Pastor's Monthly Article (August 2017)

Created: Tuesday, August 1, 2017

With ongoing high temperatures and humidity attached, leisure time continues to be lived out and enjoyed in New York City. It seems to me there is no such thing as “bad weather,” only bad clothing…A fun-filled and convenient way has evolved this summer for pastors to wear a cooling vest. The manufacturing company advertised its “efficiency and effective coolness for three to four hours” and with a lasting effect up to four hours whether you’re indoors or outdoors!

When I saw the ad for the first time, I have to admit, I questioned its validity. I concluded that the only way to find out is to give it a try! With a full set of 9 ice-cooling packs thus completing the nine-pocket vest, I do know now how a snowman must feel…nevertheless I am glad to report it sure does work! I may look a little bit like the Incredible Hulk with the vest bulking out from all corners underneath the robe! However, staying cool is more important and I count my blessings. I just need to keep track of the time, for my sermons cannot exceed three to four hours…

In my last article from June/July, I shared some of my experiences while attending a continuing education conference at the Hartford Seminary in Connecticut. Since the Hartford Seminary is the leader in graduate interfaith education, where students are invited to explore their differences as well as deepening their faith, one of the more enlightening highlights was the open dialogue between faith communities with special concerns for the impact of the forced migration experienced in Europe.

As in the United States, Europe has refugee centers where persons stay as they await the sometimes-long process through which their papers are being processed. Anyone who’s ever been through the process knows the hardship involved, and for others, one can only imagine.
Children in particular are exposed to the fear and uncertain future that awaits their families as many has been forced to flee their countries of origin, and with the sole hope of asylum toward a safe future, especially in northern Europe.

I have therefore invited our children and youth, along with the children and youth of our partners in ministry, to join us in a simple, yet most appreciated way of sharing love and hope by drawing and making pictures to children in refugee centers. These pictures will be delivered and presented by me personally, as I have received a most exciting invitation of a work mission study in Sweden this fall. A more detailed explanation will follow in the September article.

God’s Blessings for a wonderful August,
Pastor Anette