“Lord, you have been our dwelling place in all generations.” (Psalm 90:1)
Greetings, all! The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all.
On this Sunday, our churches celebrate Reformation Sunday, where we reflect on our faith heritage and our current calls to reflect and adapt as God calls us to do. A fitting theme for this particular year, as well as an apt theme for fall in general. As the old adage goes, “nothing is as constant as change”. Some changes are expected, like the falling of leaves and the perennial pulling out the sweaters from the back of the closet. These are changes that we can expect, and can adapt to with only a little bit of prodding and grumbling. But this year has demonstrated for us that many landscapes and situations we journey through are very unexpected. Yet with God’s constant presence, and the assured ground of faith that we can tread on with confidence, we can discern and adapt in faithful ways.
And the wonderful thing is that we have already seen examples of such discernment and adaptation. I had the pleasure of helping with Blyth’s drive-thru turkey dinner last weekend. It was great to see the volunteers adapt so whole-heartedly to the different layout, and taking proper precautions reflective of our call to love and care for our neighbours. It was an excellent event, and demonstrated to the local community that we are still present and active, even if we are not yet able to re-enter our sanctuaries.
We also find adaptation and discernment with our youth ministry. The first weekly packages were made available this week for families to pick up from the churches. These packages can be explored as a family at home on their own time, but they are also encouraged to join with myself and other families on an online Zoom session. This week, it is scheduled for Saturday from 10-11 a.m. Please be sure to email me for the link and other details. And if there are other folks in the congregations who want to help contribute to this ministry, please be sure to reach out!
I also had the pleasure in the Regional Meeting last week to see the discernment and adaptation taking place as a wider church. The various chaplaincies, church camps, outreach initiatives, and meaningful work of the Regional staff have made changes at this time, but all are still working hard and aiding the Spirit’s work in our area.
However, we must also recognize that many of the organizations and initiatives that we support as churches have had difficulty in adapting to this new normal, so our support is more important than ever. One such group that the churches has often supported is the Food Grains Bank, who have not been able to host the fundraising events they normally do. If you feel inspired to donate to them personally, you can send a cheque payable to “Fields of Faith” via their treasurer Barb Norman (Box 633, Clinton ON N0M 1L0). Donations for Wesley United at Saugeen First Nation, whose church burnt down earlier this month, are also still being collected by the Region on behalf of the congregation. Many of our usual Christmas Donations, such as to the North Huron Food Share, and the Huron Christmas Bureau, are also emphasizing the need for financial donations in lieu of material donations. More info on this will be available in the coming weeks.
For now, be assured that our adaptations and discernment, done in God’s presence, can and does result in faithful actions and sparking even deeper reflection. Loving God and loving neighbour looks different right now, but it is still a holy calling for us as Christians. Blessings to you all in the week ahead, and please be sure to reach out if you have any questions, concerns, or just want a conversation!
Yours in Christ,
Student Minister – Blyth and Brussels United Churches
Blyth Office Number: 519-523-4224
Brussels Office Number: 519-887-6259
Emergency Pastoral Number: call/text 705-344-3385
Feature Photo by Brett Jordan on Unsplash