I know there's all kinds of important stories out there that some folks would really like to talk about. We'll get to some of them, eventually. I promise. But not today.
Driving hime tonight, I was struck once again by how blessed we are. I can't point to one particular event that made that blessedness apparent. I think it was the sum total of all the pieces of this day.
So here is the rather mundane summary:
Got to the church about 5 minutes later than usual. The doors had already been opened, lights were on, coffee was perking. One of the silent angels had been busy. Consequently I had time to review the sermon; struck two very opinionated paragraphs.
Half a dozen of us had spent this last weekend (Friday night and all day Saturday) at a Magnetic Church conference sponsored by the Diocese. The presenter was a gentleman by the name of Andrew Weeks. He is quite good. Came back with lots of practical ideas for new member ministry. I highly recommend this program. I managed to fit a couple of good quotes from Andrew's book Welcome! into the sermon, which primed the Vestry member who was to give a brief summation of the conference during announcements.
We had a baptism as part of the later Eucharist. The family arrived in time for a brief discussion and walk through. Lots of children. I invited all the young people to gather around the font during the baptism. They were so fascinated by the whole thing. The little guy being baptized was wearing the cutest minature white tux. And he even let out a loud cry at the right moment!
A couple was also celebrating their 50th wedding anniversary. They came forward for a prayer and a blessing. They also provided a huge chocolate and strawberry cake for coffee hour. So delicious it seemed sinful. I did not refuse their offer of a huge piece to take home.
The wardens slipped away early today, so I turned off the lights and locked up after the last group made their way to the parking lot, still laughing and chatting away. Closing up is one of those chores that I actually enjoy. I linger a bit, pausing to remember the day as I move from space to space.
A few phone calls, check next week's calendar, to the aumbry for the sacrament, and then out the door. First stop is a nursing home, where two members are temporary residents. Prayers and communion. Then listen for awhile. Leave the Sunday bulletin. Let them know when I'll be back.
Back in the car; my new baby, btw, is a 2003 black DeVille...picked it up cheap with low miles, and it is an absolute dream. The seat is more comfortable than any chair I've ever sat in. Eight cylinders, yet still gets 24 mpg (28 hwy). Maybe a bit decadent, but I do a lot of driving, and always wanted a Caddy.
Cruise an hour and a half north for the installation of a rector. Beautiful stone church. Solemn High Mass. The Bishop preached a dynamite sermon. One baptism, eight confirmations and about ten receptions. The cantor was superb. Even the bishop chanted well today! The new rector, who I've gotten to know over the years, and think quite highly of, was pleased (and a bit surprised, I think) to see me present. It was more than worth the drive.
Headed south. Stopped at one of the local hospitals to visit a member who is recovering from hip surgery. Prayers of thanksgiving for continued healing. Communion from the reserve sacrament for him and his wife.
Arrive home, bearing a gift of chocolate strawberry cake for Demi, which contributed to a pleasant mood permeating our humble abode.
So, there you have it. Many little blessings that I'm savoring tonight. Not even going to check the news sites. Because, tonight, I find myself at peace.
God is good.