Sunday, November 25, 2007

December 2 is the First Sunday of Advent

I recently watched the 1990 documentary, "God Grew Tired of Us". With poignancy and power, it follows the lives of three of the Lost Boys of the Sudan who were resettled in the USA.

One was John Bul, a tall Dinka, who was placed with three other boys in an apartment in Syracuse. He had been a leader among the Lost Boys’ as they marched and as they lived in the refugee camp in Kenya.
His story is remarkable. He worked two and three jobs so he could send money back to both Kenya where his cohort of Lost Boys were living and to Uganda after he found his mother and sisters were living in a camp there. He graduated from high school and went onto college. He became a spokesman for the "Lost Boys" in America. His hope is to return to help rebuild a New Sudan.

One segment of the film in particular was striking to me....
The first year was hard and the boys had many questions.
About electricity, potato chips, trash removal and the apparent unfriendliness of Americans.
Then came December.
The boys watched a Christmas movie on television.
John Bul asked why his sponsors had put a small tree up in the apartment and what was the meaning of the tree and of "Santa"? Was "Santa" in the Bible?
The boys were taken to a shopping mall where they saw a huge Christmas tree and Santa in person. John Bul asked how does this relate to the birth of Jesus Christ?
Then the scene cut to an ice skating rink where some of the Lost Boys tried to skate.
John Bul said, "You have so many things to help you celebrate Christmas. It is good in the camp, too. We have to prepare for the birth of Jesus in our hearts. We have to prepare spiritually. We sing and dance. It is good."
As the film cut to show some of the Lost Boys riding bikes in the snow, I gulped.
And felt both confronted and challenged.

Advent. How can I prepare spiritually so that Christ can be born anew in my heart, my home and my ministry?
I took the DVD back to Blockbuster.
The question still lives with me.

Thursday, November 08, 2007

"Every Member" Sheep (c) Is Dressed and Ready. . .

"Every Member" Sheep (c) has found his tam. He's ready and waiting for the big day! And he hopes you plan to be with us for our annual festival honoring our patron- St. Margaret, Queen of Scotland, on Sunday, November 18 at 10:15 a.m. At that time, we begin our year long centennial celebration. The Ven. Richard I. Cluett, former rector and friend, will be our guest preacher. Everyone is invited to enjoy the fun by wearing plaids, tartans, tams and kilts and by joining the procession of pipers and people. Our piper is James Ruhf, official Piper to the Mayor of Bethlehem. There is a parish luncheon following worship. The menu will include our traditional St. Margaret's Vegetable Beef Soup. Help us get a head count for the hospitality can RSVP here or to


Monday, November 05, 2007

"Octoberfest" Talent Auction is Success

Sunday morning, aided by the end of Daylight Savings Time, Carla Holdridge reported that the previous night’s Talent Auction had netted a profit of $5342. The bidding was lively and the food was great. Fun was had as funds were raised. Theresa Ernst won the raffle of a weekend at the West's cabin on Bear Lake.

Thank you to everyone!

To the Holdrides- Carla, Mike, Leigh and Tim who anchored the event.

To Barbara S. and her calling committee which worked ahead of time.
To Sara C., Membership Incubator, for individual invitations mailed to homes.
To Mark T., Scott S., Janice C., Dan C. for planning, preparing, cooking, serving the tasty German menu.
To Jill T., Meta C. and Janice C. who decorated the hall. Weren’t the centerpieces great?
To Tinsley F. and Sally W. who handed the financial table.
To Patti P. and Dan F. who staffed the Silent Auction.
To Ken S. and Mack W. who worked tirelessly to set up.
To Hannah and friends who provided child care.

To all our autioneers: Mack W., Tony V., Dave L., Matt H., Bill P. and Mike H.
AND to all their "Vannas" who were asked to wear silly bibs and pray any snapshots taken of same never see the light of day!

To everyone who spent the entire day at church like little Carter!

To everyone who helped clean up.
To everyone who donated an item, a talent or a baked good to the auction.
To everyone who invited a friend, neighbor, coworker or family member to join the festivities.

To everyone who bid and helped raise funds and fun for St. Margaret’s Church.