Current Newsletter - Guardian Angels Catholic Community
On a Wing and a Prayer
Guardian Angels Catholic Community – Just. Faithful. Catholic.
Join us for Mass every Sunday at 9AM and every Wednesday at 7AM
THE ECUMENICAL CATHOLIC COMMUNION -- A Wonderful Way of Being Catholic!
Guardian Angels Calendar June 2016
ARE BOTH ON
30 – JUNE 5
M ASS 9AM
11TH SUNDAY OF
AT RISK 6-8:30PM
S. MTN. COMM.
MORE INFO BELOW
10TH SUNDAY OF
M ASS 9AM
OF ST JOHN
UMC @ 6PM
12TH SUNDAY OF
M ASS 9AM
PAZ DE CRISTO 4PM
JUNE 20TH24TH, 10 - 11AM
CLICK ON THE
FOR THIS FREE
13TH SUNDAY OF
M ASS 9AM
LEADERSHIP COUNCIL MEETING
AFTER MASS TODAY
June Birthdays, Anniversaries and other important dates to remember:
2 - Ann Connolly Birthday
4 - Frank McPeek Birthday
5 – Cynthia and Valeska’s Anniversary – 6/5/2010
11 – Barb’s son Sam’s Birthday
8 - Sheila and Jeff Green Anniversary -6/8/90
9 - Becky Keck Birthday
11- James Crowl Birthday
13 - Becky and Jeff Keck Anniversary - 6/13/81
14 – Claire Violet’s 4th Birthday
14 - Peter Bennett Birthday
14 – Robin Iverson’s Birthday
16 - Shannon Dunn Birthday
23 – Barb’s son Sam died at age 13 on this date
24 – 9th Anniversary of Pastor Sue’s (and Pastor Kate’s – St. Teresa) Ordination to the Priesthood
27 - Barb and Doug Moen Anniversary - 6/27/98
28 – 13 Anniversary of Pastor Delores’ Ordination to the Priesthood (St. Michael’s)
29 - Carol and Peter Bennett Anniversary 6/29/85
30 - Sheila Green Birthday
send your birthdays/anniversaries/other remembrance days to Becky: [email protected]
Angels at Islam 101 Class at the Islamic Community Center of Tempe
Ramadan begins June 6th and concludes on July 5th. Ramadan is the most sacred time of
year for Muslims. Muslims fast from sunup to sundown every day of Ramadan. They break
their fast every evening after sundown with a
special meal called an Iftar dinner. Our Muslim
friends from the Foundation for Intercultural
Dialogue have invited our families to break the
fast with a Muslim family on one of the nights
during Ramadan. It is part of the tradition to
invite others to these dinners. You may be the
guest of a Muslim family or if a family is not
available the dinner will be at the Dialogue
Center in Tempe. If you are interested in breaking bread with a Muslim family during
Ramadan, contact Pastor Sue [email protected] and she will hook you up with the
leaders who are organizing the dinners. It would be good if you can give Pastor Sue a
couple of options regarding dates. This is a great way for us to promote understanding and
develop a deeper relationship with one of our Muslim sisters and brothers.
We’ll be reading this book together this summer!
Several opportunities will be scheduled for us to
get together to discuss what we’re learning about
ourselves and other Independent Catholics.
A description of the book from Amazon: Independent
Catholics are not formally connected to the pope in
Rome. They practice apostolic succession, seven
sacraments, and devotion to the saints. But without a
pope, they can change quickly and experiment freely,
with some affirming communion for the divorced,
women's ordination, clerical marriage, and same-sex
marriage. From their early modern origins in the
Netherlands to their contemporary proliferation in the
United States, these "other Catholics" represent an
unusually liberal, mobile, and creative version of
America's largest religion.
In The Other Catholics, Julie Byrne shares the
remarkable history and current activity of independent
Catholics, who number at least two hundred
communities and a million members across the United
States. She focuses in particular on the Church of
Antioch, one of the first Catholic groups to ordain
women in modern times. Through archival documents and interviews, Byrne tells the story of the
unforgettable leaders and surprising influence of these understudied churches, which, when included in
Catholic history, change the narrative arc and total shape of modern Catholicism. As Pope Francis fights
to soften Roman doctrines with a pastoral touch and his fellow Roman bishops push back with equal
passion, independent Catholics continue to leap ahead of Roman reform, keeping key Catholic traditions
but adding a progressive difference.
Prison Reform Study Session – June 14
Valley Interfaith Project is offering a study session on Prison Reform in Arizona
on Tuesday, June 14, at 6:00 p.m. This session will be hosted by Dayspring
United Methodist Church, 1365 E. Elliot Road, Tempe.
How I came to Guardian Angels
– Rudy Armijo-Pack
This journey really starts in 2002.
Marriage Equality has been passed in
California and Don & I immediately
started making plans to get married in
San Diego but just as we filed for our
marriage license the courts suspended
any additional same sex marriages. We
went ahead with our plans and on
11/16/02 Don & I performed our own
ceremony with friends atop a mountain
in Palm Springs. We decided to wait out
the courts in California. Eleven years
later we were still waiting.
August 2013, Marriage Equality became
legal in Doña Ana County, New Mexico.
Don & I were legally married on
09/16/13 by Fr. Jim Lehman at Holy Family American National Catholic Church, Las Cruces,
NM with my family in attendance. That morning Fr. Jim and his husband referred me to
Guardian Angels in Tempe, AZ. I sat on this info for a year.
10/17/14, Marriage Equality is legalized in Arizona. Don & I immediately head to the Mesa
Court House where we were legally married curbside in front of the Courthouse by Mary
Jacobs, minister with the Disciples of Christ and witnessed by Sue Ringler, pastor with
Guardian Angels Catholic Community.
In January 2015 Don & I visit my family in New Mexico. In my dreams I had been hearing
my mother urging me to make this trip for some time. My mother passed in mid-2013. We
attend church on January 18th and I heard/ felt the Holy Spirit for the first time. The
readings, the gospel and Fr. Jim’s homily all seemed directed straight at me. It was as if I
was the only person in attendance. New possibilities were revealed to me that day. After
mass Fr. Jim asked me if I had sought out Guardian Angels yet. Again I waited.
After being sick with the flu for a couple of weeks I finally decided to check out Guardian
Angels. I remember that Sunday, 02/22/15, the first Sunday of Lent, like it was yesterday. I
parked and took three deep breaths and finally got out of my car. I sheepishly followed the
others not sure of what to expect and there holding the door open for me was Pastor Sue.
She looked at me smiled and said, “Rudy, I’m so glad you are here”. She remembered my
name! I was dumbstruck. I couldn’t believe this was happening. I felt my mother’s smile as
I entered the sanctuary.
It only took 51 years but I now understand that I was led to this place. My life was forever
changed on that day…
What’s your story? How did you end up at Guardian Angels?…and why did you stay? We would like
to print your story in a future newsletter. There are so many awesome, inspiring people who have
made their way to Guardian Angels Catholic Community. We all want to get to know each other
better and learn about each other’s stories. Send your story…and other ideas for the Newsletter to
Pastor Sue at [email protected]
SSSHHHHHHH Don’t tell her!!!
Many of you know that Johanna and her teammate,
Aashney, have qualified for this year’s National
Speech and Debate Tournament.
They are busy preparing for the tournament in
Utah June 11 - 18. We would like to send her off with
notes of encouragement from family and friends that
she can open during the week.
If you would like to give her a note for Nationals, you
can bring it to church on June 5 or mail it to our
house to arrive by June 10.
Johanna Crowl / Nationals
2276 East Winchester Place
Chandler, AZ 85286-1223
We are going to put all the notes in one, large
envelope for her to read on the plane and during the
week. The notes can be short - just let her know you
are thinking of her and praying for her. Our Angels
have been a great source of support and
encouragement for Johanna. It means the world to her and to us!
Thank you and God bless you all, Sam and Chris
We had a beautiful mass and a yummy potluck on May 29th to celebrate our soon-to-arrive new
Angel, baby boy Cook! We blessed Christian, Wayne, Monica and new baby boy Cook!
As some of you may have heard many children and adults are
not getting vaccines at the rate needed to help protect the
community. Recently the medical community has been warning
those with newborns and infants that those in contact with the
child really should be up to date with their vaccines especially
the Tdap that includes the Whooping Cough (Pertussis) Vaccine.
Soon we will have new born baby boy Cook with us and we’re
asking that all the Angels take the initiative to check your
vaccination status and get those you need to help us protect our
newest little Angel! If you need more information on this please
feel free to contact Pastor Sue. Thanks!
Pleas from the Pantry (Please…and THANK YOU!!)
Our little Guardian Angels/Community Christian Church Pantry provides between 25-30 sack lunches for our
homeless friends each and every week. We are currently in need of the
Tuna ( either little boxes of tuna salad to pouches of tuna)
Granola bars (the soft bars are easier for some of our friends to eat)
Cheese crackers/peanut butter crackers
Single-serving peanut butter (we REALLY need these!)
Fruit cups, applesauce cups, pudding cups
Plastic spoons or forks
Small containers of juice
Bottled water (we really go through these as temperatures heat up)
Also, Keeley makes up grooming kits and can always use travel-size
containers of shampoo, and oral-care items.
Each lunch bag includes either tuna or Vienna sausages, peanut butter, crackers, one or two granola bars,
fruit/applesauce/pudding and any other treats we may have. Right now we have individually-wrapped cookies, so
each bag gets a cookie. Every bag is a little different, and we are always trying to make them as healthy as we can
(plus add a special little treat, just for fun!) so please keep that in mind.
Thank you all so much for your generosity! Every item in our pantry is donated and our Pantry wouldn't exist
without you! Thanks again! Doug, Keeley, and Kay
RebbeSoul is a terrific, international musician.
RebbeSoul (www.rebbesoul.com) in Concert:
Sat, June 11 at 7:30pm in the Valley Unitarian
Universalist Sanctuary, 6400 W Del Rio, Chandler
85226, sponsored by Congregation NefeshSoul.
RebbeSoul is an internationally-recognized Jewish
singer/songwriter/performer who blends world music
with Jewish themes. With eight CDs and over three
decades of performing in Israel and the US, RebbeSoul
will offer a musical experience that you will never
forget. $10.00 tickets at the door (cash or check only no credit cards.) Cheesecake reception following the
The men’s group has really enjoyed getting together so
they thought they’d keep doing it! They will meet at the
church again on Wednesday June 22 at 7PM in Classroom
2. For more info or if you have questions, please contact
Pastor Ed ([email protected]).
On Pentecost we celebrated Pastor Ed’s 25th Anniversary as a Priest. Enjoy the pictures.
Our Violet took her mommies to Disney World!
Don’t forget to share your vacation pictures with us so we can put them in future Newsletters!
Real Presence by Rory Cooney
Over the years, as a student of liturgy and Catholic thought, I have
come across a few metaphors that help to demystify the idea of "real
presence," that is, that Christ can be really present to us in the
appearance of bread and wine. Now, there's a sense in which we just
feel that Christ, as God, can do anything he wants to do. Bart
Simpson wonders, Can God make a burrito so hot that he can't eat it?
Our thoughts about God go off the rails (and greater minds than
Bart's have posed similar ones) because of the way we think of
power. Suffice it to say that the Christian definition of power, the
notion that flows from the gospel of Christ, is that power is shared
life, flowing from kenotic love and the invitation to follow and be
disciple, and demonstrated by service to others, especially those who
cannot (like the poor) or will not (like enemies) reciprocate. So, in
the hope that writing these down will help both of us, here are the insights to which I've been made aware over the years.
They're not my own, but I've internalized them. Maybe they will work for you, too.
1. Transubstantiation: Food transformed by presence. Consider a scenario like this one. In a certain family, a brother and
a sister have grown up very close. After college, the brother goes into the armed forces. The sister gets engaged to be
married, but it so happens that her brother, whom she loves very much, cannot get leave, let's say he is, in fact, overseas
and involved in war. The wedding goes on, but the brother is missed. When, at the festivities of the reception, he is
remembered by his sister, some tears are shed, and when the cake is cut, she instructs her friends to carefully wrap one of
the first pieces, and they take it to the family home, and put it in the freezer.
Months later, the brother returns, and when the family gathers for a thanksgiving reunion, his sister has removed the
wedding cake and prepared it for him, and she gives it to him after his dinner, with a word of affection, telling him that
everyone at the reception had remembered him on the day of her wedding.
I suspect that her brother ate the best cake of his life at that moment! Would any of us, in such a circumstance, think that
we had eaten "just cake"? Is it only flour, sugar, butter, and baking powder that he's ingesting? Of course not! He's eating a
day and a time, memory, laughter, tears, love, the hope of the human race. He's consuming and becoming a part of, as it
becomes a part of him, everyone who gathered around that cake on his sister's wedding day.
I would say, if human presence can thus transform food so completely, how much more can divine presence transform it?
We might say the wedding cake was changed in its meaning, but it has not been changed completely. Divine presence,
however, must be able to utterly transform a thing, make it a new creation! It might still appear to be food, but it has been
changed by divine presence into something utterly other.
2. This is my body, this is my blood. Sometimes we think of these words in the consecration, echoing the words of the last
supper, as magical, that by saying these words Jesus changed the supper food into his own life. The incantation hocus
pocus actually reinforces that claim, as those words are a corruption of the Latin hoc est enim corpus meum, the words "for
this is my body" in Latin, spoken in the mass. To any student of eucharistic theology, the story of the eucharist is not
confined to the last supper; its origins are in the table ministry of the messiah as well as in the post-resurrection narratives,
taken in the context of the Last Supper, with all its overtones of Sabbath and Passover. It is a complex, richly layered
But even this is not incomprehensible to us as human beings. Again, I think that it's our duty to take faith out of the realm
of magic and put it into the realm of experience, so that it can be truly human.
Food doesn't fall out of heaven into our cupboards and refrigerators, at least it hasn't since the time of manna. Even with
the advent of "Peapod" and similar internet services where we can press a few buttons and a few hours later a man appears
on our doorstep with groceries, we know that there's more exchanged than hope and electrons. The food in our homes, the
food that sustains us and our families, the food that makes our living possible and sustains us in our work and play, all this
has to be paid for. Money is required. Some has to come from us, and go to someone else. This part is obvious. But what is
that money, really?
For most of us, money is life-time. We only get so much of it, only so many years. Only so many weeks in those years, days
in those weeks, hours in those days. Money comes from trading our time for it. We work at our jobs, we get money to buy
groceries. We buy food with our lives. We can't trade it back in, either. You can't buy back the forty hours you traded for
your paycheck, it's gone. What we have is a symbol of life spent.
So we take that paycheck, and we go buy groceries. And we bring them home, fire up the stove and oven, and start
preparing a meal. We gather our kids, our families, our friends, whomever. We take the food we've bought and prepared,
we arrange it as festively as we can, or informally, on the table. We say a blessing. We pass it around.
Can you see how, as your mother, or sister, or son or daughter or friend, asks for the bread, you could be thinking as you
pass it with love, "this is my body, this is my blood"? You've spent your life for it. All that's left is your intention. Can we
learn to intentionally give our lives in our work, in all we do, as an act of love for others, so that even the act of sharing our
tables becomes a eucharistic act that can be connected to the great eucharistic act of Christ? Life lived in love, given away,
even in and maybe especially in the simple, intentional act of sharing a meal with others is an icon of divine life. Sharing
food at table is sharing life.
3. Real Presence of Whom? We Proclaim the Death of the Lord. It's really a discussion for another time, another book, in
fact, but it needs to be said here too. Since we are talking about being invited to a table to dine with the Lord, we need to
ask, "Whose "real presence" are we consuming?
In the Eucharist, the Holy Spirit, the "Lord and Giver of life," enters into the gifts of bread and wine to transform them into
the presence of Christ, so that the body of Christ, the gathered assembly, can be nourished for the mission of God upon
which it was sent by baptism and confirmation. "Receive the Holy Spirit," Jesus said, "as the Father sent me, so I send you."
What is that mission? It is the mission of the moshiach (messiah, anointed one), or as the Greeks called him, Christos, the
Christ. There is one Spirit. The same Spirit that anointed Jesus anoints us for the same mission, to announce the gospel to
the poor, liberty to captives, joy to those in sorrow. "Turn away from sin (the empire built by violence and greed) and
believe in the good news." That good news is the real presence, in Christ, and now in us, of the empire/reign of God, to be
built by self-sacrificing love for the peace and equal good of all people.
What's the catch? Well, the empire of sin isn't going away easily. It had no trouble disposing of Jesus by the machinery of
capital punishment for treason: the cross. But God raised Jesus from death, never to die again, to bear witness forever to
the triumph, however slow to appear, however fragile its peaceful, relentless strategy may be, of abundant life. "When we
eat this bread and drink this cup," said St. Paul, writing about the meal that is the sign of the new creation, the sign of
Christ's risen, living body, the church, "we proclaim the death of the Lord, until he comes." All who follow the master in
holding up the absolute equality of the daughters and sons of Abba, who announce that God is for everyone, regardless of
their past, their parentage, nationality, or even creed, are destined for the cross. There is no other path to the
Holy food for holy people. The Holy Spirit makes the Eucharist for us, so that we can be made more fully, week by week,
Sunday by Sunday, into the likeness of Christ. So St. Augustine, in one of his sermons, told his people in the city of Hippo:
“If you therefore are Christ’s body and members, it is your own mystery that is placed on the Lord’s table! It is your own
mystery that you are receiving! Be a member of Christ’s body then, so that your ‘Amen’ may ring true! Be what you see;
receive what you are!”
To demystify doesn't suggest that the mystery is taken away, only that what appears magical before enters the realm
of mystery for us now. Mystery does not suggest unintelligibility. It suggests the impossibility of definition. It suggests a
reality that defies circumlocution. Once we can connect with what happens around our tables and in our own lives, how
food shared is life shared, we can see more clearly why Jesus used food in the first place and commanded us to remember
him, and dwell on the mystery from a place of ownership and belonging. It is our own mystery that we receive! Knowing
this, we can listen for that echo in our own life, day by day, of the promise he has made to be with us always. Trusting that
promise, we live to keep the same promise to each other.