November 7, 2017

Dear Hennepin Community:

These autumn days are visually and experientially a time of letting go. They are also a time of great beauty. As we are surrounded by Creation's leave-taking in the leaves falling to the ground, we know that in their beautiful colors lies the rebirth of the season that is yet to be. Our Creator continually invites us to be present to the mysteries of birth, life, death and rebirth. In our faith community this past week we have been present to the leave-taking of several of the faithful.

Longtime member Darlene Munson passed away on October 18th. A service to celebrate her life and remember her days among us will be at Gill Brothers' Funeral Home at 9947 Lyndale Avenue South in Bloomington on Saturday, November 11th at 2:00pm.

On November 5th, the Reverend Cal Hanson died. He served at Hennepin Avenue UMC as the Minister of Social Concern and later at Trinity UMC in Northeast Minneapolis. After his retirement he also served as a pastoral visitation minister at Hennepin and was present in the early days of the Dignity Center. Cal was known in our congregation for his deep faith, his gentle spirit, his love of people and his heart for justice. We will honor and remember him on Saturday, November 11th at 3:00pm in the Hennepin Sanctuary.

We learned yesterday of the death of Reverend Jeannette (Jan) Pettit on November 4th. Jan served Hennepin Avenue UMC as the Minister of Pastoral Care and worked with our Senior Members. She also served at Sager Brown in Louisiana and was a welcome face and presence to those from our congregation who traveled to work in the UMCOR center. Her kindness and deep spirit was a great gift to this church and to the Minnesota Annual Conference.

These lives will be forever woven into the fabric of the Hennepin community. Please keep their families and friends in your prayers as you live into these autumn days and offer a prayer of gratitude for their time among us.

In blessings and peace,

Sally Howell Johnson