St. Thomas Episcopal Church | Medina


Thoughts and Happenings

Sharing Our Stories: Tuesday Edition (9/1)

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Sharing Our Stories: Tuesday Edition (9/1)

This was an email originally sent out to the parish on Tuesday, September 1, 2020.

Hi friends:

Here are the latest group of stories we have collected. This is a wonderful way for us to stay connected with one another and to accompany one another on this journey. We would love to have YOUR story. Check out the broad guidelines HERE.  And if you have already submitted a story, please let us have another one!

Poem by Mary Pneuman

Small Wonders

Today I followed a sunbeam
as it traversed the porch—it carved
a path on the rusty screen, dancing
playfully through honeysuckle vines
entwined among the rails, hesitating
slightly as wispy clouds passed overhead,
and flickering a little as tiny wings passed
through the shaft until it tiptoed
up the weather-beaten shingles
and was gone.

As I sipped my breakfast coffee,
it came to me, although I’d never
thought of it before, that
I was witnessing rotation
of the earth—just now aware
that I was on the ride
and would return, most likely,
to this place again tomorrow. 

And I wondered if
the sun would be as radiant,
pine siskins as gregarious,
honeysuckle blooms as bountiful
with nectar quite as sweet
and hummingbirds exuberant,
or any moment as transcendent
when life returns to “normal,”
once pandemic leaves.

- Mary Pneuman
June 24, 2020

Reflection by Dwight Russell

First things first: Please join me in applauding and thanking our wonderful St. Thomas clergy and staff. Although we don’t see them in person, they continue to work every day, planning virtual services, ministering, and keeping the ship afloat – thanks be to God. We love you!

Although the lock-down is gradually loosening, basic restrictions remain in place (rightfully so re: the spread of infection), and many continue to feel isolated and depressed.  Shirley and I have, as you may have, felt some frustration from lack of contact. However, we have resurrected a marvelous way to mitigate negative feelings – it’s called “picnic” – gets you out of the house and provides a welcome change of venue. We always feel renewed and refreshed when we return home. Plan it to fit your needs, but here’s how it works for us:
1. When: middle of the week (we are retired), arriving about 10:30-11:00 AM before choice spots become crowded.
2. Where: we have tried the following locations; most involve water, have trees, and are beautiful - Clyde Beach Park, Medina Park, Medina Beach Park, Juanita Beach Park, Denny Park, Kelsey Creek Park.
3. What: keep it simple. We take two folding chairs and a food bag only. Our chairs are fabric-covered with a drink receptacle on the right arm, very compact, comfortable and inexpensive. Sample Menu: chips, tuna sandwiches on Dave’s Killer Bread, pickles, fruit, cookies, and your choice of beverage. (We find that a bottle of red wine, such as Bogle Old Vine Zinfandel, enhances the flavor of everything.) Paper cups, napkins and wipes for clean-up.

Upon arrival at your site, find a perfect place to sit and begin to observe the beauty around you. Reflect on the Holy Spirit who is always in and around you and your environs. Imagine yourself the subject of a Renoir or Seurat water-color as you sip a beverage and enjoy the day. The rest is up to you; we hope you have a relaxing time away from your regular activities and the negative vibes we all encounter. Take heart and remember the Leonard Cohen line, “There is a crack in everything, that’s how the light gets in.” Thanks for listening, and vaya con Dios.    

Submitted by Sunni Bannon

From the book "Fresh Peace" by Dr. Jaiya John:

She wanted Peace. 
So she played beautiful music, 
painted beautiful expressions. 
It was not enough… 

She went on long walks. 
Gave away possessions. 
Smiled more. 
Stopped multitasking. 
Not enough… 

She bought more 
reverent clothing. 
Read spiritual books 
Spoke spiritual words. 
Not enough… 

She changed her relationships. 
Attended classes. Cut her hair. 
Improved her diet… 

Attended worship. 
Found a new job. 
Traveled. Came back. 
All of it, not enough… 

Then, one day, 
she looked inside herself, 
the place she had run from 
all her life… 

She found two Truths: 
the concentrated ego 
of suffering and fear, 
and the simmering 
ember of Peace… 

Realizing that Peace 
was a seed already inside her, 
she decided to try 
something new… 

She decided to Love more. 
Herself. Others. All things. 
In every moment… 

She opened. 
The ocean inside came out. 
The ocean outside came in. 
She dissolved in two oceans. 
Became immeasurable Lightness. 
She found peace… 

Love is the sunlight 
that awakens the seed of Peace.