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“Not the Sermon” Message

This Week at Trinity, Beamsville

Friday, August 2, 2019

Dear Friends,

This week felt ridiculously short. I’m sure I’ll say the same next week, at the end of a holiday-Monday-shortened-week, but for sure these past seven days have slipped away all too quickly. I know time flies when you’re having fun, but so too does it seem to evaporate when you’re grasping for more hours in every day.

That said, there was a precious moment of almost stopped time, or at least stepping back in time, when I had the chance to go through just a few of the many photo albums that stay in our Common Room. Reaching back into the days when pictures were printed to be seen, the albums brought an unexpected trip down our collective memory lane. I should also say that while all the pictures are catalogued with careful annotations of who is where and when, it meant so much more to look at them in the company of an excellent memory holder/story teller from our church family. It was the same said memory holder/story teller who had the wisdom to pull the albums off the shelf in the first place – to give context and history and perspective, all in a single artistic snap.

Maybe keeping you in unfair suspense (especially as we’re heading into a mid-summer holiday weekend with lots of folks on vacation), but rather than say more here about what we were looking at, I’m going to bring one or three of those photos in to the service this Sunday. I may even haul a few more of the albums downstairs, for perusal afterward in Jory Hall. It’s too long since we’ve done that all together. It’s too important not to do more often. Neither pictures nor words can capture everything, but they have a way of filling in spaces in our collective story. They remind as they teach. They nurture as they inspire. They draw us forward to our best next steps, in the midst of taking us back to where we’ve been before.

With the never-ending changes in technology, who’s to dare imagine how our congregational story will be chronicled, in and for the future. There’s a sense that we’re always figuring that out as we go, but of this I feel rather certain: there is so much that we need to carry with us, for the sake of those still to be. There are so many names, faces, and beautiful stories, of ordinary people doing extraordinary things, for the sake of a faithful, entrusted vision. In the words of many wise people before me, God isn’t finished with us yet. In so many ways, we’re always beginning again. That is both gift and sacred inspiration. It is the story of our ongoing re-creation, all together, forever glimpsing what it is to be closer to the Way of Jesus.

With love to you all,


“For this cloud of faithful witness, for the common life we share… for the different roads we travel, we give thanks and praise, O God.” (Sylvia Dunstan, Voices United 707)

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