Farnham & St. John's
Weekly E-pistle
“Furred and Feathered Best Friends”
Llama’s antibodies could hold a key to success in COVID 19 treatment. This was one of the interesting tidbits I came across in my internet news streaming this morning as I focused on the state of this virus and the elusive nature of stemming its destructive rampage. I thought of my sister’s two alpaca “pets” at her spacious homeplace outside of Staunton. One of them I specially befriended on an extended visit to my sister and brother-in-law’s last year. Aren’t Alpaca’s close kin to Llamas? A blonde regal beast with soulful eyes living in the large pasture behind their house. Apollo and I developed a special connection immediately.
photo by Katherine Henderson
Sharon Phillips photograph
Then, there was Arthur, the hummingbird who befriended me, or so it seemed, in early summer last year. You may remember my Epistle story about Arthur a year ago. Living alone as I do, it felt good to have Arthur checking in on me about twice a day, hovering just outside my river room window. Yes, I acknowledge he was probably keeping tabs on me so I would keep tabs on the hummingbird feeder, but I enjoyed his attention, his “checking in” – we were important to one another.
< Torre Hinnant photo
There can be such a special bond between a member of the animal kingdom and that animal’s “human.” Whether Llamas’ antibodies will truly help us humans in our struggle against this virus or not remains to be played out as science races against time to locate and develop medicines and vaccines to combat it. But the animal kingdom I believe is a critical element contributing to the well-being of our human population, especially now as we humans are sheltering in place. Dog, cat, bird at home with us, they become essential in helping keep their humans emotionally healthy. They companion us and offer connection with another living “being.” And, if we watch carefully and live very present in the “Now” of everyday life with them they can teach us a lot about how to live and how to relate with all of life in an abundant and very present way.
So, I was thrilled with the arrival of Bishop Susan Goff’s “Fifth Week of Easter Reflection” yesterday, just in time to cameo it in this Week’s Epistle Message for family and friends of Farnham and St. John’s. It captured my heart as I know it will yours. Note, the interesting questions Bishop Susan poses at the end of her message. We can learn a lot from our animal friends. I would love to hear from any of you “out there” who would like to share how your animal buddy is helping you get through this time of sheltering in place. Maybe a picture too of you and him or her that we can post in a future Epistle.  


<a big Welcome to Maisie O'Hara arriving at Sabine Hall this weekend!
and to Lena Neuman (the black one) coming to Naylor's Beach Rd in June.
Bishop Goff's Meditation for Week 5 of Easter: Sometimes my dog points me to God.
A Meditation for the Fifth Week of Easter
Bishop Susan Goff
May 11, 2020
Teach me your way, O Lord, that I may walk in your truth.
Psalm 88:11a
There are three things that our sweet Chihuahua, Georgia, delights in doing above all else: eating, sleeping and going for a walk. I suppose that makes her pretty much like every other dog, although Tom and I think she's quite remarkable. She is, in fact, one apt teacher.

Georgia has a built-in clock. She knows exactly, to the minute, when it's time for her noon treat and her 5 p.m. supper. She knows exactly! Even as the light changes with the seasons, even when we adjust the hour hand on the clocks, she knows. At one minute
before the appointed hour, she spins and leaps at our feet in her "feed me NOW" dance. Typically, I'm in the middle of something that seems vitally important and the first steps of her dance come as an annoying interruption, but Georgia will not be ignored; the enthusiasm of her full body wag becomes contagious.
Our pup sleeps with abandon, too, and her favorite place to sleep is on my lap. (She's figured out how to fit herself onto the same lap that is also holding a laptop.) Her warm little body in sleep seems to have no bones, no muscles, but is simply a limp puddle of relaxed.
Our daily walks are the highlight of her day. Once Tom and I have put shoes on our feet and a harness on Georgia, I'm ready to move and get some exercise. Georgia, on the other hand, has something else in mind. Even though her short legs can keep up with my long stride, her idea of a walk has little to do with exercise. Instead, she's all about sussing out which dogs and cats and squirrels and birds were there before her. She takes it all in through a nose that leads her in zigzag patterns around the neighborhood. "Who trained you?" I ask her nearly every day.
I think God would take such delight if I
would do the happy dance of thanksgiving before every meal.
I think God would take such delight if I
would rest on God's lap in a warm puddle of trust.
I think God would take such delight if I
would slow down and notice the sights
and sounds and smells all around.
I think I would, too.
Sometimes a dog can point me to God.
Who is teaching you the simple things in this age of Coronavirus.
Who is pointing you to God?
Reaching Out in the Community
Despite our church buildings being closed due to the virus, outreach still goes on. 

·        Thanks for all the food donations from parishioners. The canned and jarred goods received at St. John’s were delivered to Warsaw United Methodist Church (WUMC) last week for its monthly Food Pantry Day last Thursday. Those delivered by N. Farnham parishioners were delivered to Farnham Baptist Church’s monthly Food Pantry yesterday (Monday) by Susan Crowley.

·        St. John’s ECW (Episcopal Church Women) made significant donations of $500 each to The Haven and to the Warsaw United Methodist Food Pantry.

·        Recent funds distributed from the Farnham/St. John’s Priest’s Discretionary Fund included donations to the Food Pantry ministries at both Farnham Baptist Church and Warsaw United Methodist Church, to the Salvation Army of Richmond County and to the Richmond Country Ministerial Association for assistance with utility bills for people in need.

·          PLEASE KEEP THOSE CANNED AND JARRED FOOD DONATIONS COMING so we have a lot to deliver to WUMC and Farnham Baptist Food Pantries in advance of their June Pantry Days. At St. John’s, leave donations on the bench under the church bell between the doors to the church. At. Farnham, leave donations on Susan and Jim Crowley’s back porch (278 Cedar Grove Road, a couple of doors from the church on the other side of the road.)

Requested Items
Peanut Butter (either creamy or chunky); Canned Tuna; Canned chicken;Canned Fruit; Canned Vegetables; Canned Soups; Spaghetti Sauce

Questions? Contact Susan Crowley (238-3405) or Courtenay Altaffer (313-1254.)
The rise and spread of COVID-19 and the current stay-at-home orders have presented individuals and The Haven committed to supporting individuals in need with a unique paradox. The ability to be a resource for those in need is important, but with stay-at-home orders in place and the importance of practicing social distancing,many of us are restricted from leaving our homes to perform acts of service. Because of this, we find ourselves in a peculiar catch-22—leading us to ask: How can I help from the confines of my living room?

If you would like to learn more about how you can support The Haven please contact Brittany Clayborne at  brittany.clayborne@havenshelter.org .
Connection, Connection, Connection

The telephone lines are buzzing, or maybe I should say the cell phone towers are humming. 

You all are doing the most wonderful job of connecting - calling and checking in with each other. Not to mention the emails flying around. But there's just something about hearing a friend's voice than can make a day brighter. I think the best thing we have done during this COVID 19 time, other than keeping everyone safe by sheltering at home is by having everyone involved in the ministry of reaching out and connecting with each other. 

BRAVO!  We will get through this!!!
Farnham & St. J's
further communications this week

Tomorrow - E-mail of Torrence's Mid-Week Reflection

Saturday afternoon or evening -

E-mail with Video Sermon
and link for Sunday Evening's 6:30
ZOOM Compline Service

with phone numbers to dial in to listen. A link to the National Cathedral's Eucharist live service at 11:15 a.m. Sunday will also be included.

Note : there will be no Friday e-mail reminder.
The Parish Prayer List
Courtenay Altaffer
John Barber
Martha Berger
Randall Bone
Sue Bowie
Nancy Allin Bush
Anna Calvert
Mary Claycomb
Marilyn Day
Sumner Elwell
Constance Edwards
Bob File
Regina Griggs
Barbara & Harry Grander
the Rev. Howard Hanchey
Weir Harman
Mary Hertling
Rebecca Hubert
Marcia Jenkins
Stephanie, Nick & Donovan Kaywork
Ramiza Koya
Jim & Sharon Krider
Susan Lewis
Frank Lynch
Susannah Marais
Judi Newman
Les Merkel
Kirsten Palubinski
George Patrick
Don Phillips
Dennis Rynd
James Rynd
Debbie Belfield Stacks
Scott Strickler
Waldy Sulik
Billy Tennyson
Connie Thompson
Matthew Yates
and Rose Mary Zellner
May Birthdays
May 4 th Ben Cox
May 5 th Carl Barber
May 14 th Carter Wellford, IV
May 16 th Harry Grander
May 19 th Sandy Garretson
May 22 nd Mary Hertling
15 th Susan & Jim Crowley
16 th Candy & Bill Carden
20 th – Courtney & Michael Sisson
There will be a Compline Service via Zoom Sunday evening at 6:30 p.m. Further instructions will be forthcoming later in the week.
Farnham Church
St. John's Church