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St. Edward’s Monday Message – June 29, 2020

Dear friends,

We hope you had a lovely Sunday. It was so nice to see people at church for both the 8 AM Rite I and the 10:15 AM Rite II service.  We continue to welcome you, as your comfort level allows, to worship with us on Sundays, and commencing next week, joining us for our Wednesday Noonday service on July 8th.  Rest assured we continue to have in place the proper protocols for health safety while also creating welcoming and contemplative spaces for worship.

If you missed our YouTube livestream, you can click here to view.  We also have included links to both service bulletins, in the event you would like to read along with the 10:15 AM service, or create your own service by worshipping in Rite I and then advancing the video to the 15:00 minute mark to listen to Father Rick’s sermon.

Click here to download the Fourth Sunday after Pentecost: Proper 8 Sunday Service bulletin for 10:15 service.

If you prefer the more meditative said service of Rite I, we have provided our service bulletin for you to download and enjoy the service for the Fourth Sunday after Pentecost: Proper 8.
If you would like to read our said service for Rite I, please click here to download that bulletin.

We continue to tweak and refine our technological process and how we deliver the various worship components to meet the spiritual needs of our parish community, while extending our welcoming to the wider community of faith.  We ask for your patience and understanding as we continue to improve our offerings.

To that end, we are also “finding our way” from the Daily Messages to a new rhythm that allows us to stay connected to everyone, while providing content that is enlightening, meditative, invitational, and informative.  For now, we will try this schedule:

Monday Message:  Recap of Sunday worship offerings, news for the week that will include activities all can participate in, a meditation, prayer or virtual tour.  Check out our events calendar on our web site to stay aprised of events and services:

Thursday Message:  Ministry news and offerings for Friday and Saturday as well as information the rector may share with us, and events for the upcoming week.

Saturday Message:  All essential links for Sunday worship: 8 AM and 10:15 AM bulletins, YouTube Livestream link, stewardship link.

Looking for a volunteer(s) to pick up bread on Mondays at Columbia Weis to bring back to the pantry!  One person could do every Monday OR could “split” with one, two, three or four other volunteers…each take one week of the month!  Pick up time is 8-8:30 AM. Please contact Beth Lynch if you are interested in volunteering and she can pass your name along to the Food Pantry to see where the need is (along with other volunteers from other churches).

Also, as you may be hearing in the news, food pantries are stretched thin of supplies to meet the growing need in our communities to provide for our food poor. Many of us are so fortunate to sit down at any time during the day to a bountiful table, while so many in our community struggle to provide even just one healthy meal a day for their family.  We continue to accept monetary donations to help the HAFP, made payable to St. Edward’s, with a memo notation of “food pantry.”  Thank you!

We leave you with a writing from The Book of Uncommon Prayer of Meditations and Devotions, a compilation from various writers, which Amy Swiernik passed on to us to share with others.  Today’s meditation is a writing from Harriet Beecher Stowe, a writer and Prophetic Witness, 1896, who has been honored in the past with a feast day of July 1st on the liturgical calendar of the Episcopal Church (USA).  The current Episcopal Church liturgical calendar honors Pauli Murray – a lawyer, poet, author, activist, Priest and the first African-American woman ordained in the Episcopal Church in 1985.

Calm and Divine
Abide in me; o’ershadow by Thy love
Each half-formed purpose and dark thought of sin;
Quench, ere it rise, each selfish, low desire,
And keep my soul as Thine, calm and divine.

– Harriet Beecher Stowe

Be well. Stay safe. Keep the faith.


Friday Message from St. Edward’s for June 26, 2020 Including our Sunday Online Service Information

Dear friends,

Let us start by inviting you to Evening Prayer this evening at 7:00 PM.  This is a wonderful way to peacefully end our week and is led by Patrick Ishler.  

Join us on Zoom:

Join Code:  863 2710 5082

Join us for our Virtual Saturday Social from 9 AM – 9:40 AM tomorrow on Zoom.  It will be hosted by Michelle Bentley.  The parish office will be introducing some great new ministries and fellowship activities that the parish has started to plan for the summer into the fall. So join us!  Ask questions, give us your feedback and enjoy some fellowship THIS SATURDAY at 9:00 AM.  The link and details will be in Friday’s email.

And now, on to Sunday news!

We welcome you to St. Edward’s!  As we continue to work with the phased re-opening of Lancaster County, for this Sunday, we are able to accommodate more people at our worship services at 8 AM for Rite I and 10:15 AM for Rite II.  Whatever your choice may be, or if you would like to worship with us via our YouTube Livestream service at 10:15 AM, which is our service inclusive of wonderful music, we are ready to welcome you!

As you feel comfortable, please consider joining us on future Sundays in-person.  We do not need to take “reservations” but should you have any questions as to our protocols or capacity, please do not hesitate to contact the parish office.  We want you to feel safe, relaxed and make certain we maintain all safe social distancing protocols.

Here is all you need for this Sunday’s worship:

Fourth Sunday after Pentecost:  Proper 8 – June 28th

Click here to connect to our YouTube Channel to enjoy our Sunday service of Holy Eucharist Rite II LIVE at 10:15 AM on Sunday, June 28th.

Click here to download the Sunday Service bulletin for 10:15 service.

If you prefer the more meditative said service of Rite I, we have provided our service bulletin for you to download and enjoy the service.

If you would like to read our said service for Rite I, please click here to download that bulletin.

Besides prayers, calls, cards and emails, there is one more thing you can do to support St. Edward’s during this time. Please keep up-to-date with your pledge or regular contribution. Even though we must keep our doors closed for a period of time, we also must continue to pay our fixed expenses such as electricity, insurance, and salaries. We will continue to pick up our mail, so you can easily mail your contributions to the office and we will see that they are properly credited.  We have also been blessed to discover that the diocese has set up online giving for each parish.  If you feel comfortable making your weekly giving or pledge donation in this manner (it is a secure giving tool), simply go to the diocesan web site, click on the tab up top and it will take you to a page where you can scroll down, find St. Edward’s, and continue with making your contribution!  Thank you for maintaining your faithfulness through your financial stewardship!

Click here if you would like to donate online through the diocesan portal. You will scroll down to find “St. Edward’s” under “Lancaster”. The portal is a secure giving site.

Leslie Arnold has created a wonderful program of Christian Formation lessons for our youth, which can be found on our Christian Education page on our web site (link below).  For youth, and the youthful at heart, take a look.  They are quite wonderful and actually may be exactly what some of us “older youth” may actually like to engage in as well!

Christian Education

What would a week at St. Edward’s be without another project, right?!?!?

So, not only did Father Rick and I do some outside work in the Memorial Garden (well, we’ll give that one to Father Rick. . .I just brought the water bottles!) but we also reorganized the Parish Hall and created a new contemplative chapel area for our Wednesday Noonday service, which will commence on Wednesday July 8th at 12 Noon. In doing so, we unearthed some wonderful St. Edward’s artifacts, like our church crest and we also cleared up much of the tables and chairs that had been cluttering the wall space. (Click on the gallery images to enlarge).

We wish you a peaceful evening and hope that we see you in-person, virtually, or that you are with us in spirit as we journey through this weekend.

Be well. Stay safe. Keep the faith.


Monday Message from St. Edward’s – June 22, 2020

Dear friends,

What a wonderful day it was yesterday at St. Edward’s!  The church was ALIVE with 8 AM Rite I parishioners and 10:15 AM Rite II parishioners.  And, it was a beautiful re-opening of our parish home.

So special to welcome Father Rick for his first in-person worship at St. Edward’s as our new rector. It was such an incredible day to finally be able to be in community, with him, and experience him celebrating and preaching, in-person.

So nice to hear the organ and piano masterfully played by Karen Waddill along with Patrick Ishler as our wonderful soloist.  All very special.

Our ushers/health safety volunteers did a fantastic job with all of our protocols and their wonderful hospitality to all who came to worship with us, while maintaining social distancing.  We are so lucky to have our bright and spacious sanctuary to be able to re-open safely with such love and welcoming, It was a lovely day!

The 10:15 AM Rite II YouTube Livestream was wonderfully received by those who we reach out to at home and in the wider community and we look forward to making our technology adjustments as we all lean in to this expanded and new way we will be worshipping together.  We thank you for your support, patience, and stewardship and we so look forward to continuing our re-opening and adding new things, as we can, while adhering to all of the health and safety protocols for you.

Share our Facebook posts and YouTube videos with your family and friends!

In case you missed the service yesterday, you can find it here:

Click here to connect to our YouTube Channel to enjoy our Sunday service of Holy Eucharist Rite II LIVE at 10:15 AM from Sunday, June 21st.

As is our tradition, our “Scepter Summer Issue” is a July /August combination.  So, if you have items, pictures, articles you would like Mac to publish for the next two months, please get them to her no later than this Wednesday, June 24th.  You can send them to:

We received a notice from Community Aid today reminding us that while they are working to manage the bins, they understand that there is a large overflow of donations that are being placed in the bins, many times falling out or being placed on the ground.  Unfortunately, when items are left on the ground they must be tossed away and it takes a substantial amount of time and funds away from their mission to pick up and pay for the disposal of the overflow items, as they are then considered “trash.” They are doing their best, but prayerfully request that we be good stewards of our donations and if the bin is full to either wait until the pick up has been taken care of (they usually come once every 10 days) or to take your donations to the store on Good Drive and Columbia Avenue where you can ensure your gifts will not be wasted. We thank you for your understanding.

We leave you with a Prayer for the Parish, from The Book of Common Prayer – page 817

Almighty and everliving God, ruler of all things in heaven and earth, hear our prayers for this parish family.  Strengthen the faithful, arouse the careless, and restore the penitent.  Grant us all things necessary for our common life, and bring us all to be of one heart and mind within your holy Church; through Jesus Christ our Lord.  Amen.

As always for this week, and every week:  Be well. Stay Safe. Keep the Faith.


Weekly Message from Bishop Scanlan – June 19, 2020

Dear Members of the Episcopal Church in Central PA,

In today’s video, Bishop Scanlan talks about the differences in the ways we worship during the pandemic, but also how we continue to find new ways to be in community.

As members of the Episcopal Diocese of Central Pennsylvania, each of us has a part to play in God’s unfolding future. Every voice counts. To that end, and under Bishop Scanlan’s directive, a COVID-19 Theology and Ecclesiology Task Force has been assembled. The purpose of the Task Force is to provide a venue for all people in our Diocese to process the effect the virus has had on our spiritual lives and theological thinking, to record the liturgical and social changes we experience as Church in this unprecedented time, and to offer theologically sound guidance as we continue to move brief survey. To complete the survey, visit

The Rev. Canon Christopher Streeter extends an invitation to join the Shaped by Faith Summer Webinar Series,which will take a deep dive into Anglican Identity, Mission vs. Sustainability, and Self-Differentiated Leadership. Beginning in July, we will offer each webinar at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, July 8, Tuesday, July 14, and Wednesday, July 22. To participate, visit

To view the PowerPoint Presentation, click here.

For more information about Shaped by Faith, visit For questions, contact Canon Streeter, email

Daily Message from St. Edward’s – June 18, 2020

Dear friends,

Today’s email is very important!  It is a “MARK YOUR CALENDAR” EMAIL WITH 3 ITEMS!!

SUNDAY, JUNE 21st SERVICES:  Those of you who indicated on our survey, last month, that you would like to attend in-person worship once we moved into the yellow phase where we could accommodate 25 people for worship at each service, are requested to reserve your place at either the 8 AM Rite I or the 10:15 AM Rite II service.

If you are interested in attending services this Sunday, June 21st, please contact the parish office via email no later than Friday afternoon, June 19th. We must stay true to the diocesan protocols that have been approved by Bishop Scanlan.  We know there will be disappointment if we reach our maximum number of people and have to decline some reservations.  This is all very new to us, as well, so we ask for your kindness and patience as we determine a system that will allow those who seek in-person worship to be able to attend.  Father Rick and I will be in consultation as to what will work best to meet everyone’s needs and will make sure that everyone is spiritually fed.

To that end, please make certain, if you do reserve a spot, that you are planning on attending.  But also know we understand if, on a Saturday evening you may feel unsure.  You can reach out to me by phone and let me know.  Your comfort and safety are our primary concerns, so we will work through this new normal together and in these changing times, we will “go with the flow” and make it work for each other.

Know that we will have a wonderful live streamed service at 10:15 AM on YouTube Live, so in place of the prerecorded service from past weeks, you can be at the service while it is happening!  We will have the service bulletin uploaded to our website and will provide the link in the Friday email.

Another change starting this week is our Virtual Coffee Hour on Sundays.  It will now switch to a Saturday Social from 9 AM – 9:40 AM.  Our hosts, Joe & Christina McLaughlin, will start our weekend off right with fellowship at a time that we hope will be convenient for all.  So, join us THIS SATURDAY at 9:00 AM.  The link and details will also be in Friday’s email.



Friday Evening Prayer is tomorrow at 7:00 PM.  This is a wonderful way to peacefully end our week and is led by Patrick Ishler.  Join us on Zoom:

Join Code:  863 2710 5082

Be well. Stay safe.  Keep the Faith.  We look forward to this upcoming weekend!


And remember, share our posts with your friends on Facebook as well as our YouTube page and our website!  To grow, we need to spread the good news and tell people about our wonderful St. Edward’s parish.  We have many offerings, virtually, to allow them to be “in community” with us!

Daily Message from St. Edward’s – June 17, 2020

Dear friends,

As we get closer to our first services for this upcoming Sunday, we continue to work through our service bulletins and logistics for welcoming people back to St. Edward’s.  We know how important Sunday worship is to everyone and whether you are worshipping in-person, starting this Sunday, or via our YouTube Livestream, please know that we are one community under God and we are all worshipping together.

A few items of note:

We will start to have our altar flowers back in the sanctuary.  The yearly Altar Flower chart is quite empty, and as you know, our flowers are at an expense of $100/week and are made possible by the generous donations of people signing up to contribute flowers “in memory of” or “in thanksgiving for” a loved one in their lives.  It would be wonderful if we could keep this ministry going with donations, of any amount, made payable to St. Edward’s and marked “altar flowers” in the memo line.  We will be printing the remembrances in the Sunday bulletins.

We continue to support the Hempfield Area Food Pantry.  They are not accepting food, but are accepting monetary donations.  Donations of any amount made payable to St. Edward’s and marked “food pantry” would be most appreciated as we continue to serve this important organization that services the wider community.  During the summer months when school programs that may have provided take-out meals for students, and may not offer as robust a program when school is not in session, it is so important for these families to remain healthy and not food poor.  We thank you for your generosity.

Starting next week, we will be transitioning to 2 messages per week:  A message on Monday that will update people on the upcoming week’s events and other offerings and a message on Thursday from Father Rick.

I know many people were so grateful for the “Daily Message” that carried us through those 90 days of quarantine during “Covidtide.”  Now we look forward to all of the new ministry and opportunities that we can engage in!  It will be on Zoom, for the present time, but we can embrace the technology to brainstorm on ideas for how St. Edward’s can outreach to the wider community, or how we can engage in spiritual formation, as well as take advantage of the Bible Study and Friday Evening Prayer that have been so faithfully led by our lay persons.

I just want to say how grateful I am to the parish and all of the wonderful ways everyone has navigated these extraordinary circumstances.  In small ways and large, our parish family has reached out and made a difference to the parish office, to Father Rick, to our church building, to the wider community, as good stewards to St. Edward’s, and most importantly, to each other, and we are so lucky to have these opportunities of extraordinary grace to which we can give thanks to God.

Be well. Stay safe.  Keep the Faith.  We look forward to this upcoming weekend!


We continue to make exciting improvements to our sanctuary space and are in the process of planning improvements to the Memorial Garden. If parishioners wish to be give, financially, to support these important projects, please contact Father Rick directly, or the parish office.  We have been very blessed with the continuous generosity of our St. Edward’s parishioners.

And remember, share our posts with your friends on Facebook as well as our YouTube page.

Daily Message from St. Edward’s – June 16, 2020

Dear friends,

We are very excited about our preparations for our re-opening this upcoming Sunday, June 21st.  Please stay tuned for details in emails during the balance of the week as we will be disseminating important information about our worship services.

Be well. Stay safe.  Keep the Faith.  We look forward to this upcoming weekend!


Our Bible Study program, led by Bill and Yvonne Gasperetti, is tomorrow, June 17th.  Details are below if you would like to reach out to them and join the group.

The study group meets every other week, beginning May 20th, at 6:30 pm.

We will be studying St. Paul’s Epistle to the Philippians.  The study guide is Blackaby’s Encounter With God series, Philippians, which is available on-line with Amazon or Barnes and Noble.

If you want to join, but have not signed up at the start of the current session, just let us know.  We will help to ensure you can join the sessions.

Until restrictions are lifted, we will continue to hold these sessions on-line by way of Zoom.  Contact Bill at, or Yvonne at, for instructions.

We continue to make exciting improvements to our sanctuary space and are in the process of planning improvements to the Memorial Garden. If parishioners wish to be give, financially, to support these important projects, please contact Father Rick directly, or the parish office.  We have been very blessed with the continuous generosity of our St. Edward’s parishioners.

And remember, share our posts with your friends on Facebook as well as our YouTube page.

We leave you with a mediation & a peaceful tour:

Forward Day by Day Meditation for TUESDAY, June 16                           Joseph Butler
Numbers 11:10 Moses heard the people weeping throughout their families, all at the entrances of their tents. Then the Lord became very angry, and Moses was displeased.

The story of the children of Israel wandering in the wilderness sounds like the most dysfunctional family trip ever. The people forget so quickly that God saved them from slavery. God gets mad and punishes them. They complain about the quality of the food—they want meat, not just bread.

God barks back, offering them so much meat it will come out of their nostrils. Moses is stuck in the middle of it all. It’s a miracle they make it through the wilderness at all. The story is ridiculous. But there’s also something kind of wonderful about it, because it’s a relationship.

The mess is exactly what we were made for—to be in relationship with our creator. And that doesn’t just mean beautiful prayers and peaceful words. It means living into the reality that life is messy, and it’s even messier together. But it’s also better together.

MOVING FORWARD: Say something difficult to God today. And then ask God to say something difficult back to you.

PRAY for the Lusitanian Church (Portugal) and the Diocese of Tanga (Tanzania)
Ps 78:1-39 * 78:40-72 | Numbers 11:1-23 | Romans 1:16-25 | Matthew 17:22-27

Take an aerial tour of Beautiful UK:

Daily Message from St. Edward’s – June 15, 2020

Dear friends,

It is with sadness that we inform you that long-time parishioner, Marge Sieghardt, passed away, peacefully, on Sunday, June 14th, at home, surrounded by her closest family.  Over the years, Marge was an active parishioner at St. Edward’s, serving on vestry, as well as on the finance committee.

Marge will be buried at a private graveside service tomorrow.  Her family will be planning a Celebration of Life service for a later date, this year, at St. Edward’s and we will keep you informed of those details.  Please keep Marge, her two daughters, Kate and Liz, as well as her grandson, Wyatt, in your prayers.

May her soul, and the souls of all the faithful departed, through the mercy of God rest in peace.

Father Rick +

Tomorrow we have our meeting with Bishop Scanlan to review our re-opening plan, so please stay tuned for updates as they pertain to this upcoming weekend services.

We continue to make exciting improvements to our sanctuary space and are in the process of planning improvements to the Memorial Garden. If parishioners wish to be give, financially, to support these important projects, please contact Father Rick directly, or the parish office.  We have been very blessed with the continuous generosity of our St. Edward’s parishioners.

In case you missed the service yesterday, you can find it on our web site by clicking here.

And remember, share our posts with your friends on Facebook as well as our YouTube page.

We leave you with a mediation to start this week:

Mediation from Forward Day by Day for MONDAY, June 15          Evelyn Underhill

Psalm 80:1-2 Hear, O Shepherd of Israel, leading Joseph like a flock; shine forth, you that are enthroned upon the cherubim. In the presence of Ephraim, Benjamin, and Manasseh, stir up your strength and come to help us.

There is a lovely version of this psalm that has always stirred my heart, set to music adapted from the composer Palestrina that we sing every year to begin Lessons and Carols. The psalmist cries, “Stir up your strength and come to help us.” As soon as Christmas arrives each year, we change the substance of our prayers too.

Where are the insistent cries for the return of our Lord in June? The redemption of all things on the Last Day is our deepest hope as Christians—nothing else can or will accomplish God’s purposes in and for the world. While that day will bring judgment, it will also bring mercy and healing for the nations.

Come, Lord Jesus!

MOVING FORWARD: Look through the text of an Advent hymn and use its words as your prayer during the rest of June. Pray for the return of the Lord.

PRAY for the Dioceses of Lusaka (Zambia)Tamale (Ghana), and Guinea

Ps 80 * 77, [79] | Numbers 9:15-23; 10:29-36 | Romans 1:1-15 | Matthew 17:14-21

Daily Message from St. Edward’s – June 12, 2020

Dear friends,

Today I write to you with a prayer on my heart: that God made known to us in Jesus Christ and poured out into our hearts through the gift of the Holy Spirit might spring forth, in a deep and an authentic PEACE, at the core of each of our lives.  That PEACE, which passes all understanding, comes to us through a sense of gravity…a knowing that roots us in a hope and a love that transcends our circumstances, both personal and collective.  With coronavirus still on the rise in many places, we’re now also in the midst of emotionally charged public discourse on issues of race and policing, as our markets vacillate.  And with all of the external factors at play, disrupting our rhythms of life and threatening our PEACE, we still have our day to day realties that come with their own challenges.  We still have family dynamics to tend with, we still have existential questions, and we still have our unresolved hurts that prevent us from being fully alive to the abundant light and love available to us in this life.

Questions of COVID-19, systemic racism, and police reform aside: we need to care for ourselves in order to face the world…let alone, to embrace the gift of life.  We need to pay attention to our own breath.  And as Christians, I’d like to believe that we can initiate a response to the world’s problems through the simple act of our breathing.  To inhale the social Zeitgeist: in all its anxious, uncertain, and erratic flavor…and to exhale back into the atmosphere: a faith, a hope, and a LOVE…is itself, an act of social praxis.  Like a light upon a hill, we can allow the hope that is in us as people of faith to shine, when (and perhaps, only when) we tend to our inner worlds.  And so, we start with our breath.  When we calm down and quiet the pulsing dialogue from the fear-based and oppositional portion of our reptilian brains, we enable ourselves to rest in the faculties of our higher minds.  In this way: by loving God and loving our neighbors as ourselves, we act like living ‘air filters’ in this season of distress, taking in the toxic atmosphere…refining it with the PEACE of our Lord…and putting something qualitatively better back out into the world.  Indeed, we are graced as Christians to reconstitute the narratives that we receive from the outside world, in light of what we know of God made incarnate in Jesus Christ.  And through the power of the Holy Spirit, we rest in the potential for this healing re-orientation each and every time we worship together.

To that end: it does indeed appear that we will be physically together again (though only in small groups of 25) beginning next Sunday, June 21st.  Thanks to the dedicated work of Michelle and our Vestry, we’ve prepared a detailed re-launch plan for our health and safety protocols that will be reviewed with Bishop Audrey in the coming week.  We believe that we are “right sized” to offer up socially distanced Sunday services to our 8:00 and 10:15 congregations, while continuing to provide virtual worship through the integration of livestreaming on YouTube Live.  To clarify what this means: beginning on the 21st, people will be able to attend our 10:15 service in real-time from the safety and comfort of home.  There is no pressure to return to church if you have any concerns over health and safety, and it is our hope that we will be able to use livestreaming as a permanent fixture to increase our reach and to more faithfully engage the work of evangelism as a parish.

While there will be very real limitations on how we gather for the foreseeable future, we are well-positioned to use the opportunities thrust upon us by COVID-19 to generate a model for engaging our wider community as a twenty-first century church in the years to come.  We will hug again…but even sooner…we will break bread together!  Please be on the lookout for communications from Michelle next Wednesday with our formal plan for return.

With great enthusiasm and with humble appreciation,

Father Rick+

St. Edward’s Episcopal Church is inviting you to Evening Prayer TONIGHT!
DATE: Friday. June 12, 2020

TIME: 7:00 PM Eastern Time (US and Canada)

Join Zoom Meeting

Meeting ID: 863 2710 5082

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We will be showing the text on screen to make it easy to follow along. If you have a Book of Common Prayer, you may start on page 115.

Please connect with our Daily Message on Saturday, June 13th, which is posted by 4 PM.  It includes the link to our Online Sunday Service, service bulletin, link to online giving, and a NEW link for this Sunday’s Virtual Coffee Hour which will be hosted by Father Rick.  There will be the link and a join code. . . no pass code needed. . .so join us!

And remember, share our posts with your friends on Facebook as well as our YouTube page.