Dear Friends in Christ:
In a conversation with my coach this morning I noted that I have a lot of things that seem to be “falling apart” just before General Convention and my sabbatical. She said, “Well Michael, in my experience things often fall apart just before a vacation or a sabbatical so you are doing this just right!” And she is right, things do fall apart and often at times that are not as convenient as others. Then again, when is falling apart ever convenient? So life continues and for the most part is it good, yes, very good. I am blessed with good work and the ability to go on a sabbatical! I’ll just say thank you to God and to the good people of the diocese and move forward – I might, however, keep on the lookout for falling debris.
What a great blessing this past week has been in the diocese. Oregon Episcopal School graduated another wonderful group of seniors, seven individuals were ordained into holy orders, and I got to be present in visitation with the good people of Grace Memorial, Portland. Thanks to Mother Esme and to the vestry for their welcome and gracious hosting. It was a blessing to confirm and to reaffirm the baptismal vows of many.
This week I am traveling to Roseburg, to Bandon, to Brookings, and finally to Port Orford: Oregon at its best! Then, when I return, I will be on the way to Salt Lake City for the General Convention of the Episcopal Church. I ask that you keep the Convention in your prayers and invite you to visit the website of General Convention to see how you might track the work of the Convention as it unfolds. You may also be able to keep up with things on the Episcopal Church website or our own diocesan website.
Following General Convention I will begin a three-month Sabbatical with a month of vacation as well, thus landing me back in the diocese in time for our Diocesan Convention. Please keep me in your prayers and I promise to do the same; holding the diocese in my thoughts and prayers. I have faith in the good lay and clergy leadership of the diocese and know that I travel with everything in good hands.
So yes, things do occasionally fall apart but they can come back in place and often be stronger for the fall and for the work of recovery. And besides, only a few things are really challenging these days and life is good, so I leave for a time hoping to return stronger and better equipped for the work of ministry that God has given to me.
Until later, Blessings,