As members of our congregation, we have a shared responsibility. Everyone is entitled to voice their opinions and to be heard. Obviously, where opinions differ, common ground needs to be found. Our Council members have volunteered to work on behalf of their fellow congregants, but they need to know that the congregation wants. Obviously, we would all want to stay in our church building and carry on; however, financially, we cannot afford to do so as things stand while at the same time doing the work of the church - mission, outreach, and so much more.
A few weeks ago, I raised some questions - and they are included here again as only 11 answers were received. In answering them, please consider that we are facing a deficit this year and do not have the fundraising ability to maintain the church or to hire a minister.
1. Do you want our congregation to continue?
2. If yes, shall we sell the building and rent elsewhere? The option if the majority say No to question one or are silent is to hand our buildings and properties to the United Church of Canada.
3. If you answer "yes" to Question 1, then will you commit to sitting on a committee or on Council, or to organizing an ongoing event such as Bible study, i.e., to further the work of the church?
4. If you answer "no" to Question 2, then how do you propose we pay for the new furnace, boiler, water heater, and replacing drafty windows and doors?
Looking forward to your answers. Send them to my email or call me at 819-685-0656 to discuss them.
The setting moon’s opalescent light has woken me twice in the last week. It will be a full moon tomorrow. Sleeping in a tent at the fullness of the moon, it was the rustling of small bodies in leaves that would wake me. Sometimes, lying awake, having moved into the centre of the tent floor and having unzipped the sleeping bag cocoon, and holding my Swiss Army Knife these rustlings became the sound of large bodies snuffling and pushing aside bushes and rootling around the camp fire, knocking around the old oven rack, the iron frying pan that was always set upside down to dry, the tin bowl, the much chipped enamelled white and blue mug, and the metal fork and spoon. Sometimes, in the morning, the tracks around the camp site were not those of chipmunk, squirrel, or raccoon. On the tip of the isthmus in Algonquin Park’s Opalescent Lake, the rising sun’s raking light put into high relief the paw prints of the mother Black Bear and her cub. In the lee of a Machair covered shell sand dune on Vatersay, in the Outer Hebrides the tracks were those of a red bull protecting his coos from my cooking gas by forking the cylinder down the hill with his Caledonia horns, the points of which had made seed drills amongst the six inch, wind sized purple harebells, yellow butter and eggs, and the yellow centred white daisies. I patted the plant mat into place and dribbled water from my hiking bottle onto the damaged protected species, all the while keeping a weather eye on the sire and his coos grazing out of the wind, down near the bottom of the gale gouged hollow. The moonscape meteor crater fitted the other worldly aspect of this Hebridean world. The golden corn globe of the Harvest Moon rising over the south-east end of Paugan Reservoir mesmerised me. On the verge of sleep, turning to unzip the tent, the green, yellow, white, and unusually, the red and orange Northern Lights leapt and swirled, engulfing me in the Northern Peoples’ stories of being swept up and kidnapped by them, of it being deathly bad luck to summon them by whistling, of being either cured or cursed by their sound and vibration, or of being the omen of mysteries that must always remain untold. This last week there were no hard rustlings of metallic creatures travelling their trails. There were no sharp, metallic, warning barks. I heard one whispered meow. The opalescent light soothed my unease in the absence of accustomed sharp edged sound. I heard a living, breathing furry creature, wakened as was I by the moonlight, giving voice while I too was awake.
When will spring come - will it be a long drawn-out end to winter or suddenly be spring with blooming daffodils and forsythia! Personally, I'm hoping for an early spring so I can start working in my garden.
The day, too, will come when we can return to our church building. I wonder how many people will return to worship. Like many who read this, I miss gathering with our church family and singing together to Lynn's playing. However, personally, during the winter months, I was more than glad to not have to put on a coat, boots and gloves, clean the car and clear the driveway to go to church.
Thankfully, we have a Covid-19 Team who have been researching the latest information on the rules regarding gathering. While the Premier says we can gather, he doesn't outline all the steps required regarding sanitizing, spacing, entering and leaving, cleaning of bathrooms between uses - or tell us who will do all that. Only one person and they in their 80s volunteered when we asked for volunteers to enable us to open.
So, for the foreseeable future while Covid-19 exists, we remain closed. Remember - a person who has received the Covid-19 vaccination can still catch Covid-19 (but just not be as sick as they might have been without the vaccine) and can still spread it to others. I, for one, would not want to see any one of our members becoming sick or worse dying because we gathered together too soon.