March 16, 2014

Pastor Letter 
 
Greetings one and all, 
 
Lent has arrived with a meaningful Ash Wednesday, and our first full week of the 
season. 
 
Using the palm ashes from our closing "Everyone's Inn" fire, I spent most of 
Ash Wednesday with seriously soiled hands - imposing ashes on God's 
people. Each time, I reminded them that we came from dust, and we will return 
to dust ... and that every moment in between we are God's. It was a moving 
experience for me as I drew the cross on the youngest among us at our 
preschool and in our church family, and on octogenarians alike. When I looked 
out to the worshipping congregation during our evening worship service, I saw 
the people of God before me with dark crosses on their foreheads (that they had 
allowed me to impose); all these people together claiming Christ as their savior, 
Christ's way as their way in this crazy world, and I thought, "we belong together; 
we belong to God." Each of us is a unique and beloved child of God, and it is, 
truly - only - our heavenly Father, Mother, Source of Life who binds us together. 
 
And so it is that during our Lenten season, we have a special, set-aside time to 
focus on drawing nearer to Christ, and to settle deeply into his story and ours. It 
is Lent that the Church has designed to help us grow closer to the way of Jesus 
that is set before us, and to determine how to welcome Jesus' way as our 
way. Pastor Mark has invited us to consider how we are making room for Christ 
in our lives. How are we making room to welcome one another, to welcome God 
into our homes and busy schedules? During Lent, our entire church family is 
invited to come together in homes for two meals and conversation, and then 
together on Maundy Thursday. Additionally, weekly on Wednesdays at 
Everyone's Inn, our mid-week all-church ministry, we will be sharing a meal, 
singing, praying and studying the Bible, too. Together, throughout Lent, we are 
asked to be the beloved community, joining together, learning from one another 
by slowing down to enjoy a meal and conversation. How will God work through 
us in these places of hospitality and grace? 
 
May each of these places of ministry be in the ways of Christ, and may these 
experiences help our entire church family know who God made them to be, who 
they are in Christ, and who we are together as a church family. 
 
Blessings upon your journey, 
 
Pastor Melinda