Sunday, April 26, 2009

Happenings at the Little Church in Troy

This week, we thought we'd simply update everyone on the various programs that our little church is participating in, planning or in the process of. :)

First, one of our most successful outreach programs is the prayer shawl ministry, affectionately known as The Knit Wits. :) We typically have anywhere from 5 to 7 people knitting and crocheting for prayer shawls, and the other program we've already begun, now named Caring Covers, which provides blankets for kids in foster care (giving them something of their own to have, cuddle into and take care of). When we were initially approached about the Linus Program, we loved the concept, but truly don't have the money required to participate in a program that we feel, shouldn't cost money. :) So, the blankets will still get used, but everybody's work is volunteer and there's no overhead. Additionally, there's a program with the military for donating hats and scarves for military members serving in rather colder places - we're checking into that program. :)

Another of our members is very active and aware in the senior community, and is arranging for someone who volunteers to provide foot care on a monthly basis for the seniors. Troy's senior center didn't have an interest in the program, so we figure that our meeting hall will provide enough room to operate the program out of Holy Trinity. The foot care is done on a donation only basis, and the local transportation can be arranged ahead of time. We think this will be a wonderful addition to our community.

In the works are two seminars or workshops - one on financial planning most likely using Dave Ramsey's program, and one on alternative healing. Once we have more information on them, we'll post it here.

That's it for now, but I think great things come from our church. Come check it out. :)

Sunday, April 19, 2009

The Message of Thomas

Today's blog is inspired from the sermon of Rev. Dr. Susanna Metz (whole sermon can be found here). What struck me was this section: "In the final verses of today's gospel passage, Jesus tells the disciples that many would come after them who would not have the same experience of him that they did. No one would again walk and talk with him as the disciples had; and yet, these others would also come to believe."

We are those others. And like the apostles and disciples who followed, we meet each week to continue learning about Christ, support one another and are (hopefully) effective witnesses to the life of faith Jesus offers to us. We are today's disciples. And also like the apostles, there are probably many of us who still get a catch in our voice as we realize each year at Easter, the true miracle of Christ's life and resurrection. There is a lightness in our hearts when we are once again able to say, Alleluia! And those things help to lay to rest some of the fears and doubts that we sometimes bring with us, like Thomas, like most people. We know at this time of celebration that when Christ said, "For where two or three are assembled in my name, I am there among them." (Matthew 18:20) - He meant it. So, if Christ were to appear in our midst, would we need to touch his hands and his side? Or would we, like Thomas, be able to simply offer our own profession of faith, in the simple acknowledgment of Christ as our Lord and God?

Tuesday, April 14, 2009


This week's sermon focused on a soldier, far from home, in a land where he wasn't wanted nor liked, writing a letter home. Complaints of food, too much sand and the heat began the letter. Sound familiar? Despite the rather anachronistic telling, the letter was from Romulus, a guard sent by Pilate to watch over the tomb of Jesus of Nazareth so that none of the zealots could come and take his body away. This was his account of watching Jesus die, and seeing the same man on the morning of the third day merely walk out of the tomb. Needless to say, he became a believer, and had to let his folks know that he was going to follow where Christ led.

The other part of this week that was truly wonderful for me, personally, was that I got to meet Hazel, one of the older members of our congregation. She brought brownies with M&Ms for the feast we seemed to have after the service. She's in a wheelchair, but from what I can see, seems to wheel herself about - which gives her a very firm-gripped handshake! We offered our condolences as Hazel lost the last of her 12 brothers and sisters last week. She's the only one left at 102. I'm hoping we get to see more of her in the future!

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Framing Christ's Life

The Man leaned down to whisper encouragement in my ear. The crowds around us were loud, everyone cheering and waving palm branches. The roads were lined with the palms, the way all returning heroes and conquerors were honored. I may have been a little skittish, but I was proud to be carrying the Man on my back. His voice, though, reminded me of where His journey had begun, and when we had first met. Don't ever let anyone tell you that a donkey doesn't remember - my job in this story is one that no one will ever forget.

It was quieter when I carried His mother. His father walked in front, leading the way, and we traveled a very long way, many, many days' journey. The woman was large with child, but at that point, I was only a few years old, and being young and strong, felt I could go on forever. What I didn't realize was that it truly felt that we were going on forever. Sometimes, we'd travel with groups for a way. I'd talk with the other donkeys to see where they'd traveled, but mostly, knowing the precious cargo I'd been given to transport, I stayed with the man and the woman. They truly cared for one another, watching out in little ways as the endless journey continued. When it came time for her to deliver the baby, we stopped at house after house for a place for her, only to hear each time, there's no room. The man, Joseph, was finally told he could use the stable. I started walking toward it before Joseph got back to me. The woman, Mary, was in pain, and kept squeezing on me. I do wish your mama could have been there - she would at least have known what to do. We got to the stable and I knelt down so she could get off my back easier, and soon, the Baby was born.

Lights shone down from the sky, and it seemed that everyone heard about it, because they didn't get a moment alone after that. Shepherds, animals, Angels - even Kings came to visit - they brought camels! I guess when God has a Child, it is rather something to brag about. He sure did let everyone know. That was an exciting time, and by the time we went home, I was carrying more than the Baby's mother!

And now, look at Him. Hailed as the King He is, greeted with joy and laughter. I walked as tall as I could, so everyone could see Him. And even still, He takes the time to make sure I'm okay, whispering encouragement to me that it'll soon be over. He sounds sad, and I wonder about that. It has been my blessing to watch over Him throughout his life. I'm getting to the end of mine now. Perhaps you'll be able to carry Him where he goes next?

The above was inspired by Karen G. King, our wonderful seminary student who knows that as we are presently without a priest, we greatly appreciate the sermons she sends to us to share in our congregation!