Saint Patrick's Church Schola

Lenten 2006 Class -- Classical Spiritual Disciplines

Thursday, June 30, 2005


From Luke Syfert -- our summer missionary to India:

Greetings in the name of Jesus Christ

The Lord is good all the time. Thank you all for your
thoughts and prayers.

I will be traevling tomorrow to Cape KenyaKumari,
this is where the Tsunami caused the most damage in India.
They still do not have a body count there and are still searching.
The orphange there I'm sure is full, this will be my first
opportunity to work with Tsunami survivors, I am very excited
but I am also feeling the pain for these children.
I asked Richard how the Tsunami affected the people in Madurai.
He said there were no deaths here caused by the Tsunami,
but the fear and depression from such a tragic event
still affects the way people live everyday.

So far the kids I have been working with in this area
are from a Mentally challenged school and A hearing empaired
school. This has been kind of a filler until we are able to
work out the details for the practicum. I met with the doctor
I will be working with and it seems that I will be extremly busy
this summer, which is great. It has been such a blessing so far
to be able to sit with these children of God and simply Love on them.

The orpahange I will be working with is 10 miles out of the city.
The Pennel School and Hostel has around
100 children, mostly girls. I will be spending most of my
time here once I get back from the Cape. It sounds like I will be
a lot in the Southern area. In a couple of weeks
I will be traveling to Bangelore, where there is a Rescue
for teenage prostitutes.

I praise the Lord for these opportunities
to share His love, I know and confess that Jesus Christ is the great
counselor and I will follow by his guidance.

Pray for my heart to become more sensetive to the Holy Spirit as the
Lord uses me as a vessel in the lives of His children. More later...


Wednesday, June 29, 2005

More Thoughts on Sunday's Sermon

Here some questions I have been pondering:

If we are called to "empty ourselves" in our relationships within the Christian community, what kind of life patterns need to be in place in a local church so that we can get close enough to "empty ourselves"?

What practices could we embrace that foster "emptying ourselves"?

Do these need to be programmed, or are these things that each person should simply build into her/his own life apart from any formal church structure?

Should there be a mix of personal habit and church structures?

Any specific ideas?

May the comments begin!!



Monday, June 27, 2005


We are beginning a new practice this week. We will continue the reflection time we have after each sermon on Sunday on our community blog. I will post the central ideas of the sermon and then everyone is invited to add thoughts, comments, questions in the comment area. To make a comment, click comments below. Write your post -- be sure and include your name -- and post it. I think it will be pretty obvious what do once you open comments.

"Emptied Himself" Philippians 2:5-11

-Christ emptied himself by moving from God to Man (although he did not leave aside his divinity -- he assumed humanity)
-Christ emptied himself by moving from life to death -- even death on a cross
----the cross was not merely a way of death but the most humiliating kind of death
----Jesus voluntarily submitted to this form of death
-A key metaphor to understand Christ's self-emptying is slave (re: the Colonial Village illustration)
-Paul tells us about Christ because he wants us to empty ourselves
-Emptying ourselves is impossible without the grace of God/the Holy Spirit operative in our lives.
-On the last day Jesus will be exalted and vindicated and we will be exalted and vidicated with and in him.
----this is a promise to sustain as we seek to take on the mindset of Christ -- the mindset of emptying ourselves.

I'm looking forward to the discussion!!