GREETINGS                                                 April 19, 2018
Minimalism, down-sizing, simplification: these seem to be the mode of our times.   It's about having less clutter, or getting by with less, or creating more open space with less distraction. Spiritually, it is the exercise of detachment.   Some situations necessitate it such as moving to smaller living spaces or making adjustments because of emergent health issues. Otherwise, it is a choice.   I'm working towards it ... slowly it seems. For a few years, I committed myself to fasting once a week. More recently, I've tailored my diet. As for the "stuff" in my life I still have more than I really need. My clothes closets and dressers are due for a serious clearing out this spring. Alternatively, I am endeavouring to share more of my stuff, and time, and food with others. The guiding motivation is gratitude for all the blessings God has enabled me to enjoy so far in life. I celebrate those who are part of our Marshall congregation who have managed to take simplification further than I have.
Giving and letting go are a far more satisfying way of faithful living that continuously taking and accumulating. Biblically, it is a way of exercising stewardship, which is really about the care and management of all of life: possessions, money, health, resources, talents, time, relationships, bearing witness, environmental consciousness, energy, seeking justice, self-care, and keeping connected to God. An American preacher once defined it: "Stewardship is everything I do after I say, 'I believe'." Still easier said than done.
Inspiring and encouraging words come from Cistercian (Trappist) monk Basil Pennington:      
"A fasting attitude multiplies the enrichment while it minimizes the consumption. And it gives birth to freedom. We can learn the freedom of getting along with less clothing, less heat, less sound to fill our silences, less objects to fill our spaces, less diversions to fill our time. The little, when given a chance to blossom and express all its own proper reality, can with its beauty fill to overflowing all our capacities. As we grow in gratitude and appreciation, we need less and less of creation, we are free and freer to find in ourselves and in the expansive little we already have, all that we want and need."   [A Place Apart: Monastic Prayer and Practice for Everyone, pages 69-70, Doubleday and Co., New York, NY: 1983].
Thanks be to the God who helps us give and let go so we can more fully live.

In our thoughts and prayers are Judy VanDuzer and Patricia Bradshaw's grandson, Daniel. 



Rev. Disher Away
Rev. Disher will be on Study Leave from April 23 through April 29. In case of pastoral need or emergency during this time, please contact Rev. Bert Radford, (Supply Minister at Ryerson United), (289) 439-1622.
Outreach Meeting
Past, present and future members of the Outreach Committee are invited to attend a meeting at 7pm on Monday, April 30th in the library (The previous meeting was cancelled due to the weather.) On the agenda - where are we and where do we want to go walking in God's way and serving in God's world. If you are unable to attend, but have ideas to share, please email Linda Craig at [email protected]
Vacation Bible School
Vacation Bible School will be held for the community at St. Andrew's Presbyterian Church on Sulphur Springs Road from July 3rd to July 6th in the mornings.  More information will follow.


Marshall's Men - Egg & I Breakfast
On Saturday, April 28 Marshall's Men will be meeting for breakfast at the Ancaster "Egg & I" Restaurant starting at 9 a.m.  This will be an excellent opportunity to socialize and get to know each other better.  If you would like to attend, please e-mail Dave Putnam ( [email protected] ).  All new comers are welcome.

Spring Lunch
There will be a Spring Lunch on Friday, May 11th at noon. Ask your friends to join us for a great lunch catered by Frank Pierce. The cost is $20. Proceeds will go to the Interval House. Tickets are on sale today and must be purchased by May 9th. There will not be tickets available at the door. Rides are available.
Start your spring cleaning and donate your old electronics to the 3 rd annual electronics recycling event being held on May 25 (4-8), May 26 th (9-5) and May 27 th (a.m. only) in the front parking lot. Electronics include any type of television, video or DVD players, radios, cell phones (MUST BE WIPED CLEAN), cordless phones.  Items do not need to be functioning. This event helps to support Outreach. 
New this year -  we will also be collecting used clothing in support of the Ontario Foundation for Cerebral Palsy.
Volunteers are needed to assist with the event.  Please contact Kim Cheeseman -   [email protected]