Set to visit an Episcopal parish known for feeding as many as 1,300 needy people daily, the Anglican Observer at the United Nations is scheduled to preach at 11 a.m. on Sunday, August 29, at Holy Apostles Church near Madison Square Garden -- site of the Republican National Convention (RNC) August 30- September 2.Healing God's Creation is the title of the book Archdeacon Tai recently finished;
"I look forward to describing the work that I do, and to linking the powerful texts of Sunday's scripture readings to world events today," the Observer, Samoa's Archdeacon Taimalelagi F. Tuatagaloa-Matalavea, told the Episcopal News Service.
Known to her colleagues as Archdeacon Tai (pronounced "tie"), the observer will also speak about the work of her office -- including the environmental advocacy cited in a just-published book she has compiled during a 1:10 p.m. parish forum at the church, 296 Ninth Avenue (at 28th Street). Title for the forum is "The Church's Witness on International Concerns and Issues."
'Healing God's Creation,' a new book compiled by the Anglican Observer to the United Nations and just released through Morehouse Publishing -- is the report of the 2002 meeting of the Global Anglican Congress on the Stewardship of Creation. The first gathering of its kind, the Congress brought together some 80 leaders, lay and ordained, from 20 of the worldwide Anglican Communion's 38 provinces. The book has been compiled by Archdeacon Taimalelagi F. Tuatagoloa-Matalavea, a Samoan laywoman, who since September 2001 has been Anglican Observer to the United Nations.Holy Apostles Church, the parish in which Archdeacon Tai will be preaching, will be open for rest and refreshments during the RNC;
"The Global Anglican Congress, I'm happy to say, demonstrated how we can come together, with love and respect, as one people, in response to the challenges before us," Tuatagoloa-Matalavea writes in the book's introduction. "We understood that those challenges are really spiritual and moral at their heart. God and all God's creation need us now to act with commitment and perseverance." The book conveys expertise on topics including: Community empowerment, water, food and agriculture, energy and climate change, HIV/AIDS, biodiversity, ecojustice, gender and human development, and "the beauty of empowerment." The chapters feature observations by various Anglican scholars, among others.
The volume also records Anglican's first-hand perspectives noted in provincial and country reports from Aotearoa, New Zealand and Polynesia; Bangladesh; Burundi; Canada; England; Ireland; North India; Scotland; Southern Africa; the United States; Wales, and the West Indies.Texts of Congress homilies are also featured: "Walk with vital awareness of God's comprehensive mission and purpose in creation," Tuatagaloa-Matalavea observes. "Walk with awe and gratitude. The birds, the beasts, the trees and the rivers, the person next to you is not without purpose and meaning in God's scheme of things."
There is a great deal of activity in and around the neighborhood of the Church of the Holy Apostles during the week of the Republican National Convention in late August. Many protesters are coming to express concern about domestic and foreign policies of the current Administration, including some from faith-based justice groups like our own SEJC. Therefore, the Social & Economic Justice Committee has been planning with the clergy & vestry to arrange to have the church open in the afternoon and evenings of the RNC, so that protesters may come in, have some quiet time, light refreshments, and good uplifting conversations with parishioners and friends of our church community.On August 31, Holy Apostles will invite RNC delegates to volunteer in its nationally known soup kitchen.
I'm going to try to make it to the afternoon forum on the 29th. I'm entertaining the notion of participating in the Let Justice Roll Rally on the 31st (thanks to Chuck Currie for the heads up...while you're over there, take a look at his Fasting for Darfur post as well).
Having only been to NYC a half dozen times, it's good to know that there is a place like Holy Apostles where one can find refuge if lost or in need. It feels like having family nearby when far from home. What a wonderful way to be the Church.