In the name of our Lord and the parishioners of St. Michaels & All Angels Anglican Church we welcome you to our website and hope you spend some time navigating the pages to learn about us.
Our parish is an intimate Anglo-Catholic church, offering a place for those to whom the Anglican Way is appealing as a worship experience. We believe that the hearing of Holy Scripture, singing of great songs of the Church, Evangelical and timely preaching along with beautiful liturgy combine to glorify God. In such a setting, it is our hope that our parishioners and visitors not only deepen their relationship with our Lord, but find a place and time to be renewed in the spirit and find peace.
We invite you and your family to visit us and let us surround you with the love of Christ. It would be an honor to worship with you! We are a very hospitable community of believers.
May the blessing of God the Father, the Son and the Holy Ghost be with you, those you love and those for whom you pray. Amen.
Breast Cancer Awareness Month
ABOUT LAS VEGAS
A few days have gone by since the horrific violence of the Las Vegas massacre. There have been thousands of articles written and nonstop television reporting. I read that the investigators are no closer to understanding the motive of the shooter. They have a huge amount of information on him, but nothing has told them anything definitive about him. Most mass killers leave behind a manifesto or recording to explain their moment of infamy, but not Stephen Paddock. So far, there’s just nothing…nothing. I’m sure eventually it will all come out.
There are the usual calls for gun control, stricter laws, better security by buildings like the casino which are tall and give potential shooters an unrestricted view. Many more calls to action will be made, most of them reasonable and good. This tragedy seems to be like Hurricane Harvey in one way – How do you prepare for an eight hundred year flood of biblical proportions? The police, security companies, and others can’t protect us from everything. Especially the Devil, Satan, The Deceiver.
Other than some ministers, I hardly ever hear anyone putting the blame squarely where it belongs – The Devil. Isn’t Satan actually the cause? Here’s what Holy Scripture tells us: “Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour” (1 Peter 5:8). He comes “only to steal and kill and destroy” (John. 10:10). When something like this happens, a huge number of people ask “Why would God let this happen?” We never know the exact answer to that question. But we do know the exact answer to who caused this to happen! Satan! People are listening to an outdoor concert at the end of three days, enjoying themselves, when suddenly bullets rain down on them. Fifty-Eight are killed, five hundred wounded. FIVE HUNDRED! People are on the sidewalk in Europe walking along, holding hands, stopping at sidewalk café’s when a driver plows into them with a big truck. Just runs them down; People in an Orlando nightclub or an Aurora Colorado theatre, just expressing their joy, taking a break from this often hard world, massacred; Kids walk into schools, shoot up the place, kids die and are hurt – they were just trying to learn; terrorists fly planes into buildings and kill nearly four thousand people, but that morning normal, everyday people boarded planes to go do business or see loved ones and people went to work in their buildings just like they’ve always done, like they should do, and they’re dead. First responders run toward the danger. Toward it, not away from it, and they die. I could go on and on and on.
The one thing all these horrors have in common is the cause; the Devil trying to create doubt and anger in us about our faith in God. Nothing more, nothing less. From the very beginning in the Garden of Eden until this day it’s always been the Devil. You’re happy? Satan won’t have it. Joy has finally come to you? Not if Satan can stop it. Actually in love with your husband or wife? There’s no Holy Sacrament the Devil doesn’t want to banish. If The Destroyer has his way, you won’t be all that God wants for you; Your life will be crushed. If he can, the Devil will make sure the choices in your life lead you away from Eternal Life.
We must always remember, Satan has already lost! When Jesus conquered death, Satan was conquered! Oh, he can create havoc trying, hell on earth even, but in the end, he doesn’t win. He didn’t win in the Garden of Eden and he didn’t win in Las Vegas. The Devil is written about in Holy Scripture a great deal. Here is some of what we are taught: God’s Spirit, who is in you, is greater than the devil, who is in the world (1 John 4:4); God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear (I Corinthians 10:13);
Resist the devil and he will flee from you (James 4:7); The devil is filled with fury because he knows his time is short (Revelation 12:12).
So we must keep Satan on our radar. He is not to be feared because he has already been defeated. Any seeming victories we think he wins on earth are only temporary. God is using them to shape our faith, like clay on a potter’s wheel. And our response? Worship, putting God on the throne; reading Holy Scripture, God’s Word, instead of the Devil’s library; And pray…We must pray to God on bended knee, asking for forgiveness when we give in to temptation. These are tools God has given us. We must use them.
The evil in humans, instigated and nurtured by the Devil is what we must recognize for what it is. So we must recognize Almighty God for who He is. He sent His Son to defeat Satan once and for all and He sends His Holy Angels to watch over us as we stand tall against evil.
We remember those fifty-eight persons who innocently died in Las Vegas and the hundreds wounded. We pray for their souls and for the healing. We pray for those who became heroes that night, for the first responders, doctors, and nurses who worked tirelessly under terrible stress and great confusion. We pray for the families of all of these that they may feel the presence of God in their lives. All of these are promised the peace that passes all understanding. May they receive it. It’s often said about crimes that knowing the “why” helps in recovery. Maybe it does. But I think it’s more important to realize the “who” of their pain and gain peace knowing that their enemy, of whom Stephen Paddock was a tool, has been defeated and exists in frustration forever and ever. Amen.