Castleton/Grafton United Church News for September Week 4
& GRAFTON UNITED CHURCHES -an affirming ministry with a
vision of worship, justice, and community
outreach, putting people before dogma
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Very Warm September 2018 Greetings
My Dear Friends,
I wasnít sure if Iíd be doing another message on this my last email newsletter. I expect a newsletter in some form will continue, but it will appropriately have some changes in process, format and style, so with the transition, if you donít receive one in the next few weeks let us know.
After the ďdoĒ you had for me and indeed for you on Sunday I cannot not respond. Itís not a surprise to me that I am appreciated because all the way along these 7+ years you have always been very affirming and encouraging, but the extent and depth and thoughtfulness of your comments at the event and in print and action are very humbling and moving.
It was heartwarming to see so many out including from neighbouring churches. Thanks too for the shawl, the crook, flowers, pictures, prayer lamb, the song, and your M&S gifts. And the quilt with clearly many squares picked to highlight our time and ministry together, even going the distance to make it long enough for a long body. Of course it doesnít always work, but ministers are supposed to give 90 days notice of leaving. I think I maybe gave you about 3 weeks, and it may have been the setting of the reception date that really got the wheels turning, so the quilters were no doubt burning some midnight oil to work such a miracle in crafting that work of art.
You have been the best congregation Iíve had in terms of atmosphere, connectedness and certainly the most together charge with really no politics, and no one discouraging me from being who I am. As Iíve said to you, I have been most free here to be theologically honest, and less having to judge what the market will bear.
Anything I have accomplished is really what you have done. Sure I may have put out a suggestion or tease about refugees or affirming, or the screen, but none of those things would have happened if one or two of you and then a bunch more did not run with it. And I would never have had the chutzpa to do the Vicar of Dibley at the Presbytery level if you had not responded so enthusiastically to the several dramas we did here. I consider myself privileged to have journeyed with a group of folks so caring of one another, and so imaginative and outreach oriented modeling what a church can do.
Itís been said to me that its too bad you didnít have some real retirement years, but I canít think of a better way to spend them than with you.
I appreciate your concern of my health, and it must sound ominous, but I wonder if some of are not more concerned about me than I am. No question cancer is a dirty word and maybe especially bone cancer, but for me pain is a dirtier word, and I have no pain, at least yet, and when it does come, the Doctor says sheíll spotweld with radiation. The cancer didnít make me quit as I donít even know its there; itís rather the interstitial lung disease or fibrosis that is making breathing a challenge and so curtailing my energy.
But even then we are philosophical about it and continue to joke about it in our home. I canít say Iím worrying, except some about how my family will move forward. Iím mostly just so grateful that Iíve been able to put in such amazing innings, when I was told not to expect that with the scleroderma Iíve had 40 years. And besides none of us know the future. Yes, sure all of our time is limited, but I also think of how often Iíve baffled the doctors before, so my focus is pretty much to enjoy each day and continue to spread a little light and humour to anyone who happens to be around.
One person Sunday brought to mind how a couple of times I asked you to think of a couple of adjectives or nouns youíd use to describe your children or best friends. And then to ask how many of you came up with the word sinner. Of course none did. Then to ask: why is it then weíve been led to think thatís how God thinks of us as sinners, when we donít even of our own children. Weíve been taught to think of God as judge, but is he/she not -more lover? As Jesus says, if you being human know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more God...
Surely thatís gospel, so I hope you know that you matter, that you are loved, precious in Godís sight in Isaiahís words, that you were worth dreaming up, that you are children of God, called to treat all others as brothers and sisters.
Thanks for everything
See you around
Your friend David
Note annual service time change Sept 30; thanks to Rev. Jean Wilson for not having taken another position and hence being able to be minister here, appointed now till June.
of life service for Graham Norcutt Sept 28 Castleton UC http:
Coming Events for Castleton and Grafton United Church
Usual 2017-18 Service Time: Beginning Sept 30 --- Castleton 9:15 a.m. Grafton 11 a.m. Ė (times reverse from last year)
Each Thursday, 7:30 Choir practice for both congregations at St Andrewís Grafton. Newcomers welcome
Sept 28, 7:00 pm the Belles of the Barn Celtic Concert at St Andrewís, $ 15 as a fundraiser for Flight to Hope, for our two Syrian families recently arrived.
Sunday Sept 30 Annual Service Time Change: Castleton will be at 9:15 for the next year and St. Andrewís Grafton at 11
Wed. Oct 3, 2 pm Next St Andrewís UCW meeting @ the Church
Sunday Oct 7, World Wide Communion Sunday
Sunday Oct 14, Thanksgiving St Andrewís folks invited to bring garden produce anytime to decorate windows and the front.
Saturday Oct 20, Castleton United Church Roast Pork Dinner Call Marion at 905 375 8155
Saturday Oct 20, Night at The Trinity - a Murder Mystery Fundraiser for Flight to Hope 2 at Trinity United Cobourg -ask Melody Johnston 905 375 9789
Friday Oct 26, Games Night at St Andrewís
Saturday Nov 24, Snowflake Luncheon at St Andrewís Grafton
October 4th, 6:30 PM, MEET THE ALNWICK HALDIMAND CANDIDATES
Fenella Community Hall http:
October 11th Alderville Visit sponsored by Presbytery. There is still space available if you are interested in this opportunity to participate in this Alderville tour and visit. Ask your presbytery rep
RETREAT FOR GRADES 7 & 8 ďLET CREATION TEACH YOUĒ Experiencing
and Celebrating Godís presence in Nature; Cost
register or more info go towww.bayofquinteconference.ca and
click on link marked ĎGrade 7 & 8 Retreatí For younger
youth, an overnight retreat at Camp Quin-Mo-Lac Fri Oct 12- Sat
Oct 13. Please note that this is a shorter time line than a full
weekend- arrive around 7pm on Friday and depart at 4pm Sat. We
need to know numbers by Tues Oct 9 (allowing for holiday Monday
of Thanksgiving) https:
Migrant Workers: There are now approximately 30 migrant workers in the Brighton area, working hard in apple orchards. Most of the workers are from Jamaica and a few are from Trinidad. The workers would very much appreciate donations of suitcases to be used for transporting items back home after the harvest has been completed. Both the carry-on size and large size suitcases would be very helpful. If you know of anyone who might have such an item to donate please have them contact Christine Hammond (613-475-0034).
from the Mill Festival Weaves
itself into Fabric of Castleton Community http:
A thanksgiving challenge for your Thanksgiving dinner by Greenwood coalition https://thanksgiving-challenge.ca/about/
Youth Centre news https://www.kiva.org/blog/how-young-men-at-a-juvenile-de
Check our website www.castletongraftonuc.com if you wish to see the week's newsletter, our photo gallery, listen to a sermon , see info & photos of the 100 Mile Diet Event etc., our refugee sponsorship, how and why we became affirming, archive of media reports of our church activities and of David's columns .
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A few quotes and snippets:
The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes. ~ Marcel Proust
Al Gore: We cannot go on using the sky as an open sewer.
This is a wonderful day. Iíve never seen this one before. Maya Angelou
You canít build a reputation on what youíre going to do. Henry Ford
wanted you to see what real courage is, instead of getting the
idea that courage is a man with a gun in his hand. It's when you
know you're licked before you begin, but you begin anyway and
see it through no matter what.'" (Atticus Finch) Harper
Lee, To Kill a Mockingbird
I really only love God as much as the person I love the least. Dorothy Day
There is something in everyone of you that waits and listens for the sound of the genuine in yourself. It is the only true guide you will ever have. And if you cannot hear it, you will all your life spend your days on the ends of strings that somebody else pulls. Howard Thurman
Opinion is really the lowest form of human knowledge. It requires no accountability, no understanding. The highest form of knowledge is empathy, for it requires us to suspend our egos and live in another's world. Bill Bullard
On particularly rough days I like to remind myself that my track record for getting through bad days so far is 100%, and that's pretty good.
My mission in life is not merely to survive, but to thrive, and to do so with some passion, some compassion, some humour, and some Style. Maya Angelou
Be like Jesus: Spend enough time with sinners to ruin your reputation with religious people. Joshua Harris
Growth is uncomfortable because you've never been here before. You've never been this version of you. So give yourself a little Grace and breathe through it. Kristen Lohr
The hardest command we have from Jesus - and one of the most revolutionary - is love your enemies. Archbishop Justin Welby
Thinking is difficult, that's why most people judge. Carl Jung
We live in a world where we have to hide to make love, while violence is practiced in broad daylight. John Lennon
The church must never speak from a position of strength.... The church ought to be, if you will, as powerless as God himself, -who does not coerce but who calls and unveils the beauty and the truth of things without imposing them. Metropolitan Anthony Bloom
Surrender to what is. Let go of what was. Have faith in what will be. Sonia Ricotti
Don't give up fight like you are the third monkey trying to get on Noah's Ark.
Being taught to avoid talking about politics and religion has led to a lack of understanding of politics and religion. What we should have been taught was how to have a civil conversation about a difficult topic.
During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act. George Orwell
When you dance, your purpose is not to get to a certain place on the floor. It's to enjoy each step along the way. Wayne Dyer
The other: There are nights that are so still that I can hear the small owl calling far off and a fox barking miles away. It is then that I lie in the lean hours awake listening to the swell born somewhere in the Atlantic rising and falling, rising and falling Wave on Wave on the long shore by The Village, that is without light, and companionless. And the thought comes of that other being who is awake, too, letting our prayers break on him, not like this for a few hours, but for days, years, for eternity. RS Thomas
Hope expressed without knowledge of and participation in grief is likely to be false hope that does not reach despair. ... It is precisely those who know death most painfully who can speak hope most of vigorously. Walter Brueggemann
When the world is falling apart around you, understand you have no power to hold it together. the only Power you have is Letting Go and releasing the chaos of your life into the arms of Christ to carry you through it. Paul Bain
The modern distortion of faith is the one I learned growing up around the middle of this century: faith as believing. Faith as believing the doctrines of the Christian tradition, faith as believing that there is a God, faith as believing that Jesus is divine, faith as believing that Jesus died for your sinsóin short, faith as believing certain statements to be true. There are a number of reasons why I say thatís a modern distortion. First of all, try to imagine what faith was like before the Enlightenment, that great period of Western history that began in the seventeenth or eighteenth century. Prior to the Enlightenment, in the Christian culture of the Reformation, the Middle Ages, and earlier, nobody had any trouble believing that the Bible came from God, that the Genesis stories of creation were true, that Jesus walked on water, and so forth. It didnít take faith to believe any of that; that was simply part of the taken-for-granted understanding of people living in Western Christendom. Itís only when those things started to be questioned that suddenly faith came to mean believing what otherwise doesnít make a lot of sense to you. And faith came to mean what Bishop Robinson called it some thirty-five years ago: believing forty-nine impossible things before breakfast. Ė Marcus Borg - from "Days of Awe and Wonder"
When I am liberated by silence,
I am no longer involved
can discover a form of prayer in which
My whole life becomes a prayer.
My whole silence is full of prayer.
world of silence in which I am immersed
deeper our faith, the more doubt we endure;
"There Are No Words To Express The Abyss Between Isolation And Having One Ally. Two Is Not Twice One; Two Is Two Thousand Times One." - G.K.Chesterton
is that condition in which the happiness of another person is
essential to your own.Ē
United Church minister in west-end Toronto is pitted against a
Christian business owner over an outdoor signboard used to
spread the word of God. https:
Vosper trial https:
your photos for church bulletins or calendar https: