The Anglican Cathedral of Second Life


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Report on Leadership Team meeting 13 January 2018

Here is a brief outline of what happened at the meeting which was attended by Helene Milena, Ana Stubbs, Klaus Bereznyak, Charlie12string Lax and Joyous Schism.

Ana reported on the early results from our survey (https://epiphanysurvey.com) The survey had been available for a week and received 26 responses, from a mix of regular members of Anglicans of SL and those who only pop in occasionally. Of these, quite a number had no other church apart from Epiphany. There had been some suggestions for activities, such as more dances and restoration of the Saturday discussion group. Some people had shared how Epiphany had been instrumental in their finding or deepening their faith. There has been a trickle of volunteers, some with a good idea of what they can offer and some not sure. All members of AoSL have received a notecard with details of where to find the survey. There are also boards around the sim to remind people.

Those who have volunteered will receive a personal invitation to attend one of the community meetings, which will be open to anyone who wishes to attend. The dates and times of these will be published shortly. Helene will not be at these meetings. The format of the meetings is likely to be partly giving information about roles within AoSL and also answering questions. There is likely to be an opportunity to explore further some of the questions posed in the survey.

We will begin preparing for things to be different after Helene’s retirement by looking at the format of the noon Sunday service. Others may lead; others may give a short reflection on the readings for the day; or a reflection from published sources may be used.

Celberon, who has previously been a worship leader, would like to start Evening Prayer again. This was agreed by the Leadership Team. It may initially be on an ad hoc basis. Celberon will send out a notice if he is available in the chapel to lead.

The next meeting of the Leadership Team is likely to be in mid-February after the community meetings have been held.

Helene Milena

 

 

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Change is in the air

At our New Year Covenant Service yesterday, Helene made the following announcement:
 
Before we begin our service, I have some news to share with you. I have had a growing awareness for some time that I need to step back from being Lay Pastor of Anglicans of SL. Family commitments mean that I struggle to do all that I would like for this ministry. I have therefore informed the Leadership Team that I would like to retire from my position by mid-May at the latest which will be almost 9 years after I began my role. I would like to remain involved in this ministry in some way, but exactly how will be decided by the Leadership Team.
 
Obviously it’s necessary to work out what will happen in the future for AoSL. We are asking members to complete a survey so that we can find out their thoughts. This will be ready next week. We also need volunteers to join the Leadership Team and to take on some of the responsibilities of running this ministry. If the general opinion is that our ministry should cease, it will still be necessary to have a team to oversee that. Please complete the survey and prayerfully consider how you might be involved in this ministry. We will be having a series of meetings at the end of January and beginning of February when we can discuss together what might happen. Please feel free to contact any member of the Leadership Team directly if you want to discuss anything in the meantime.
 
It has been a huge privilege to lead worship here, to pray with those who need it and to lend a listening ear. I shall always be grateful for what I have been able to do. Now, if the ministry continues, it needs to be under new leadership, a team and a leader who can exploit the huge potential this ministry has to reach people with the Gospel.


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Carols on Epiphany

On Sunday 17 December at noon, we celebrated the traditional Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols at the Cathedral. This popular service was well attended as usual, and a variety of voices was heard as volunteers read the nine passages that tell the story of Jesus’ birth from the moment it is foretold in the book of Genesis in the Bible. Each reading was illustrated with live props by our churchwarden.

After the service, we had a lively social time on the benches outside the cathedral. Some snaps from the occasion can be seen in this online album.

This Sunday at noon (Christmas Eve), a short service for the Fourth Sunday in Advent will be followed by the return of the Posada to Epiphany Island and all are welcome to join us for this.

On Christmas Day, there will be a service of prayers and readings at noon in the chapel.


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We are 10!!!

Anglicans of Second Life is ten years old. That is quite an achievement and well worth celebrating, which is what we are doing in July.

Throughout the month there will be displays of photos from our past. If you have been a member of our group in SL for some time you can take a trip down memory lane.

Events currently planned are:

  • Saturday 1 July 2-3pm. Canada Day dance hosted by our own Canadian superhero Captain Canuck!
  • Sunday 9 July 12noon Sea Sunday service followed at 1pm onwards by fun and games as the sim is flooded. Come to swim, boat and play accompanied by suitable maritime music.
  • Sunday 16 July Birthday Dance from 1-3pm at the Community Centre. Fairground rides, refreshments and more. Do come and join us.
  • Other events may be added. Watch out for notices.

Do come and join us for one of our events. Bring your friends, have a great time.

Helene Milena – Lay Pastor


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St George’s Day on Epiphany Island

The Sunday after Easter Sunday is traditionally called ‘Low Sunday’ in comparison to the high feast of Easter which is the peak of the year for Christians. Perhaps, also, people feel a bit low after all the excitement of the week before (although we keep plenty of Alleluias in our services and continue to celebrate).

This year there was no chance to feel low as we had a wonderful first for Epiphany Island. We were joined by members of Second Life’s cub and scout group for the celebration of St George’s Day. Around a dozen scouts came to Epiphany Island and marched around the cathedral with their flags before lining up to greet worshippers by the door of the cathedral. They then joined us for a time of worship. You will find the sermon from the day on this blog also, but below are some photos of this special event. Continue reading


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Alleluia!!

As genuine Anglican Christians, we observe many of the ways of the offline church, with some slight adjustments at times because of our context. One of the traditions is that in Lent, there are no flowers in the church and that in services the word Alleluia is not used. In the cathedral and chapel services on Epiphany Island, we do the same. Many of us feel the lack of Alleluias to be a great sacrifice and long for their return. At our Easter Vigil, we enjoy the first use of Alleluia for six and a half weeks. Then on Easter Sunday we have many more. The atmosphere of celebration is so great that we need more than just Alleluias said, shouted and gestured. We usually have fireworks to complete our celebration, courtesy of Ana our churchwarden. This year Ana excelled herself. Fireworks went off in the Cathedral at various points in the service as well as at the end when we had completed our service at the Garden Tomb.

To give you some idea of the effect, here are some photos taken by Celberon.

The cathedral on Easter Day.

The fireworks begin!

The service has ended – coloured particles begin to appear.

The display becomes more dazzling.

The view of our celebration from a distance.

 

 


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Holy Week on Epiphany Island

Anglicans on Epiphany Island are busy with special services in this most important week of the year, just as our counterparts are in offline churches throughout the world. Below are some pictures to give you a taste of what has happened in the last week.

On Palm Sunday Ana excelled herself as usual in decorating the sim with palm trees and palm branches. We met in the Peace Garden for the beginning of our service and then processed, along with a reluctant donkey, to the Cathedral where the rest of the service took place. In the garden we read the Palm Gospel Matthew 21:1-11 . In the cathedral the readings were Philippians 2:5-11 and the Passion Gospel which this year was a dramatised version of Matthew 26:14-27:66 . Continue reading