It seems like it was just the other day that I was typing up my column for the June edition of the Lamplighter. Time sure flies when you’re having fun, doesn’t it? And we have been having fun this summer. If you didn’t make it to our church picnic on June 14th, you certainly missed out on a treat. I want to take a moment here to thank Glen, Christy, and the rest of the Bobart clan for putting together such a great afternoon and preparing so much amazing food. And thanks to all of you who brought side dishes and desserts as well. I always think that there’s no way we could possibly outdo the last year’s spread and yet we always do. Thanks to everyone for making this a truly memorable afternoon.
However, the whole affair was made even better by the presence of our UCC neighbors from the Congregational Church of Deerfield. The first blessing for me was hearing the voices of both congregations filling our chapel with such glorious singing. The second blessing was the fellowship that we shared over our meals in the Bobart backyard, as we got to know the folks from Deerfield on a more personal level. I’ve heard nothing but good reports about that day from all of you, and I understand that we all learned quite a bit about one another during our time together. It will be exciting to go to Deerfield and return the favor when we get to be their guests. I’m looking forward to sharing a firm date and time with you very soon!
You see, this is the fun part of our transition work – getting to know our neighbors (and potential congregational partners). After a year and a half of studying, listening, and learning, we finally get to enjoy some of the fruits of our labor. And July is going to be a great month for that. While I’m away getting my brother married off and attending the General Assembly of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), Northfield Community Church will be welcoming us as guests at their worship services. You can read the full details in the “Transition Visits” article on page one so I won’t bore you by repeating that, but what I will tell you is that this is an important part of your transition work as a member of the congregation. Yes, we’ve shared a number of joint services with our NCC neighbors, but this is your chance to see how they worship when we’re not around. And I can assure you it will be a treat, because both of their services – contemporary and traditional – have a little different feel than our own regular Sunday service.
Now I know you might be tempted to phone in sick on one of these days and stay home, but I can’t stress to you enough how important it is for all of us to be able to make the most informed decisions possible when we settle down to iron out the details of our future together. At the risk of sounding exaggerated, I will go ahead and say that the future of St. Peter really is at stake. And like all things, what we gain from our ongoing transition process will ultimately be a product of what we put into it. So let’s give these next few months our all – and heck, let’s enjoy the chance to experience a little variety as we worship with our friends at Northfield Community Church and the Congregational Church of Deerfield.
You see? Sometimes doing the work of the church can be fun, so let’s make the most of it! I’ll see you in worship – wherever that may be.
Yours on the journey of faith,
PS – If you need to know a little more or feel like I left out a detail or two, don’t be afraid to ask. I’m happy to take your calls, answer your emails, or chat after worship. I’m here for you during this time of transition, so don’t be shy about blessing me with your thoughts and questions. After all, this is what God has called me to do. Be well!