Weekly Greeting: July 9

Good Morning Parish,

As tropical storm Elsa travels off the coast of Maine, bringing much-needed rains to mitigate drought conditions, I thank God for the rhythm and balance of seasons. I am also grateful for new beginnings and possibilities. Two-and-a-half years ago, my grandson Jonah helped me plant a flowering tree on the parsonage front lawn to replace one that was damaged by movers when we arrived in Auburn. It did well for a year, but just as the pandemic restrictions made themselves known, it split down the trunk and ‘failed to thrive.’  Yesterday, I planted a flowering dogwood and trust the rains of Elsa will give it a nourishing start.

It is a metaphor for our church, too. As we awaken from many of the restrictions due to COVID-19, we cautiously step into the future even as we imagine and envision new ways of being the presence of Christ in the Auburn/Lewiston greater parish. Last night, at our church council, we voted to move ahead with the audio-visual upgrades which represent the last prioritized ‘funding’ project from our Seeds Capital Campaign. Thank you for providing the $ to make this possible! The plan integrates state-of-the-art technology with worship services, while preserving the sacred space and character which facilitate meaningful, sacramental connection with God. When all is finished, I am sure all will celebrate this significant step forward in the missional story of the United Methodist Church of Auburn!

This Sunday, we will remember God as ‘Source’ of all we are and have and renew our trust in God expressed through lives of integrity. I have attached to the weekly greeting email Sunday’s Worship Guide, missional opportunities update, fall festival announcement, and copy of last Sunday’s message for those seeking renewal of hope in their lives. The 8:30 am service will be both ‘in person’ and zoom, and the 10 am service will be both ‘in person’ and live-stream. Those (in person) who wish to sing hymns with Kary Coffin at the 10 am service are encouraged to wear masks for the safety of others.

May God’s grace be with you this week-end!

Pastor Steve Bascom, UMCA