Pulled in Two Directions
I don’t know if you’re feeling it as well, but I’m feeling a tension between the troubling realities of our world and the promise of some kind of return to “normal.” Schools have opened up (my kids are both attending in-person classes); many churches are returning to in-person worship (we’ve started broadcasting parts of our service from the church building); and a broad commitment to reconciliation and anti-racism appears to have some staying power. But, on the other hand, cases of the corona virus are spiking, the possibility of another lockdown is not off the table, and Breonna Taylor will rest in peace, but without justice.
Our situation is not unlike the Israelites, having left Egypt, but not having yet arrived in Canaan: tasting liberation, but also missing the taste of Egyptian fleshpots and bread. The wilderness is a place of testing, of danger, of preparation.
I am feeling pulled in two directions. There does not appear to be a clear exit plan from the wilderness, no obvious return to normal or definitive path to the promised land. But I am finding enough — sometimes just enough — to get by; to keep an eye on what is good in creation; to “look for the helpers” in a bad situation, as Mister Rogers used to say; to know that the arc of the moral universe bends toward justice. Like the manna God provided for the Israelites, who were largely dissatisfied with their situation (and maybe a bit “hangry”), I pray that you are finding enough — maybe even more than enough — to get by, to support and pray for one another and our world, to hope for God’s coming Kingdom.
I look forward to seeing you on Sunday and hearing Tim Vickery preach,
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Meeting ID: 777 678 934
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COMPLINE – Wednesdays at 7:30 PM
Each Wednesday at 7:30 PM, we will gather for a short service of prayer. You can access the service through the same link that we use for Sunday worship.
Compline, which comes from the same Latin root as the word “completion,” is a form of prayer that marks the end of the day where we hand the night over to God and ask for a restful sleep.
PRAYERS: FOR USE DURING THE CORONAVIRUS OUTBREAK
The Church of England has produced an excellent prayer resource for use during the pandemic. The booklet includes prayers about the outbreak, personal prayers, prayers with children, and a pattern of daily prayer.
| FROM THE DEACON’S DESK – Prayers and Reflections |
As you know, this church is working with three of the other churches in the Parkdale/West Toronto Deanery to better understand how authentic reconciliation between the indigenous peoples and settlers will occur. The first event in the series took place last Thursday, September 17.
Dorothy Peers has kindly agreed to share her story with us. Here it is.
I participated in Claudette’s program, “Dinner and a Movie: A Reconciliation Walk” this week about the impact of the Residential Schools on so many of our indigenous people. I learned that I had a personal connection to one of the stories about how residential schools came to be in Canada. Sir John A. Macdonald, the Prime Minister of the day, sent a Saskatchewan man named Nicholas Flood Davin to the States to do a study on the residential schools that were already in existence there. His subsequent ‘Davin Report’ became the blueprint for the Canadian residential schools. When we lived in Regina in the 70’s, our children attended Davin Public School, named after the infamous Nicholas Flood Davin. After learning about his role in the creation of the schools this week, I did some research and was heartened to discover that the Regina School Board and the Government of Saskatchewan received such a backlash from the general public about ‘Davin’s Report’ and the residential school legacy that they changed the name of the school. It is now The Crescents Elementary School. Bravo to them!
Truth and reconciliation involves examining our history and all the things we think we know. When we begin to understand that real mistakes and errors occurred in the past, I trust we will have the courage to make changes that reflect our current hopes and dreams, including our deep desire for reconciliation with the First Nations people of our country.
Thank you, Dorothy,
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