May 17, 2019
If there's a Book Sale at the Guilford Free Library, there's an event at Christ Church. That seems to be the pattern. Our Evening ECW will be hosting a lunch of Soup, bread, fruit and dessert this Saturday, May 18, in the Christ Church Parish Hall. The ladies of the EECW bring crockpots of their own gourmet soup to share. Run into friends and neighbors at the Library's Paperback Book Sale? Be sure to invite them to Christ Church for lunch 11a.m.-2p.m.. They'll surely thank you!
This Sunday we'll be saying "Thank-you & Good-bye" to our Sunday School Director Laurie Varley. Since she began with our Vacation Bible School in the summer of 2016, Miss Laurie has cared for our Sunday School children, worked with our Sunday School teachers, coordinated with mentors of our Middle and High School programs, and led the program of Nursery care for our youngest children. We have all enjoyed our children telling the Nativity Story every December, and their chancel dramas in the spring -- either the Story of the Good Shepherd , as in this year, or The Story of Pentecost, as in last year. While Mark Sullivan taught and directed the music, Laurie did the behind-the-scenes organizing. She has been the chief organizer for the Sunday School's "Helping Hands for Haiti" each March -- cooking many of the pancakes herself! Along the way, our youngsters have learned about God's love revealed in Jesus, and found that love mirrored in Miss Laurie's care for each and every one of them. In addition to being grateful for Laurie's dependable and faithful leadership, I have admired her calm and easy skill with what the professionals call "classroom management."
Although Laurie will be with us Memorial Day weekend, watching over the Nursery as usual, Sunday School won't be meeting then; so this Sunday is our official chance to say, "We're grateful to you! We're going to miss you and Stevie! and, We pray God's blessings on your next adventures back in your home state of North Carolina!"
(Don't tell her this, but we will be presenting Laurie a 'purse' of two heftily charged-up gift cards in two lovely ECW gift-card holders this Sunday. If you would like to help with this, please place your gift in a 'Laurie' envelope and put it in Sunday's plate; please make your check out to Christ Church with 'Laurie' on the memo line.)
Speaking of Good Shepherd Sunday, sincere thanks to our Sunday School Children, middle school readers and acolytes and high school intercessor and ushers, plus one. It was really something special. The children's singing of Mark Sullivan's setting of the 23rd Psalm just about did me in. Thanks to Miss Laurie and the Sunday School parents for all the coaching, organizing, and help with rehearsals and remembering lines!
Thanks to every one who responded to the ECW's "Roses for Mother's Day" and "Roses for Mommy" appeals. The bouquets of roses on just about every horizontal surface in the church were a sight to behold and a beautiful way to honor and express our gratitude to -- and for -- the important women in our lives. Special thanks go to chief organizer Diane Link, and her helpers.
One of Laurie Varley's special responsibilities as our Sunday School Director has been to be our designated staff person who makes sure that we follow the Episcopal Church's Safe Churchpolicies and protocols for our youngsters. She has been diligent and helpful in this I spent this past Tuesday morning and afternoon at a "Mandatory Clergy Professional Development Day;" The "mandatory" referred to the Episcopal Church in CT's requirement that clergy learn about the latest iteration of these Safe Church protocols to maintain our "good standing" within the diocese. The topics included safety from abuse for our children, for our elders, and for vulnerable adults, as well as maintaining appropriate boundaries. One of the new wrinkles will be a "universal" on-line basic training that will be available to all, and expected of many. Watch this space for details.
Our conversations about Joan Chittester's book The Gift of Years will continue during this Sunday's Rectory Forum and Tuesday Spring Supper. This will be the final meeting of the Tuesday Supper Discussion; so Tuesday folks, you know that means dessert by Sue!. The Sunday Forum conversation will have at least two more meetings. If you're reading the book, come with a passage to read that particularly spoke to you, or about which you have some questions or concerns.
This Thursday will conclude our Spring season of Thursday morning Bible Study on the Book of Revelation; feel free to bring your issues with or about the text. The group has decided to return to Revelation again in the fall.
In the meantime, I look forward to seeing you over soup on Saturday, and as we bid Laurie Varley "Godspeed" on Sunday.
With Easter faith, hope, and love,
We feature various authors from around our parish, commenting on topics of interest to our community. Enjoy! Comment if you are so moved!