Sunday, April 1, 2018

What I wish more churches would share with young parents

There are lots of things I like about the church we attend, and I could really go on and on about what wonderful guidance I received in celebrating this year's Easter observance, but today, in the packed Easter Service my eyes were drawn to a little note that hangs in each pew.  It is for parents of young children.  Now, of course, I no long fit this demographic but I totally appreciate it because when you are the parent of a young child it can feel like they make no louder ruckus than in church!


It says:

To the Parents of Children, May We Suggest....

Relax,God put the wiggle in children; don't feel you have to suppress it in God's house. All are welcome.

Sit towards the front where it is easier for your little ones to hear and see what is going on. They tire of seeing the backs of others heads.

Quietly explain the part of of the service and actions of the pastor, ushers, choir, etc.

Sing the hymns, pray and voice the responses. Children learn liturgical behavior from copying you.

If you have to leave the service with your child, please feel free to do so, but please come back. As Jesus said, "Let the little children come to me."

Remember that the way we welcome children in the church directly affects the way they respond to the Church, to God, and to one another. Let them know that they are at home in this house of worship.


TO THE MEMBERS OF OUR CHURCH
The presence of children is a fit to the Church and they are a reminder that our congregation is growing.

Please welcome our children and give a smile of encouragement to their parents.

So, Mamas and Daddies, don't feel you are disturbing the service.....YOU are part of the service and YOU are the ministers to the next generation.  


Sunday, March 25, 2018

Palm Sunday

From: http://www.stniniansold.org.uk/

Today is the beginning of Holy Week.  I know in years past, I overlooked, or maybe was ignorant of the importance of this week.  Actually, the entire walk through Lent is important so I can prepare my heart for this week....to remember, reflect, confess....and be quiet.  In church this morning our Reverend  brought something to me in a new way....He talked about how as we went through the traditions and liturgy, there were Christians all over the world doing the very same thing.  What  a reminder of the family of God, that because of Christ, we are His children.  Even knowing the Palm cross pinned to my sweater (like the one above) was touched by the hands of a woman in a village in Africa made me feel a connection beyond my little spot on that pew.  Earthly families fall, earthly friends fail....but the family of Christ is forever.

I leave you with this post written by: Greg Goebel founder and editor at www.AnglicanPastor.com
I am not an Anglican During Holy Week
I love being an Anglican Christian. This Communion is my home, these are the people I’m called to serve with, and I’m thankful for the beauty of this tradition.But during Holy Week, I’m not an Anglican. I’m not a Baptist either. Or a Presbyterian. Or a Roman Catholic.

Maundy Thursday

On Maundy Thursday, my feet are being washed, and I’m washing feet. There is nothing particularly Anglican about this. Its what Jesus told us to do. I’m celebrating the Eucharist, during the feast of the Last Supper, the Lord’s Supper. This is the table of the Lord, not of us Anglicans in particular. I feel like Judas. Will I depart? I feel like Peter. Will I deny him? Sometimes I feel like John, and I lay my head upon his breast and rest.
And then the altar is stripped bare. What will remain? Nothing that particularly symbolizes Anglicanism. Instead, its a crown of thorns on an empty table, a symbol for the one true God for all people. With each piece removed, I feel the layers of my own soul being peeled away. And I leave in silence with the crown of thorns left, alone, in my heart.

Good Friday

On Good Friday, more than any other time of year, I’m just a Christian. I’m a sinner saved and redeemed by the blood of Jesus. I’m a disciple who is running away from the cross, and yet being pulled back to it by grace. I’m a Peter, denying Christ and needing his restoring love. I’m Pilate, condemning him. I’m the crowd jeering him. I’m Mary Magdalene, crying for him because he saved my life and delivered me.
On Good Friday, I’m lying at the foot of the cross. I’m looking up into his eyes, and witnessing the pain. I’m looking at his mother Mary, and I have to look away. How can she bear this? She isn’t just the mother of us Anglicans. She is the mother of God, and mother of the Church because she is the mother of Christ.
On Good Friday, I’m confused and wondering. I’m listening but not fully understanding. On Good Friday, I’m finally aware that I’m, after all, a human being. A fallen human being that needs to be saved. And he is saving me.
On Good Friday, I’m listening. And I hear him say “It is finished.” The sacrifices are ended. He offered himself to save us, and heal us, and to end our constant offering of our own sacrifices. Animals. Enemies. Slaves. Our own children. Time, money, talent, and more. We humans kept trying to appease the God who loves us, so he came here himself and allowed us to sacrifice him. He ended it. He saved us even when we didn’t think we needed anyone to save us.
On Good Friday I sit with that reality in a darkened church, with God’s people, gathered around the stark, empty altar of God. I wear a black cassock, which sits unusually heavy on me. I’m not focused in particular on being Anglican at that moment, I’m a desperate, confused, loved, and accepted Child of God.

Holy Saturday

On Holy Saturday I’m always torn between the routines of family life and the utter silence of all creation while Christ lies in the tomb. How can things go on as normal? Why did the earth continue to revolve and people to eat, drink, and be merry as Christ lay in the tomb, dead. Death is silent to the living. He was not moving. He was not there. When will God answer? We had hoped for more. This hope is not just an Anglican hope, it’s a human hope.
And then, at the Easter Vigil, as we shout “He is Risen,” I’m joining my voice with Christians all over the world who celebrate his resurrection.

Easter

I do love the way we Anglicans celebrate. It is beautiful! But really, we aren’t Anglicans or Baptists, Roman Catholics or Methodists. On Easter Day, we are the shocked women at the tomb, the slow-to-realize disciples, and the (temporarily) doubting Thomases who kneel and say “My Lord and My God!”. We’re people who love Jesus, and who want to walk with him and be with him and in him all of our days. We are just little children, entering the Kingdom of God.
At that moment, we who have been baptized into the One Body of Christ, are more united in our praise than at any other moment of the year.
We are just Christians, and that’s enough.


Monday, March 12, 2018

So today...


I didn't want to get out of bed to go to work...dang you, time change! But, I did.  Then I went to visit with some clients before I decided it was just too cold and wet and I didn't get paid enough to live through that special part of Hades so I high tailed it back to the office. Did I mention it was one ugly, cold day here?  It kind of snuck in the back door and has just about scared us to death. I mean my phone was beeping every 30 seconds "freeze warning!"  What did that phone think I was going to do about it?  

So, I did make it home this afternoon, baked some cookies, hung a pot rack (actually an old wine rack that I realized would make an excellent pot rack!) Fed the dogs and the man child, not necessarily in that order and managed to clean the residue of a super strong strip of carpet tape off the floor without using chemicals....WHOOT!  That might not sound like a big deal but I have been working on this sticky conception of Satan for days.  Now, I can say, I am tarred (translated to tired for  those of you who missed High Country 101 in college...I am bilingual in several languages...Hill Billy and Redneck, just to name a few!)

Of course, I need to be studying as I started a new class today...hopefully one that won't make me feel dumber.  Lots of my college classes do that....what is that about anyway?  Going back to school was suppose to empower me and make me feel all "I can conquer the worldish"...right?  So far, it makes me feel like I need a nap for the most part.  I also have another project that I have to get rolling but I don't think it is happening tonight because, well, I am too cold...yep, too cold.  I don't do well when I am cold, thus the reason I live in the South....Hello????  Someone please fix the thermostat!



Saturday, March 10, 2018

On this 4th Sunday of Lent

May we all look inward, deeper, to those uneasy parts...to prepare...



Friday, February 23, 2018

Spring is coming!!!


Yes it is!  

Now,  I admit, I have done more than my fair share of sniffling around about the cold this year...because it was COLD; and it was a cold that didn't want to end.  But the last 2 weeks  Mother Nature confirmed that yes, even though it is  still 13 degrees in Boise, Idaho, the Southland is the reining Queen of Spring . Every day brings a  delightful invitation to the coming season....daffodils in their radiant gowns, the forsythia and Carolina Jessamine parading their yellow fireworks up and down the street, the glorious Saucer Magnolia reminding us everything is pretty in pink, along with the delicate Star magnolia sharing her beautiful white blooms!  The humidity has already whispered a gentle kiss among the Red-buds. All the while, the grass is beginning it's attempt at becoming an unruly child among the garden. Oh, and then there are the weeds, that truly were not to be found this morning,  but some how wiggled inside the gates and are  throwing a welcoming party for Spring that looks as if it is about be completely out of control.

Bring on the Tulips, Dogwoods, the beloved Azaleas and wrap yourself in Spring. Oh, and I am sure it will find its way to Boise, eventually....sometime after summer has taken up residence here.


Sunday, February 11, 2018

Quite Literally....

I think I am at a strange
Photo Credit: unknown
Have you ever found yourself there?  When you aren't quite sure which direction you should go and you have added up the pros and cons of both and still don't have a clear direction?  

I am there right now.  Actually, over the past couple of weeks I have been asked a question from various people about what I want to do with my degree when I finish.  Hmmmmm....???  I feel like I should have a better answer than I have...since, uh, I don't have an answer.  I am literally majoring in a degree based on my previous degree because the distance from Point A to Point B is shortest.  But, now, after having been asked this multiple times by various people I am wondering.  Setting the path to getting a MBA seemed to be the most logical and definitely most direct route based on my past course of study, but now, all of the sudden I am just not sure. It is frustrating because I think I am too old to be trying to determine "what I want to be when I grow up!"  I am just not sure my passion lies in this path, but then my logical side kicks in and reminds me that there are clear reasons to follow this path...blah, blah, blah.

Working in the industry I am currently, has given me new perspectives and experiences and a lot to consider in relation to my educational pursuits. My heart is not in the impersonal business of making money for the sake of money.  Yes, I know money is required, but previously I working in an industry that I loved and the money was icing on the cake....but wasn't the cake!  I seriously love cake, so cake is important to me!  It is very fulfilling to do something that helps other people feel better, even if is just a small part of their lives.  Knowing you made the day brighter for someone in some small way is HUGE.  I am not looking to save the world, but it was nice to contribute to the success and growth of other people and see their lives fuller and more satisfied.  So, maybe now you see my hmmmmm????  I am literally questioning if this is a fork in the road or am I overthinking all this?