Chicago Marathon This Sunday!

More Information below.

The Eighteenth Sunday after Pentecost
Ten Lepers Healed , Brian Kershisnik,
Oil on Canvas

7:30 a.m. Morning Prayer

8:00 a.m. Low Mass (Rite I)

Nursery available, 8:45 a.m.

9:00 a.m. Sung Mass

11:00 a.m. 
Solemn High Mass

This Week at Ascension + October 9, 2019

From the Rector
Also from the Rector
Chicago Marathon this Sunday
Open House Chicago
Upcoming Mass Commemorations
This Sunday at Ascension
The Parish Prayer List
Approved Vestry Minutes Online
The Last Word


Tell out, my soul, the greatness of the Lord!
Unnumbered blessings give my spirit voice;
Tender to me the promise of his word;
In God my Savior shall my heart rejoice.
   - Magnificat (paraphrase by Timothy Dudley-Smith), Hymn #437
Dear people of Ascension,
     If I had to boil this letter down to one short message, it would be: Thank you for singing. If I were to elaborate, I'd add: Thank you for so often singing so beautifully and so faithfully.
     My gratitude arose while away from the parish, over the past few days, at the annual Diocese of Chicago Clergy Conference. Held this year at Loyola University's retreat center up in Woodstock, the theme was 'clergy wellness' - remaining healthy in body, mind and spirit over the long haul. That part was, well, mostly ho-hum, but a highlight for me was the impressive and inspiring pick-up chorale made up of the eighty or so clergy who took part. The music was diverse, edifying and impressively and beautifully offered.
     Before singing our first note at the conference, Dillon Shipman, Director of Music at St. Elizabeth's, Glencoe, reminded us of the well-known counsel of John Wesley on the matter of singing hymns:
Sing lustily and with good courage.
Beware of singing as if you were half dead, or half asleep;
but lift up your voice with strength ....
The Clergy Conference included a simple, meaningful healing service on Monday evening.
Above all sing spiritually.
Have an eye to God in every word you sing.
     Many of us responded with chuckles and nods. I thought of all of you back here at Ascension.
     Those who gravitate to the 11:00 am Solemn High Mass here on Sundays are always grateful, I'm sure, for the choir's support in our hymn-singing. And who doesn't tingle in response to the descants? But the choir aside, and at whatever sung mass, on Sunday or otherwise, I so often hear both the musical training and the spiritual intentions in the congregation's participation.
     So, again: Thank you for singing. I hear you.
The Bishop Search and the Bishop Search Survey
were NOT topics at the Clergy Conference, but having just spent two days with our Bishop and other clergy I am reminded of the Sunday, October 13, deadline for YOUR participation in the survey. Click here to learn more and take the survey!
Following up on my 'Young People' letter from last week ... Seminarian David Knox and I are hoping to convene a conversation of interested young adults following the Solemn High Mass on October 20. I believe Fr. Petite may also be able to join us. Please be in touch with David, me or Fr. Petite if you may wish to join us for lunch and discuss ways to better connect younger Ascension attendees. If you may be able to help organize this gathering or have ideas about making it more appealing or relevant - do share!

Wow! and Ciao! Parishioners Anne Monma and Fracecsco Arena
recently moved to Franesco's native Italy. Below is the note I received from Anne in September. I'd delayed placing it here in hopes of getting a photo, but no luck ...
Dear Father Raymond,
It is with sadness that I'm writing to say that Francesco and I will be leaving the parish. We are moving to Italy on the 25th of this month. The preparations have been quite overwhelming and unfortunately that has kept us away from church.  
Please be so kind as to convey our farewells to our friends at Ascension. I'm sure we will be back at some point to visit.
So - arrevederci!
Anne & Francesco
Not as fun as moving to Italy ... but do look into Shingrix.
It's a newer vaccine for those of us over 50 and apparently impressively effective in preventing shingles. OK, I know this is not usual church newsletter fare, but a parishioner sent me a text this morning after receiving the vaccine and encouraged me to look into it. Having known a few souls who've suffered from shingles, I hope that sharing the information might serve the good of the whole. Here's a link to related information on the CDC website.
A carillonneur - who knew? It was great to see Elma Ling Hoffman and Christopher Poore back at Ascension and serving at the altar this past Sunday. I was surprised and delighted to learn afterward from Elma of her extensive interest and participation in the music and operation of the carillon at the University of Chicago. I hope she may share more at some point, and for now you can click here to read a related article, in which Elma is mentioned and pictured, from the Summer '19 issue of UChicago Magazine.
More Michaelmas! As we shared last week, we received many photos following our September 29 Michaelmas Celebration. My thanks to Br. Nathanael for compiling the three-page spread that you may view by clicking here.
Yes! They're married!  I meant to mention it last week but actually didn't have any photo until today from the September 20 wedding of the Revs. Anna Broadbent and Shawn Evelyn, shown here at the edge of Echo Park Lake, Los Angeles.  [photo: FreshFrameFoto]


What Ascension-goers should know:
- Please plan to share in worship at Ascension at normal times Sunday. Allow extra time to get to the church.
- The Marathon route requires the closure of LaSalle Street ALL MORNING SUNDAY. Consider taking the Red Line to the Clark and Division stop if you are able. Allow extra time if you drive.
- Access the church parking lot by way of Clark Street, heading either north or south, then head west on Elm (one way toward LaSalle) to the alley behind the church. Turn left into the alley. Enter the lot through the open gate just past the rectory garage.

- Please contact Vestry members Ken Kelling or Amber Zelazny, or the Rector, if you may be able to help serve free coffee to marathon spectators along LaSalle Street early Sunday morning. 
- Please join in praying for the health of all athletes taking part and for public safety throughout the marathon.


Ascension's Open House Chicago committee
has been diligently preparing for the OHC weekend. This Saturday, the committee will be putting up a timeline in Michael Hall with pictures from the archives. You may want to take a look.
Also in conjunction with the OHC weekend, Ascension is offering special presentations including a pipe organ demonstration, an opportunity to visit St. Anne's Convent and an opportunity to hear the choir. Here is the link to the special offerings.

Open House Chicago is a two-day event, Saturday, October 19 and Sunday, October 20. The hours are 10:00 to 5:00 both days. More information may be found at

Wednesday, October 9th
Commemoration of Robert Grosseteste,
Bishop of Lincoln
6:10 p.m. Evening Prayer
6:30 p.m. Said Mass

Saturday, October 12th
Commemoration of Wilfred,
Archbishop of York
9:30 a.m. Morning Prayer
10:00 a.m. Healing Mass
followed by Third-Saturday Rosary

The schedule of Sunday Readings, Celebrants, Preachers, Lectors, Acolytes, Ushers, Hymnody, Choral and Organ Repertoire for  Sunday, October 13, 2019  may be found by clicking here . More information on the Choral repertoire may be found by clicking here .


Please remember these people in your daily prayers
Geoffrey Wainwright, Fr. John Graham, Dorothy Murray, Mary Lou Devens, Michael Milano, Charley Taylor, August 'Augie' Alonzo, Ted Long, Jim Berger, Ethel Martin, Yuka Asai, Dean Pineda, Bazelais Suy, Carnola Malone, Charlene MacDougal, Pablo Illás, Doreen Finn, Don Wilber, Jacob Potter, Nathan, Monica, Jim, March Kimmel, Jim Walsh, Donnie Richmond

Prayers for the departed

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


The Approved Minutes of Vestry meetings are now available online to parishioners who request the link. If you would like Internet access to the Approved Vestry Minutes, please email the  Church Office and request the link. 
Once you access the web page, you can read all recent Approved Vestry Minutes. In addition, if you click on the subscribe button at the top right, you will be given email notice whenever a new set of Approved Minutes is added. 

Because I mentioned Wesley's hymn-singing counsel in my letter today, I thought the following feature may be of interest. - Fr. Raymond +
John Wesley's "Directions for Singing" was included as an appendage to Select Hymns: with Tunes Annext (1761), a collection of hymn texts and tunes designed for congregational use across the Methodist Connexion. Although a list of only seven brief points, it reveals much about the way in which Wesley desired music to be used in Methodist worship and the benefits that he believed could be reaped from its effective use. Carlton Young suggests that the "Directions" represent "Wesley's attempts to standardize hymn singing performance and repertory," which is borne out by their publication together with the tunes of Select Hymns, which Wesley advocated as authentically Methodist. The full significance of these instructions can only be understood when they are considered in relation to the theological and doctrinal position of Methodism, while they need to be assessed alongside Select Hymns and other collections of tunes used within Methodism in order to evaluate their impact. They highlight the importance Wesley attached to Select Hymns, while also offering more general practical advice, before concluding with a reminder of the purpose of congregational singing:

That this part of Divine Worship may be the more acceptable to God, as well as the more profitable to yourself and others, be careful to observe the following directions.

I. Learn these Tunes before you learn any others; afterwards learn as many as you please.

II. Sing them exactly as they are printed here, without altering or mending them at all; and if you have learned to sing them otherwise, unlearn it as soon as you can.

III. Sing All. See that you join with the congregation as frequently as you can. Let not a slight degree of weakness or weariness hinder you. If it is a cross to you, take it up and you will find a blessing.

IV. Sing lustily and with good courage. Beware of singing as if you were half dead, or half asleep; but lift up your voice with strength. Be no more afraid of your voice now, nor more ashamed of its being heard, than when you sung the songs of Satan.

V. Sing modestly. Do not bawl, so as to be heard above or distinct from the rest of the congregation, that you may not destroy the harmony; but strive to unite your voices together, so as to make one clear melodious sound.

VI. Sing in Time: whatever time is sung, be sure to keep with it. Do not run before nor stay behind it; but attend closely to the leading voices, and move therewith as exactly as you can. And take care you sing not too slow. This drawling way naturally steals on all who are lazy; and it is high time to drive it out from among us, and sing all our tunes just as quick as we did at first.

VII. Above all sing spiritually. Have an eye to God in every word you sing. Aim at pleasing him more than yourself, or any other creature. In order to this attend strictly to the sense of what you sing, and see that your Heart is not carried away with the sound, but offered to God continually; so shall your singing be such as the Lord will approve of here, and reward when he cometh in the clouds of heaven.

Portrait of John Wesley by William Hamilton, 1788.

Fr. Patrick Raymond,

Susan Schlough,      

Parish Office