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Showing posts from February, 2007


As I mentioned in a recent post , at St. Paul's during Lent we have weekly communion services. This year we are focusing on prayer. Things aren't all planned out yet (hey, I still have 6 hours til the first session!!), but we'll be looking at prayer from different ways, exploring different prayers and types of prayer, looking at the Lord's Prayer, experimenting with Lectio Divina , etc. My own 'prayer life' has gone through many incarnations. When I was little, and having a spiritual crisis in fourth grade (no joke), my mother asked me if I was praying everyday. "No!" So she told me to pray every night and that I should do that by telling God about my day. I took her quite literally, and being an obedient child, I did exactly what she said. I would first pray the "God bless"es, systematically going through each family member and each extended family member, including all two dozen or so cousins and occasionally even select second cousins. A

Weekend Update

Nothing too lengthy and/or profound to say, so here's what's left: - I like watching the Oscars, but I hate listening to acceptance speeches. I find them so awkward 50% of the time. I give people about one sentence to see if they will actually give a good speech, and then I hit mute until the speech is over. - I think I like facebook better than myspace. - I've given up Diet Coke for Lent (all soda, but I only drink Diet Coke anyway.) Two of my members challenged me - one is giving up soda and the other is giving up meat in exchange for me giving up soda. The one who said she would give up meat is being very delinquent so far (not unlike Melissa at Going on to Perfection :).) I've been wanting to stop drinking soda for a while (at least so much soda) because it seems that all those chemicals can't be very good for you, but I really love my Diet Coke, and haven't made myself take the plunge before. But I am extremely competitive, so I'm finding it easier t

Relay for Life 2007

I am walking again in the Relay for Life this year - the fourth year our church will have a team participating in this American Cancer Society event. I'm really bad at raising money in person - I ask my parishioners to give enough to other things (like to the church!) so I usually have better luck with online fundraising. If you're looking for a place to put $10 (or more, of course...), I invite you to check out my page here and consider making a donation.

Paying Attention

I've been reading on various blogs about what different pastors/seminarian/theology-types are doing for Lent - giving something up, some even abstaining from the internet or blogging for Lent (eek - brave souls)... I don't usually give something up for Lent. Sometimes I try, but I rarely keep at it through the whole season, and more often than not, I just don't give something up at all. I'm not sure quite what my plan will be this year, but the time is fast approaching! I do feel a bit more prepared for Lent this year - some of my clergy colleagues and I - other young women in my conference who are pastors - have been getting together to plan worship for Advent and now Lent. We talk over ideas and themes and texts together, and I've found it extremely helpful. Advent and Lent have ways of sneaking up on me, but this time around, I actually have at least a general plan to take me from Ash Wednesday to Easter. Still, though, one of the hard things about being a pas

Snow Day

Ah, today is the kind of snow day that applies to (most) adults as well as lucky children, because there is just SO MUCH SNOW! My mailbox is covered. I couldn't open my garage door for all the snow piled against it. The church steps are buried. The amount of snow dropped on Central New York this past week has been phenomenal. Even still, I am about 45 minutes away from places like Oswego County, where a state of emergency has been declared because of the 100+ inches of snow. I am enjoying my snow day - I did make it over to the church - I live next door - but the feeling is definitely of a relaxed, easy-paced day. But do keep in your thoughts today those who are working or stuck working double shifts, those who are without heat and power, and those who are without food and shelter in this crazy weather.... This picture is of the steps into St. Paul's: This one is of my parsonage, with me taking the picture from the church steps. Believe it or not, that expanse in between is s

Reflections: CCYM Winter Retreat

I've been the conference youth coordinator of our CCYM for just under four years now. I was a CCYMer myself when I was in high school , and when I was asked by the youth to take over for the 'retiring' coordinator in 2003, I felt like I couldn't pass up the opportunity. It's been a bumpy four years so far. The first couple years were difficult because getting a new youth coordinator is like getting a new pastor for the youth, and the previous coordinator, Rev. Dave Hays, who was the coordinator when I myself was a youth, was dearly loved. He and I are quite different in personality and leadership style, and the transition was sometimes hard. The next couple years were hard because we are steadily moving towards a merger of four(!) conferences and we've been in conversations as CCYMs with coming together, starting already to share ministries, and, at least in NCNYCCYM's case, changing how we do things now so that when we do merge, we'll already have l

General Conference and the Use of Technology

Sorry for the lack of posting - I've had a busy week. As I mentioned , I had a Book of Resolutions Task Force meeting this past week, in conjunction with the Interagency Legislative Task Force Meeting. The Interagency thing is where staff/members of different boards and agencies get together to talk about legislation they will be submitting to General Conference 2008 . The idea is that agencies will be able to collaborate on legislation and avoid submitting similar/overlapping petitions or avoid assigning work to another agency without informing them beforehand. During our conversation together, the issue of technology and General Conference came up. Someone asked about the rules for using things like PDAs , cell phones, and laptops during GC , especially for delegates. Currently, there are no rules in place. The conversation quickly turned to all the 'bad' ways technology might be used at GC , and a suggestion that device-use be restricted for delegates, and signals ja

Review: Pan's Labyrinth

This week I went to see Pan's Labyrinth ( El Laberinto del Fauno ) . (I will try not to give too many details, but please don't read this review if you don't want to be spoiled!) I had read some good things about the movie, and wanted to see it to have seen it, but wasn't particularly excited about it. I was surprised, very pleasantly surprised. This was an excellent, excellent film. In fact, it is definitely one of the best movies I've seen in some time. I found the previews for the movie, which suggest that the film is mostly a child's fantasy, to be misleading. The fantasy element is certainly a huge part of the film, but the previews that I saw mostly overlooked the 'reality' part of the movie - the war zone that is the backdrop for the fantasy world. Overall, though, the whole film has something of a fairy-tale feel to it, while at the same time maintaining a horrible, cruel realism. I found myself just blinking dumbly at the screen when the cre

Help: Software Question

We're looking into buying electronic membership software for our church. Any recommendations on what to try? I've been looking around online, but can't find good reviews anywhere. We're not looking for anything fancy. Something that is simple for our office staff to use would be best over something with more bells and whistles. Thanks in advance for your help!