We moved recently, and our new home includes a balcony. It gets some decent afternoon sun, overlooking our quiet courtyard. My dog has decided it’s her favorite place for a long summer nap, or to work on her puzzle toy, whiling away her hours. She is all about the lazy afternoons and the warmer weather. Meanwhile, she is also being trailer-trained so we can try bike-trailering her so we can go on family camping trips. She may enjoy her long naps, but long as she is with her people when they do fun things, she is happy to roll with the flow.
St. John’s over the summer will be a great place to roll with the flow. We slow down the pace of events so you can relax and rejuvenate after a busy program year. But we are also planning special activities to excite your soul. Being God’s people full of God’s Spirit is a year-round way of being human. This summer, we want to focus on you and your neighborhood and family – how can we be better neighbors to each other? How can we teach our young ones about their faith?
Let me tell you about two reasons you will definitely want to bring your family and friends with you this summer.
Fence Breakers. This neighbor-to-neighbor project aims to introduce St. John’s parishioners to the people who live nearest them for fun, social activities, and community connections. The biggest concern I’ve heard since coming here is a grief and a worry that we don’t know who lives next door – and we want to. We want to share meals, offer support, call each other to check in during crisis, or plan outings with interesting friends.
Our next steps will be to post a map at St. John’s showing the boundaries of the neighborhoods, and then to send each person a note so you know where your neighborhood is and who else lives nearby. There will be easy ways to get involved, like hosting a cookout, being a neighborhood captain, or sharing your interest in cooking meals. You’ll also find a daily prayer that we hope you’ll consider praying for your neighbors and community. What will make Fence Breakers different will be the personal levels of connection. This is all about breaking down the barriers, and making a real connection to those nearest us. We want you to discover amazing, fun, interesting people.
Kids’ Fun Sunday Books. Summer church can be a hard sell for a kid who might prefer to be outside playing in the sun. This year, we created (for the kids!) a summer series of activities that invites them to engage in their church. Whether bringing their favorite stuffed animal to church for a blessing, or getting Bishop Mariann’s autograph when she visits and preaches in July, or singing in the summer choir, the kids are invited to come and engage in their faith. We hope they will color, count, word-find, and sing their way to an active summer in their faith practice. As a bonus, several weeks will include a family activity you can do at home.
St. John’s is anticipating a peace-filled, active summer. We look forward to seeing you, to blessing the journeys you’ll take, and to enjoying a few special months of activities and community connections. Above all, we look forward to helping you find new ways to engage your faith and your actions.