Rev. Julia L. Brown
Hello my friends!
How is it November already? I hope you all have been able to enjoy the fall foliage, sip some apple cider, and begin to slow down for the dormant season. Wildlife and vegetation may be getting ready to slumber, but we certainly are not. While we will take time to rest and move slowly, we will also be doing the work of discernment, planning, and preparation.
We had a great garden season this year, and the winter months will give us time to look toward next year. With the help of some community volunteers, we’ll be adding 10 new raised beds to our community garden! The Garden/Grounds committee is preparing a reservation form so that neighbors can reserve a bed for their personal use. Of course, church members will also be able to reserve a bed for personal gardening! There is no charge, but we do encourage those who are able to donate to the garden so that we can continue offering this ministry in an affordable way to those in need.
Additionally, while we are passed the heavy lifting and steep learning curve of starting our livestream, there is still learning and refining to do! If you have feedback, ideas, or wisdom to share, please reach out! Our tech team and I would be glad to hear from you.
Other areas of discernment, reflection, and dreaming include: fundraising, grant applications, gardens for our regenerative space, and the Creation Justice Church designation. Over the course of November, my sermon series will revisit the creation care series I did in the spring. This one will focus on what it means to be a Creation Justice Church, with the goal of preparing us for a year of careful and intentional discernment. Is God truly calling us to this designation? If so, how do we engrain that designation into every fiber and aspect of our church life and our lives as individuals?
As we engage in this discernment process, I encourage open and honest conversations! We must be honest with each other about our concerns, challenges, needs, vision, and hopes. It is work we must do together as a congregation and with God because it will impact the future of how we as a church do ministry. It will take the full year.
For now, be in prayer. Be present with God. Take time to rest, discern, reflect, and dream in your own life! What do you want for next year? What does God want for your next year? May God’s voice be clear and comforting!
– Pastor Julia