Wellshire Presbyterian Church began construction on a new Narthex (lobby area) and renovated Sanctuary space i...
BY DORIS B. TRUHLAR STAFF WRITER The recently-consecrated Bishop for the Episcopal Church in Colorado, the Rt....
CONTRIBUTED BY SCJS Registration is open for the SCJS annual conference, “Place and Identity: Redefining the C...
BY ROSEMARY FETTER The ubiquitous egg has been a traditional harbinger of spring from earliest times. As far b...
The holiday season is a special and spiritual time of year. It can sometimes be easy to get lost in the more c...
At this holiday season, many prayers are answered and church services flow across our godly founded nation. A...
BY BRAD STRAIT I love Christmas, with its songs and candle-lit services. But Christmas is also a challenging t...
December 14, 15, 16 and 24 Join Cherry Creek Presbyterian Church at 10150 E. Belleview Ave. in Greenwood Villa...
Jewish Family Service of Colorado (JFS) installed new board members, Jennifer Kraft, Rabbi Rick Rheins, Scott...
“Let him Easter in us” Gerard Manley Hopkins What is Easter to you? It is the day we celebrate Ch...
Wellshire Presbyterian Church began construction on a new Narthex (lobby area) and renovated Sanctuary space in January 2018. The final result, completed in August 2019, is a welcoming, usable space that will support the work of Wellshire and the Denver community for decades to come. Join us in celebrating the grand re-opening of the Narthex and Sanctuary September 22, 2019. They are located at 2999 S. Colorado Blvd.
BY DORIS B. TRUHLAR
The recently-consecrated Bishop for the Episcopal Church in Colorado, the Rt. Rev. Kimberly (Kym) Lucas, recently visited Good Shepherd Episcopal Church in Centennial, where she led the service and preached the sermon to a full house.
In an interview with The Villager, Lucas stated that her vision for the Episcopal Church during the coming years is “for an active, living church, making a difference in the community.”
Lucas also said that she likes to “remind people that the Episcopal Church was born out of revolution.” Lucas is the 11th bishop of the Episcopal Church in Colorado.
Lucas was rector of St. Margaret’s Episcopal Church in Washington, D.C., from January 2012 until this year. Prior to that, she was the rector of St. Ambrose Episcopal Church, Raleigh, North Carolina, from 2005 to 2011.
She grew up in Spring Lake, North Carolina, and received a Bachelor of Science Degree in biology from Wake Forest University. She earned her Master of Divinity, in the New Testament, at Union Theological Seminary in New York.
The Bishop and her husband, Mark Retherford, have four children. She succeeded the Rt. Rev. Robert O’Neill, who served the Colorado church for 15 years. The Episcopal Church in Colorado was established in 1887, and has about 30,000 members in 96 churches and missions in the state.
Lucas was ordained and consecrated as the new bishop of the Episcopal Church in Colorado on May 18 at Saint John’s Cathedral in Denver.
CONTRIBUTED BY SCJS
Registration is open for the SCJS annual conference, “Place and Identity: Redefining the Crypto-Judaic Experience in the Western Hemisphere” to be held June 30—July 2 at the Double Tree Hotel by Hilton, 7801 East Orchard Road, in southeast Denver.
Panels will feature independent researchers, writers, historians, genealogists, authors, and descendants of Iberian Jews. This year marks the inauguration of the Stanley M. Hordes Distinguished Scholar Lecture, recipient Dr.David Gitlitz, an honor bestowed upon a scholar whose contribution to advancing the field of crypto-Judaic studies has been exemplary.
SCJS welcomes keynote speaker, former Life magazine journalist Jeff Wheelwright, who, in 2008, wrote the pivotal article for the Smithsonian Magazine, “Secret of the San Luis Valley,” followed by his book, “The Wandering Gene and the Indian Princess.” His work focused on the discovery of the BRCA gene found in women in southwestern Colorado, exploring the ancestry of this secluded community.
Following a genealogy workshop on Sunday, a cocktail reception will feature the talents of Lorenzo Trujillo and the Southwest Musicians. The opening dinner honors special guest Jose Luis Parrado, Consul of Spain for Colorado, among others. Sunday night’s prize-winning play, “Conviction,” stars Ami Dayan, a master dramatist from Boulder in a compelling story about a Spanish priest and the questions of faith, love and persecution. Monday’s midday Martin-Sosin Address for Advancement in Crypto-Judaic Arts features a multi-artist, original presentation with composer David Wohl dedicated to the Iberian expulsion. Monday night, enjoy The Lost Tribe performing Sephardi, Mizrachi and Ladino music.
The conference concludes Tuesday afternoon. Registration includes four meals, the reception, snacks and all events. Kosher meals and day rates available. Hotel group rates extended prior to and after the conference duration. For more information and to register, go to cryptojews.com or write to scjsconference.Denver@gmail.com.
With thanks to the Sosin-Petit Foundation, the Mizel Museum, Museo de Las Americas, and Theater Or of Denver, as well as Gaon Books and Film, and Temple Aaron, Trinidad for their support.
The SCJS is a secular and academic group founded in 1991 dedicated to the research of the historical and contemporary development of crypto-Jews of Iberian origin. Anyone is invited to attend the conference, whether a member of SCJS or not.
“Crypto” or “ hidden Jews” are those who maintained a secret adherence to Judaism while publicly professing to be of another faith. This term especially applies to Spanish Jews in the 15th, 16th and 17th centuries who outwardly professed Catholicism in order to survive persecution during and following the Spanish Inquisition in the Old World and the new. Various narratives tell about the survival of “crypto-Jewish” practices and traditions in the greater Southwest and many families from New Mexico and Colorado are now seeking their roots in these areas. Some refer to themselves as Sephardim or Sefardita, also as Sephardic, or anusim, children of the forced ones.
This remarkable story of Jewish heritage secretly passed down through the centuries in Spanish Catholic countries is a verified part of Mexican and New Mexican ancestry. Church and military records and DNA studies suggest that one-in-four of all Spanish colonialists in New Spain were of Jewish descent. Their descendants today number in the millions; Colorado/New Mexico estimate easily boasts 500,000.
BY ROSEMARY FETTER
The ubiquitous egg has been a traditional harbinger of spring from earliest times. As far back as the ancient Egyptians, Greeks and Persians, scholars believed that the world began with an enormous egg – not that far from the truth.
In medieval Europe, eggs decorated New Year trees and Maypoles. The affluent would exchange eggs covered with gilt or gold leaf, while peasants colored their eggs by boiling them with flowers, leaves or even insects. Household records of King Edward I of England (1239-1307) record a payment of eighteen pence for 450 eggs to be gold-leafed and colored for Easter gifts.
Some believed the yolk of an egg laid on Good Friday would turn to diamond after 100 years, although exactly how an egg could be kept intact for a century without a freezer remains uncertain. Good Friday eggs cooked on Easter Sunday were said to promote the fertility of the trees and crops and protect against sudden deaths. Two yolks in an Easter egg meant an omen of prosperity.
In the late 19th century, Russian goldsmith Peter Carl Fabergé created the world’s most valuable Easter eggs for Czar Alexander III and his son, Nicholas II, to give to their wives at Easter. Working with a team of nearly 500 designers, goldsmiths, jewelers and carvers, he created some of Europe’s greatest treasures from precious metals, enamels and jewels.
Fabergé was born in Saint Petersburg, Russia, the son of a Baltic German jeweler and his Danish wife. Following his father’s trade, in 1864, he embarked a Grand Tour of Europe, studying his craft in museums around the world. Twelve years later he returned to St. Petersburg, married and studied under Hiskias Pend, his father’s key artisan. In 1882, he took over the company, developing a team of artist-jewelers who created exquisite works. The first Fabergé egg, crafted for Tsar Alexander III, was a gift to his wife, the Empress Maria Fedorovna, at Easter in 1885. Known as the Hen Egg, it is crafted from gold with an opaque white enameled “shell” that opens to reveal a matte yellow gold yolk. Inside, the gold beak contained a small ruby pendant suspended from a minute diamond replica of the Imperial Crown. That year, the Tsar gave the House of Fabergé the title; ‘Goldsmith by special appointment to the Imperial Crown.’
One of the most impressive eggs celebrated the coronation of Nicholas II in 1897. The motif for the five-inch masterpiece, inspired by the coronation robes, was stitched from gold cloth embroidered with a double-headed eagle. The egg opens to reveal a replica of the czarina’s coronation coach, modeled in enamel with gold mounts with a miniature rose diamond version of the imperial crown.
Faberge’s clientele included the hierarchy of Europe, Asia and America from 1870 until shortly after the Russian Revolution. In 1918 the Bolsheviks nationalized. The House of Fabergé and confiscated their stock. He and most of his family fled to Germany and eventually Switzerland, where he died two years later, His work remains as a glorious tribute to both his craft and the Easter celebration.
The holiday season is a special and spiritual time of year. It can sometimes be easy to get lost in the more commercial aspects of the holiday season, and there’s certainly nothing wrong with shopping for gifts that will show your loved ones how much you love and appreciate them.
For those who want to focus back on the spiritual side of this special time of year, the following suggestions can help in those efforts.
Share the story of Christmas
The Gospels of Mark and Luke offer differing accounts of the birth of Jesus Christ. Both indicate that Jesus was born to Mary, who was engaged to Joseph, a carpenter. Mary became pregnant through immaculate conception, as she was a virgin when visited by an angel who informed her that she was to carry God’s son. At the time of Christ’s birth, all Jewish people had to be counted by Roman soldiers for tax purposes. That required people to return to their places of birth. As a result, Mary and Joseph set out on an arduous journey to Bethlehem. Upon arriving in Bethlehem, inns had no vacancies, but Mary and Joseph were given shelter in a stable where Jesus was ultimately born.
Churches traditionally hold religious services on Christmas Eve and Christmas. These services are joyful expressions of faith, music and community spirit. But Christmas mass is not the only time to head to church. During Advent, the four-week period preceding Christmas, Catholics prepare and repent. Advent calendars help count down the days until Christmas.
Set out a nativity scene
Make a nativity scene the primary focus of Christmas decorations and encourage children to play with the figures and act out the Christmas story.
Focus on gifts for good
Families can focus their energies on faithful endeavors and the spirit of giving that’s synonymous with the season. Do good deeds for others, embrace peace and love and share special time with others.
Spread the holiday spirit through song. Get together with a group of friends or neighbors and go door-to-door, or hold a caroling performance at a centralized location. Select religious hymns, but also include some secular favorites.
The holiday season is a great time of year to reconnect with one’s faith and spirituality.
The site of the newly purchased home for the Resurrection Anglican Church located at 9250 E. Belleview.
At this holiday season, many prayers are answered and church services flow across our godly founded nation. A miracle has occurred in Greenwood Village with The Resurrection Anglican Fellowship (REZ) church with 50 devoted members praying for, finding, and purchasing a new church property close to other churches on East Belleview adjacent to Boston Street.
It might be described as Divine Providence, is how Father Phil Eberhart and Lawrence Depenbusch describe the local miracle of purchasing the 4.5-acre lot that has sat vacant for the past 11 years with an existing church building on the property. The land price was just under $2 million, and the congregation did not have anywhere near that much oil in their fiscal lamp.
So, they prayed!
The miracle started to unfold when Lawrence attended an “Open House” on Dayton, where he met REMAX award winning agents Lyn and Cory Drake. After further discussion and consultation, the Drakes agreed to help find buyers for the extra 2 acres. In less than a month, a developer signed a contract which in turn gave assurance to the bank of the church’s mortgage capabilities. The miracle was that the contract was signed just 24 hours before the deadline for proof of financial ability to purchase as required by the seller.
The financial angel was a local developer who arranged the cash funds to buy the property on the premise of being able to build on half of the 4.5 acres zoned R-1, not being used by the church.
Building lots are in short supply in Greenwood Village and the project will be presented to the Greenwood Planning and Zoning Commission in January and prayerfully to the GV city council later in the year. In the meantime, the REZ church is holding services in the present church building.
Lawrence Depenbusch and Pastor Phil Eberhart inside the new home of the Resurrection Anglican Fellowship. Photos by Bob Sweeney
Christmas Eve services will be a Celebration of Light by candles, carols and communion at 9 p.m. The public is always welcome and invited to attend. The congregation plans to upgrade the current church facility as the project moves forward. The church is already making improvements on the property with a new roof replaced on the church structure and an old vacant house adjacent to Boston Street demolished. Improvements on Boston Street have been made by the city, cleaning up the street area.
In correspondence from spokesman Depenbusch, he outlines the history of the land and the church members. The following are portions of his report:
“Resurrection Anglican Fellowship found our new home in a church on a hill in Greenwood Village in 2017 after over a decade of being a nomadic church, moving from retail to schools to a funeral chapel, back to retail space. In July 2017 a group of our REZ leaders sent out an email prayer request to find a ‘Treasure Hid in A Field,’ from a parable of the kingdom in Matthew 13:44 and within two weeks found the 4.5-acre lot with a church at 9200-9250 East Belleview Ave. in need of some TLC. Church members voted unanimously for the purchase of the property. The church was slated for demolition in 2006 when it was bought to build a nine-acre subdivision. Plans were rejected in 2008 for being twice the density allowed, and no buyer could be found for the next 11 years before we came along.”
Depenbusch continues, “Our plan is to sell off two one-acre R-1 lots to reduce the debt. We think this is a win/win as we can help satisfy the demand for R-1 lots (there are none east of I-25 in Greenwood Village) and assure the city planners and neighbors that our growth will be within the parameters of the land.”
The local church is aligned with traditional Anglican worship in the Anglian Church in North America. Church members have been very active in advancing the kingdom abroad with missions in Rwanda, Uganda, Estonia, Haiti and other needy countries. Members under the leadership of Eberhart have been working with nearby Lutheran, Presbyterian and Methodist churches in community-wide events.
Lyn Drake, REMAX Masters Millennium realtor, said “It has been such a joy to be a part of this amazing journey.”
BY BRAD STRAIT
I love Christmas, with its songs and candle-lit services. But Christmas is also a challenging time. As the lights twinkle, we all try to be kinder, but we often feel deeply any “malfunctioning parts” of our lives. Missing family. Financial issues. Overbooked schedules. Broken relationships. For many, Christmas is corrupted with stress, depression, abuse and loneliness. Too often, joy and hope and love seem bagged by the Grinch and carried away.
I remember a young mom in my church who lost her husband unexpectedly at 34 years old. His flu bug one day became her sobbing the next. As I hugged her, I looked at their decorated Christmas tree and my heart tore— perceiving two small boys limping through Christmas that year without a dad. Christmas can be full of brokenness.
It helps me that the first Christmas was also touched by emptiness. The Bible reminds us that Jesus voluntarily left heaven, and emptied himself to become one of us. Amazing. The unchanging and omnipresent son of God became limited to one place in space and time: a little first-century town in Palestine. The most powerful required feeding and changing. The One who created everything on the Earth—warm tides, rain forests and every manner of life—immersed himself in the decaying of a barnyard stable situated in a world full of turmoil and war.
For Jesus, the Christmas process involved an unimagined pouring out. Followed by the hope of great fullness. His purity mixing with our dirt-encrusted world, to sanctify it. His emptying becoming a path to our fullness. Christians believe that the Baby Jesus begins the final victory over brokenness. For us, the birth of Jesus changes everything!
If emptiness, stress or depression pursue you this Christmas, take hope. Filling is always preceded with a tipping of the cup to emptiness. Come light a candle. God has not forgotten. He seeks. He loves. He comes. Wait for it. Feel the emptiness but seek the pouring in of Christmas!
Brad Strait is senior pastor at Cherry Creek Presbyterian Church in Greenwood Village.
Join Cherry Creek Presbyterian Church at 10150 E. Belleview Ave. in Greenwood Village in celebrating the Christmas season with free concerts, Dec. 14 and 15 at 7 p.m., and Dec. 16 at 3 p.m. CCPC’s pipe organ, professional orchestra and 80+ voice choir will perform traditional carols and new music. All are welcome. Free childcare is available with a reservation, 303-779-9909.
A Live Nativity with our famed donkey, sheep and other barn animals will be onsite for children and adults alike to experience what that first Christmas was like for Jesus, Joseph and Mary. Celebrate Christ’s birth in a manger 45 minutes prior to CCPC’s Christmas Eve Children’s Services at 1 and 3 p.m. For a more traditional evening with organ, brass and choir; two candlelight services will be offered at 5 and 7 p.m.
For questions or more information, visit our website or call 303-779-9909.
2018 All Rights Reserved. Villager Publishing |