First, our thoughts and prayers go to our fellow Massachusetts residents in Springfield and Western Massachusetts, who were hit by terrible tornados. I had been in Springfield for a UUMA meeting the day of the storm and left about a half-hour before the storms started. I know that several of you have family and friends in that part of the state, and I hope that they are all safe and sound. The Unitarian Universalist Church in Monson did lose its steeple. I hope through various UU contacts to see if there are ways we can help with the rebuilding efforts down the road. Meanwhile, if you go to the Clara Barton/Mass Bay UUA website, you can find a link to make a donation for disaster relief.
The end of the regular church year always feels compressed, as we try to get everything in place before summer. The Canvass Committee is winding up and the Standing Committee will be preparing the proposal for next year's budget. We will have our annual meeting on June 19th, after our last regular morning service of the year. At that service, we will honor our high school seniors with a bridging ceremony, and we will have our flower communion. Please bring a flower to add to our common bouquet. Our last evening service will be this coming Sunday, June 12th. The Tervos will provide their usual, wonderful music for this service.
Beginning June 26th, worship will be at 9 am in the chapel. Unfortunately, we are not able to provide religious education classes or nursery care for these services at this time. Most of the services are lay-led, and offer quite a variety of perspectives and voices. I encourage you to attend. Lynne Cole of the Worship Committee is coordinating the summer services. If you are interested in leading one, I can help you get in touch with Lynne.
Although I will not be leading worship over the summer, I will not be gone. I will be attending committee meetings and the like, and will be available to talk or listen, if you need an ear or a shoulder.
In the next newsletter, I will relate all that everyone needs to know in terms of vacation coverage. My colleagues and I are still working on it. Meanwhile, know that I will be attending General Assembly from June 21-25 in Charlotte, N.C. and will be on vacation July 31-August 21.
Of course, I will be there for the Fourth of July Breakfast. I hope you will join in volunteering or stopping by to eat, if you are around. Caroline and Rosemary McMullin are once again chairing this important fundraiser and long-standing tradition.
As we enjoy this early summer time, with its special events and warm, sunny weather, keep in mind the words of Mary Oliver, from her poem, "Messenger":
keep my mind on what matters,
which is my work,
which is mostly standing still and learning to be