Sermons at St. Mike’s: March 12, 2017

March Madness is in high-gear, and you can find Mother Dina’s discussion of Lent Madness by clicking HERE.

For more information on Lent Madness and who will win the Golden Halo, check out 
Lent Madness 2012

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This Week: December 16, 2016

Dear Friends~

 ‘Tis the season for… Charlie Brown and a scraggly little tree. But that’s only the beginning… Linus is the real star of the show.
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I think I may have shared this last year, but it’s worth watching at least once each Christmas season so click here to watch.


This week’s Episcopal News Weekly features a Christmas message from Presiding Bishop Michael Curry. 

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Click HERE to read his message and other news around the diocese. Or you can click HERE to watch the video.

Also in this issue: Continue reading

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This Week: December 8, 2016

Dear Friends~


‘Tis the season for holiday parties. Today I gave the blessing for the meal at our El Segundo Park Vista senior housing holiday luncheon hosted by the El Segundo Rotary Club and with entertainment by the El Segundo High School Chorus. What an example of community! It was so nice to be part of it.

The ESHS Chorus is excellent and we all enjoyed their singing. One of the carols they sang was “Mary Did You Know?” It’s one that I especially enjoy. You may, too.Click here to listen to Pentatonix a capella group singing this lovely carol. Consider it an early Christmas treat! (You should be able to click passed the ad in about 5 seconds.)


We have a bishop! So as you might suspect, the lead story in the Episcopal News Weekly for this Sunday is the announcement of our new bishop coadjutor-elect, John Taylor. Here he is right after the election results were announced with his wife Kathy Hannigan O’Connor.

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Click HERE to read more about this and other news around the diocese.

Also in this issue:

  • ‘Advent hope and expectation,’ by Bishop J. Jon Bruno
  • Events around the diocese


We lit our Christmas tree on Tuesday night… and blessed it with our songs and prayers. Santa made a special stop for us and all the kids stepped up to make their Christmas requests. It looks to me that Betty Lou has an in with Santa. What do you think?

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After the tree lighting, we moved inside and Victoria Samia hosted our Gingerbread House Party again this year (thank you, Victoria!). We had an overflow crowd and an abundance of prize winners. Continue reading

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This Week: October 26, 2016

Dear Friends~

Are you a baseball fan? How about a supporter of Episcopal Relief & Development (ERD)? Either way, have we got a deal for you!


Bishop Jeff Lee of the Diocese of Chicago and Bishop Mark Hollingsworth of the Diocese of Ohio have a bet on the World Series, but it has nothing to do with what happens on the field.

Lee thinks the number of generous Chicago Cubs fans is greater than the number of generous Cleveland Indians fans, and he has a pound of Chicago-style hot dogs that says so.

Hollingsworth and a pound of comb honey collected from the hive at Bellwether Farm, the diocesan camp and retreat center, say Lee is wrong.

The prize goes to the bishop who rallies the greatest number of supporters. But whichever bishop is right, Episcopal Relief & Development and its partners around the world will be the real winners. So place your support now…

Make your donation to Episcopal Relief & Development HERE if you support the team that hasn’t won the World Series since Harry Truman was in the White House (that’s the Indians or Team Hollingsworth).

Or, HERE if you support the team that hasn’t won since Moses was playing T-ball (that would be the Cubs or Team Lee).

Whomever you support, both bishops and ERD thank you!


Our Fifth Sunday Child-friendly Eucharist is this Sunday, October 30th. Given the date, you might expect that the theme will be All Hallows Eve. And we’re inviting the children (and adults, if you wish!) to come in costumes. Bring your little ones to hear more about how Halloween fits with the church.
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This Week: October 5, 2016

Dear Friends~

I suspect you have seen this beautiful and terrifying picture on the news.


Hurricane Matthew, said to be about the size of Arizona, is currently approaching the US mainland, even as it has left devastation in its wake in Haiti. According to Reuters News Service at this hour:

“Hurricane Matthew churned toward the Bahamas and Florida’s east coast on Wednesday after killing at least 21 people in Haiti and prompting the hard-hit country to postpone a long-awaited presidential election.

Episcopal Relief & Development urges prayers for communities in the Caribbean and along the US East Coast that are preparing for or dealing with the impact of Hurricane Matthew.

O God, our times are in your hand.  

In the midst of uncertainty lead us by your never-failing grace

as we seek to be agents of healing and hope.  

Walk with us through difficult times;

watch over us in danger;

and give to us a spirit of love and compassion for those who suffer and mourn.  

And finally remind us that you have promised never to leave us

so that even in the valley of the shadow of death

your love may be felt, through Jesus Christ our Lord.  


And if you are able to provide monetary assistance, click here to donate to the ERD Hurricane Matthew Response Fund.


We had a great time celebrating St. Michael’s Day last Sunday.


Watch out! Oliver’s toss is coming right at you!

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This Week: September 29, 2016

Dear Friends~

Today is St. Michael’s Day.


I suspect at least some of us have a mixed relationship with angels. We are intrigued, hopeful, sometimes even sensing they are present, yet confused by an existence beyond our limits of time and space. And the image of St. Michael as an avenging angel may be troubling when we live in violent times and yearn for peace. Is there a place for St. Michael and All Angels (for indeed that is the full name of today’s Feast Day) in our lives? We’ll deal with just that question on Sunday as we celebrate our patronal feast. Come join us!

Here is the collect for the Feast of St. Michael and All Angels:

Everlasting God,

you have ordained and constituted in a wonderful order

the ministries of angels and mortals:

Mercifully grant that, as your holy angels always serve and worship you in heaven,

so by your appointment they may help and defend us here on earth;

through Jesus Christ our Lord,

who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,

one God, for ever and ever. 


BCP p. 244

Click here to read the lessons for St. Michael’s Day. These are the readings we will use for Sunday.

Continue reading

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This Week, September 9 2016

Dear Friends~

News Flash! In case you haven’t heard, the candidates for the next bishop of Los Angeles have been announced! 

Our neighbor, the Rev. Dr. Rachel Nyback, rector of St. Cross, is among the nominees. Woohoo! I think she is an outstanding candidate. My prayer is for the best person to lead us in this time of change and challenge—and I admit that I think Rachel is well equipped to do just that. Our delegates to convention, Julie Bergeron and Blaisdell Shaw, and I will have the opportunity to meet all the candidates, ask them questions and hear their vision for our diocese on Friday, October 7th at St. George’s Episcopal Church in Laguna Hills. This is one of four meetings with the candidates that will be held throughout the diocese that weekend. If you have a question you’d like answered, please let Julie, Blaisdell or me know before we go. Read more about the candidates and the process in this week’s issue of The Episcopal News Update. The election of our new bishop will take place during Diocesan Convention in December.

The Book of Common Prayer offers this prayer for the election of a bishop.

Almighty God, giver of every good gift:
Look graciously on
your Church,

and so guide the minds of those who shall choose a bishop for this Diocese

that we may receive a faithful pastor,

who will care for your people and equip us for our ministries;

through Jesus Christ our Lord. 



Welcome, Adam! Our new choir director/keyboardist, Adam Behlen, begins work with us this Sunday. His first day is today, September 8th, meeting with the choir. We are very happy to welcome Adam to be with us. He has excellent credentials and is a talented musician. He will be starting a PhD program in music as USC’s Thornton School of Music in January. Come and meet him on Sunday!

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This Week: July 28, 2016

Dear Friends~

With the nominations of candidates for president of the United States by the two major parties completed this week, we are officially in election season. And so it seems appropriate to pray for our nation and our elections. I invite this prayer for elections from our Book of Common Prayer. You may want to bookmark it for future use.

Almighty God,
to whom we must account for all our powers and privileges:
Guide the people of the United States
in the election of officials and representatives;
that, by faithful administration and wise laws,
the rights of all may be protected
and our nation be enabled to fulfill your purposes;
through Jesus Christ our Lord.

BCP, page 822

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This Week: July 21, 2016

Dear Friends~

In these days when the heaviness of the world can feel burdensome, I was delighted to find the absurdity of the Feast of the Pokemon Go player,

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“a feast that recalls a miracle whereby unwitting adult players of a children’s mobile-phone game were tricked into boosting attendance stats for the Church of England.”  This feast comes complete with a collect, which I dare to share:

Almighty God,

who has gotta ‘catch us all’,

within the great Pokeball of your love.

Give us the power that’s inside,

so that we might not divert our eyes from the game map that you have set,

but instead, with Clefairy, Charmander and that electrocuted yellow rat thing,

come to the great PokeGym in the sky, where prestige points are infinite.

Lifted, with grateful thanks and praise, from the Exciting Weariness blogspot.

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This Week: July 14,2016

Dear Friends~

It looked like it could be a tense standoff or worse when “Black Lives Matter” marchers confronted an “All Lives Matter” counter-demonstration in Dallas earlier this week. The police warned the groups to stay on their sides of the street… but something else happened.

Watch the video by clicking here.
(After it loads, you’ll have to click the arrow to play the video. And I’m sorry for the preceding ad… but stick with it; it’s worth it!)

It looks to me like an example of an answer to prayer. Let us pray…

Grant, O God,
that your holy and life-giving Spirit may so move every human heart
and especially the hearts of the people of this land,
that barriers which divide us may crumble, suspicions disappear, and hatreds cease;
that our divisions being healed, we may live in justice and peace;
through Jesus Christ our Lord.

BCP p. 823

Continue reading

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