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Holy Apostle ARChive
Our last letter from Father Mike Ferguson:
Dear Friends in Christ,
A good clergy friend of mine, also a retired Naval Officer, now deceased, loved the prayer below. As both a seaman and a Parish priest, he believed the words, part of a prayer attributed to Sir Francis Drake in 1577, spoke volumes for all who sail in God’s service.
Disturb us, Lord, when
We are too well pleased with ourselves,
When our dreams have come true
Because we have dreamed too little,
When we arrived safely
Because we sailed too close to the shore.
Disturb us, Lord, when
With the abundance of things we possess
We have lost our thirst
For the waters of life;
Having fallen in love with life,
We have ceased to dream of eternity
And in our efforts to build a new earth,
We have allowed our vision
Of the new Heaven to dim.
Disturb us, Lord, to dare more boldly,
To venture on wider seas
Where storms will show your mastery;
Where losing sight of land,
We shall find the stars.
We ask You to push back
The horizons of our hopes;
And to push into the future
In strength, courage, hope, and love.
This prayer describes both where people who are troubled with the hopes and dreams of the founders of this community (and those who have followed them), and the brave bishops, priests and laypeople who have sailed out anyway, trusting in God’s love, have been, and are still bravely getting underway. We harbor great hopes that we will be allowed to sail freely someday, guided by many stars, including the one that shown over a bleak manger centuries ago. However, in the meantime, we are called to be cautious about venturing into water that is too shallow for our ship and end up on the rocks. Peter, James and John knew this as fishermen. Paul learned it when he was a prisoner in a ship that foundered on some rocks (Acts 27:27-44). But Paul was allowed to continue serving God in myriad ways, as hope and believe that we shall be.
Many others have learned the truth of these words over the centuries. A smart navigator, following the stars that God puts in the sky for good reason, will sail as close to rocks and shoals as safety allows, but not so close as to go aground and never sail again. Christians are called to sail very boldly, while always remembering that reaching their destination intact, even if a bit weather-beaten and battle-scarred, is what God’s desires, rather than being lost at sea, with all hands lost.
In Christ’s love,
Second Monday of the Month between 9:30-11 (or until we run out of food).
We have been doing this ministry for several years now. We currently feed an average of 150 families through the Food Bank of Hampton Roads. It has been a real blessing to know our neighbors better, and we have so appreciated the families who need the food, but who have committed to work beside us each month.
Homeless Shelter Summer/Winter
Because of the size of our membership and building, we are unable to accomodate the needs for the winter shelter, so we have joined with other groups to provide meals and supplies. The Virginia Beach area is a summer tourist area which means it is often difficult to find places for families in need during the summer months. We have housed 3 families and children here at our church. Our ministry did not end there. We helped them move and find furniture and supplies for their permanent homes. Summer 2016- June 29 to July 5.