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August 31, 2016, 12:00 AM

A word at mid-week, 8/31

Happy mid-week everyone or y'all (as my colleague from Alabama likes to say)! I hope you are making it through all these storms and torrential rains without permanent or insurmountable damage. I know many of you have been fighting flooded basements, downed trees, flooded streets, and power outages. We were without power from 8am Friday until around 12 noon on Sunday. It is in these situations when I become aware of all of the conveniences that I take for granted.

This past week, I have been thinking a lot about what former Presiding Bishop Frank Griswold refers to as appropriating God - meaning that we encounter God and are transformed by God over time and often well before we are able to intellectually understand it. Benedictine Brother Curtis Almquist from The Society of St. John notes that Jesus' identity wasn't handed to him any more than ours has been handed to us. It takes a lot of work to find your way in life. And so when Jesus finally finds his voice and claims his calling, when he says, "I am the way, and the truth, and the life," he hasn't come onto this easily or automatically.

And, so with us. God's grace and transforming activity is developmental over time. Like the whole series of mechanics below street level that are supporting life above the street, God's transforming love is imperceptibly at work in us often beyond our knowledge and awareness.

This is why the church is so important to us. We need each other to grow to our full capacity, to help reflect this gradual "growing up in Christ" movement that is happening in us. Jesus is formed in us gradually and the meaning and purpose of our lives evolves over time. Me and you, in relationship together, grow up in Christ; we need each other.

We give thanks this week for Fr. Jerry Janzen joining us as a Centennial Guest. Please see a full copy of Fr. Jerry's sermon below.

The Centennial Committee is hard at work putting the final touches on the Gala event. Please see the note below about the upcoming Parish Workday on September 10. We want the grounds and facility to look nice as many guests will be joining in with the festivities. Please plan to attend - we will find things to do to fit your know-how, skill level, stamina, and interests!

God's love to you all,  Fr. Frank 

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