• Mother’s Day and Christian Family Sunday

    This weekend is Mother’s Day and Christian Family Sunday.  It is a time to pause and give thanks for all of the extraordinary blessings that we know through our mothers.  It is a time to not only recognize these blessings, but to share our love and appreciation with our mothers.  But what if we allowed this love to overflow so that it spilled far beyond our mothers?  Remember the song from the 1960’s – “love is something if you give it away, you’ll end up having more.”  That is the thing about love.  It is not a limited commodity that we need to hide away and protect.  Rather, when it is shared, it expands and grows.  It needs to be brought into the light of day in order for it to flourish and make a difference. It's just like a magic penny, hold it tight and you won't have any. Lend it, spend it, and you'll have so many they'll roll all over the floor.


    The United Church of Canada is extending an invitation to all of us to make this Mother’s Day more meaningful, inclusive, compassionate and hopeful by supporting families in need at home and around the world.  That is a pretty tall order, but it is possible… if we give love away so that it may expand in our world in ever widening circles.  (And in this time of pandemic, when our usual shopping for gifts is not possible, here is a ready-made solution, complete with e-cards to send to our mothers!) Here is the invitation:

    Are you a mother who wants to make a difference? Is there a mother or someone like a mother you want to honour? Do you know people who have lost mothers or mothers who have lost a child? Does anyone you know find Mother’s Day hard? Are there people in your life whose untraditional family unit deserves recognition and celebration?

    This Mother’s Day, Mission & Service is providing a special opportunity to not only help families in need but also reach out to honour and support our loved ones.

    Make a special Mission & Service gift this Mother’s Day/Christian Family Sunday. Your gift will help families in need at home and abroad, supporting things like prenatal and parenting classes, respite care for families with children, medical clinics for babies and mothers, safe shelter, and education for children.

    At the same time, when you make a gift online, you can do even more good by sending any number of free e-cards. The cards say things like “Mother’s Day can be so hard. I made a gift to support families in need as I thought about you today. I hope knowing you inspire me to make a difference is a comfort” and “The world needs all kinds of families! You are a blessing!” If you are giving offline, feel free to borrow the wording for print cards. Don’t forget to credit your congregation when you make a gift!

    “Mother’s Day is a time when we celebrate mothers. Which is awesome, but not for everyone. For some, the holiday can be a sad or challenging time. We want to do more good by helping families in need and make the holiday itself more inclusive and compassionate,” says Sarah Charters, Acting Director of Philanthropy.

    Charters is encouraging her family to make a gift instead of giving her the usual chocolate and flowers. And she’s honouring her mother by making a donation.

    “Imagine if the church came together to give life-changing gifts, pray, and provide pastoral care and encouragement at the same time,” she says. “What an amazing difference!”

    You can help make Mother’s Day more meaningful, inclusive, and compassionate. Make a gift and send a card today! Your support changes lives!

    Rev. Keith Hagerman

  • Thinking about you

    I hope that you are all staying safe in body, mind and spirit as you navigate the challenges of this third lockdown.  As the pandemic challenges keep unfolding, I realize that I am relying more and more on prayer to strengthen my connections to those who mean so much to me but who I rarely see any more.   So here is my prayer for all of you this day.

    I am thinking of all of you who are continuing to work while also home schooling your children. I pray that you will be given strength and good humour, and that you will give yourself (and your children) patience and compassion as you navigate these challenging days.

    I am thinking of all of you who are weighed down with worry in your life – concerns for aging parents, concerns about getting the vaccine, concerns for family members in other places, concerns about housing and making ends meet.  I pray that the words of faith – “be not afraid” – will give you strength for today, knowing that you are not alone.  In the resurrection stories, the angel at the tomb tells those early followers “do not be afraid”.  Jesus says “Peace I leave with you….  Do not let your hearts be troubled, and do not let them be afraid.”  God journeys with you through these turbulent times.

    I am thinking of all of you as the weather changes. As spring takes hold and buds appear on the trees, I pray for moments of wonder and joy as you see the magic of the changing seasons unfold before you.

    I am thinking of all of you who are entering into treatment or worried about a health issue that you have.  I am praying that you will feel supported by others, that you feel strengthened with gifts that are within you and that you feel held in the tender arms of God.

    I am thinking of all of you whose hearts are heavy with grief, fear, worry, or loneliness. As you navigate the swirling feelings within you, I pray that you will also have moments of peace; through prayer, walks in nature, and daily gifts that remind you that God is with you on this journey.

    I am thinking of all of you who feel exhausted from work, from isolation, and from the sadness of missing the ordinary things we used to enjoy in life. I pray that God will give you strength when you feel depleted, courage when you feel afraid, and hope when you feel despair.

    I am thinking of all of us who have been too long separated from one another. I pray that we hold in our memories the feel of a hug, the warmth of a smile the energy of singing together and the joy of laughing as we stand side by side. But mostly I pray that we will not lose faith or hope that we will get to a new day that has already been imagined in the heart of God. And I pray that we will all be aware that God is with us as we walk from this day to that new day, which awaits our arrival. Amen.

    Rev. Keith Hagerman