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A Letter from Pastor Mary



Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,         Happy New Year!

This turning of the page in the calendar has always seemed so significant to me – that on THIS day we begin a new year – another celestial voyage around the sun! If I didn’t have a calendar, though, I don’t suppose I would know the new year from the old - the days flow one into another the same way regardless, whether it’s a new day or a new week, month, or year.

I suppose we need certain days to be set aside as milestones on our chronological journey, even if those dates are subjectively chosen. Lots of us will make new year’s resolutions this year as so many of us have done in the past. We’re going to lose weight! We’re going to get and stay organized! We’re going to finish that project once and for all!

I stopped sharing my new year’s resolutions long ago because I never keep them. Long ago, my most important measure of time became the week – one Sunday morning’s worship until the next. And I have to tell you, it’s not a bad way to live.

Every Sunday morning, we leave each other’s presence in worship with a benediction – a Latinate word that means a “well-spoken word.” It is an aspiration of goodness said for the benefit of all of us! Perhaps a resolution that we can all keep is to speak spoken word to each other in the new year – a word of encouragement and hope. Here’s a benediction for the New Year for all of us:

Beannacht / Blessing                                                         And a stain of ocean

By John O’Donohue                                                          Blackens beneath you,

                                                                                           May there come across the waters

On the day when                                                                 A path of yellow moonlight

The weight deadens                                                           To bring you safely home.

On your shoulders

And you stumble,                                                               May the nourishment of the earth be yours,

May the clay dance                                                            May the clarity of light be yours,

To balance you.                                                                  May the fluency of the ocean be yours,

                                                                                           May the protection of the ancestors be

And when your eyes                                                           Yours.

Freeze behind

The grey window                                                                 And so may a slow

And the ghost of loss                                                          Wind work these words

Gets into you,                                                                       Of love around you,

May a flock of colours,                                                        An invisible cloak

Indigo, red, green                                                                 To mind your life.

And azure blue,

Come to awaken in you                                                      With every hope for the New Year,

A meadow of delight.

When the canvas frays                                                       Mary

In the currach of thought                                                    The Rev. Dr. Mary N. Pugh, Pastor