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Eastertide Greetings,
Be immersed in gratitude today! We are so fortunate to be part of the Grace Community of Faith family! We continue to figure things out, the share and care and all the little things you do are gifts of furthering the ministry and mission of Jesus in our lives. A smile, a call/connection, an offering of thanks, a pause to pray, a noticing of God’s presence, a random act of kindness, taking time to listen … it all matters. Thank-you! I will be on study leave Wednesday to Friday of next week. I will be joining craft and chat Wednesday night and Thursday morning so come have fun on Zoom! I will be leading worship May 2 in which we also celebrate Communion. I will finish up study leave from May 3 through May 9. On May 9, Christian Family Sunday, Susan Sweet Lebeau will be preaching and Paula Pound will be worship leader.
Next Steps in the Sanctuary Needs:
Do you have an interest, ideas. Send in your thoughts. Consider joining our small task action group which is exploring a “scope of work” to address sound improvements in our church as we continue to figure out needs impacting gathering in-person and on-line. Areas being explored include: sound treatments, speakers, tech needs, visual esthetics, short term needs and long term dreams and wishes We continue to brainstorm and consider. Come join us… Heather Aiton Landry, Ross Allen, Sharon Ballantyne, Brian Landry, Neil Lebeau, Shelby Lebeau, Dustin Weihs.
A New Workshop thanks to Fern Hearne who will facilitate.
Tapping for Releasing Stress.......New to tapping? Great! Please join us.
Presented by Fern Hearne
When ...May 13th 
Time......7:00 - 8:00 p.m.
Where...Zoom... link (Sharon’s Zoom) Fern will send out link closer to date..
Register at - [email protected]  
The United Church of Canada is continually updating its policies, practices and the latest additions are the 2021 Manual (March 2021) and the latest Board of Trustees. You can check out various handbooks and guides on the UCCAN website.
Grace Needs People to Join our congregational trustees
We can have up to fifteen members. Trustees are a legal requirement of UCCAN. Contact George Flevall, our Board of Management chair.
SME Approved at ECORC
Supervised Ministry of Education site, Grace United, approved at East Central Ontario Regional Council Wed. April 21, following the approvals at Board of Management meeting April 20. We are excited to know that a candidate for ordination will help us continue our vision of “engaging the community” as we support furthering the learning together. Continue to pray for the process to bring a candidate part-time to Grace to facilitate our young families ministry outreach, community outreach and ministry of compassion initiatives. If you remember working with candidates Larry Doyle and Kathy Underhill, you will have a sense of the role. It used to be considered an internship but this 2021 possibility required Grace to be approved as a learning site. Kathleen Whyte will return to work with Grace as a liaison. Glenda Jopling will chair the Lay Supervision team and is looking for some folks to make a two year commitment upon arrival of a candidate, to accompany a candidate while at Grace. Contact George, Glenda or the office if you are interested in joining this team.
Tidbits and Trivia:
Do all the different acronyms confuse you?? Those letter abbreviations that sometimes make you wonder what they mean or have multiple applications. Early in January I saw a notation “BOM” and wondered what Bank of Montreal had to do with Grace… context revealed it was not the BOM I was thinking of but “Board of Management.” In 2015, the United Church of Canada (UCCAN) entered into a full communion with the United Church of Christ (UCC).Historically in Canada, UCC stood for United Church of Canada and if you were in the USA, UCC means United Church of Christ. This becomes an especially important distinction when doing ecumenical work across borders. Within our contexts, UCC is still locally interpreted as our denomination.
Take a Sacred Pause
We live within a vibrant living universe; we are interconnected in the Sacred Web of Existence and inter-related together with All of Life; we are all fractal components of one another and reflect one another in the multitude of living expressions. The Squamish Headman, Seathl, said it profoundly that human beings cannot impact the Earth and All Creatures of the Earth without impacting one another. This is the basis of Indigenous worldview and the values that shape our living. In my opinion, every human culture at one time, knew of this, and was shaped by this inter-relationship.
Begin with a… PAUSE – Stop what you are doing.
Sense – use as many senses as you can. Notice the sounds and smells. Look wide. Look soft. Choose something and look close. Feel with your skin, your bones, your muscles. Feel your breathing. Notice any reactions you might be sensing in yourself – alertness, curiosity, fear, restlessness, attraction, distraction....
Appreciate – focus your attention on something(s) near you. Take as long as you like. Notice all you can about it – its colours, shapes, textures. Appreciate what it is offering to you in this moment. Appreciate it for simply being itself. Acknowledge and give thanks for this gift of Creator/Creation. Speak your gratitude out loud.
Connect – Is there a story, teaching, or image that this brings to mind? Think about who or what depends on this element? On what or on whom does it depend? How does it give? How does it take or receive? Consider any threats to its safety. What will become of it in a day, a year, 10 years, 1000 years? How will threats such as climate change and severe weather patterns impact it?
Respect – think of how you relate to this element. How do your actions or inactions impact this part of Creation? How do you show care and respect for this element? Are there actions you will take to protect, to heal, to honour, or cherish?
Express – show your appreciation and respect by making an offering – you could do this with words, a prayer, a ritual, a song, a dance, for example. You might offer water, tobacco, or a lock of your hair. Take an intentional action in the moment to express your love and respect for this unique and precious part of Creation.
Delight/Deepen – As you leave, or return to your walk or swim or task, allow the feelings and sensations to deepen in you. Delight in the connections you noticed, or the concern you felt. You may want to take time later to reflect, using silence, arts, journaling, or other methods – perhaps in the context of your own spiritual tradition.
Please plan to drop in and share in fellowship by Zoom, Sunday April 25 following worship 2 livestream.
Sun. April 25 Easter 4 Celia Hunter preaching, Sharon worship leader
Tues. April 27 Lunch Bunch and Spiritual Practices noon to 1:00 P.M. Come have virtual lunch with us on Zoom.
Wed. April 28 evening Zoom Craft and Chat at 7:00 P.M. Join us! Bring whatever you like to craft or just come and chat!
Thursday April 29 craft and chat meets Thursday at 11:00 by Zoom.
Sun. May 2 Easter 5 Sharon preaching, Communion
Sun. May 9 Easter 6 Susan Sweet Lebeau preaching Christian Family Sunday Rural Sunday
Sat. May 15 National Chocolate Chip Day—have some fun with that!
Prayers Please
This is a struggling time for people. Everyone is carrying concerns and joys. Pray for all you love, for each other, for this community of faith and for needs locally, nationally, and globally. Thank-you for all prayers.
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