM Holy Eucharist (sung)
11.45 AM Fun, Food and Fellowship
As much fun, food and fellowship as Anglicans allow themselves to have
1.00 PM - Evening Prayer during the summer
4.00 PM - Evening Prayer rest of the year
4.00 PM - Evensong on the Second Sunday of each month
Wednesdays, Thursdays & Fridays
11:45 AM - Morning Prayer
12:00 noon - Mass
7.00 PM - Evening Prayer
Holy Days as above
For each weeks schedule of Saint's Days and Holy Days, see the schedule on our "About Us" page
Reading St Augustine’s The City of God IX
“…in the discussions making up Cicero’s Republic, the Roman commonwealth, it was said, had degenerated into ‘a cesspool of iniquity,’ and Cicero himself said it had ‘long since perished’…[in their discussion] Scipio said, ‘As different notes come together to form a harmony…so the State is formed into a concordant whole by the consent of very diverse elements…the closest and strongest bond for the commonwealth, and without which it cannot maintain itself is justice.’ This topic the participants took up with great eagerness and insisted that it be thoroughly discussed…during which, Scipio won the agreement of all that ‘the commonwealth exists for the well-being of the people,' and defined the people as ‘not a mob or unruly mass gathering, but the multitude come together by a mutual recognition of rights and a mutual cooperation for the common good.’ He concluded that a true commonwealth can be administered either by a monarch, a ruling body or by all the people, as long as justice is the common, binding cord…in the absence of justice, the discussion ran, any commonwealth is not only evil but ceases to exist…such, Cicero states, is the present state of the Roman commonwealth. ‘It is no state at all.’
…Cicero goes on ‘What is there left of the ancient virtue which undergirded the Roman state? It has been so utterly cast to the winds that morals are not only unobserved, but ignored... the old customs have been lost, and for all this great evil we ourselves are not only are responsible but deserve punishment…By our own vices, not by chance, we have lost the republic, though we retain the name.’
Let those men really take a look at the republic and its true practices. Let them ask when true justice ever flourished or if it was not, as their own statements suggest, merely a thin paper painting of justice…their ancient state was never, by Cicero’s own words and definitions, a true republic, because it never practiced justice…
However, using their definitions there is a true commonwealth (if I may call it that) better-governed than that extolled by Cicero and his companions. It has as its Founder and Ruler Jesus Christ and this is certain: True justice for all reigns only in that commonwealth of which Holy Scripture says: ‘Glorious things are said of thee, O City of God.’” – St Augustine of Hippo, The City of God
Parish Food Closet
We collect non-perishable food items throughout the year and every two months we caravan the donations to the New Braunfels SOS Food Bank.
During the Coronavirus pandemic, due to severe shortages in town, we're collecting food in boxes on the front porch of David Hall for a weekly trip to the New Braunfels SOS Food Bank. Come anytime, day or night, and leave food on the porch.
Options for Life
Every Lent we raise money for an annual gift to the New Braunfels "Options for Life" Program, supporting young, single mothers struggling to raise their children. We also have an OfL Collection Jar in our parish hall for through-the-year donations.
On Memorial Day and Veterans' Day we take up special collections to help wounded and disabled veterans. At Christmastime, we lay wreaths at the graves of departed veterans.
Our Texas Freeze Water Bank
Because of our recent "Texas Freeze," public water supplies in the area are contaminated and a "boil order" is in effect. Fortunately, St Joseph''s has a good supply of bottled drinking water. If you are in need, please contact the parish and we can have someone meet you at David Hall and give you a case of "Texas Spring Drinking Water."
When you come by the church, take a look at our "new" old bell, a bronze 100 -year-old beauty with a rich tone that carries all the way down to the river when it rings! The stained glass windows in the church are less than 20 years old, but are closely-patterned after stained glass seen throughout the South from about 1870-1920 (St Joseph's boasts the only Men's Room in central Texas with its own stained-glass window). St Joseph’s chalice and paten were originally given as a gift to the first Episcopal Bishop of Quincy, Illinois, the Rt Rev Thomas Burgess, in 1878. As the hallmark under the base of the chalice shows, it was made by the Gorham Manufacturing Company, the leading silversmiths of 19th century America. How St Joseph’s came into the possession of a chalice & paten owned by a former Yankee chaplain in the War Between the States is a tale worth hearing (but at another time and in another place).
Receiving Holy Communion at St Joseph’s
At St Joseph’s, any baptized person is welcome to receive Holy Communion. We have a kneeler in front of the table we are using for an Altar. At communion-time, form a line and approach after the person in front of you has received the Sacrament. If you cannot kneel (or get up easily), please remain standing and receive. The priest will place the Sacrament in your hands (it is customary to support your right hand with the left): simply lift the Sacrament to your mouth. It is the sacramental Body of Christ. Please do not handle the consecrated Bread with your fingers. If you prefer to have him place the Host directly on your tongue, simply open your mouth as you approach and he will place it there. If you would like to have the Host dipped in the chalice rather than drink from it, continue to hold it in your open hand and the priest will take it, dip it into the chalice and then place it directly in your mouth. Please do not dip the host into the chalice yourself.
If you wish to drink from the chalice, the Chalice-bearer will be standing beside you at the kneeler and will help you drink from it directly.
If you do not wish to receive Holy Communion (or are not eligible to because you are not baptized), but would like a blessing, stand in line until your time comes, approach the kneeler and either kneel or stand and the priest will bless you. To let him know you wish to be blessed, cross your arms over your breast when you approach. He will make the sign of the Cross on your forehead as he blesses you.
Any baptized person is welcome to receive Holy Communion, but not everyone always should. If you are in a state of serious sin, it would be best not to present yourself for Holy Communion, here or elsewhere, until you have confessed your sins, resolved “to live a new life,” and received absolution. Anyone, baptized or not, can always come forward to receive a blessing.
– Fr Gregory Wilcox
Sunday, February 21 - the Second Sunday in Lent
9.00 AM - Morning Prayer
9.30 AM - the Holy Eucharist
10.45 AM - Lenten Treats in David Hall
1.00 PM - Evening Prayer
Annual Meeting Date Set
Though recent events, having little to do with the parish, have delayed our Annual Meeting, the Vestry has set the date of Sunday, March 28 (which is Palm Sunday) to finally hold the meeting. Following the morning’s Mass we’ll have a parish brunch with the meeting called to order immediately thereafter. This is the first official notice of the meeting.
New in the Tract Rack
More copies are now available of "Daily Lenten Prayers," the booklet we published before Lent but quickly disappeared from the rack. There are also newly-printed copies of "An Anglican Guide to Feasting and Fasting," summarizing the traditional practices that Christians have long observed about, fasting, abstinence, and - not to be forgotten! - days and seasons of feasting as well!
On the narthex table are copies of Fr Wilcox's "Daily Lenten Meditations," based on the teachings of the Desert Fathers (and Mothers!) on the spiritual life and growth as found in The Sayings of the Fathers of the Desert.
The Vestry of St Joseph's will have its next meeting on Sunday, March 21, following the 9.30 Eucharist.
See this week's Liturgical Schedule on our "About Us" page
Born in England about AD 920, Oswald was the son of noble Danish parents, members of a family well-connected in both church and state. One uncle Odo was Archbishop of Canterbury. Another uncle on his mother’s side (also named Odo) was Archbishop of Fleury in France. His cousin, Ostetel, was the Archbishop of York. As a young man Oswald was sent to Fleury for his education. He took monastic vows there and his uncle ordained him to the priesthood at the completion of his studies. Returning to England in 959, he was taken into the household of St Dunstan, Bishop of Worcester. When St Dunstan became Archbishop of Canterbury, he nominated Oswald as his successor. He was consecrated Bishop of Worchester in 962, by St Dunstan himself. In this office, Oswald worked against widespread ecclesiastical abuses among the parish clergy and put down a series of scandals in monastic houses. To encourage strict observance of the Benedictine rule, the saint supported the building of several monasteries, including the famous Abbey of Ramsey in Huntingdonshire. He also traveled the diocese extensively, visiting parishes and encouraging the clergy to take a leading role in local charity and education. To that end, he established schools in most of the monasteries and convents he founded or reformed.
In 972, St Oswald was elevated to the Archbishopric of York, where he continued the same programs he’d instituted in Worchester. In addition to striving to improve the morals of his clergy, the pious bishop also labored to increase their theological knowledge - he wrote several theological books directed at improving the level of clerical education.
Oswald was much loved by both the clergy and laity of his diocese. He was rarely spoken of as “bishop of Worchester” or York, but commonly called “Father of Worchester” or “Father of York.” During Lent it was his daily custom to wash the feed of twelve poor folks, who he then gave new clothes and a purse of coins. On February 28, 992, as he was washing a poor man’s feet, he collapsed and died. He was buried in Worchester and for 500 years was one of the leading pilgrimage destinations of England.
Your prayers, support and contributions will help us keep a faithful Anglican presence and traditional Anglican worship alive and kickin' here in the Texas Hill Country. We have a lot to do to bring our parish mission to this part of God's world: to be "Catholic in Tradition, Biblical in Faith and Sacramental in Worship." Your generous (and tax-deductable!) donations will help fund that mission and keep us movin'!
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