They say time flies when you're having fun. Well that was certainly true of the vacation time I've just finished. Where did the time go? It was an enjoyable, restful and renewing time for which I am grateful. And although vacations seem to me to often not be long enough, it is good to be back and ready to begin our fall season together. And what a fall we have planned. Be sure to mark your calendars. You won't want to miss any of the exciting things planned!!
Later this morning we will deliver
over 20 backpacks with school supplies
to the food bank for children in need
to begin the coming school year!!
There are a number of supplies left over
that we will deliver to a local school
to be given to any children
who may need them.
Thank you and well done!!!
This Sunday, September 2
I will be concluding the reflection series ...
Anglican who have had the courage
to take risks out of their faith
to advance the ministry of the church
and the proclamation of the kingdom message
September 2 ... "Church Army" & Wilson Carlile
Let's learn something ourselves
about our call to be audacious
from these ordinary men and women
who did extraordinary and faithful ministry
begins on Thurs September 6
at 10:00 am
Followed by bible study,
conversation and discussion.
Coffee and Conversation
resumes on Monday Sept 17
at the Tin Cup.
Invite your friends and neighbors
to share in this time of
fellowship and conversation!!
Sept 23 and 4th Sun of each month
We will be offering worship
at Douglas Crossing
Please let me know if you are interested
in helping out
with this ministry to those who live
at Douglas Crossing.
We especially need musicians.
As part of Orange Shirt Day
we will be sharing in worship
at St. Andrew's Chalmers Presbyterian
for our 1030 service.
The evening will include
The Honourable Jane Philpott g
Minister of Indigenous Services
and MP for Markham—Stouffville
Get your tickets soon
for the dinner here at St. Paul's
as there is a limited number available!!
The evening presentation
is open to the general public
with no admission charge.
The Orange Shirt planning team including
Gail Browne, Gail Verwoerd & Eileen Foote from St. Paul's
You are invited!!
We need you!!!
Please mark the date on your calendar now!!
Saturday October 28
9:30 am to 2:30 pm
A day together to reflect, discuss
and pray about our life together
here at St. Paul's.
Let's discern what God is up to
in our shared ministry!
even though things may change,
mark your calendars now so you don't miss out!!
Sun 2 … Labor Day Sat 8 … Men’s Breakfast Sun 9 … return to 8:30 & 10:30 service times Thurs 13 … Communion & Bible Study Sat 15 … Gay/Straight Alliance Mon 17 … Coffee & Chat Thurs 20 … Communion & Bible Study; Lunch & Learn; TAB Sun 23 ... Communion at Douglas Crossing
Mon 24 … holy spirits Thurs 27 … Communion & Bible Study; Noon Organ concert Sun 30 … Orange Shirt Day ... shared worship at St. Andrew's Chalmers Presbyterian Church ... other activities including a walk in solidarity with our aboriginal brothers and sisters
Mon 1 … Coffee & Chat Thurs 4 … Communion & Bible Study Sun 7 … Harvest Thanksgiving Thurs 11 … Communion & Bible Study Sat 13 … Men’s Breakfast Mon 15 … Coffee & Chat Wed 17 … Pilgrim Series Thurs 18 … Communion & Bible Study; Lunch & Learn; TAB Sat 20 … Trent/Durham Mental Health symposium for clergy at St. P’s; Gay/Straight Alliance Wed 24 … Pilgrim Series Thurs 25 … Communion & Bible Study Sat 27 … “What’s God Up To?” … appreciative inquiry summit for St. P’s … details to follow
Sun 28 ... Communion at Douglas Crossing Mon 30 … holy spirits
Thurs 1 … Communion & Bible Study Sat 3 … Men’s Breakfast; Turkey Dinner (TBC) Sun 4 … All Saint’s Day; Evensong with Tudor Singers Mon 5 … Coffee & Chat Wed 7 … Pilgrim Series Thurs 8 … Communion & Bible Study Sun 11 … Remembrance Day; Orpheus Symphonietta concert Wed 14 … Pilgrim Series Thurs 15 … Communion & Bible Study; Lunch & Learn Sat 17 … Gay/Straight Alliance Sun 18 … Feast of St. Cecilia; afternoon “Old Tyme Hymn Sing … celebrating the gift and ministry of music” Mon 19 … Coffee & Chat Wed 24 … Pilgrim Series Thurs 25 … Communion & Bible Study Sun 25 … Reign of Christ; Cantorei sine Nomine Concert
Sun 25 ... Communion at Douglas Crossing Mon 26 … holy spirits Wed 28 … Pilgrim Series Thurs 29 … Communion & Bible Study
Sat 1 … Men’s Breakfast; putting up the Christmas tree Sun 2 … Advent 1 Mon 3 … Coffee & Chat Wed 5 … Advent Candlelight Communion Thurs 6 … Communion & Bible Study Sun 9 … Advent 2 … “Old Tyme Christmas Carol Sing” Wed 12 … Advent Candlelight Communion Thurs 13 … Communion & Bible Study Sat 15 … Gay/Straight Alliance Sun 16 … Advent 3; Christmas Open House at the Rectory Wed 19 … Advent Candlelight Communion Thurs 20 … Communion & Bible Study Fri 21 … Longest Night Service Sun 23 … Advent 4
Sun 23 ... Communion at Douglas Crossing Mon 24 … Family Christmas Eve Communion; Festive Almost Midnight Communion Tues 25 … Christmas Day Communion Sun 30 … 9:30 Communion
"Lessons from the Maritimes!"
First, the Maritimes is such a gorgeous splendor of God's creation. I enjoyed capturing the many images, as best I could through the lens of my camera. Here are a few of the photos that show the essence of our experience on Cape Breton Island.
And if I were to count, there are hundred's more photographs!!
Life in the Maritimes, and especially on Cape Breton is certainly different than what we experience day to day. And, in reflecting, I think there are some things to learn from our experience that would make life easier, less stressful and probably more healthy in the long run.
slow down the pace and enjoy the moment
what's the hurry all the time
stop and simply smell the sea air and feel the ocean breeze and taste the salt on your lips
relationships and community are to be nurtured and friends and neighbors treasured
friendliness to everyone we meet is a gift we can offer and receive
even when there's construction, drive up and down the steep hills anyway
if you're stopped to let ongoing traffic through at a construction site, look around because perhaps it's the best view you'll have all day
if there's the choice between two hiking paths, take the longer one because who knows what you'll miss by taking the short cut
be spontaneous and not always having to stick to the plan arranged ahead of time
drive the back roads and explore beyond the highlights on the tourist map
walk into the ocean, even up to your ankles and realize this is but one small piece of such a large body of water stretching far beyond the horizon
go to the end of the road, even if it's a dirt road, otherwise you'll miss out on being as far north as you can go
take part in local customs and meet those who live there
listen to the stories and hear something of the past
even when it's raining, head out with an umbrella
the scenery looks different depending on the time of day and the weather
there are rocky cliffs, high mountains, pastures, villages, fishing boats, lobster traps, sea birds, lighthouses, beaches, driftwood, rocks, sunsets, clouds in the sky ... each one offering a glimpse of life in this part of our country
most important ... have ice cream every day!!
There is so much spiritual wisdom in these observations I had from our time away amidst such a friendly and engaging people. God is offering abundance all the time, even in the mundane of daily routines, schedules and appointments. I wonder what it would be like for us to really enter into a rhythm that allows us to open our eyes and our ears, using all of our senses to truly recognize, experience and appreciate the glory of God not just on a vacation some 5000 kilometers away. But right here, at home, whatever we are doing, whoever we are with.
That's a challenge I put to myself as I transition back to work. Maybe it's a question and challenge for you to put before yourself too ... What does it look like for you to be still and know that God is God right here and right now?
I suspect our lives would be a lot simpler, less stressful as we recognize and engage with the abundance of all that is holy and sacred even in the structure of our everyday lives.
I offer us this prayer guiding us in how we approach day to day life with the hope and trust of a meaningful encounter with God ...
God, You know our hearts better than we know them ourselves.
You know our struggles
and You hold each hope and fear in Your caring hands.
Teach us to be still and to know that You are God.
Teach us to wait for Your still, small voice
and quiet the earthquakes and blazing fires in our lives.
Replace our restless doing with inner calm,
and help us to sit at Your feet in quiet adoration
even if there are a million things clamoring for our attention.
Just as You spoke over the tumultuous sea and storms,
so speak over our hearts Your shalom.
Teach our hearts to cease striving
and to know that we can have an intimate and deep,
personal, first-hand experience–that You are God.
Help us cultivate quiet hearts,
like a baby content in its mother’s arms,
no longer coming to You with a “gimme” spirit
but instead calmly nestling against Your heart.
Help us find quietness and happiness
in intimate communion with You.
You’ve got the details of our day covered.
We can rest in You. Amen!!
Remember, if you have a question, I encourage you to send it to me in an email and I will do my best to answer it either in a weekly update or in a sermon.
As always, my inbox is open, and so is my office door if you'd like to chat. I'm usually in my office most mornings Monday through Thursday unless otherwise announced due to a meeting. Stop by or make an appointment!