Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Sabbatical Journal, Day Twenty-Two


            Lately there has been a blue heron staying around the harbor area in Parker’s Cove.  It was here this morning early and it is back this evening near dusk.  It has been seen in the vicinity on several days.  It is a tall graceful bird with a long neck, and gray in color.  It is mainly looking around through the seaweed that covers the rocks after the tide goes out.  One time I saw it with a fish in its mouth so it has found some success in its search for food here. 
            This is Sunday so we went to the same United Church of Canada congregation with whom we had worshiped two weeks ago, the one in Annapolis Royal.  The Canadians as a whole are a bit more reserved than Americans and Nova Scotians are even more so.  So, it is difficult to judge them as to being friendly or not friendly to visitors in worship.  We had a few people talk to us and several come to us during the passing of the peace to greet us. 
            The pastor does not greet people at the door after worship as we do in our church.  She retreats to the parlor where coffee and cakes were being served, giving an invitation to join her in there at the end of the worship service.  That may be their custom rather than the one we are accustomed to in our congregation.  We did not stay for the coffee time afterwards though, making an exit through the rear doors instead. 
            The service as a whole was very good and meaningful.  Doris and I knew all the hymns sung today although they sung some responses and the Lord’s Prayer to a tune we did not know.  The pastor read her text for her sermon, which was one of the parables of Jesus, and then did not preach on it.  Instead, she talked about looking at works of art as examples of parables.  She had two pictures of paintings projected on the wall in the sanctuary and used them as examples of art work that teach a lesson.  I was a bit disappointed that she did not preach on the scripture she read since I have preached on it and would have enjoyed hearing her interpretation of it.  Anyway, we enjoyed going to worship and felt uplifted by the experience as a whole. 
            As I said on an earlier Sunday, it is valuable for me to be a visitor in worship now and then so I can understand how someone who is new to a congregation feels.  I think it helps all of us to be the “new person” now and then in a social setting so we can understand the feelings of others and try to reach out to them when they are visiting in our church. 
            We had a rather quiet and restful day the remainder of our day.  The area around the wharf and the campground across from it was very quiet with no one visiting either area.  We sat on the porch a while and had coffee and cookies and finally went inside to prepare dinner.  It has been a very good Sabbath day. 

            “In returning and rest you shall be saved; in quietness and trust shall be your strength.”  (Isaiah 30:15b,c)

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