The Church Wide Retreat in early October was a great opportunity for the members of Welcome Table to connect with each other on all sorts of levels. Thank you to Liz Lang for leading us in InterPlay—what a wonderful way to open ourbodies, minds, and souls to the breezes and winds of Spirit. Curt Williams led us with some fabulous questions about our worst fears and best hopes, and then seeded us with some quotes from Dianna Butler Bass’ book Christianity After Religion. So many tremendous ideas about Welcome Table’s future were shared and explored. Julie Jones led us in a community building exercise using a musical philosophy known as Orff. What fun it was to sing and dance and get lost in both, yet to find one another. And to try to re-enact the song and dance during Fellowship Time on Sunday was all the more fun—especially for those of us who have two left feet, and two right hands.
Cheryl Brush guided us in walking the labyrinth outdoors. We tried to hurry outside so that we could enjoy the beautiful weather, but, alas, the rain did come. But not until after we got to spend five or ten minutes simply standing out on the patio and taking in the beauty of a warm fall day, with all of its beautiful, grandeur of the colors and smells from the autumn leaves. Chad Blanchard, our Bible study guru, walked us through some transitions in the life of Job, helping us to explore the journey of transitions found in scripture. The insights and reflections by members of Welcome Table were fantastic.
What a journey the retreat was. I am so grateful for everyone who helped to plan the retreat (Liz, Louise, Curt, Cheryl, and Katy), and to make it work—Louise with preparing the food, Curt and Al for preparing the soups, and the group leaders who engaged all of us; body, mind, and soul.
As we step further into the fall we will also be stepping closer to the new church building, to a new church year, a new church budget, and another transition in ministers. In essence, Welcome Table will be continuing its journey of transitions—a journey where we struggle for stability and the path takes us to yet another transition. And with each step that we take we grow a little stronger in our courage, a little more willing to embrace the changes, and a little more able to participate in whatever it is that God has in store for us. Never alone; always together, forging new friendships, new relationships, and new partnerships.
I look forward to being on this path with each of you as we celebrate our past and our future, with joy.
With God’s Peace —Chris