Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Fellowship of St. Joseph Behind the Walls

There's something new and wonderful about to happen at the Eastern Kentucky Correctional Complex in West Liberty, Kentucky!  My name is Father Todd Boyce, and  I have the privilege to serve as Institutional Chaplain at EKCC.  We have over 1,700 inmates, nearly 400 staff members, and two Chaplains!  I'm a busy man, but I love what I'm doing.  In the course of any given week I counsel upwards of 15 to 20 men in my office or in their dorm, I notify between 4 and 6 men of family emergencies/deaths, I interact with nearly 25 volunteers, and pray continually about how God's love can be manifested more clearly in this place.


Each time I counsel with an Inmate I'm required to look at his background and know what he's done.  I don't mind telling you that there are many times I didn't have to do that.  Yet, in spite of it and/or because of it, God's love for us is made more clear to me each time.  I have felt, over the past 6 months, that something more is needed in this place for the men to grab hold of than what's currently offered.  Now, please don't misunderstand me.  We have the most wonderful volunteers working with us.  They bring unfailingly bring the men the message of God's salvation in Jesus Christ.  But something more is needed.


The men here need, once they have made the decision to surrender themselves to Jesus, the ongoing opportunity to offer themselves to Jesus.  That is, they need worship; worship that calls them to sacrificially give of themselves and to join themselves to perfect sacrifice of Jesus.  In short, they need the Mass.  They need to learn what, for many of them, they were never taught as they grew up: The value of self-giving.  What is implicitly understood by you and I - namely, that all our giving begins and ends in Jesus - is a forgeign concept to them.  As it stand right now, their only understanding of worship is entertainment.  The Fellowship of Saint Joseph Behind-the-Walls, an outreach ministry of MSJ, aims to change that.  By your prayers and the intercession of our Patron, Saint Joseph, we hope to provide growth for our men through worship; specifically, through the celebration of the Holy Eucharist.  Please remember to pray for The Fellowship of Saint Joseph Behind-the-Walls!   Pray for us as we seek to follow his example of patient teaching and self-denial!  God bless each of you! 

Father Todd Boyce, MSJ

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Decoration Day

Long before the expression "old school" became fashionable, older fellas, like my own dad, referred to Memorial Day as Decoration Day.  For them, it wasn't so much about a three day holiday weekend, but about honoring the dead.

Special focus was given and honor extended to those who had given their lives in service to their country in the military forces.  Town parades began at the cemetery where small America flags were placed on the graves of those ultimate patriots.  Things were clearer then, it seems.  It was Decoration Day and decorating the graves of fallen heroes was the primary task.  Then, with proper duty accomplished, came the parades, the red-white-blue streamers on bicycles, and family picnics.  

Almighty God, we commend to your gracious care and
keeping all the men and women of our armed forces at home
and abroad. Defend them day by day with your heavenly
grace; strengthen them in their trials and temptations; give
them courage to face the perils which beset them; and grant
them a sense of your abiding presence wherever they may be;
through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

From the Book of Common Prayer

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Cleveland MSJ Cluster Gathering

The Missionaries of St John, Greater Cleveland Cluster, will be gathering for a weekend of fellowship, prayer and encouragement.  Following a Friday, May 8th, evening of food and fellowship, an all day Saturday clericus workshop will be held at Saint Martin Episcopal Church, 6295 River Rd, Chagrin Falls Ohio, 44022. 

We are very grateful to the vestry of St Martin for their hospitality.  For more information, please call 248-345-2651

Contact Information

11195 S. Grayling Rd.
Roscommon, MI 48653

Telephone: 586-264-6044
msjanglican "at" yahoo.com