From the Pastor

2015-11-01 Newsletter Message

I DO love this time of year! The crisp air, the smell of wood smoke from fireplaces, those first fall fires in our stove, the leaves, sweaters – and a whole lot of special worship celebrations!

There are many celebrations in the month of November that can shape our hearts in gratitude for the One who gives us life and abundant blessing. I hope you will make those celebrations a priority in your calendar.

All Saints Celebration – We are celebrating our saints who died over the last year on Sunday, November 8, at both worship services. By the time you are reading this newsletter, families have sent pictures and information about their family and church members who have died this past year. There will be a time in the service when you may light a candle to remember all of your loved ones, no matter when they died.There will not be communion at this service, so we anticipate that it should not be longer than about an hour and 15 minutes, if that.

New Member Sunday – November 15, both services –As of today, we are expecting several people to become members of RUMC on November 15. Come and welcome these new members to our faith family!

Communion –We will not be celebrating communion on November 1. Rather, communion will be part of our Thanksgiving celebration on November 22.

Thanksgiving Sunday – November 22

   Breakfast 8:45 to 9:45 am in the Fellowship Hall – Come together to share breakfast with your faith family before worship. Thanks to Kris Brown who will be coordinating the breakfast this time so that those who are involved in the Holly Fair will be freed up from this additional responsibility.

  WORSHIP, 10 am only –This is one of just a couple of times a year when we worship together as a whole faith family. Our Praise Band and Chancel Singers will lead in worship that day as we thank God for the many ways God has helped us in our lives. The service will ask the question: When has God done something for me that was far beyond my human capabilities? Consider that question over the next few weeks and then come to praise and thank God for the amazing help God gives us in living our lives!

As some of you know, Rich and I have a triennial timeshare condo in Orlando (every 3 years), and this is our year to use it. We have been planning a family vacation to Florida for October 31 through November 7 for quite some time, and we are very excited to take our grandson Tommy and his mommy Annie Laurie to Disney World for the first time. It is an almost-whole-family vacation, including two of my sisters and several of our nieces and nephews, and of course, my mother who can’t wait to watch Tommy (whom we call our entertainment) meet Mickey and go on some rides. She may even go on a few accessible rides with him! As you can imagine, I can’t wait! I just hope I can keep up with him!

As always when I am away, please call the church office if you have an emergency (Monday through Friday, 8 am to 4 pm) or call one of the lay leaders (George Hoffmann, 410-526-6967 or Sue Wright 410-833-6738). Robine or the lay leader will talk with you to determine how best to respond to the issue and will call the pastor on call as necessary. Thanking God for abundant blessing and unfailing help,

Blessings on you,

Posted by Vivian McCarthy with

2015-09-01 Newsletter Message

Summer has flown by. School has begun. And I have been hearing from many of you about life balance – or maybe it’s lack thereof?

Do you remember that image of a calendar that I shared with you months ago? At the beginning of 2014, I think it was. My friend wrote a blog about a blank calendar – the same blank calendar that all of us have to fill. Every day is like a blank canvas, and we each choose how to use the minutes and hours available to us.

There is a gripping song entitled Seasons of Love in the Broadway musical, Rent, with a chorus that goes:

Five Hundred Twenty-Five Thousand Six Hundred Minutes
Five Hundred Twenty-Five Thousand Moments so dear

In the movie version, the song is sung by the whole company, and the scene that always comes to my mind is when Jesse Martin (whose character is “Roger,” a man diagnosed with AIDS/HIV) sings a solo verse, contemplating the woman he loves who is dying of AIDS. This song has been used as a kind of reflection on endings. My friend’s blog encourages us to consider those precious moments ahead of moments like that – to consider how we invest our time.

Is your time invested the way you want it to be? What are the things that are high on your list of values? Does time slip away and you suddenly realize that you have not invested your time in what you see as your calling? Have you realized that you haven’t been investing an adequate number of those precious minutes with family and others dear to you? Investing or just spending – to me there is a huge difference!

Psalm 90, verse 12 is a prayer – perhaps it’s not too dramatic to say an “urgent” prayer – asking God to Teach us to count our days. The Psalm begins with a declaration that The Lord has been our dwelling place for generations and then becomes a prayer asking that God have patience with us – God’s children who often forget God’s ways.

Teach us to live well! Teach us to live wisely and well! (Eugene Peterson’s version in The Message)

Right now I am praying for all of us to live well. I am also praying that all of us will live in ways that will give us the deep satisfaction of knowing that we have

  • served God and loved our families and those dear to us to the best of our ability,
  • reached out in love to our neighbors, and
  • continued to grow spiritually.

The next worship series begins on September 13, when we will spend 3 weeks focusing on the theology and history of John Wesley.

Blessings on you!

Posted by Vivian McCarthy with