This Month at St. Mark


Birthdays This Month

Recognizing our congregation members who were born this month...

August 01

Denise Bell

Sandra Connelly

August 02

Tobias Boyers

August 03

Kimberly McCachren

August 04

Barb Baublitz

August 05

Tammy Snyder

Jeffrey Warehime

August 06

Darbe Bailey

Eileen Laabs

Marcia Peters

August 08

Doris Gouker

August 10

Logan Mummert

Noah Shermeyer

 

     Happy Birthday!

 

August 11

Bethany Hoke

Jean Weikert

August 12

Marilyn Kirschner

August 13

Erin Sandruck

August 15

Barbara Kerr

August 17

Allen Bowersox

Michele Eline

Karen Gilligan

David Snyder

August 18

Barbara Noble

Diana Weaver

August 20

Braelon Jones

August 21

Evan Garman

Ashley Hoke

John Peterson

August 23

Simpson Baublitz

Neil Mummert

August 24

Gil Carter

Peg Martin

August 25

Gage Martin

August 29

Sharon Bish

Elijah Carbaugh

Heather Farley

Becki Wiseotzkey





     


Current Church Season

Our Church Season for July is Time After Pentecost

The time following Pentecost is known as the Time After Pentecost. It begins on the Monday  following Pentecost and continues through Saturday afternoon before the first Sunday of Advent, some five to six months later, always including the entire months of July, August, September and October and most or all of June and November (some years include small portions of May and December). The last Sunday before Advent is celebrated as Christ the King Sunday. Sundays in this season are typically refered to as the 'n'th Sunday after Pentecost. 

 

The 23 to 28 Sundays after Pentecost are often used to focus on various aspects of the Faith, especially the mission of the church in the world. 

 

The sanctuary color for the season is dark green, although other...


Spotlight on

Apostles & Saints

This month, we are highlighting Judas.

Judas Iscariot (died c. 30–33 AD) was one of the Twelve original disciples of Jesus Christ and son of Simon Iscariot, according to the New Testament. There are debates regarding Judas' intentions in betraying Jesus, about whether he actually did betray Jesus, and even about how he died. Some of these are presented here to help explain those debates.


In Hebrew the meaning of the name Judasis is Praise. The praised one.

 Judas

Judas Iscariot (died c. 30–33 AD) was one of the Twelve original disciples of Jesus Christ and son of Simon Iscariot, according to the New Testament.


Judas is known for the kiss and betrayal of Jesus to the Sanhedrin for thirty silver coins. His name is often used synonymously with betrayal or treason. Though there are varied accounts of his death, the

traditional version sees him as having hanged himself following the betrayal, as recorded in the Gospel of Matthew. His place among the Twelve Apostles was later filled by Matthias.


Despite his notorious role in the Gospel narratives, Judas remains a controversial figure in Christian history. For instance, Judas' betrayal is seen as setting in motion the events that led to Jesus' crucifixion and resurrection which, according to traditional Christian theology, brought salvation to humanity. Gnostic texts – rejected by the mainstream Church as heretical – praise Judas for his role in triggering humanity's salvation and view Judas as the best of the apostles.


Judas was a common name in New Testament times. Judas Iscariot should not be confused with Jude Thomas (Saint Thomas the Apostle), or with Saint Jude Thaddaeus who was also one of the Twelve Apostles.


The Gospels of Matthew, Mark, and Luke state that Jesus sent out "the twelve" (including Judas) with power over unclean spirits and with a ministry of preaching and healing: Judas clearly played an active part in this apostolic ministry alongside the other eleven. Origen of Alexandria, in his Commentary on John's Gospel, reflected on Judas's interactions with the other apostles and Jesus' confidence in him prior to his betrayal. However, in John's Gospel, Judas's outlook was differentiated - many of Jesus' disciples abandoned him because of the difficulty of accepting his teachings, and Jesus asked the twelve if they would also leave him. Simon Peter spole for the twelve: "Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life."


Matthew directly states that Judas betrayed Jesus for a bribe of "thirty pieces of silver" by identifying him with a kiss to arresting soldiers of the High Priest Caiaphas, who then turned Jesus over to Pontius Pilate's soldiers.


Mark's Gospel states that the chief priests were looking for a way to arrest Jesus. They decided not to do so during the feast [of the Passover], since they were afraid that people would riot; instead, they chose the night before the feast to arrest him. According to Luke's account, Satan entered Judas at this time.


According to the account in the Gospel of John, Judas carried the disciples' money bag or box, but John's Gospel makes no mention of the thirty pieces of silver as a fee for betrayal. However, in John 13:27-30, when Judas left the gathering of Jesus and His disciples with betrayal in mind, some [of the disciples] thought that Judas might have been leaving to buy supplies or on a charitable errand.


There are several different accounts of the death of Judas, including two in the modern Biblical canon:

Matthew 27:3–10 says that Judas returned the money to the priests and committed suicide by hanging himself. They used it to buy the potter's field. The Gospel account presents this as a fulfillment of prophecy.


The Acts 1:18-19 says that Judas used the money to buy a field but fell headfirst, and burst asunder in the midst, and all his bowels gushed out. This field is called Akeldama or Field of Blood.


The non-canonical Gospel of Judas says Judas had a vision of the disciples stoning and persecuting him.


Another account was preserved by the early Christian leader, Papias: "Judas walked about in this world a sad example of impiety; for his body having swollen to such an extent that he could not pass where a chariot could pass easily, he was crushed by the chariot, so that his bowels gushed out."


The existence of conflicting accounts of the death of Judas has caused problems for scholars who have seen them as threatening the reliability of Scripture.


Various attempts at harmonization have been suggested. Generally they have followed literal interpretations such as that of Augustine, which suggest that these simply describe different aspects of the same event – that Judas hanged himself in the field, and the rope eventually snapped and the fall burst his body open, or that the accounts of Acts and Matthew refer to two different transactions. Some have taken the descriptions as figurative: that the "falling prostrate" was Judas in anguish, and the "bursting out of the bowels" is pouring out emotion.


More recently, scholars have suggested that the Gospel writer may also have had a passage from Jeremiah in mind,[32] such as chapters 18:1–4 and 19:1–13 which refers to a potter's jar and a burial place, and chapter 32:6–15 which refers to a burial place and an earthenware jar.


The betrayal of Jesus by one of his disciples is widely regarded by scholars as authentic, based on the criterion of embarrassment: it is considered unlikely that the early church would have invented this tradition, since it appears to reflect badly on Jesus.


Bart Ehrman, though suggests that the betrayal is "about as historically certain as anything else in the tradition," argues that what was betrayed was not the whereabouts of Jesus, but his private teachings.


In his book The Sins of Scripture, John Shelby Spong says that "the whole story of Judas has the feeling of being contrived." He writes: "the act of betrayal by a member of the twelve disciples is not found in the earliest Christian writings. Judas is first placed into the Christian story by the Gospel of Mark (3:19), who wrote in the early years of the eighth decade of the Common Era." He points out that some of the Gospels, after the Crucifixion, refer to the number of Disciples as "Twelve," as if Judas were still among them. Comparing the three conflicting descriptions of Judas's death – hanging, leaping into a pit, and disemboweling – with three Old Testament betrayals followed by similar suicides, he suggests that these were the real source of the story.


Spong's conclusion is that early Bible authors, after the First Jewish-Roman War, sought to distance themselves from Rome's enemies. They augmented the Gospels with a story of a disciple, personified in Judas as the Jewish state, who either betrayed or handed over Jesus to his Roman crucifiers. Spong identifies this augmentation with the origin of modern Anti-Semitism.


Jewish scholar Hyam Maccoby suggests that in the New Testament, the name "Judas" was constructed as an attack on the Judaeans or on the Judaean religious establishment held responsible for executing Jesus.



Source: wikipedia

Notable People This Month

Each month we introduce people who are notable for us Lutherans. Some will be saints. Some will be recognized as having made other significant contributions. 


This month, we recognize composers Johann Sebastian Bach and Georg Friedrich Handel.

Johann Sebastian Bach (1685-1750)


Bach was a German composer and musician of the Baroque period. He enriched established German styles through his mastery of counterpoint, harmonic and motivic organization, and his adaptation of rhythms, forms, and textures from abroad, particularly from Italy and France. Bach's compositions include the Brandenburg Concertos, the Goldberg Variations, the Mass in B minor, two Passions, and over three hundred cantatas of which approximately two hundred survive. His music is revered for its technical command, artistic beauty, and intellectual depth.


While Bach's abilities as an organist were highly respected during his lifetime, he was not widely recognized as an important composer until a revival of interest in his music during the first half of the 19th century. He is now generally regarded as one of the greatest composers of all time.

His father, Johann Ambrosius, a musicial director, likely taught him violin and basic music theory. His uncles were all professional musicians, whose posts included church organists, court chamber musicians, and composers. One uncle, Johann Christoph Bach (1645–93), introduced him to the organ, and an older second cousin, Johann Ludwig Bach (1677–1731), was a well-known composer and violinist.


In April 1700, Bach enrolled in the prestigious St. Michael's School in Lüneburg, some two weeks' travel north of Ohrdruf. The journey was probably undertaken mostly on foot. His two years there were critical in exposing Bach to a wider range of European culture. In addition to singing in the choir, he played the School's three-manual organ and harpsichords. He came into contact with sons of aristocrats from northern Germany, sent to the highly selective school to prepare for careers in other disciplines.


In January 1703, shortly after graduating from St. Michael's and being turned down for the post of organist at Sangerhausen, Bach was appointed court musician in the chapel of Duke Johann Ernst III in Weimar. His role there is unclear, but it probably included menial, non-musical duties. During his seven-month tenure at Weimar, his reputation as a keyboardist spread so much that he was invited to inspect the new organ and give the inaugural recital, at the New Church (now Bach Church) in Arnstadt, located about 19 mi southwest of Weimar. In August 1703, he became the organist at the New Church, with light duties, a relatively generous salary, and a fine new organ tuned in a temperament that allowed music written in a wider range of keys to be played.


Despite strong family connections and a musically enthusiastic employer, tension built up between Bach and the authorities after several years in the post. Bach was dissatisfied with the standard of singers in the choir. He called one of them a "Zippel Fagottist" (weenie bassoon player). The conflict was resolved, but Bach was disenchanted with the assignment.


Appointment in Leipzig: After having been offered the position of Thomaskantor in 1722, Bach was invited to Leipzig. Bach was required to instruct the students of the Thomasschule in singing and to provide church music for the main churches in Leipzig. Bach was required to teach Latin, but he was allowed to employ four "prefects" (deputies) to do this instead. The prefects also aided with musical instruction. A cantata was required for the church services on Sundays and additional church holidays during the liturgical year.


Bach usually led performances of his cantatas, most of which were composed within three years of his relocation to Leipzig. The first was Die Elenden sollen essen, BWV 75, performed on 30 May 1723, the first Sunday after Trinity. Bach collected his cantatas in annual cycles. Of the more than three hundred cantatas which Bach composed in Leipzig, over one hundred have been lost to posterity. Most of these concerted works expound on the Gospel readings prescribed for every Sunday and feast day in the Lutheran year. Bach started a second annual cycle the first Sunday after Trinity of 1724 and composed only chorale cantatas, each based on a single church hymn. 


Bach broadened his composing and performing beyond the liturgy by taking over, in March 1729, the directorship of the Collegium Musicum, a secular performance ensemble started by Telemann. This was one of the dozens of private societies in the major German-speaking cities that was established by musically active university students; these societies had become increasingly important in public musical life and were typically led by the most prominent professionals in a city. In the words of Christoph Wolff, it "consolidated Bach's firm grip on Leipzig's principal musical institutions". Year round, the Leipzig's Collegium Musicum performed regularly in Leipzig venues. Many of Bach's works during the 1730s and 1740s were written for and performed by the Collegium Musicum; among these were parts of his Clavier-Übung (Keyboard Practice) and many of his violin and keyboard concertos.


To a large extent, Bach's musical style fits in the conventions of his day, which is the final stage of the baroque style. When his contemporaries, such as Handel, Telemann and Vivaldi wrote concertos he did so too. When they wrote suites, he did so too. From an early age, he imbued himself with the compositions of his contemporaries and of prior generations, all of what was available from European composers, such as the French, the Italian, and those from all parts of Germany, and there is little of it that didn't appear in his own music.


Religious music was at the center of Bach's output for much of his life. The hundreds of sacred works he created are usually seen as manifesting not just his craft but a truly devout relationship with God. He had taught Luther's Small Catechism as the Thomaskantor in Leipzig, and some of his pieces represent it. The Lutheran chorale was the basis of much of his work. In elaborating these hymns into his chorale preludes, he wrote more cogent and tightly integrated works than most, even when they were massive and lengthy. The large-scale structure of every major Bach sacred vocal work is evidence of subtle, elaborate planning to create a religiously and musically powerful expression. For example, the St Matthew Passion, like other works of its kind, illustrated the Passion with Bible text reflected in recitatives, arias, choruses, and chorales; but in crafting this work, Bach created an overall experience that has been found over the centuries since to be both musically thrilling and spiritually profound.


Bach published or carefully compiled in manuscript many collections of pieces that explored the range of artistic and technical possibilities inherent in almost every genre of his time except opera.


In January 1749 Bach's daughter Elisabeth Juliane Friederica married his pupil Johann Christoph Altnickol. Bach's health was however declining. On 2 June, Heinrich von Brühl wrote to one of the Leipzig burgomasters to request that his music director, Johann Gottlob Harrer, fill the Thomaskantor and Director musices posts "upon the eventual ... decease of Mr. Bach". Becoming blind, Bach underwent eye surgery, in March 1750, and again in April, from the British eye surgeon John Taylor. Bach died on 28 July 1750, from complications connected to the unsuccessful treatment.


An inventory drawn up a few months after Bach's death, shows that his estate included five harpsichords, two lute-harpsichords, three violins, three violas, two cellos, a viola da gamba, a lute and a spinet, along with 52 "sacred books", including works by Martin Luther and Josephus. The composer's son Carl Philipp Emanuel saw to it that The Art of Fugue, however still unfinished, was published in 1751.

Source: wikipedia


Georg Friedrich Handel (1685-1759)


Handel was a German, later British, baroque composer who spent the bulk of his career in London, becoming well known for his operas, oratorios, anthems, and organ concertos. Handel received important training in Halle and worked as a composer in Hamburg and Italy before settling in London in 1712; he became a naturalized British subject in 1727. He was strongly influenced both by the great composers of the Italian Baroque and by the middle-German polyphonic choral tradition.


Within fifteen years, Handel had started three commercial opera companies to supply the English nobility with Italian opera. Musicologist Winton Dean writes that his operas show that "Handel was not only a great composer; he was a dramatic genius of the first order." As Alexander's Feast (1736) was well received, Handel made a transition to English choral works. After his success with Messiah (1742) he never composed an Italian opera again. Almost blind, and having lived in England for nearly fifty years, he died in 1759, a respected and rich man. His funeral was given full state honours, and he was buried in Westminster Abbey in London.


Born the same year as Johann Sebastian Bach and Domenico Scarlatti, Handel is regarded as one of the greatest composers of the Baroque era, with works such as Water Music, Music for the Royal Fireworks and Messiah 

remaining steadfastly popular. One of his four Coronation Anthems, Zadok the Priest (1727), composed for the coronation of George II, has been performed at every subsequent British coronation, traditionally during the sovereign's anointing. Handel composed more than forty operas in over thirty years, and since the late 1960s, with the revival of baroque music and historically informed musical performance, interest in Handel's operas has grown.


When Georg Friedrich was about age nine, his father engaged the organist at the Halle parish church, the young Friedrich Wilhelm Zachow, to instruct Handel. Zachow would be the only teacher that Handel ever had.


Zachow  introduced Hadel "to a vast collection of German and Italian music, which he possessed, sacred and profane, vocal and instrumental compositions of different schools, different styles, and of every master". Many traits considered "Handelian" can be traced back to Zachow's music. At the same time Handel continued practice on the harpsichord, learned violin and organ, but according to Burney his special affection was for the hautbois (oboe).



Shortly after commencing his university education, Handel (though Lutheran) on 13 March 1702 accepted the probationary position of organist at the Calvinist Cathedral in Halle. Handel's probationary appointment expired in March 1703 and by July Handel had moved to Hamburg. There, he accepted a position as violinist and harpsichordist in the orchestra of the Hamburg Opera. Here, his first two operas, Almira and Nero, were produced in 1705. He produced two other operas, Daphne and Florindo, in 1708.


In 1710, Handel became Kapellmeister to German prince George, the Elector of Hanover, who in 1714 would become King George I of Great Britain and Ireland. He visited Anna Maria Luisa de' Medici and her husband in Düsseldorf on his way to London in 1710. In 1712, Handel decided to settle permanently in England.


In 1717 Handel became house composer at Cannons in Middlesex, where he laid the cornerstone for his future choral compositions in the twelve Chandos Anthems. Another cannon he wrote for The 1st Duke of Chandos, was Acis and Galatea. During Handel's lifetime it was his most performed work. Winton Dean wrote, "the music catches breath and disturbs the memory". In 1719 the Duke of Chandos became one of the composer's important patrons and main subscribers to his new opera company, the Royal Academy of Music.


In 1749 Handel composed Music for the Royal Fireworks; 12,000 people attended the first performance. In 1750 he arranged a performance of Messiah to benefit the Foundling Hospital. The performance was considered a great success and was followed by annual concerts that continued throughout his life. In recognition of his patronage, Handel was made a governor of the Hospital the day after his initial concert. He bequeathed a copy of Messiah to the institution upon his death. His involvement with the Foundling Hospital is today commemorated with a permanent exhibition in London's Foundling Museum, which also holds the Gerald Coke Handel Collection. In addition to the Foundling Hospital, Handel also gave to a charity that assisted impoverished musicians and their families.


In August 1750, on a journey back from Germany to London, Handel was seriously injured in a carriage accident between The Hague and Haarlem in the Netherlands. In 1751, one eye started to fail. The cause was a cataract which was operated on by the great charlatan Chevalier Taylor. This did not improve his eyesight, but possibly made it worse. He was completely blind by 1752. He died in 1759 at home in Brook Street, at age 74. The last performance he attended was of Messiah. Handel was buried in Westminster Abbey. More than three thousand mourners attended his funeral, which was given full state honors.

Handel never married, and kept his personal life private. His initial will bequeathed the bulk of his estate to his niece Johanna, however four codicils distributed much of his estate to other relations, servants, friends and charities.


Handel has generally been accorded high esteem by fellow composers, both in his own time and since. Bach attempted, unsuccessfully, to meet Handel while he was visiting Halle. Mozart is reputed to have said of him, "Handel understands affect better than any of us. When he chooses, he strikes like a thunder bolt." To Beethoven he was "the master of us all... the greatest composer that ever lived. I would uncover my head and kneel before his tomb." Beethoven emphasized above all the simplicity and popular appeal of Handel's music when he said, "Go to him to learn how to achieve great effects, by such simple means."​​​​​​​

Source: wikipedia

Do You Know

This month's quiz focuses upon common hymns. There is a list of several hymns' common titles and a list of snippets from those hymns' opening lines.

 

The problem is that the two lists don't match. What are the correct pairings -- hymn title and opening lines?

Can you match the Hymn's title with snippets of opening lines?

  • A Mighty Fortress is Our God
  • Joyful, Joyful We Adore Thee
  • Amazing Grace
  • Beautiful Savior
  • Go My Children with My Blessing
  • Silent Night, Holy Night
  • Crown Him with Many Crowns
  • Lift High the Cross
  • I was There to Hear Your Borning Cry
  • Praise God from Whom All Blessings Flow
  • I’ll be there when you are old
  • Waking, sleeping, I am with you; You are my own
  • A sword and shield victorious
  • The Lamb upon His throne
  • The love of Christ proclaim
  • …that saved a wretch like me
  • King of Creation, Son of God, Son of Man
  • Praise Him all creatures here below
  • God of Glory, Lord of Love
  • All is calm, all is bright