Dear St. Stephen’s church family and friends,
Greetings in Christ!

It is good for me to hold fast to God, to put my trust in the Lord God.
-Psalm 73:28

Those who would like to help with the Mother’s Day Gift Baskets for Adele House and other shelters in Saskatoon are invited for a short meeting tomorrow after the service. Grab a coffee and we will gather soon thereafter in the back of the sanctuary.

There will also be a Building Committee Meeting tomorrow after the 10:30 am service. Grab a coffee and gather downstairs.

Confirmation Class meets tomorrow, from 1-3.

We will celebrate Pentecost together with the St. Stephen’s Malayalam congregation on Sunday, May 19th at 5 pm! Please mark your calendars and plan to attend this service of worship and celebration, and mark your calendars NOT to attend the 10:30 service on May 19th because there will not be one! We will hold an 8:30 service that day, but not a 10:30 am. (Why not attend a different church that morning, in honour of Pentecost, where the Holy Spirit fell on all believers)? For the past 2 years the Malayalam congregation has joined us at 10:30 and it’s time to switch it up! We will have a light potluck supper following the service. Please bring a dish to share if you are able. Plan to wear red, or bright colours for Pentecost–red, orange and yellow, the colours of the fire of the Spirit!

These are Linda’s flowers showing their beautiful colours last week, before the snow! If you like taking photos, please send me photos of signs of hope and spring and resurrection. I would love to include in parish emails.
Julie has made a Volunteer job poster for Vacation Bible School! Our annual Vacation Bible School will take place from July 22-26, from 9:30-noon, with the theme of Hometown Nazareth. Please check it out and prayerfully consider where you might be able to help out! It takes a village to raise a Vacation Bible School! (Here’s Julie a few years ago, working behind the scenes to make it a wonderful week).
Mark with Marc at Sherbrooke Community Centre, on Tuesday, April 23rd at 7 pm. All welcome!

Parish Cycle of Prayer
Monday: for Vacation Bible school this coming summer, that it may be a time of sharing the good news with the children in our church and community. For volunteers and for all involved.
Tuesday: for Perry, as he prepares to be ordained to the priesthood on May 31st in Prince Albert.
Wednesday: for all who are sick or in hospital or recovering at home, for healing and strength, for courage on the road ahead.
Thursday: for Ruth and Obinna with Fenna, Fezianna and Febenna, who will be baptised on April 29th.
Friday: for Heather and Jeff and family

In Christ’s peace,
Rev. Amy <><

Our welcomes are all connected: How we welcome our childhood selves is connected to how much we welcome the children in front of us, which is connected to how much we welcome the Christ child. And to welcome the Christ child is to welcome humanity itself. Children are the most human among us. They are the most present, most authentic, and most connected with the least effort and intention.

The incarnation is the foundation for the holy act of becoming human. Jesus’ life showed us that each developmental stage can be a place of holy delight. He was a child who did childlike and childish things. In him was the delight and wonder of discovery. He who knew all things experienced them afresh with a human body. He experienced life as an infant, a toddler, a child, a tween and an adolescent. He encountered the same fears and worries and existential questions that we do.

As we welcome our own childhood selves, we welcome the humanity of Jesus. And in that welcoming, we find a companion for life. And further, when we welcome our own childhood selves and the Christ child, we will be more able to welcome children in our own lives. The act of welcoming involves a presence filled with acceptance, compassion, and empathy. When we feel with others and accept them, our level of desire for connection deepens.
-Lucy Finn Borgo (from Faith Like a Child, our next book study book)!