There seems to exist in the greater Church community a few weeks spread out through the year when churches actually get things done. September and October in one such time. The other is the time after Easter and before Summer hits. Now we are in the productive days before the Holiday season starts at Thanksgiving. This year we just completed a very successful Music and Wine festival and in a couple of weeks we will have a Golf Tournament fundraiser. November brings our Kirking celebration, and Diocesan Convention – It will be a busy few weeks.
A shout out to Steve Lafever for facilitating the removal of the stumps in the parking lot and the filling in of the holes with asphalt. The parking lot is far from pristine, yet it is safer for our tires and more readily available for parking. Thank you too to those of you who stepped up and adopted a bill during the past couple of weeks. The end of Summer is usually a period of low attendance and contribution but our bills for some reason don’t stop coming in. We had a good attendance this Summer, I thought, with about 25 people on average at our single worship. It has taken us a bit of time to come back to normal numbers for the 8am & 10am services, yet it looks like we’re there.
The first Sunday of October is the Blessing of the Animals, so don’t forget to bring your pets for a blessing on the 6th. We are not the only important species on the planet and many of us share our lives with creatures furry and feathered. God’s blessing is available to all whether you fly, crawl, hop, stalk, bounce, prance or just like to hang with your people, so come and get a blessing.
As we finish up my first year with you all, I like to ask in a general way where you all would like to see the community going in the next couple of years. Many congregations see their role as building leadership in the community, yet here at St. Andrew’s many folks have been those leaders in the past and are in the process of stepping back from that role. With such a limited number of people it’s hard to see us taking “building leadership” as our role.
On a side note, we sure could use some additional folks to help out serving at the altar or joining the altar guild. It also doesn’t seem like we have the demographics to build a thriving youth ministry. This is a Catch 22 as they say. You need families with small children to attract families with small children. We can continue to foster our relationships with the community at large and by that I mean those outside our worship group. Not as a recruitment tool but as a way of continuing to make St. Andrew’s the community’s church. We may get a few new members but this wouldn’t be the focus. We do this via our outreach events now. Do we want to do more? We witness to Christ by being with and loving others. Do we want our focus to be taking care of each other? This might mean more social events, agape dinners and the like. Let me know. This isn’t a strategic plan or anything like that, per se. It is just an attempt to get a real sense of where we want to walk together over the next couple of years. A strategic plan may come out of that in the future. This is just a conversation.
Finally, keep your hearts open. Save some time for yourselves and for this Church that we love. Make a joyful noise unto our Lord, for it is God’s kingdom we pray come into our lives for real each day. Forgive more often. Bless more often. Love each other as Christ loves you. So simple, so very simple, yet a lifetime’s effort means we try it again tomorrow as best we can, failing, laughing along the way.
I hope you all have a joyful and prosperous October.
I remain yours in Christ.