This morning, like the rest of you, I woke to the news that Prince Edward Island has begun a 72 hour lockdown (link) and that the Halifax area is closed to travellers for the March Break (link). All this, as New Brunswick adjust the rules for the Orange Level of Recovery and considers a move to yet a different shade of Yellow (link)… its all I can do somedays to keep up with the changing colours and the implication for those I care about and support those who are making decisions for this community of faith that I share in the leadership of.
I have to believe, despite how confusing it all sometimes seems that those in the various departments of health and the politicians of the various provinces are, like each of us, making the best decisions they can based on the information that they have at hand.
My friend and colleague, Barbara Nixon, author of “Things I Wish Jesus Said” who currently serves as Director of Field Education at Claremont School of Theology in Salem OR, wrote an article in Corvallis Gazette Times entitled “Exploring the ‘what is truth?’ question“
As I see it, each of us individually is constantly interpreting every piece of information we receive and all that we experience. Consciously or unconsciously, we are choosing what we believe to be true. In other words – we are choosing WHAT and WHO we trust.Barbara Nixon
On Friday, I chose to trust the scientist that developed the vaccine that was injected in my arm. Today, I choose to trust the Chief Medical Officers of Health that are making decisions that are in the best interests of the communities they serve. Yes, by times I may get confused and frustrated but this is better than being sick or dead or watching those I care about get sick and die.
This coming Sunday, despite having made an earlier decision to not offer in-person Sunday Gatherings in the Orange Level of Recovery, Sackville United Church will offer the opportunity to gather in-person once again – because the Executive considered new information and made a new decision, the best decision they could based on the information at hand. As we made this decision we were aware that there are some who will not be comfortable gathering in-person and we respect and support them in their decision and remind them that the Sunday Gathering will continue to be live-streamed with the only change being the time (moving to 11AM rather than 10AM) and we look forward to all of us being together in whatever way we choose to participate. Upper Sackville United Church will next gather in-person on Sunday March 28th and again on April 4th at 9AM.
In closing, the Executives of each congregation, and I are ever mindful of the trust that you have placed in us and we covet your prayers of care and support.
Today I am in the office for the better part of the day setting up visits and meetings for the rest of the week and participating in two meetings related to community events and activities. After lunch I’ll be out making contact with local business folk seeking support for our upcoming PIE Day Pie Auction. Have you considered the possibility of baking a pie and donating it to this event?
On Tuesday Bea, our co-op student will be with us and she’ll be working making contacts in respect to the Church directory while I am with the Preacher’s Help Group at 10:30AM followed by a Zoom Webinar on Stewardship with members of the Pastoral Charge led by Roger Janes at 1PM. And then at 7PM I’ll host our Journey in Lent group on Zoom (see link below).
Wednesday, barring any emergencies will be a work from home day as I try to bring some order to my thoughts in resepect to the liturgy and sermon for Sunday. At 5PM I’ll host our Virtual Community Supper (see below) after which I will take part in in a discussion hosted by St. Paul’s United Church with Tom Johnson focusing on the Treaties of Peace and Friendship that the Wabanaki (People of the Dawn), which includes the Wolastoqiyik, Mi’kmaq, Penobscot and Passamaquoddy, entered into with the Crown prior to 1779. Tom is Wolastoqiyik and a member of Tobique First Nation, who grew up in and continues to make Riverview his home. He is a respected Indigenous knowledge keeper and researcher. Tom works as Geographic Information Systems Coordinator (GIS Coordinator) at Mi’gmawel Tplu’taqnn Inc. If you’ like to join in this conversation send me a note and I’ll share the link with you.
Thursday morning I’ll be engage in pastoral visits for the morning and finishing the sermon (I hope) in the afternoon.
Friday and Saturday will be days off (provided everything for Sunday is ready) and on Sunday I look forward to gathering in-person with folk of the Sackville United Church congregation at 11AM and having folk from Upper Sackville and Sackville United and other places across Canada (including my Mom and Dad in PEI) join in the live-stream via Facebook Live. There is room at the table for everyone!
Weekly During Lent
- Tuesday @ 10:30AM Preacher’s Help Group (Zoom)
- Tuesday @ 7PM Small Group Study: Journey in Lent (Zoom) A 30 minute pause to ponder our spiritual pathway.
- Wednesday @ 5PM Virtual Community Supper (Zoom)
- Thursday @ 7PM Beer & (no) Hymns (Zoom)
- Sunday @ 11AM Sackville United Church and live-streamed on Facebook Live *
- Sunday @ 11:45AM Conversation & Community (Zoom)
- Sunday @ 4PM Wondering in the Wandering (Zoom) A time of wondering and sharing for children and adults of all ages.
- Upper Sackville United Church gathers in-person at 9AM on Sunday March 28th and April 4th.