Farnham & St. John's
Weekly Message
"Reflections"
And the people stayed home.
 And read books, and listened, and rested,
and exercised, and made art, and played games,
and learned new ways of being,
and were still.
And listened more deeply.
Some meditated, some prayed, some danced.
Some met their shadows.
And the people began to think differently.
And the people healed.
And, in the absence of people living in ignorant, dangerous,
mindless, and heartless ways,
the earth began to heal.
And when the danger passed,
 and the people joined together again,
they grieved their losses,
 and made new choices,
and dreamed new images,
and created new ways to live
and heal the earth fully,
as they had been healed.

(by Kitty O’Meara)
The above appeared in my “in box” from two different friends in the last couple of days. I have been reflecting on it since it showed up. Because I sense deep simple truth in its words. I pass it on to you to savor. May it nourish hope in all of us in these days and nights of “sheltering in place.” May it help us to vision a time beyond the current crisis which is seeping into every crack and crevice of life. It was written by Kitty O’Meara, a retired teacher from Madison, Wisconsin. She now does hospice work.  Written only a few days ago and posted on her Facebook page, she wrote it “in an effort to curb her own anxiety amid the nerve-wracking news of the COVID-19 pandemic.” It offers ways to live, move and have being when we are confronted with our way of life, even life itself, being threatened. When we need to hear God’s heart speak to us, saying, “Do not fear.” When we need to reach out and know the presence of a Christ who is the Source of Peace, who calms the tempest and quiets the winds swirling around and in us. It is about healing, about hope, about transformation. About things this world needed before this crisis, now during it, and, by God’s grace, we will live through it.
 
I started making a mental list of the things that seem to be sustaining me during this crazy time. 
     ·        Looking for signs of spring/new life in the landscape around my little home

·       Calling you to see if you’re safe and because I miss you

·       Creating prayers I can share with others
Sue Motley photo
·         Watching a pair of eagles and ospreys do my yardwork – picking up sticks they will use to build nests

·       Reading through the several books I got from the library in anticipation of time alone
·        Taking naps

·       Packing away my heaviest winter items to swap them for springtime clothing, but holding out some warm sweaters “just in case”

·       Meditating and simply watching the river flow by·       Taking pictures of amazing sunsets and anything “flowering”

·       Looking through old albums and boxes of family photos - remembering

·       Emailing and phoning back and forth with kids and grandkids – connecting the “ties that bind” us and feeling blessed

·       Doing some stretching exercises each day, walking around my yard, checking the mailbox, occasionally traveling to the dump

·         Considering putting on some beautiful music and simply dancing with it – with only God watching

·       As evening falls, holding all of you gently and prayerfully “in the Light” that shines through any darkness . . . . asking God to “bless and keep you this moment and always.”
What are you doing? Please share. Use the “questions” that follow this Message, if you want to. And whatever you do remember to leave plenty of space to
 
                                                            Be still and know . . . . hope, comfort, peace
 
                                                                                                                       Torrence

above and background pictures are staff photos except Ospreys Nesting , courtesy of Susan Motley
“Questions”
 
“Where, how are you finding calm during this time?”
What is helping you address what is fearful about this time? What is not?
What is sustaining you?
What are you doing that is nurturing your spirit and life-giving?
 

Announcements
To:     Parishioners of Farnham & St. John’s Episcopal Churches

From:  Your Vestries

Our churches are empty on Sundays. And so are the collection plates. Although we are not present in our church spaces, the fixed costs to maintain them continue. Our contact and care is happening as we shelter in place, not in person but over the phone, the internet, all the air waves available to us and the work of the church continues in alternative but still significant ways. Our pledges/donations support all of this and are needed to continue to show up to fund the ongoing work.  Please take time to send in your pledge Payments/donations during this time may be made as follows:
For Farnham: Mail your check to
Pledge Keeper
N. Farnham Episcopal Church
P. O. Box 343
Farnham, VA 22460
For St. John’s: Mail your check to Pledge Keeper
St. John’s Episcopal Church
P. O. Box 1093
Warsaw, VA 22572
Notes about Our Website

Our website is in the process of being redesigned, one of Lucy's projects while working from home. In the meantime, we are posting much more frequently to the site, farnhamwithstjohns.org , including Torrence's Sunday Video Message. I encourage you all to visit the site.

  • To see back versions of the E-pistle from the website, click on the News & Events page and hover over E-pistle. That brings up all the E-pistle dates that are linked. Click on the E-pistle date that you want to see. (Clicking on "E-pistle" takes you to a dead page - one of the things that will be fixed on the new site.)

  • At the very top of our home page there is a tiny Episcopal church shield. Right next to that, it says "The Diocese of Virginia." If you click on the shield, you will be taken to the webpage of the National Episcopal church. If you click on "The Diocese of Virginia" you will be taken to the Diocesan webpage.

  • There are several categories on the home page that have nothing on them, including "Shared Meanderings," "Get Involved," "Parish Ministries," and "Cemeteries," so know ahead of time that there's nothing on those pages. (There are two very old sermons.) Lucy is putting together pictures of our outreach activities for the Parish Ministries page. If you're involved in ECW or the Cemetery Committees, please consider what you might want to include about those activities on the new site.
Links

* Link in to our Farnham/St. John's teleconferencing Evening Prayer service (The Phone Tree Service) this coming Sunday at 6:30 p.m. Here are the directions: Dial in number     1-425-436-6323  .    When asked punch in Access Code 781055#
Looking forward to "hearing" you then.
Forward Day by Day
save this site as a favorite
especially since we haven't been getting paper copies.

Come join our teleconference
Evening Prayer service Sunday March 22 nd
at 6:30 p.m.
Call 1-425-436-6323
ACCESS CODE 781055 #
 
Farnham Church
St. John's Church