The MessengerSeptember, 2017

A publication of St. James on the Lake Episcopal Church    

An orthodox parish that welcomes everyone!                                                      

Rector:  Fr. Randy Melton

10707 CR 4022, Kemp, Texas 75143

(903) 498-8080


FR. MELTON’S MUSINGS:                      


This is Like Deja Vu” All Over Again?”--Yogi Berra


Years ago Karen and I moved our son into his college dorm and took a brief campus tour. We met and introduced him to the campus minister of the local Episcopal church just a block from the dorm, with the hope that he wouldn’t be a total stranger to that place.


The activity around the dorm and campus was a bit nostalgic for me as I recalled the excitement of my move-in day at college 35 years earlier. The high energy of a new adventure, meeting new people, guys awkwardly trying to impress cute girls, and the strange familiarity of the collegiate environment were eerily deja vu.”  And yet this was obviously no longer an environment that catered to my comfort level, as a now much more chronologically advanced person.  I had to wonder what I would do differently if I had it all to do over again at Michael’s age. Hindsight is an interesting perspective. You can’t go back, and even if you did, it’s not the same because we’re not the same. Time doesn’t stand still for anyone. We move on to where God leads us.


My time has come and gone from the dear old college days, which were both some of the best and worst years of my life. New challenges called me forth from the collegiate ranks. The work force, making my own way, marriage and family, all introduced me to a new word I had to take seriously-- responsibility.”  Most of us realize that staying still in time,” though tempting, is a dangerous thing and we need to eventually move on with our lives from one level to the next as we journey on down (or up) the road to maturity and wisdom.  Whether we ever arrive at our destination or not is sometimes arguable.


Yet the same is not always true with our faith journey, is it?  We often like to stay right where we are because we're too insecure to move on down (or up) the road to new faith adventures. Like Hurricane Harvey, our comfort zone tends to want us to stop and hover, to stay put, resist change, and dare I say, personal transformation? Harvey will eventually die unless he returns to the water. What is keeping us from returning to the deep well of the Holy Spirit to be refilled and reenergized in new ways? What is it that's so fearful that we dare not move to the next level of our spiritual life? 


Perhaps the one thing with which we're most secure is self-reliance, which is the built-in safety net of comfort zones. Letting go of the security of our self-perceived ability to control our environment seems unnecessarily risky. The fear is in giving ourselves away to God in faith, trusting Him to be our security. We're told that as we dare to walk in His grace, the Lord will lead us more and more to new spiritual heights of growth and maturity. But our loss of control seems to be a scary, dangerous business. And it is! We’re being introduced to a new word that we’re called to take very seriously—“faith.”


Where is your personal spiritual comfort level? How does it reflect a reluctance to stretch yourself toward greater spiritual maturity? Are you ready to reach out to the Lord and ask Him to help you with your next step in faith? How might you transition from the way of comfort to the challenge of Christ's call? So much incredible ministry is done here in this amazing parish. But where might our comfort level be stalling us as we seek to discern the Lord’s call to explore an even deeper relationship with him? Where might the Holy Spirit be calling you to go from here? How will you get there? Are you paralyzed by fear or do the possibilities excite you? Are you satisfied with where you are, or hungry for something more? What might going to the next level “spiritually” mean for you? It may have more to do with your sense of “being” in God than with your level of “activity” for God. It’s certainly worth thinking and praying deeply about, don’t you think?


ADDENDUM: I’m genuinely overwhelmed with a powerful sense of excitement and gratitude for the presence of the Holy Spirit in this place and what God is doing among us here! I'm talking a kind ofhair standing up on the back of my neckenthusiasm (that word literally means “inspired; in-breathed by God”)! God is doing a marvelous thing in this parish, a Divine Happening! And you know what? It’s just beginning! Get ready! My gut tells me that the Lord has unexpected surprises in store for us. Stay tuned as we wait, listen and discern together. All we have to do is get out of the way and let Jesus take control by developing our spiritual gifts as we dare to step out in faith.


Check out the new opportunities listed throughout this newsletter.



Fr. Randy+





Sunday Services                                  Holy Communion 9:00 a.m., followed by                                                                               Snacks, Fellowship and Bible Study

                                                            (Healing Prayers at altar 8:30-8:45 a.m.)

Daughters of the King                         4:30 PM 2nd Sunday

Praise & Worship Service                   6 PM 2nd Sunday

Women’s Bible Study                          6:00 PM 2nd & 4th Monday

Men’s Reunion Group                         7 AM Tuesday

Women’s Reunion Group                    9 AM 1st and 3rd Tuesday

Prayer Intercession Group                  4 PM Tuesday

Vestry Meetings                                  6 PM 2nd Tuesday

Healing Eucharist                                Noon Wednesday (Starts September 20)

Evening Prayer & Parish Dinner         6 PM Last Wednesday

Teen Youth Ministry                           6 PM 1st & 3rd Wednesday

Men’s Bible Study                               6 PM Thursday

Hungry Bunch Dinners                        6 PM Friday (except 3rd Friday)

Movie Night                                        6 PM Friday (3rd Friday)




Fr. Randy will teach an Inquirer’s/Confirmation Series from 6-8 PM on Sundays from September 17 through November 19. These classes provide an overview of the history, teachings, spirituality, liturgy, Book of Common Prayer, and the polity of the Episcopal Church. Fr. Randy will also make every attempt to answer ALL questions presented by the Inquirers themselves.


Participants will learn the basics of what Episcopalians believe and be prepared to make an informed choice as to whether they desire to be confirmed in the Church. These classes also provide an opportunity for those who just want to refresh their knowledge about the Church’s Faith traditions and sacramental worship and/or desire to renew one’s Baptismal vows. Bishop Smith, our assisting Bishop will be here to confirm on Sunday, January 28.






Instructed Eucharist, September 10:

At the Sunday liturgy on September 10, in Lieu of a sermon, Fr. Randy will explain the liturgical movements of our Eucharistic worship by briefly highlighting some historical background, doctrine, and theology that touch on why, what, when, where & how we do the things we do as worshiping Episcopalians, regarding our rituals and ceremonies.


He will take each part of the liturgy and speak in 4 or 5 spots prior each section, offering explanation. This is a wonderful opportunity to not only learn more about the power of our worship, but to invite someone who may be interested in our worship style and yet be a bit confused by it.


You are guaranteed to learn something even if you’re a cradle Episcopalian who has been worshiping like this your whole life! Sometimes we can become so familiar with our worship that we don’t give much thought about what it all really means. This will hopefully inspire greater devotion in your worship.

Guest Sunday! Bring a friend!


Healing Prayer Offered Before Worship

Are you sick?  Call the church leaders together to pray and anoint you with oil in the name of the Master.  Believing prayer will heal you, and Jesus will put you on your feet. And if you've sinned, you'll be forgiven, healed inside and out.  Make this your common practice: Confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you can live together whole and healed. The prayer of a person living right with God is something powerful to be reckoned with.” (James 5:14-16, The Message)


Beginning in September, Fr. Randy will offer healing prayer at the altar from 8:30-8:45 before the Sunday Eucharist, through the sacrament of unction (anointing with Holy Oil). If you or someone you know is hurting in body, mind or spirit, and in need of God's healing touch, please come yourself or invite your friend to come.


Feel free to join in prayerful support of your friends and loved ones by coming up and laying your hands on their shoulders as they're prayed for. Don't miss this opportunity to access God's healing grace in your life and those you care about.  God is at work in his sacramental prayer and wills to make us whole again. Jesus always heals that which is in most need of healing.


Want To Be An ACOLYTE?

Meet with Fr. Randy after church on September 10 to sign up and discuss training schedules. Any Baptized member of the parish is eligible.  Must be at least 12 years old but not over 100. 




TEEN MINISTRY Starts September 20!

Beginning Wednesday, September 20, a new teen ministry will be initiated for 7th through 12th grades. We will meet 1st and 3rd Wednesdays from 6-8 p.m. Come fill yourself up with pizza and Kool-Aid as we warm up with some fun games. Then share your ideas with Fr. Randy about potential parish youth group activities, field trips and a summer mission trip. Friends encouraged!



Noon Healing Eucharist Begins Sept. 20th

A new Wednesday Noon Eucharist will begin September 20. It’ll be an informal, contemplative, said service (no music) offering prayers for healing. One of the reasons for this worship opportunity is to provide an option for those who, due to health issues, are unable to come to Sunday worship at an earlier hour. This is also a wonderful opportunity for anyone desiring the spiritual sustenance and comfort of the Holy Eucharist during the week as well as Sunday. It is not intended as a substitute for our main community worship on Sunday, the Lord’s day, except for those who otherwise are unable to come at that time. The Wednesday Mass is simply an “additional” sacramental option to Sunday worship. Bring a friend!  



Blessing of the Animals and Hot Dog Cookout

Saturday, October 7, 5 p.m.

I used to have a sign in my office that said: My Goal in life is to be the kind of person my dog thinks I am!” Such an adoring and forgiving creature he is, not to mention the comforting presence he offers!  Most of us feel that way about our pets and animals. The Blessing of the Animals commemorates the witness of St. Francis of Assisi, whose love for all of God's creation is legendary. All creatures great and small are asked to gather on the grassy area behind the church…that means dogs, cats, mice, hamsters, horses, cows, pigs, goats, birds, fish, gorillas, giraffes, alligators, elephants, reptiles, and snakes (did I say snakes? Yikes, even them---cringe).  All animals must bring their caretakers with them (on a leash or in a cage of course) to join in the festivities.  During this brief service we will sing songs, sprinkle holy water and give thanks to God for all creation, but especially for the animal world, which not only helps, but also befriends us.


Children of ALL ages are encouraged to bring their pets. If you don't have a pet and wish to participate in the celebration, bring a small plant to be blessed. Immediately following the blessings, a hot dog cookout will be served for both animals and their owners. 


This year we're asking for donations to help support the Humane Society of Cedar Creek Lake.  Items needed include Clorox bleach, laundry detergent (“HE” only), Dawn, heavy duty cleaning supplies, antibacterial dish soap, hand sanitizer, paper towels, toilet tissue, heavy duty 40 gallon 3-ply trash bags, cat litter, dog biscuits and cat treats, dry cat and dog food (no red dye), canned dog food (lamb or chicken & rice), 13 gallon trash bags, ink pens, notepads, old or new towels and blankets, white printer paper, metal food and water bowls, medical supplies (sponges, gauze, bandages), heavy duty water hoses, spray nozzles, postage stamps, You get the idea.  Thanks for helping our furry friends!


NOTE: Caretakers are responsible for taking up the collection of any voluntary offerings” their animals may choose to donate to the church premises.





“Christianity is a statement which, if false, is of no importance, and, if true, of infinite importance. The one thing it cannot be in moderately important.”

— C.S. Lewis


“In Jesus Christ we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace that he lavished on us with all wisdom and understanding.” — St. Paul (Ephesians 1:7-8)


“If Christ is Risen nothing else matters, and if Christ is not Risen nothing else matters.” — Jaroslav Pelikan


"I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live, even though he dies; and whoever lives and believes in me will never die. Do you believe this?" --Jesus Christ (John 11:25-26)




(or Books to Buy, Beg or Borrow)



By Ron Hall and Denver Moore, with Lynn Vincent, Thomas Nelson Press, (c) 2008


My two older sons recommended this book to me several years ago. I was immediately engrossed because one of the main characters grew up in the DFW area and had relatives in East Texas. He attended East Texas State University (my alma mater) because it was the cheapest college in Texas at the time. Then he transferred to TCU so he could meet some pretty, rich girls. I never had that luxury, but I did just fine at ETSU because that’s where I met Karen!


Anyway, the other character is a black man from Louisiana, who was the son of a sharecropper and describes his life as modern-day slavery. The lives of these two men are eventually brought to gather by a remarkable woman as the story of the breakdown of racist stereotypes begins and a lifelong friendship is developed.


The last few chapters of the book were so emotionally moving that I cried like a baby as I finished the book late one night in my living room (fortunately alone). Note: I used to not even know what emotions were in my younger days, but since I’ve aged, I even cry at Michelin tire commercials where the Michelin man goes out in a storm to search for his Michelin dog, and they’re happily reunited—go figure!


Anyway, I digress. This is a true story, very inspirational and a must read. It will give you lots to think about and you won’t want the book to end. It’s coming out as a movie in mid-October, so read it ahead of time!




God's Annoying Love for Imperfect People

By Mike Yaconelli, Zondervan Press © 2002

[5 STARS: Easy and enjoyable reading]


Do ya ever think: I don't pray enough. I don't read my bible enough.  I don't share my faith enough.  I don't love God enough.  I'm not committed enough.  I'm not spiritual enough.  I guess I'm not a very good Christian.”  Well, do you ever feel that way? I've been ordained for over 34 years and I still sometimes resonate with those statements.  That's why I so enjoyed this book.


Mike Yaconelli co-founded Youth Specialties Ministries and the Wittenberg Door, a Christian satire magazine akin to MAD Magazine.  As an EYC sponsor and later as a young priest, I regularly attended Mike's youth ministry conferences whenever he came to Dallas.  What always struck me about him was his nitty gritty approach to Christian spirituality and his candidness and authenticity.  When he described spiritual struggles, you knew he knew what he was talking about because you knew from your own experience the truth of his words. Sadly, Mike died about several years ago in a tragic car accident. Yet his Christian realism lives on.


His book is an attempt to convince us that Christian perfectionism is not about us becoming perfect, but about us being comfortable enough in our imperfection that we're willing to give our messy lives to Jesus.  It's only through our acknowledgment of our deep, personal need for God's grace that we can truly be in fellowship with God.  Not one Biblical character, outside of Jesus, is anywhere near perfect, and most are terribly us.  That's why they become saints!  Confused?  Read the book!  Its truth will free you from the bonds of perfectionism.


This amazing little book is filled with earthy, moving stories that everyone can relate to.  When we learn about what it means to be a true” Christian, we may be surprised at some of our own self-perceptions that are holding us back from developing a joyful relationship with our Creator.  Grace really is supreme!  Jesus wants us to come as we are, be willing to change, and yet our lives will always be something of a mess on this side of eternity.  Simply learning to accept that fact is itself a welcome opportunity for grace. This book is a MUST READ for ALL Christians!




A wise man once said, The main thing is to make the main thing the main thing.  And once you've made the main thing the main thing, then the main thing is to keep the main thing the main thing. That's the main thing!”  If S.S.I. isn’t THE main thing, it’s definitely one of the main things in the life of every parish. SSI is essential if we want to grow spiritually in our corporate life in Christ.  It’s easy to remember:


•    SHOW UP at worship, Christian formation opportunities, spiritual studies, outreach ministries, and times of fun and fellowship!

•    SEEK GOD and ask Jesus to convert your heart to love him above all else. Seek God by making a renewed commitment to Jesus as Lord and Savior.  Seek God by offering yourself just as you are, to be bathed in his grace, love and mercy. Seek God by praying regularly and listening for God’s voice in response to the words of your heart. Seek God to regain your spiritual passion as you continue to grow in your relationship with Jesus through the power of the Holy Spirit.

•    INVITE OTHERS to join you in this glorious journey we share with God.  As we make the effort to show up and seek God, we encourage others to give it a try with us!  We're all seekers looking for Truth, the truth that will set us free, the truth that is supremely revealed in Jesus, who is the Way, the Truth and the Life.    


S.S.I. will help us continue to be a church where Jesus Christ is encountered as Lord and Savior, people are empowered by the Holy Spirit, and lives are changed through the Grace of God. S.S.I. is s simple yet essential means of allowing God to work in our lives and the lives of others TODAY!  REMEMBER….S.S.I. !






Here's some free advice on how to stay safe in the world today.  Avoid riding in automobiles because they are responsible for 20% of all fatal accidents. Do not stay home as 17% of all accidents occur in the home. Avoid walking on sidewalks or streets or because 14% of all accidents occur to pedestrians.  Avoid traveling by air, rail or water because 16% of all accidents involve these forms of transportation.  Of the remaining 33%, 32% of all deaths occur in hospitals.  So, above all else, avoid hospitals.


BUT, you will be pleased to learn that less that .001% of all deaths occur in worship services at church, and these are usually related to previous physical disorders. Therefore, logic tells us that the safest place for you to be at any given point in time is at church!  And Bible study is safe too.  The percentage of deaths during Bible studies is even less.  So, for safety's sake, attend church and read your Bible.  







Confirmation Classes, Sundays, 6 p.m. - 8 p.m.:

            September 17, 24, October 1, 15, 29, November 5, 19, 26

Teen Youth Ministry, Wednesdays, 6 - 8 p.m.

            September 20, October 4, 18, November 1, 15,

Noon Healing Eucharist

            Wednesdays starting September 20

Acolyte Meeting (for Newbies)

            Sunday, September 10, during Bible Study

Sunday Morning Healing Prayers

            Anointing offered from 8:30 - 8:45 AM on Sunday

Blessing of the Animals

            Saturday, October 7, 5 PM on the grass behind the church

St. James Golf Tournament

            Monday, October 9 Benefits Adopt A Family and other ministries




Office Hours & Contact Information

Monday:                     9:30 AM - 1:30 PM

Tuesday:                     9:30 AM - 1:30 PM

Wednesday:               9:30 AM - 1:30 PM

Thursday:                   9:30 AM - 1:30 PM

Friday and Saturday: Office is Closed

NOTE: Fr. Randy will likely be in the church at other times as well, but these are simply scheduled times he plans to be in the office, though there may be exceptions due to outside appointments or pastoral needs. If you don’t see his car, it’s because he parks in the back near the shade. Appointments may certainly be made at other times if necessary.


FR. RANDY’S CELL:     (830) 481-8290                      

CHURCH PHONE:        (903) 498-8080






9th        Daughters of the King – 4:30 pm

            Praise & Worship – 6:00 pm

11th      Women’s Bible Study – 6:00 pm

16th      Women’s Quiet Day – 9:00 am

20th      Begin Healing Eucharist – NOON – weekly on Wednesday

22nd      Movie Night

25th      Women’s Bible Study – 6:00 pm

30th      Evening Prayer and Parish Dinner – 6:00 pm



The Tuesday Morning Reunion group is sponsoring a Quiet Day for the ladies at St. James as well as the community.  The date is Saturday, September 16.  Flyers with details have been sent out via email and will be sent again with this Messenger.  Please plan to attend and prepare to be soaked in worship, prayer and fellowship.  There is no cost and lunch is included.  Please let Sunny Lasiter know you’re coming so we can prepare for the appropriate numbers.

Be still


	The Golf Tournament will be here in little over a month.  This annual tournament at Cedar Creek Country Club is the major money raiser for St. James’ Adopt A Family program at Christmas as well as other ministries.  The 2017 tournament is on Monday, October 9th.  The entry fee is $75.00.  The only other cost will be for mulligans and raffle tickets.  There will be no solicitations for money on the course.  A hotdog lunch will be served beginning at 11:30 with tee time at 12:30. Our traditional Holy Smoke BBQ awards dinner will be at the Church following the competition.  The Parish Hall will open at 4:30 with snacks and refreshments and dinner will start at approximately 5:00.  
	The BBQ is open to all.  Tickets are $12.50.  For tournament players, the BBQ is included with the registration.  It is time to start getting your teams together or submitting your individual entry and let us put you on a team.  In addition to players we have hole sponsorships available for $200.  Any business or person sponsoring a hole and a team will receive a $50.00 discount off the team entry fee. Raffle tickets are 3 for $10 or 8 for $20 and are on sale now (for you players, raffle tickets are also your mulligans).  
	We need raffle prize donations for our other prizes.  We give fewer but more valuable prizes than most local tournaments.  Prize donations with a value of at least $30.00 are appreciated. Registration forms and Hole Sponsor forms are in the parish hall.  Also in the parish hall are several signup sheets.  One for wine which will be used as part of the winner’s prize and the other sheet is for volunteering for various jobs which we need to get done.  
	To purchase BBQ or raffle tickets see Gary Gallatin, or Sunny Lasiter.
	If you have any questions about the tournament, see one of the following Golf Committee members:  Paul Lasiter, Marshall Barton, Charlie Davis, Terry Dahlman, or Gary Gallatin.

September Birthdays:

3          Tissy Krenek

             Don Loomis

            Bruce Irwin

  4        Judy Evans

            Ed Trotter

  8        Pam Roach

  9        Jim Belich

10        Dru Boughton

17         Doyal Files

18        Dawn Temethick

21        Cathy Richards

24        Louis DeRosa

25        Phil McGlothlin

Gil Drab

26        Lindsay Rogers

Marvin O’Connor



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Remember, it will be up to you to get a replacement if you cannot fulfill your obligation.




























Exodus 3:1-15; Psalm 105:1-6, 23-26, 45c; Romans 12:9-21; Matthew 16:21-28






Young kids:


Older kids:










Exodus 12:1-14; Psalm 149; Romans 13:8-14; Matthew 18:15-20






Young kids:


Older kids:

In church










Exodus 14:19-31; Psalm 114 or Exodus 15:1b-11, 20-21; Romans 14:1-12; Matthew 18:21-35






Young kids:


Older kids:










Jonah 3:10 – 4:11; Psalm 145:1-8; Philippians 1:21-30; Matthew 20:1-16






Young kids:


Older kids:

In church




  1        Phil & Sharon McGlothlin

 Bill & Jo Miniat

17        Lonnie & Dawn Striplin



8          Kelly Savage

Eunice Perkins

10        Jeanne Irion

11        Gladys Patrick

12        Louis DeRosa

14        Roy McGlothlin

15        Vernon Urban

16        Mamie Moody

            Bubba Weems           

18        Tate Pittman

19        Nealie Singletary

            Pat Hicks

25        Caroline Humphreys

27        Berta Sue Tatum






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