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This Week at St. Patrick's October 3, 2018

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Every year, as I reflect on the life of St. Francis, I read a passage in Lesser Feasts and Fasts that always brings me up short. It is:

Of all the saints, Francis is the most popular and admired, but probably the least imitated; few have attained to his total identification with the poverty and suffering of Christ.

I hope that I can aim my life a little closer to Francis’ example of a Jesus centered existence because it would lead to a better world. This Sunday, we will celebrate Francis with a Blessing of the Animals service. He might laugh at us for our love of pets and for how we pamper them, but legend tells us that he preached to the animals which is why he is the patron of all animals. Our blessing service will be during our regular Sunday worship time (10am) and, weather permitting, in the front courtyard. Please bring your pets, a picture, or stuffed animals. 
On Sunday evening, I invite you to participate in Game Night in the Great Hall. It is a potluck, so bring some food and a game to share. Game night is a great opportunity to get to know others in the parish and to invite friends. It begins at 5pm. 
This past Sunday, I preached about being a courageous voice [Listen]. My words were inspired by the current controversy about alleged sexual assault by our Supreme Court Justice nominee. Yesterday, Bishop Mariann offered a pastoral letter to the Diocese [Bishop's Letter] about her view on this important topic. In the letter, Bishop Mariann wrote:

If you have experienced sexual violence and would like to talk to someone about it, please know that there are clergy and lay leaders throughout the Diocese of Washington, including your bishop, who will listen. We will listen without judgment. We will listen with compassion and gratitude to God that you survived. We will say to you now what you deserved to hear the moment the abuse happened: It was not your fault. This should never have happened to you. You are worthy of love and respect. 

If you need a listening ear and prayer, I encourage you to reach out to me or my assistant Jenifer Gamber


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