A Word From Our Pastor: April 2013 Transition

A Word from Our Pastor


May. . .we are in transition – between spring and summer, between school and vacation, between planting and growth/harvest.  For some of us whose lives are not shaped by the school year, May can feel like the end of a long haul, with maybe only a week of vacation in the summer.  Our ancestors usually celebrated the excitement of abundant and beautiful springtime birth and growth during this time with rowdy festivals, and today, we are looking forward to the Bazaar.  If we’ve been working hard all year, we might not view the hard physical work of that weekend with happy anticipation. . .  Most of us would really enjoy a pick-me-up, right about now.  So, how can the Bazaar be a source of life and energy?


It’s no coincidence that the church has a celebration of birth and abundance during this time of year.  We are beginning the season of Pentecost – when the church celebrates the special the coming of the Spirit. . .Of course, God’s Spirit has always been there for us, but after Jesus’ resurrection, the Spirit blesses the church with inspiration – life and energy — to transform the world. . .  We celebrated Pentecost Sunday on May 19 with great music and the recognition that Mike Friedrich is progressing towards ordination.  Both are examples of God’s Spirit working among us.  Music uplifts us and reminds us of the joy we have as God’s people, and Mike Friedrich’s faith and commitment shows us how God guides and changes our lives.


The Bazaar, too, can be such an event.  A joy-filled opportunity to see old friends as they come to help with prep, or on Sunday, when we greet our many guests.  As we catch up in conversation, we may see how God has transformed people’s lives – if we really listen and watch, we can see signs of God’s activity everywhere.  The Bazaar offers us opportunities to connect with others on a much larger scale than our day-to-day experiences.  We can give thanks for the faith and commitment of so many who work for the Bazaar year after year, and for those who patronize us.   In all these ways, we can feel God’s Spirit among us as well express our caring for one another, as we help each other with the tough chores, in moments of stress, as we forgive one another;  as we listen to the ups and downs of life that have happened in the last year, as we pray together, as we laugh and occasionally shed a tear together.  God’s Spirit both creates community and gives it life:  let’s watch for it, encourage it, participate in it, rejoice in it.


This year we will be trying something new!  We want to widen the circle from those who work at the Bazaar, or who already know about it, to reach out to our neighborhood.  We will be inviting people in the neighborhood (through flyers) to come and find out about volunteer opportunities that we and other organizations can provide.  This will give us a chance to talk to people about what they are interested in, what are their hopes and dreams for their community, how they might want to be involved.  We hope you will see lots of new faces, and that you make an effort to welcome them.


As we open our church doors to old and new friends, let us pray that God’s Spirit fills each of us, so that we can be God’s ambassadors to the world.  Our theme for Pentecost is “Hearts on Fire,” from one of our favorite songs:




Shine, Jesus, shine, fill this land with the Father’s glory

Blaze, Spirit, blaze, set our hearts on fire

Flow, river, flow, flood the nations with grace and mercy

Send for your word, Lord, and let there be light.


May our hearts be filled with grace, mercy and light – so that we may experience God’s blessing and be a blessing to others.


Have a great Bazaar,


Rev. Naomi