Sorry for the delay in sending out this week's "Musings". Yesterday just seemed to get away from me with various meetings back to back. All good and exciting which I look forward to sharing with you in the near future.
I ask your prayers for Joan Doodchenko. Joan was diagnosed on Monday night with a tumor in her brain and was sent immediately to St. Michael's hospital for further tests. She is likely to be having surgery today. It is operable and the surgeon feels that she will likely leave the hospital with little impairment. They are very hopeful for the outcome; she is in the best neurological unit in the area with one of the best surgeons caring for her. Joan was upbeat and in good spirits when I saw her last evening. We pray for her, for healing and wholeness, for the surgeon and hospital staff who are caring for her, for Leo and her family and for us as a parish as we too are concerned.
When our medical system works, it works well. Joan saw her family doctor a week ago; has had a CAT scan, was diagnosed and sent to a specialty hospital, had an MRI, a consultation with her surgeon and is having surgery all within 7 days. We give thanks that we do have this medical system that is available for everyone.
Strengthen your servant Joan, O God, to do what she has to do and bear what she has to bear; that, accepting your healing gifts through the skill of surgeons and nurses, she may be restored to health, wholeness and well being
with a thankful heart; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Members of St. Paul's
will be at the Town Hall on Friday at 9 am
to participate in raising the Pride Flag
in the foyer to mark
Internationial Day against
Homophobia, transphobia & biphobia.
We are grateful to the town for
this act of support, encouragement & affirmation.
In June, we will be engaging with the
Natural Church Development process
facilitated by a Diocesan volunteer
to give us a snapshot of St. Paul's
at this moment in time.
Thank you to Evelyn Pogue, Ron Lee-Wing and Tiina Beaudoin
for working on this with me.
We will be inviting 30 members of the parish
to be part of a survey
which will take place on Sunday June 23
immediately following the 10:45 service.
For those not asked to participate in the survey
we will want your feed back too
However, the process is limited to 30 people.
I look forward to seeing our results
and using them to discern future ministry here at St. Paul's.
Yesterday I had the pleasure of meeting with
Mona Edmond from North House
and Bev Northeast from the Salvation Army
to begin conversations about how to address
the issues of poverty in our community of Uxbridge.
We're off to a great beginning in our partnership together!!
We are planning a gathering before summer
of those in our churches, government and community
who have an interest in addressing
this important issue in our life here in Uxbridge.
We see two primary needs to begin with ...
educate the community and government leaders on the complexities of poverty in Uxbridge and what the face of poverty looks like;
through consultations and individual conversations with those on the margins in our community because of poverty, discern what are their most pressing needs and how we can assist in responding to them.
This is very exciting with a great potential to do something
that can make a difference in the lives of those
who live with poverty in our community.
Watch for further details and get involved where you can!!
We are putting together a working group
to promote environmental stewardship, both in our individual lives
and in our church community.
If you are interested
in joining our Green Team, please contact
Dorothy Haines firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thurs May 16 ... 10:00 am Communion followed by bible study at Mae's Thurs May 16 ... TAB "dinner out" ... Corrados Restaurant & Bar in Brooklin. We will carpool from the church (back parking lot) at 5:30 pm. For more information, please call Sharon Houston, 905-852-7799. Sat May 18 ... 2:00 pm, Gay Straight Alliance Sat May 19 ... 8:15, Quiet, traditional Communion (BCP); 9:30, "The Table"; 10:45 am, Classic Communion (BAS) with choir Mon May 20 ... NO COFFEE & CHAT DUE TO VICTORIA DAY HOLIDAY
Thurs May 23 ... 10:00 am, Communion followed by bible study at Mae's Sun May 26 ... Food Bank Sunday ... 8:15, Quiet traditional Communion (BCP); 9:30, "The Table"; 10:45 am, Classic Communion (BAS) with choir Sun May 26 ... 2:00 pm, Communion at Douglas Crossing Mon May 27 ... 7:00 pm, "holy spirits ... faith conversations over a pint" at Wixan's
Thurs May 30 ... COMMUNION & BIBLE STUDY CANCELLED Fri May 31 ... 7:00 pm, Gaymes Night
The Men's Group are sponsoring
a parish Spring Clean up
of the grounds and gardens
Saturday June 1
Lunch will be provided.
Sunday June 9 is Pentecost Sunday
celebrating the gift of the Holy Spirit.
If you can, please wear something red that day.
As well, I need volunteers
at both 930 and 1045
to read the reading in various languages.
If you can assist us, please send me an email.
"Time Flies When You're Having Fun!!"
This past week, I celebrated the 30th anniversary of my ordination as a Deacon and the 29th anniversary of my ordination as a priest. Each year, I honor these days with some nostalgia of where I have been and all God has invited me to do in the parishes where I have served. As the years go by, I also realize how much things have changed in the church in my time as a priest. But this vocation remains for me a joy as I recognize the holy and sacred privilege of serving God and the church. I am grateful for the blessings I have received and continue to receive.
I'd like to share some observations out of my reflecting this week ...
each parish where I have served over these 30 years has been unique and different which reminds me of the breadth and depth of what it means to be Anglican. And each experience brought with it it's own challenges and blessings.
it has been a privilege to journey alongside so many people throughout the struggles of their lives and witness the faithfulness as we grieved deaths together of faithful members of each parish.
God wants the church to thrive and grow in Spirit and in ministry. It is God's desire to work through us and all we do to make the gospel come alive in the communities we serve.
Sometimes there are challenges and difficult decisions to be made, often because of financial limitations. We need to always pray for the guidance of the Holy Spirit to discern God's will, and trust that as God calls us, God will also help us find the resources to do what we are invited to do.
As a community who share much in common, we need to always support, uphold, care and nurture one another through meaningful and loving relationships.
Ultimately, the church is God's creation and belongs to God as the body of Christ. There are times when we need to set aside our own agendas and plans for what we think is right and allow the Spirit to lead us and be amazed and in awe at where we are taken.
One of the parishes where I served, St. John's, Weston, has closed and amalgamated with three other churches in the area. Although that was a difficult and emotional decision for them to make, it was the right decision. And out of that experience they now are a vibrant parish with a new lease on life. That's our faith in action that out of death comes resurrection.
There are always opportunities to serve; all we need to do is be like Isaiah and when God says ... "Whom shall I send?" ... our response needs to be be ... "here we are, send us!!"
It's been quite a ride these past 30 years. I look forward with great hope and anticipation to all that God leads me and us into in these next years. God is definately up to something and I'm blessed to feel part of it!!
I offer us this prayer for faithfulness in our ministry ...
Lord of All, Alpha and Omega,
we come before You in all faithfulness,
knowing that You and You alone lead us
in how we can faithfully serve you in our discipleship.
Bring us a real sense of peace about the future and what lies ahead;
help us see Your hand in everything that we do.
We are here to serve you, Lord,
and all I ask is that You make use of us to your honor and glory.
We trust You to guide us and the ministry of your church. 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!