Worship was held on Sunday April 23, 2023 @ 10:30 a.m. in person and interactively on the Internet using Skype. Download the CORRECTED Order of Worship with weekly announcements: RIGHT CLICK HERE. The recording of the Facebook Live Webcast RIGHT CLICK HERE. Christina McLaughlin sings "Take Me To The King" at 43:05 on the recording.
LGBTQSIA2ss+ Community of Central NY, in Elmira, NY @ Ray Of Hope Church, Inc. held Worship Sunday, April 23, 2023, at Ray Of Hope Church @ 10:30 a.m. in person and interactively on the Internet using Skype. We celebrated the third Sunday of The Resurrection. ** We are experimenting with camera turns and we have had some difficulties.
The Sermon begins at 48:18 on the recording. The Gospel story, the Road to Emmaus is the source of the outline of the worship service: The service of the Word of God and then the service of the Eucharist, Holy Communion. The structure comes in part from today's Gospel reading; Luke 24:13-35.
The Scripture readings today confirm Jesus was exactly who He said He was, the very God in the flesh, "God from God, Light from Light, True God from True God" as stated in the Creed. All people of every sexual orientation and every gender expression are saved by the very power of God made known by God raising Jesus from the grave of death. There is no condemnation for anyone because of their sexual orientation or gender. There are three points to start with. 1) Today is the third of six Sundays of the season of the Resurrection. The Great 50 days from Resurrection to Pentecost have begun. Every Sunday is Resurrection, the Lord's Day, in this 40-day season through the celebration of the Lord's Ascension on Thursday, May 18. We celebrate the Ascension of the Lord on Sunday, May 21. May 28 is Pentecost Sunday when the Great 50 Days are over. On Pentecost, we pray for a renewal of the Holy Spirit. The following Sunday, we start Pride Month. June 1, 2023, will be the 20th Anniversary of our moving into this building and holding our first public worship event in Elmira, NY. 2) How our counting 50 days from the Resurrection to Pentecost is similar to the Jewish Counting of the Omer. This similarity is explained in the sermon. 3) All the promises of eternal life outlined in the second reading today are assured to LGBTQSIA2ss+ people, and there is no doubt about this. 4) Ray Of Hope Church strongly supports Trans persons, Trans education, Trans medicine, and the professionals who assist Trans persons. We are very critical of the attempts we see in the Church and the State that make things difficult for Trans people and any person of any sexual orientation or gender expression.
Finally, we drew attention again to the unfortunate teaching published by the Roman Catholic Bishops in the United States regarding Trans care and Trans health. Ray Of Hope Church completely disagrees with the Bishops. Here is a short piece of that section.
United States Conference of Catholic Bishops. DOCTRINAL NOTE ON THE MORAL LIMITS TO TECHNOLOGICAL MANIPULATION OF THE HUMAN BODY. March 20, 2023, section 20, page 12: Any technological intervention that does not accord with the fundamental order of the human person as a unity of body and soul, including the sexual difference inscribed in the body, ultimately does not help but, rather, harms the human person.
DOCTRINAL NOTE ON THE MORAL LIMITS TO TECHNOLOGICAL MANIPULATION OF THE HUMAN BODY. March 20 2023, section 18, pages 11& 12: Catholic health care services must not perform interventions, whether surgical or chemical, that aim to transform the sexual characteristics of a human body into those of the opposite sex or take part in the development of such procedures. They must employ all appropriate resources to mitigate the suffering of those who struggle with gender incongruence, but the means used must respect the fundamental order of the human body. Only by using morally appropriate means do healthcare providers show full respect for the dignity of each human person. To read the entire document, click here: https://www.usccb.org/resources/Doctrinal%20Note%202023-03-20.pdf =================================================
Alleluia! Alleluia! Let the Holy Anthem Rise. G&P 399 Text: 87 87 D; Edward Caswall, 1814-1878. Music: St Basil's Hymnal, 1889. Contributor: HOLY ANTHEM Onlicense Song # 84068. Used with Print Permission and Streaming License A-741278
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***WOKE*** Conservatives have taken over the expression "woke" popularized by African-American young men. African-Americans used the word to mean staying awake and alert, to have been "woke" up and paying attention to the cultural and religious movements of the past, present, and potential futures. The Ray Of Hope Church Statement of Purpose calls us to stay "woke" at all times, paying attention to the world of religion, politics, and society.
We did not start a new kind of Christianity. Ray Of Hope Church teaches the same Christian faith of ancient ecumenical consensus. St. Vincent of Lerins, a fifth-century monk and theologian, described it as "what has been believed always, everywhere, and by all."
To our LGBTQSIA2ss+++ friends out there, we like to say: We are the church made by you, and for you, because we ARE YOU! You are as welcome here as Christ Jesus, Himself. Today you will find persons of every sexual orientation and every gender expression in our congregation and in our leadership.
To donate and assist with our expenses, use our secure PayPal link: http://rayofhopechurch.com/DONATE_RAYOFHOPE.htm. You may also donate by sending your donation to Ray Of Hope Church 380 W. 1st St. Elmira, NY 14901, with the attention Treasurer. We always say give what you can but never give your last. Thank you, and God bless you.