In the Meantime… What a time to begin a new ministry. Normally I would start a new call on a Sunday morning with a congregation that may be excited, may be anxious, may be even a bit apprehensive to see whether the new minister has any chops, may have even the remote possibility of measuring up to the saint who just left. I’d make appointments to visit people. Work the room at coffee hour to make new acquaintances. Do what I could to put names to faces and allow you to put a face to my name. But not now. Not when we’re doing all that we can to ensure the health and well-being of the body that is Lynn Valley United Church. Not while we’re maintaining physical distancing and restricting who can come into the church building, and I’m being cautious about how widely I expand my ‘bubble’. So in the meantime, we figure out how to be the church even when we aren’t together in the same space. We learn the ancient truth that the church is not defined by a building but by how the people who make up the church are engaged in the life and work of Jesus Christ in order to make a difference in the world. I know from the stories I have already heard that you are still about being the church in your neighbourhoods and in the world, notwithstanding the weirdness of the moment. I will do all that I can to support you in that work, and continue the enlivening ministry that Blair offered in his many years with you. A Search Committee has been formed to find a new minister to serve Lynn Valley United Church. In the meantime, I am the Interim minister, not just holding the space but seeking to continue the momentum you’ve been building up over the years. This Sunday, June 21, we will begin a worship series called “Birds of the Bible: The Word of God Takes Wing”. The theme is based on a book by Debbie Blue called “Consider the Birds”. She writes: “I’m convinced that there is something about the sort of consciousness necessary for birding that is very much like the practice of faith. It comes and it goes. It requires waiting. You must use both your body and your mind. Attention is paramount.” During the series we’ll hear about different birds, many of them in the Bible, and consider how their stories have links to the stories of our lives. And trust me – there are links. This week will be about quails and about what happens when we binge on something that we think will satisfy us but in truth does not give us life but leaves us wanting. I wonder what you yearn for? What gives you life? Are they the same thing? Ancient stories, current questions. I look forward to mulling them over with you. The church is not closed, it has been dispersed.