Let the Second Annual February Blog Extravaganza begin!!!
Except, er, I don't actually have an idea for today's post...
How about if I post some photos I took this morning?
I was first to arrive for our pre-service choir practice, and instead of heading straight into the chapel to wait for the others, I went into the sanctuary. For me, there is something so wonderful about being in this place all by myself. In the stillness and silence, I feel calmed and strengthened. In the absence of other people, I feel not at all alone, the presence of the Spirit surrounds and fills me. It seems an incredible blessing to feel so entirely at home, with such a sense of belonging, in this amazing and awesome place of worship.
While enjoying my commune with God in the beautiful sanctuary this morning, I snapped some photos. Continue on to view those...
Here is my church from the outside (this particular photo was obviously not taken today, as evidenced by the lack of snow on the ground!):
Shown below is the sanctuary.
The light floods in through the huge window up front, and three smaller ones along the side. I greatly admire the huge stained glass windows seen in many churches, but in my own church, I love the plain glass window with the massive wooden cross. I could enjoy the side windows being replaced with stained glass, but I would not want the main window to be changed. There is a tiny stained glass window way up high opposite the cross, but I forgot to take a photo of it. It is beautiful with the sun shining through it, I have been told that one of the men in our congregation made it.
A while ago, Annie had admired a banner showing in one of my previous photos. So here is a better look at the matching pair, followed by a couple other banners that hang in the sanctuary. Most, if not all, were made by a very talented woman in our congregation.
This next one was a parting gift from our former minister, Rev. Iain:
And this trio was made for a year of jubilee (don't ask me which year...it was before my church going days, am thinking likely 2000 though.)
Our opening prayer today was:
"God of deserving praise, you gift us with voices of witness, hands to extend in welcome and care, and hearts to love. May your calling grow deeper within as your spirit equips and inspires us to do your will. Amen."
(Imagine what a different world we'd live in if we extended our hands in welcome to everyone we met, and opened our hearts to love all of our neighbours.)