I did a little online search this morning to find the origins of the family names from which I am descended. Cahill is my mother's maiden name; it's Irish in origin and denotes one descended from the warrior Catail. The most literal meaning of the name is "battle powerful." I like that. My father's family is Mitchell; these Mitchells are descended from a German immigrant to the U.S. named Peter Mischler. There are several possible meanings for this name, including "baker," "one who decorates, as with a smile," or "one who lives by a dirty stream"(!) It's fun to consider where we came from, how we got our hair or skin color, our short nose or long legs. There are plenty of online resources to trace back our ancestors as far as there are records. When we come together as a parish, we come as a microcosm of our country's identity as the "melting pot" of the world. We each have a distinct lineage, connected to specific people who lived and worked and married and had children and died, over and over again until the line reached us at our birth. When we gather as a parish, we also come as a microcosm of God's vast family encompassing the whole world. We each come as if to a family reunion and discover that we share a common name that trumps all the others: "Child of God." Marked with the cross of Christ and sealed by the Holy Spirit, we are bound together by love so we may learn to love one another and reach out in love to the people around us. "Child of God." I cherish that identity most of all and pray that you do, too.
Congratulations to proud grandparents Margie and Randall Wells on the birth of their grandson! I don't have any details right now except to say the baby is a boy and the son of Katie Wells and her partner and all are doing well.
“You feed them.” That’s what Jesus told his disciples when they wanted to send the crowds away so they could eat their supper alone. So the disciples scrounged around and came up with five little loaves of bread and two fish. Jesus multiplied their meager meal so it fed thousands of people and even had some leftovers. “You feed them.” We receive the same command from Jesus as those first disciples. In partnership with the Plenty! food bank, we are collecting boxes of cereal so that our neighbors might begin their days with breakfast. The cereal collection has hit a little summer slump and there hasn’t been much to take to Plenty! recently. Won’t you write yourself a note to remember to pick up an extra box of cereal the next time you go grocery shopping? Bring it to church and our volunteers will make sure it gets to the food bank. Thank you!
Both Zion and St. Mark will have congregational meetings following worship this coming Sunday, August 17. The purpose of this meeting is to vote on a new proposal for removing bamboo that has migrated from the parsonage property into the yard of a neighbor on Oxford street. The original plan was to apply chemicals to the neighbor's yard and install a herbicide-impregnated metal barrier between the two properties. The neighbor has indicated she does not want chemicals applied to her lawn, so we now have a new estimate that involves digging the bamboo out of her yard with a backhoe, installing a plain barrier (without herbicide) and bringing in new topsoil to replace what is removed. The estimate for that work is $4250. The joint council recommends giving the neighbor a cash payment of $5000, which would help with the cost of watering the new grass and whatever other costs might arise out of the work in her yard. We would also require the neighbor to sign a release stating we have no further liability concerning the bamboo, nor do the new owners of the parsonage property. The council feels this would take the parish out of the middle of arrangements for the work, speed up the closing on the parsonage property and enable us to close this stressful chapter in our parish history. Please pray for a mutually-beneficial resolution to this issue and speak with a council member if you have any questions/comments on this vote.
We keep in prayer: Debbie Fullbright as she prepares for knee replacement surgery on August 19; Phil Fullbright as he begins treatment for prostate cancer; Max Whalen as he and his family prepare for his heart surgery on September 3; and the family of Tony Cahill as they gather for his funeral service this Friday.
"Dare we believe that the leaders of the world's great nations will wake up, will see the precipice towards which they are moving, and will change direction?" - Alva Myrdal
Yours in Christ,