(This post was also included in this week’s First Words newsletter.)
They said the leaves would be very colorful this fall, and I think they are right! We’ve had several days of rain as I write this, but we have had many beautiful, sunny days with brilliant color. Once again I thank God for the privilege of living in this beautiful place!
A number of folks who worship with us half the year have migrated, mostly south, mostly to Florida, but some to other places. We miss you already and wish for you a pleasant winter. Please keep in touch with us, let us know if you need our prayers, and know that we look forward to your return in the spring!
To those of you who have responded to our “Growing in Generosity” campaign with a pledge for 2016, THANK YOU! We have received to date (as of October 28) 196 pledges totaling $766,680. (Last year’s total was 283 pledges for $1,003,598.) It is obvious that we have a way to go, but the numbers are promising as long as those who have not responded will do so. Please respond as soon as possible—make your 2016 giving an intentional act of faith and generosity, and help the Leadership Team in their planning for 2016. God has much more work for us to do!
Beginning Wednesday, November 4, there will be a 3-week series at Wonderful Wednesday relating to a subject that we all need to face—end of life issues. On November 4, I will share biblical/theological perspectives on death and dying, and Dr. Mike Pass, church member and Hospice physician, will share end of life medical issues, and discuss decisions that often have to be made. There will be information on the proper documentation necessary to insure that your wishes are carried out. (If you have an old living will, it may be obsolete!) On November 11, Wells Greeley, church member and funeral director, will join me in leading discussion on the funeral or memorial service, and you’ll have opportunity to record your wishes in that regard for the church records. And then on November 18, Christian Burns from the United Methodist Foundation of Western NC will share information about wills, estate planning, and the church. Have you considered including the church in your will? A number of our members have done so. Did you know you can make a gift to the church that will continue to help fund the church’s ministries in perpetuity?
I have long felt a need to provide these 3 sessions on these critical issues that we sometimes would rather not face. Dr. Pass tells me that studies show that people who discuss these issues actually live longer! So join us, be empowered by the opportunity to ensure that your wishes concerning end of life issues will be carried out.
This Sunday we celebrate All Saints Day. We’ll remember those who have gone on before us, those whose lives and faith have touched and helped shape ours, and we’ll call those by name from our congregation who died during the past year. John Wesley referred to All Saints Day as “a day of triumphant joy.”
See you Sunday,