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Sunday, November 22, 2015

A day of prayer, praise and thanksgiving...

A beautiful way to spend a day in my life on Newark-Granville Road…going to church!

It started with Clare, Charlotte and other confirmands from FPC, sponsors and our Associate Pastor, Trip Porch attending a Vineyard Grace Fellowship in Heath. A wonderful component of the confirmation class at FPC is to visit other churches/worships/faiths to understand our own. I'm fortunate to be a sponsor and learning with these 9th graders.  We were warmly welcomed at VGF and given background information to help us on this journey.   Due to several of the girls, including Clare, we only stayed for the worship component of the service. We were sorry to miss the sermon, although due to its length Clare admitted to appreication for the return to FPC.  The 25 minutes was Spirit filled and I do hope to return another day.  I am drawn a traditional service as part of my Sunday preperation- yet I welcome the energy of praise music.  I also value the opportunity to learn and walk in the footsteps of others of faith.  Yes- more opportunities for blog post materials as these confirmands explore their faith.

Back at FPC this morning we were delighted with the return of Karen Chakoian to the pulpit. I knew it was happening, but forgot- so was happy to be in the pew for this.  A beautiful sermon, heartfelt, healthy, introspective, personal, meaningful.  A message of gratitude at a service of gratitude in a day of gratitude.  All fitting as we started our weekend grateful for friend time, celebrating Leithauser thanksgiving on Saturday and being in a place to thank the one who makes is possible.

And finally the evening service united our community, our village churches coordinated the Ecumenical Thanksgiving service.  The middle school and high school youth from the churches gathered ahead of time to make pies for St. Vincent de Paul and enjoy pizza pie- happy our children embraced the idea and attended.  Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday and I soak in anything connected- an ecumenical service all about community- perfect!

The only thing that made the day better- friends of course!  Sitting with a friend I don't see often at the service, finally stopping by to pick up a generous and beautiful gift from friends and sharing a drink, surrounded by wonderful women at a friend's gratitude party, catching up with friends in between these services and while sitting at Sally's basketball game. I'll wonder across the street for a Sunday night tradition my heart saying a prayer of praise and thanksgiving.

If you are reading this and need a prayer, comfort and/or someone to share good news- know I am here and can help you to connect to others.  There are so many caring, devoted people and churches in our communities to help you find a fit. Or like our comfirmands, help you as you explore and question to make your way. God works through all to show Jesus' love and compassion, the Spirit strong and united- life on Newark-Granville Road shares and connects, thank you God.

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