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What's New, and What's Brief
HARTFORD (11/14/2015) -- The Connecticut Conference distributed this prayer, authored by Associate Conference Minister the Rev. Eric Anderson, in an email to authorized ministers today:
God of loving compassion, embrace the sorrowing, fearful, and anguished people of Paris. The peace of the City of Lights has been shattered; the lives of its citizens torn away, the glow of its evening plunged into shadow. Out of the depths they cry to you, O God: hear their cries!
Others also cry to you from the gloom of war and violence. Hear them, O God, and make us hear them, too, that we might bind the wounds and bind the spirits wailing in the night.
Let there be a morning that follows this dark night. Let this be a morning that restores justice; let this be a day that revives peace. Let this be a season for healing wounds; let this be a season for renewed community.
Let this be an acceptable year of the Lord.
EAST WOODSTOCK (10/28/2015) -- Where do you go for quiet time? What do you do when you need to "recharge your batteries"? Where do you find God?
It's important to make time for yourself, to slow down the busy pace of your life, and take some time away from all the electronic distractions of our lives. During the last few summers, the Rev. Sue Foster has led retreats aboard the windjammer schooner Lewis R. French. "I would like to invite you to join me on July 10-14, 2016," she said. It is a unique way to follow the commandment to take a time of Sabbath. Sailing along the coast of Maine provides a wonderful opportunity to enjoy good fellowship, delicious home cooked meals (including a lobster bake on the beach!), and the glory of God's creation.
"Each year I join with 20 other people to rejuvenate our spirits as we relax on board this beautifully restored 1871 schooner," said Rev. Foster. "We start each morning with worship and reflection as we gaze out on Penobscot Bay. We are well cared-for each day as we feast on home-cooked meals brought up on deck from the galley below."
The time slips by; days are filled with reading, knitting, chatting or simply watching the stunning scenery, catching glimpses of Maine wildlife. There is even the option of trying your hand on deck if you want to hoist the sails, furl the jib, or take a hand at the helm.
Each day includes optional "shore leave" when (depending on the setting) there might be a chance to shop, hike, or sit on the beach. In the quiet of the evening, you can lie back and be amazed at the spectacular array of stars as you enjoy the sound of waves splashing against the boat.
"I would love to share this experience with you," said Rev. Foster. "Please be in touch with me if you'd like more information." In the meantime, enjoy the changing seasons and be on the look-out for ways to feed your spirit and nourish your soul.
EAST WOODSTOCK (09/17/2015) -- You've read Paul's letter and discussed his theology. How would you like to re-trace his footsteps?
On April 15-26, 2016, you are invited to join the Rev. Sue Foster on a pilgrimage to Greece. We will tour many of the places where Paul established churches, including Philippi, Thessaloniki, Corinth, and Athens. One of the highlights of the trip will be a three-night cruise of the Greek Islands that will bring us to Ephesus and Crete.
The trip, organized by Transformation Travel of Augusta, Maine, will help bring the stories of the early church to life. For more information, please contact tour host Sue Foster at email@example.com or 860.928.7449.