Park Ridge June 1st, 2009
Community Church News
A WORD ABOUT GRADUATION
TO DREAM THE IMPOSSIBLE DREAM. Remember that powerful anthem from “The Man From La Mancha?” I remember
because the 8th Grade Chorus, of which I was a member, was to provide a stirring rendition of that song for the Haven Junior High
School graduation exercises. It was a moving and inspiring moment. It had to be. Sing together with a dozen other pubescent male
voices all on the verge of either uncontrollable squeaking or dropping a full octave--or both--and see if you don’t need whatever
inspiration you could lay your hands on.
YES! WE CAN DO ANYTHING! After singing through “To Dream” in rehearsal the first time, it was easy to understand why it
had been selected by our director, Mr. Marshall. Or so it seemed to me. I mean, there we were, gifted, bright, the products of an
excellent school system. We were living in those heady days when the words of President Kennedy urged us on into the “New
Frontier” and Dr. King dared us to dream along with him of a new and better future for all people. In the words of today’s 8th grade
graduates, I was “pumped.” At least for the moment.
“LADIES AND GENTLEMEN, WE MUST CHANGE ONE LINE OF THE LYRIC.” Mr. Marshall riveted our attention after
that first run through. He was definitely not the type to change text or tune. I was shocked. “Where the text now reads ‘We will
march into Hell,’ we will substitute, ‘We will march and be strong.’ That will capture the sense of courage of the original.” Someone
from the tenor section squawked out in dismay, “But why?” The exact question on all our lips. This song had us ready to go
anywhere, do anything. No feat, no challenge was too great. “Because,” came the response, “next Thursday evening we are
graduating from the 8th Grade, we are not marching into Hell.” Point. Set. Match. Who could argue?
THAT TOOK MY HEAD OUT OF THE CLOUDS . . . and firmly planted my feet on the ground. At first, I was none too pleased
at having the bubble of my idealism burst at such a young age. But then I began to understand the director’s motives. First of all,
marching in to Hell was just a tad over the top for a Junior High graduation. More than that, however, I think Mr. Marshall was doing
us a service. He knew we were coming of age in a time overflowing with idealism. Simply by picking “To Dream The Impossible
Dream,” was his way of acknowledging the necessity of idealism. However, in reminding us that “we are graduating from the 8th
grade,” we were forced to come back to the mundane world of everyday events.
ONE MORE LESSON BEFORE WE MOVED ON. We were being taught something vital and lasting. We were being taught that
in the days, months, and years to come, the true test of our character and courage would come in facing each day. Here was a man
who seemed to know from his own life that the stress and challenge, the illness and grief, the joys and the sorrows that come with
living each day can require as much or more from us as the “mountain top experiences.”
THAT’S WHAT JOSHUA WAS TEACHING TO THE ISRAELITES. After being freed from slavery in Egypt, after the parting
of the Red Sea, after receiving the Ten Commandments from God and Moses at Sinai, after forty years in the wilderness, and after
finally reaching the Promised Land, Joshua knew that the greatest dangers lay ahead of the people. The Exodus experience was never
easy, but throughout that extraordinary time, God and Moses kept the hearts and minds of the people focused on the Promised Land.
Now that they arrived, keeping their focus, maintaining their faith through the vast expanse of ordinary existence would be an
“FOR A LONG TIME YOU LIVED IN THE WILDERNESS . . .then you crossed the Jordan. . .Now hold the Lord in awe, and
serve him in loyalty and in truth.” Now, as the Israelites “graduated” from a nomadic to a settled life, Joshua knew the temptations
that would face his people. Now more than ever, it would be easy for them to forget God and all the mighty acts that had been
accomplished to win their freedom.
ARE YOU A GRADUATE? Whether from Elementary School, Junior High, Senior High, College, Graduate School, or from one
phase of your life to another, the challenge remains the same. When the last strains of “Pomp and Circumstance,” or “To Dream the
Impossible Dream” and the celebrations fade into memory, we all face the same challenge: to live faithfully and fully in each moment
we are given. In one of the great commencement addresses, Joshua challenged his people, imploring them to “Choose this day whom
you will serve.” That challenge comes to each of us now across the ages. It is my fervent prayer that we will answer along with
Joshua, “As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.” Then we will find the strength and courage to march anywhere. . .from
the doors of the Junior High School to the gates of you-know-where.
Grace and Peace,
Brett W. McCleneghan
CC News – Page 1
2009 SECOND MILE AWARD...
At the 2009 PRCC Annual Meeting, it was once again my pleasure to present the Second Mile Award. This year’s
recipients are Bob and Paula Mack. If you were not able to attend, here is a copy of the announcement. A few moments
after the Mack’s receive the award—and completely independent of their being honored–college-bound daughter Kelly
was awarded the 2009 Eric Nelson Scholarship, adding joy upon joy.
Since 1978, The Park Ridge Community Church has sought to recognize and honor those individuals from the
congregation who gives of themselves “above and beyond,” those who go the second mile to love and serve God and
The Second Mile Award links past, present, and future ministries and the individuals who have been instrumental is
creating and sustaining the outreach, service, worship, fellowship, and learning that take place here and beyond the walls
of our church.
This year, responsibility for the selection of the Second Mile Award nominees was entrusted to the Board of Directors.
The initial field of nominees was an inspiring cross-section of the congregation. The final three candidates exemplified the
many qualities of that broader group. However the individual Board members made their final choices, the overall
comment was that it was an extremely difficult decision given the faithfulness, dedication, and service of all the
With that being said, the 2009 PRCC Second Mile Award is presented to a couple who exemplify the genuine spirit of
Christian love, fellowship, and service within the life of the church and in the living of their daily lives, wherever their
journey has led.
Paula has dedicated many years to teaching Sunday School, has served as a Confirmation Leader, and on the Youth
Committee, has worked on the Pumpkin Patch and Beatles Night, has been a Youth Group Dinner Coordinator, and
labored through the Rummage Sale. She has been the Membership Committee Chair, a Deaconess, and has served on
multiple Mission Trips.
Bob has been Confirmation Leader for the boys who are now seniors in high school as well as the boys who are now
freshmen. He served as a member of the Search Committee for our new Associate Pastor, Nicole. He has been an active
participant in all youth activities including the Pumpkin Patch, Beatles Night, and the Rummage Sale. He is a weekly
guitarist for children's Sunday School singing program. He is a fabulous bass player and singer—gifts he shares every
year at Beatles Night, and he, too, has served on multiple Mission Trips
Together they are important role models for all our children and youth and, indeed, for all of us.
It is my honor and privilege to present the recipients of the 2009 Park Ridge Community Church Second Mile Award,
Bob and Paula Mack.
Brett W. McCleneghan
CC News – Page 2
JOIN US FOR WORSHIP DURING EASTER AND SUMMER
Worship Hours During Summer
8:30 AM in the Garden
10:00 AM in the Sanctuary
Summer Coffee Hours:
9:00 AM to 10:00 AM in the Great Hall between services
All are Welcome
JUNE 7 – Trinity Sunday
Recognition of Graduates at 10:00 AM service
JUNE 14 – The Second Sunday after Pentecost
Sermon: Summer Rules: Work in the Garden, Take a Nap
Text: Ezekiel 17:22-24; Mark 4:26-34
JUNE 21 – The Third Sunday After Pentecost Father’s Day
Sermon: Lessons My Father Taught Me
Text: 2 Corinthians 6:1-13; Mark 4:35-41
JUNE 28 – The Fourth Sunday after Pentecost
Sermon: Blessing of the Animals
Text: Genesis 9:8-17; Matthew 6:25-33
Inside our Newsletter...
Pastor’s Message Front Page
2009 Second Mile Award Page 2
Our Church Family Page 4-5
Church Announcements Page 6-7
Community Announcements Page 8
Youth News Page 9
VBS Volunteer Opportunities Page 10
Celebrate Second Adulthood Page 11
Stephen Ministry Message Page 12
Nothing But Nets Page 13
CC News – Page 3
Our Church Family...
Katrina Englerth 6/1 Winston Williams 6/12 Matt Perez 6/29
Anne Longman 6/1 Tim Pruban 6/13 June Hedrich 6/30
Kent Wehman 6/1 Cliff Stettler 6/13 Lauren Reboletti 6/30
Matt Van Tine 6/2 Charles Koenig III 6/14 July Birthdays
June Zimmerman 6/2 Lucy Pruban 6/14 Taylor Arends 7/1
Paul Battaglia 6/3 Kal Webster 6/14 Jessica Crowl 7/1
Jeffrey Clapper 6/3 Alma Cox 6/15 Arthur Hoelscher 7/1
Greg Englerth 6/3 Marilyn Johnston 6/15 Claire Kallen 7/1
Dot Southerington 6/3 Lee Baratta 6/17 Michelle Petersen 7/1
Ellie Cady 6/4 Bob Klauck 6/17 Erin Self 7/1
Margaret Gearman 6/4 Brian Rujawitz 6/17 Lois Zitoli 7/1
Allison Hennessy 6/4 Mary Biardo 6/18 Greg Kapolnek 7/2
David Matzen 6/4 Jane Curry 6/18 Connor Norcross 7/2
Joesph Petersen 6/4 Reggie Pantazi 6/18 Quinn Peters 7/2
Nicole Calabrese 6/5 Grace Curtis 6/19 Mike Kusibab 7/3
Kristin Hahn 6/5 Winnie Ericksen 6/19 Donna Muscarello 7/3
Susan Schwartz 6/5 Lane Pruban 6/19 Ellie Naudzius 7/3
John Simmons 6/5 Nat Barnard 6/20 Luke Naudzius 7/3
Larry Zimmerman 6/5 John M. Carpenter 6/20 Sandy Bowen 7/4
Joann Anderson 6/6 Gus Steiner 6/20 Olivia Brown 7/4
Tom Biedke 6/6 Brock Barsanti 6/21 Emily Cady 7/5
Kelly McKenna 6/6 J.D. Burke 6/21 Clare Kunkel 7/5
Bob Englerth 6/8 Alex Baumel 6/22 Eileen O’Neill Burke 7/5
Carla Kotowsky 6/8 Cindy Klimmeck 6/22 Michael Pachowicz 7/5
Keith Nelson 6/8 Jane Moody 6/22 Kelsey Schaul 7/5
Andrew Gaddini 6/9 Michael Vigil 6/22 Jennifer Schwartz 7/5
Terri Pullara 6/9 Mark Zorn 6/22 Anna Artrip 7/6
Jack Tilley 6/9 Grace Baumel 6/23 Dawn Disher 7/6
Dick Beile 6/10 Rob Huening 6/23 Bob Hohmann 7/6
Lambert DeCardy 6/10 Jim Wilcox 6/23 Elizabeth Upton 7/6
Colleen Moriarty 6/10 Herb Zuegel 6/23 Rita Dauphinee 7/7
James Giblin 6/11 Sarah Pachowicz 6/24 Ronald Matzen 7/7
Sean O’Brien 6/11 Nancy Ady 6/26 Jackie Tilles 7/7
Kim Schoonover 6/11 Pat Battaglia 6/26 Erika Fabisch 7/8
Emily Solomon 6/11 Nadya Zimmerman 6/27 Sasha Gerritson 7/9
Anne Wave 6/11 Tom Craig 6/28 Char Kenzel 7/9
Rob Sasser 6/12 Helen Pantazi 6/29
If you or someone you know are not listed on our birthday list, please advise the church
office so we can add them to our list. All information is kept strictly confidential. Simply call
847-823-3164 or email email@example.com.
CC News – Page 4
Our Church Family...
Keep In Your Prayers:
We keep in our prayers: Donald Anderson (Siri Nelson’s father), Linda Bear, Dwight and Stephanie Beery and
their grandsons, Barb Bereza, Michael Bianchi, Bill Conklin (cousin of Bill Williams), the Curtis family, Marie
Degaard, Jean Dennis, Winnie Erickson, Florence Fertig, Brian Fogarty, Janet Healy, Eileen Kaczmarek, Alice
Keating, Candace Kidston, Walter Kotecky (Bernice Zabawski’s brother), Jim Lego (Mary Biardo's brother),
Wilma Limper, Bob and Gerry Mack (Bob’s Mack’s parents), Paul Martin (friend of Mary Crowl), Elsie
Matthys, Lurana Nelson, Pauline Numrych, Praneet Sankahavanija, Debbie Self, Geri Sell (Teri Biedke’s
mother), Ann Siena, Doris Sikorsky, Holly Sindelar, Jim Sindt, Audre Thompson, Yoshiko Urasaki, the Walsh
family, Aaron Wright (Jessye Wright’s brother), and Matt Zelasko.
- Prayers for the family and friends of Bill Conklin who passed away suddenly at the young age of 43.
- Prayers of healing for Lurana Nelson who has stage four colon cancer.
- Prayers for our students as they study for final exams.
If you or a loved one is listed in our weekly prayer list, we hope you will find comfort in knowing that Stephen
Ministers are praying for those listed.
Please Keep in Your Prayers:
Please keep in your prayers the family of Wilma Limper. Wilma entered into life in the resurrection on Monday,
June 1st, 2009.
Wilma was the wife of Lou Limper and the mother of Susan Douglass and Brian and Scott Limper. She was
also a longtime member of PRCC. A visitation was held on Wednesday, June 3rd at Cooney Funeral Home from
3:00 PM – 9:00 PM and a service was held at PRCC on Thursday, June 4th at 11:00 AM.
In lieu of gifts, contributions to Park Ridge Community Church or Rainbow Hospice are greatly appreciated.
Congratulations to our 2009 Confirmands:
Ian James Battaglia Sean Michael Cara Nicole Ashley Schaul
Elizabeth Ellen Black Jacob Thomas Hennessy Jessica Lauren Self
Sean Patrick Burke Rebecca Ann Lapp Amanda Emily Sparks
Marc Ernest Saladino
CC News – Page 5
If you are seeking more information about our church or about church membership, you are invited to attend our next
information class, June 21st, after the 10:00 AM worship service. Participants will then be invited to join the church the
next Sunday. These classes are held the third Sunday of every month.
Are you turning in your old batteries, small electronics, and ink or toner cartridges? If not, bring in that junk and simply
drop it off in the Sunday School wing’s new recycling center. All of the items will be turned in for a profit. That profit
will go into our “Green Fund” and further our greenness here at PRCC. And don’t forget to spread the word and tell your
family, friends, and neighbors too!
Please refrain from putting large items in the center as these can not be recycled. Some examples of items that can not be
accepted are televisions, VCRs, computers, and radios. Questions may be directed to Nic Kremer, Parish Coordinator at
847-823-3164 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Food Pantry Donations – Remember the Hungry:
Drop off your food pantry donations during service on the first Sunday of every month of the year. This Sunday, June 7th
is the next collection! During this economic upheaval, the pantry is in desperate need of contributions to help those in
need. Items needed are non-perishable food items. A detailed list can be found in the main hallway on the bulletin board.
All donations help the Maine Township Food Pantry. You can visit them online for more information at
CC News Summer Issues:
During the summer months, the CC News will be issued once a month. Check out our website for updates in the meantime
on events, news, and worship information and keep an eye out for our new look in the fall!
Summer Coffee Hours:
For the summer, coffee will be served in the Great Hall between services from 9:00 AM – 10:00 AM due to the kitchen
renovation and limited amount of space during this time. Visit us in this new location and as always, all are welcome to
CC News – Page 6
You Can Join a PRCC Support Team – Regardless of How Busy Your Life Is!
Become part of this exciting, new team concept at PRCC! Being on a Support Team means you offer service to someone
who needs help by
• doing what you enjoy doing and find fulfilling
• at a time which is convenient for you
• within an organized approach
• with the support of a team
The Support Team approach works very well for people who have busy lives but still want to make a contribution. The
reason is this: Each month you decide how much time you have to volunteer your help. You fit the program to your life
each month and each season. Nothing is set in stone and nothing is assumed.
You can choose from providing meals, offering rides, watching ball games with shut-ins, helping with computer work,
shredding documents – a wide variety of ways to offer help to members of our church family.
The next ST orientation will take place on Tuesday, June 23rd from 7:00 PM to 9:00 PM. Please call Marie (847-823-
3164) to register in advance or if you have questions.
Kitchen Renewal Project:
Have you noticed our beautiful signs? Computer generated pictures of the kitchen renewal can be found in our Park Place
room along with plans and a fundraising tracking thermometer. Now you can watch our progress as we reach for our $75,
000 goal! Pledge forms can be found in the office, the Park Place room and online beginning this week. Help us reach our
goal and feed the spirit of our church as well as the spirit of our community. We are already at $30,000 and the project
should begin shortly. We’ll post progress regularly online, in the CC News, and in the bulletins.
Notary Public Reminder:
If you need a document notarized for the Mission Trip or other church activity, stop by the church office. Our parish
coordinator, Nic Kremer is a Notary Public and can assist you with this. You must bring an identification card with you.
This service will be available on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays from 9:00 AM – 12:00 PM and 1:00 PM – 3:00 PM.
Also, on June 14th, during the Nothing but Nets free-throw contest, Nic will be available to notarize documents. Beginning
at 11:00 AM immediately following the 10:00 AM service until approximately 12:30 PM.
Questions can be directed to Nic at 847-823-3164 or email@example.com.
CC News – Page 7
Kalo Silver Presentation:
Herb Zuegel will present a history of the fabulous jewelry of the Kalo Shop silversmiths of Park Ridge on Tuesday, June
16th at 2:00 PM at the Park Ridge Library. Tools, drawings, and silver pieces will be on display. If you own an original
Kalo piece, please bring it in to show. Visit www.kalofoundation.org for more information.
Come play miniature golf to benefit The Center of Concern:
The 16th annual miniature golf outing for The Center of Concern, 1580 N. Northwest Highway, Park Ridge, will be held at
Mountain View Adventure Golf on Algonquin west of Wolf Road on Tuesday, June 16th from 5:30 to 8:30 PM. (The rain
date is June 17th.) The cost is $15/adult and $8/child under 12 and includes a picnic dinner. There will be raffle prizes and
plenty of fun. Please RSVP by June 10th by calling 847-823-0453.
American Cancer Society Relay for Life News:
High School youth - we still have space on the Dynasty team. Sign up to have fun and stay up all night on June 26-27
and raise money for cancer research. We still have a few spots left to fill up our team. Contact Devon Williams if you
need more information.
If you can't join the team, there are other ways to participate:
• All cancer survivors and their caregivers are invited to celebrate life and the hope for a cure by joining in the
opening ceremony at 6pm on June 26 at Maine West High School. The first two laps around the track symbolize
the courage survivors and their caregivers display in their lives everyday.
• The Luminaria Ceremony is a special time during the Relay to honor those who have survived cancer or
remember those in our lives we have lost due to cancer. The name of your loved one will be written on the
outside of a luminaria bag and placed around the track. The luminaria are lit during a special ceremony at 10pm
on June 26. Luminaria bags can be purchased for $10 each.
• Come over and join in on the fun sometime in the evening on June 26 at Maine West High School. There will be
games, food and fun and you will be supporting the Relay for Life activities.
• Make a donation to someone on the Dynasty team.
Contact Tricia Williams at 847-685-0887 or firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
CC News – Page 8
Vacation Bible School – June 22nd-June 25th, 6:00 – 8:00 PM:
It’s time to sign up for Vacation Bible School. Registration and volunteer forms are available in the Park Place room or at
Get ready for a veggie good time!
Questions? Contact Carol Longman.
If you are interested in helping with Veggie Town and VBS, please see the volunteer form on the next page in this
newsletter. Simply fill it out and return it to Carol Longman. This is a great way for youth, and anyone of any age to get
involved with our PRCC children.
We do not need #6 plastic containers any longer. The collection was going to the VBS craft projects and we have met
our max! Thanks for all of your help with this collection.
Nursery New Location:
Due to summer kitchen renovations, the nursery has been temporarily relocated. The nursery is located in the preschool
room of the Sunday School Wing. Our Sunday School Wing is located on the ground level near the Park Place entrance.
The nursery is open every Sunday all summer for children ages infant to five years old. Nursery summer hours are 9:30
AM to 11:00 AM.
Youth Programs for the Summer:
All Youth BBQ – Carriage House
Sunday, June 14th, 5:00 PM – 7:00 PM
Because you just can’t give up the Sunday evening fun! Bring a salad or dessert to share. Hamburgers, hotdogs and
veggie options will be provided.
Great America Trip
Wednesday, June 24th, 9:00 AM – 7:00 PM (with a group leaving around noon for summer school youth)
Not a fan of rollercoasters? No problem. You can eat your weight in funnel cakes with Pastor Nicole instead! A sign-up
sheet for Youth and Chaperones is located in the Park Place room. Or you can contact Pastor Nicole at
Relay for Life
Friday, June 26 , 6:00 PM until Saturday, June 27th, 6:00 AM at Maine West High School
For high schoolers - Devon Williams is organizing a team from PRCC to raise funds and show our support for the fight
against cancer. And you get to stay up all night for a good cause! If you’d like to join the team, please contact Tricia
Williams at email@example.com.
CC News – Page 9
Veggie Town ~ Vacation Bible School 2009
The success of Veggie Town relies on the service of extraordinary human beings who love God, love
their neighbors and eat their vegetables. This summer enjoy spreading the gospel message in fun and
creative, new ways by signing up to live and work in Veggie Town! We hope you will be a part of this
Check all that apply and include your contact information. A VBS coordinator will contact you.
Neighborhood Leader ~ Guide a group of children around Veggie Town, assisting them at each
station and leading group discussions at the end of the day.
Pre-school Neighborhood Leader ~ Oversee a group of 3-6 year olds, presenting the story, craft,
game and video.
Station Leader ~ Present the lesson and oversee a single station in Veggie Town. Stations include:
The Art Loft (arts and crafts), The Television Studio (veggie videos), Games and Movement (differs
nightly), and The Snack Shack (snacks).
*Station Assistant * ~ Present the lesson and oversee a single station in Veggie Town. Stations
include: The Art Loft (arts and crafts), The Television Studio (veggie videos), Games and
Movement (differs nightly), and The Snack Shack (snacks).
*Veggie Town Players* ~ Present a drama daily to illustrate our story. Also man the Bank and Post
Office during family time.
*Support Staff*~ Assist with registration, run messages during VBS and assist with Bank and Post
*Construction Crew* ~ Help build Veggie Town, gather set pieces for each skit, and tear down
Veggie Town at the end of the week.
(*Positions* are open to youth)
Name: ____________________________________________________ Phone: ________________________
Forms should be returned to Carol Longman, director of Christian Education.
CC News – Page 10
Health and Wellness Corner…
Kindred Spirits Café Summer Events following chores:
The PRCC Support Team members have lots of fun Window washing
things planned for this summer for our Seniors who Carrying items in/out; storing in basement
attend Kindred Spirits Café. Changing batteries in alarms
Senior Show Offs is a 5-minute segment when a Changing light bulbs
Senior can entertain, show a prized collection, or Cleaning hard-to-reach spots like ceiling
share a story with the others. Upcoming Senior fans and bookcase tops
Show Offs are Nancy Ady and Nancy Skoog on Cleaning window screens
June 2nd and Marian Stettler on June 16.
On June 9th we’ll be celebrating the 97th birthday of There is no obligation and no fee for this work. It’s
Mabel Pope. just one way for the PRCC youth to honor and help
On June 23rd, Dara from the Park Ridge Library will the Seniors of our church family.
bring a suggested summer reading list for our
Seniors. It’s a most special list because all the Contact Marie or Pastor Nicole if you have
heroes and heroines are Seniors! questions or if you are ready to sign up.
The Café will remain open on Tuesdays during the
summer from noon to around 1:30 PM. All Seniors A moment’s thought:
(self define, please) are welcome. In fact, everyone
is welcome! To live content with small means; to seek elegance
While the kitchen is being renovated, we’ll meet in rather than luxury, and refinement rather than
The Great Hall. fashion; to be worthy not respectable and wealthy
not rich; to study hard, think quietly, talk gently, act
July 11th Is PRCC Youth’s In-Town Mission frankly; to listen to stars and birds, babes and
Trip – Just for Our Seniors! sages, with open heart; to bear all cheerfully, do all
bravely, await occasions, hurry never. In a word, to
Dozens of our youth (in groups of 4-5) are offering let the spiritual, unbidden, and unconscious grow
their help to our Seniors for the day of Saturday, up through the common. This is to be my symphony.
July 11th. (Adults will be on hand to help the youth
throughout their work.) So, Seniors, what might you --William Ellery Channing
done around your home? How about some of the
CC News – Page 11
Caring for Our Families...
Stephen Ministry Message by Anita Rifkind
God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble. Therefore, we will not fear, though the
earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea, though its waters roar and foam and the
mountains quake with their surging. Psalm 46: 1-3
There was a terrible ice storm in Kentucky this revealed sun.
spring. The pictures taken of the Abbey of Gethsemani Storms come and go, but so does rebirth and
and the woods coated with ice are breath-taking in their new life. It is one of the lessons that life teaches if we
beauty. But there was a lot of loss as well. It was are listening. If we only notice the devastation, we miss
difficult to walk familiar paths without mourning a bit the new seedlings that seem to find a way to sprout.
for what was. Worse yet, if we are constantly watching for storm
Certainly some of the trees were weak, damage, we will sometimes miss the beauty that comes
damaged; the rot at their core visible now in the in the midst of it. And as Mary Oliver says in one of her
aftermath of the carnage. But a few were young, poems - even the hash we make of our lives could be
resilient, flexible; surely strong enough to withstand the nourishment for someone else.
weight? Alas not so - they too lay on their sides, broken; It is not easy to look for new life, or beauty, or
buds forever frozen on lifeless branches. meaning while we are in the middle of a storm. Nor is it
Mature elms, once stately and tall, stretch out always easy to remember that the storm will end.
across the ground, now humbled; their shallow roots Sometimes it is all we can do get out of bed and brush
ripped out of the red soil. (While it appears one or two our teeth. Sometimes it feels as though there will never
may have been felled by a weaker neighbor; it is more be any relief from the devastation.
often true that the elms caused destruction.) Formerly Deep roots help, being flexible helps, being
solid trunks stand twisted apart, ropey curved tendons in strong helps. But no matter: we all bear scars, and some
place of solid wood. of us live with broken hearts.
Other trees have a broken heart; the very center A Stephen Minister is a reminder that there is
of the trees now reach long brown bare fingers down ever-present Help in times of trouble; a reminder of the
past leafed-out lower branches, struggling on. Maples deep roots of your faith. A Stephen Minister can help as
seemed to have bent with the weight, but did not break; you struggle to get through the storm, find the inner
they are bowed still, often pinned down by the fate of the strength you need to need to move beyond the moment,
less fortunate, awaiting decay or a strong wind for their and look for the new growth and beauty that God
release. Scarcely a tree was spared at least some wounds; promises.
everywhere limbs hang dying. Contact Pastor Brett (847-823-3164) or Ginny
Except for the oaks! Strong straight bodies Feurer (847-299-1781) to talk about whether or not a
stretch to heaven, stalwart, stoic; below amongst the ruin Stephen Minister would be right for you.
their children, and those of the others, bask in newly
CC News – Page 12
CC News – Page 13