Thursday, October 24, 2013

 red moon 
Pastor's Diary
Dear friends,
  As with my journal at home, I haven't written my diary in awhile. We've been busy. We have new tenants at our house in Fauquier County and it needed some in-between-time work.

Nancy shovels gravelI spent some half days out there and some off days cleaning out accumulated things, hauling metal items for recycling, and shoveling new gravel for the driveway. (see photo) Fitz was re-building the deck surface and replacing supports where needed. Thanks to a LOT of help from our friends, the work is almost complete. (and the deck looks beautiful!)
2013-10-15 15.20.28
A busy time was had by all!
The work at the church has been busy too! As you realize from your letter, it's Stewardship Month. The Church Board passed a budget and we have our dedication of pledges this Sunday (10/27) along with bringing into membership three people. I've enjoyed crafting some of the language of 'One More' based on the board's desire that our focus go beyond dollars (although always needed) to a greater commitment to our faith journey together - as a congregation. I was tempted to mention 'one more shovelful, one more deck board, one more window to wash' but decided that was my personal 'one-more' for the month.

'One More' is the challenge of our journey with Jesus. He was always 'upping the ante' to use a phrase he might not have ever used. He did say things like, "Let the dead bury the dead. You follow me!" Which then and now is not the most sensitive thing to say. One could never accuse Jesus of being politically correct, but he was always honest. 'ouch'

A colleague said that he was ready to go to the soccer fields on Sunday morning where his congregation could be found and let the 'dead bury the dead' back at church. 'ouch' once again. But perhaps no harsher than Jesus. I don't find such a dim view to be true at Arlington CoB. Sunday is a time full of new life. I believe our new commitments of finances AND time/talent will show just how much LIFE exists in our congregation. We won't know the totality of what we've promised until Church Council (which means everyone) meets on Nov. 17. Then a summary of pledges will be presented along with the proposed budget for 2014.

I'm still contemplating my 'one more'. The pledge amount was easy, the time/talent commitment is harder. What 'one more' would Jesus have me promise? What 'one more' will help me grow closer to God? I look forward to taking those steps together with you in the days ahead.

Pastor Nancy

I try to post these messages on my blog and the church website. Link to my blog If you miss us, you can always catch up here on the web, Link to our website. I also change the pictures on the web and the church facebook page. We do try to post sermons either written or audio and sometimes both.


Thursday, October 17, 2013

a good mix for writing

I still listen to Pandora radio a fair amount. I try iTunes Radio from time to time being an Apple fan, but it's so easy to go back to Pandora and I think they've cut back on commercials since iTunes came into the market. So I'm recommending Jukebox, the Ghost as a starter for a good station when you are writing..or trying to.

I've spent the day trying to write a stewardship letter, summarize the budget and prepare for an in-home anointing service. It can be slow work but I'm almost ready, just need to change to 'church clothes'. It has been a crazy couple of weeks. I know it is crazy when I'm looking forward to Advent for things to calm down!

I haven't been to my favorite RevGalBlogPal sites, haven't joined the Preacher's Party on Saturdays, and barely keep up with needed reading for sunday. THANKFULLY, I had John Monroe, a UU seminary student at Wesley, preach for me last Sunday. With District Conference last weekend and a bit of a homeowner emergency week, he truly was a gift from GOD!

We rent the home we own and we live in a parsonage. We had planned to go without rent for at least a month while we did some renovations and clean up at the house. The property hadn't been mowed all year and the deck badly needed replacing. Then we found a family we think will be the perfect tenants, but they needed to move in asap. so, crash course in hurry up maintenance. I took half days off to work out there with machete' and rake, cleaning rags, and window washing. I Scrubbed walls and did a tiny bit of paint. I sorted some of our stored junk and cleaned out part of the attic. All while my hubby worked like crazy on the deck. With a LOT of help from our dear friends and neighbors, the new family got moved in!
Men At Work

He is out there again today working on the final parts of the deck and it will take a few more days to complete. the chimney still needs cleaning and parts of the gutter also when we can get use of the bucket truck and the ground isn't so soft. Oh and did I mention it poured most of last week? sigh

SO now I'm playing catch up. While I got to meetings and prepared worship last week. I didn't get the stewardship letter written. Now it's up again a week-late deadline and much to do.

Back to it all now, but just saying that good music (thanks Pandora) and the live feed from the Baltimore aquarium. Helps keep me sane and calm. or as much as can be expected.

In addition, I am blessed by a particularly caring congregation and is showering me with Pastor Appreciation cards and gifts. How that for good news?