This Week at Ascension + December 29, 2021

"Worship the Lord in the beauty of holiness." - Psalm 96
Today: Wednesday, December 29
Holy Innocents (tr.)

6:00 p.m. Evening Prayer via ZOOM

6:30 p.m. Sung Mass: In-person &

Image: "Massacre of the Innocents in Bethlehem" Ludovico Mazzolino - Artwork on USEUM
Sunday, January 2, 2022

The Second Sunday after Christmas Day

8:30 a.m. - Morning Prayer via ZOOM

9:00 a.m. In-person only Sung Mass with Organ and Hymns

11:00 a.m. In-person &
Solemn High Mass
Mass setting: Congregational Mass setting

Image: Ascension rosary window "Finding in the Temple"

Please note that the Evensong and Benediction preceded by
organ recital previously scheuled for Sunday afternoon
January 2 has been cancelled.
From the Rector
New Year

Of the Father's love begotten
ere the worlds began to be,
he is Alpha and Omega,
he the source, the ending he,
of the things that are, that have been,
and that future years shall see
evermore and evermore.

- Hymnal 1982, #82, v. 1

Image: Santa Nino de Atocha,
a devosional image of the Christ Child
popular in Spain and parts of Latin America
Dear people of Ascension,

Most of us, I imagine, annually experience and take part in two new years. In faith as Christians we began a new year weeks ago now, on the First Sunday of Advent. But by virtue of culture and for other reasons, we also anticipate the new year as observed on secular calendars a few days hence. For your attention with regard to the latter:

  • Regrettably, due to multiple factors, I have felt it best to cancel the Evensong and Benediction, preceded by organ recital, that was to have taken place this coming Sunday afternoon, January 2. Also, at the request of the parents of the infant candidate, the baptism that had been scheduled for Sunday morning has now been postponed.

  • Thanks to all who have generously supported our parish financially in 2021. If you anticipate making an end-of-year gift and if for tax purposes you itemize your charitable donations, please remember that donations must be postmarked by December 31 to be recognized as 2021 donations. Online donations must be made by 11:59 p.m. on the 31st. Hand-delivered donations must be at Ascension before Br. Nathanael leaves on Thursday the 30th at 3:00 p.m.

  • A series of conversations on the meanings and evolution of Anglo-Catholic identity are in the works for January and February. They are being planned by Father Petite and Mother Murphy-Gill in response to inquiries by a number of our young adults. Stay tuned for more information.

  • On behalf of our Wardens and Vestry members, I am hereby announcing the 2021 Annual Meeting: Sunday, January 30, 2022, at Noon. Unless circumstances change, we will hold the meeting in St. Michael's Hall and we are investigating live virtual participation as well. Please mark your calendars and see the Vestry-approved slate of candidates below.

Many of us are no doubt anticipating the new year with apprehension and justifiably so. May we begin it with prayers: for wisdom and perseverance to face the unknown and difficult, and for hearts and eyes open to familiar comforts that endure and new blessings yet to be revealed.

Also from the Rector
New windows have been installed over the past few days in the rector's office, at the front of the parish house, and in the church kitchen (over the sink, in the east-facing wall). The Vestry's decision to replace them was based on energy loss/savings considerations, the windows' overall deterioration and, in the case of the windows in the rector's office abatement of the significant LaSalle Street traffic noise.
The death on Sunday of the Most Rev. Desmond Mpilo Tutu, OMSG CH GCStJ, former Archbishop of the Anglican Church of South Africa is, as many will recognize, a great loss to the whole Church. The obituary from the Guardian gives a lot of detail germane to the Anglican Church, Tutu's ministries and leadership roles within it and the evolution of his prophetic convictions and voice. The October 1984 photograph above is personally meaningful as I was standing nearby when it was taken on the grounds of General Seminary in New York, where the Archbishop was a visiting professor and I a second year seminarian. The photo was taken just after Archbishop Tutu and his wife Leah learned from the Norwegian Ambassador that Tutu was the recipient of the 1984 Nobel Peace Prize. VID symptoms.
A slate of candidates for Warden and Vestry members, for election at the January 30, 2022, annual meeting, was presented to and approved by the Vestry at its meeting of Thursday, December 16. Due to some partial-term vacancies, the Nominating Committee, chaired by Jim Lo Bello, was tasked with identifying a total of five vestry nominees, in addition to the one warden nominee. A warden's normal term is two years; vestry terms are normally three.

  • Laverne Saunders, Warden - 2-year term
  • Ian Barillas - Mc Intee, Vestry - 3-year term
  • Sean Hansen, Vestry - 3-year term
  • Joshua Simpson, Vestry - 3-year term
  • Marlea Edinger, Vestry - 2-year term
  • Ken Cozette, Vestry - 1-year term

More information on the nominees and on the January 30 annual meeting will be provided in weeks to come.
COVID Updates and Guidance

  • We continue to navigate fluid pandemic circumstances. As I understand it, the positive COVID testing rate in Cook County has significantly increased from a week ago. Most or all additional data I could provide here is, I trust, already known to most or all readers. With regard to Ascension ...

  • Count on some changes to some or all liturgies in order to account for my absence, optimize social distancing and/or in the event of no-shows by those scheduled to minister who may become unavailable.

  • All who lead worship are now asked to remain masked, even when leading, reading, singing or greeting.

  • For your well-being and the well-being of others, please consider wearing an N95 or KN 95 mask or similar. KN95 masks are available at the church.

  • Please do register with an usher in the narthex if you will be a member of the congregation and follow other protocols by now familiar (e.g. handwashing!).

  • Look for any significant updates by way of special edition newsletters or on the Ascension website homepage.

  • Pray.
If you have not yet seen it, please ...

(And don't miss the photos!)

The Rev. Meghan Murphy-Gill's sermon for Christmas Eve may be read here.

The Rev. Gary Lawler's sermon for
Christmas Day may be read here.

The Rev. Meghan Murphy-Gill's sermon for the First Sunday after Christmas Day may be read here.

Organ Repertoire for January 2, 2022
Three settings:
Vom Himmel hoch da komm' ich her'
PWV 52 & PWV 478
Johann Pachelbel (1653-1706)  
BWV 769/II
Johann Sebastian Bach (1685-1750)
At the Entrance Procession
At the Offertory
At the Communion
At the Retiring Procession
Toccata in E KWV 406
Johann Ludwig Krebs (1713-1780)
About our 2021 Repertoire
As I develop a long-range plan for repertoire each year, I choose a theme or area of emphasis, often complete works or a complete large-scale work by one composer. During 2021, organ music by women composers and African-American composers is being and will be featured in voluntaries and recitals throughout the year. There are some little-known gems waiting to be discovered, as well as music by major composers, with whom works for the organ are not generally associated. Enjoy!

Between Masses, please don’t forget that The Choir of the Ascension has recorded upwards of 60 tracks that you can listen to anywhere you have an internet connection. They can be found here:
Ascension Connections
(with your click and God's help)
Participate in Ascension masses at our YouTube Channel. (Look for other connections options soon.)
Meeting ID:
792 031 7452
Password: 1133
Join-by-Phone Option: (312) 626-6799

Weekly Ascension Schedule

For connections:
via Zoom (click here)

8:30 a.m. Morning Prayer via Zoom
9:00 a.m. In-person Sung Mass
11:00 a.m. In-person and Live-Streamed Solemn High Mass

7:30 A.M. Morning Prayer via FACEBOOK LIVE 
6:00 p.m. Evening Prayer via Zoom

6:30 p.m. Said Mass
Please give generously as you are able.
Treasurer Susan Schlough has asked me to remind you of Ascension's ongoing expenses at this time. To the extent that you are able, payment on your pledges or the offering of Holy Day or other special gifts will be greatly appreciated. You may still write a check and mail it to the church, or online payment is possible through the buttons at various places on our website. Thank you!
For our prayers: The Rev. Canon Paula Clark, August 'Augie' Alonzo, Jim Berger, Sarah Ponder, Taffy Wehe, Beth Hall, Sue Lenz, Ben, David D. Jones, Carys and Joshua Benjamin, Lawrence Cox, Gina, Tom Baer, Mary Stetson, Lillian Alexander, Patricia Grisham, Miguel, Edward Minieka, Sjon Brouwer
Birthdays: Nancy G. McChesney, 12/26; Ned Hedley, 12/27 
Requiescat in pace: Fletcher Glen Hedley, 12/31/2003; Stacey Elizabeth High, 12/31/2001, Cynthia Moreno, Robert Orpen, Priest; Denise Pacheco, Cousin of Kenneth Kelling, 12/26/2021

Rest eternal grant unto them, O Lord, and let light perpetual shine upon them;
May their souls and the souls of all the departed, through the mercy of God, rest in peace.

The Rev. Patrick Raymond, Rector

The Rev. Meghan Murphy-Gill, Curate

Susan Schlough, Treasurer

Br. Nathanael Deward Rahm BSG, Parish Office
Vestry of Church of the Ascension
Cheryl Peterson, Sr. Warden; Kenneth Kelling, Jr. Warden; Kelly Colomberti, Marilyn Evans, Lynette Hector, Jim Lo Bello, George Pineda, David Reeves, Samuel Sommers, Enrique Vilaseco, Amber Zelazny

Approved minutes of Vestry meetings are always available online to parishioners who request the link. If you would like Internet access to these Vestry Minutes, please email the Parish Office and request the link. Once you access the web page, you can read all recent Vestry meeting minutes.
The link remains live indefinitely. Any parishioner who has the link will not need to request a new link from month to month.