Edition: April 13, 2015
How a dog can make a great pastor
MADISON COUNTY, Ga. (UMNS) — The Rev. Hugh Hendrickson in the North Georgia Conference confides that sometimes his dog "Rev" is a better pastor than he is. "With his wagging tail, gentle spirit, and puppy dog kisses," Hendrickson said, his dog often has been "an agent of God's grace." Read Article ...
If a Job is Worth Doing, It's Worth Doing Poorly
by L. Roger Owens
“We will test, try, experiment. We will stumble, no doubt. But we will also learn and improve and grow. We will not shut the door on excellence, but neither will we let excellence shut the door on innovation.“ Read Article ...
We delight in the beauty of the butterfly,
but rarely admit the changes it has gone through to achieve that beauty.
Even after all this time, the sun never says to the earth,
"You owe me."
Look what happens with a love like that...
It lights up the whole sky.
Something of God flows into us from the blue of the sky, the taste of honey, the delicious embrace of water whether cold or hot, and even from sleep itself.
–C. S. Lewis
Spring is nature's way of saying, 'Let's party!'
When all the world appears to be in a tumult, and nature itself is feeling the assault of climate change, the seasons retain their essential rhythm. Yes, fall gives us a premonition of winter, but then, winter, will be forced to relent, once again, to the new beginnings of soft greens, longer light, and the sweet air of spring.
Nature as the First Bible
By Fr. Richard Rohr
“The first Incarnation of God did not happen in Bethlehem 2,000 years ago. That is just when it became human and personal for us, and many people started taking divine embodiment seriously. The initial Incarnation actually happened around 14 billion years ago with "The Big Bang." That is what we call the moment when God decided to materialize and self-expose, at least in this universe. The first "idea" in the mind of God was to make Divine Formlessness into physical form, so that everything visible is a further revelation of what has been going on secretly inside of God from all eternity. Love always outpours! God spoke the Eternal Word/Idea called Christ, "and so it was!" (Genesis 1:9).”
Meet: monthly 1 ½ hours
Where and when:
Alliance: Christ UMC, 470 E. Broadway – Third Thursdays, 1:00 PM
Ashland: Christ UMC, 1140 Claremont Ave. – Second Wednesdays, 1:00 PM
Cleveland: East Shore UMC, 23002 Lakeshore Blvd., Euclid – First Thursdays, 1:30 PM
Medina: Granger UMC, 1235 Granger Rd. – Third Wednesdays, 1:00 PM
New Philadelphia: First UMC, 201 W. High St. – Second Thursdays, 9:00 AM
Sandusky: Trinity UMC, 214 E. Jefferson St. – Second Thursdays, 2:00 PM
If you are interested in being part of one of these groups, it would be helpful if you let us know for planning purposes. For questions and to receive information about a particular group, please call our office 330-456-0486 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
The Program in Pastoral Care and Counseling encourages the spiritual formation of our pastors believing a strong spiritual base is the greatest resource a church leader can possess. It helps us weather the many storms of ministry and deepens the incredible joys ministry provides. Following is a list of Spiritual Directors in our area. We encourage you to take advantage of this rich resource. This listing will appear in each edition of our bi-monthly webpage updates and new names and contact information will be provided as we learn of them and have permission to include them. If you are a director or know of a director that is not included here please let us know.
Debbie Baker - email@example.com
Bruce Batchler-Glader – firstname.lastname@example.org
Harry Finkbone - Finkbone1@gmail.com
Liz Nau – email@example.com
Jennifer Olin-Hitt – firstname.lastname@example.org
Sharon Seyfarth Garner – email@example.com
The Meditation with Nature
by Mary Kurus
Begin this meditation while walking or find a quiet place where you can rest or sit, whatever is most comfortable for you. Take time to leave behind your thoughts, worries, joys, and schedules. Forget about the benefits of exercise, forget about how quickly or slowly you walk, forget your troubles, and stop thinking about what you need to do. Take time to be.
Listen to the sound of the wind, listen to the birds and the sounds they make, hear the crunch of snow under your feet or the breaking of a twig beneath your boots or shoes, feel the air blowing against your face. Become present to the Nature around you. Focus on all parts of Nature around you.
Feel the rock you are sitting on. Touch a plant as you pass it. Stand by a tree and feel the energy it gives you, it has a very powerful energy field. Listen to the sound of the water. Take lots of time to slowly connect with the Nature around you and do this very slowly. Once you have focused on a specific piece of nature around you, open a discussion with that piece of nature, the plant, tree or rock. They would love to talk with you so please take the time to speak with them. Just ask the tree or whatever how it is, does it enjoy life where it is, does it have a message for you? Ask it whatever comes into your mind. Believe me it will answer if you really take the time to listen. Talk to nature and listen to what it has to tell you. Connect with Mother Earth!
Then slowly move your attention to the sky, perhaps a faint outline of the moon that you can still see up above, or the sun that is warming you. Look at the wonderful shapes of the clouds moving above you. Imagine the other planets circling around in such amazing precision. They all move in such delicately balanced patterns. Each planet has its own energy and the energy of each particle in the greater Universe affects each one of us. We are all connected. Imagine the big Universe with our planet the Earth just one small piece of this great Universal Being. See yourself standing on Mother Earth as an essential part of this Universe. Connect with the Universe!
Bring your attention back to Mother Earth. Listen to hear the rhythm of the Earth’s heartbeat. The earth has a pulse, a rhythm unique in this Universe. If you listen in quiet and love, asking to hear the Earth’s heartbeat, you will hear it. It’s very real. Once you hear it, just stay with the beat, the pulse, and the rhythm of Mother Earth. Connect with the pulse, the heartbeat of Mother Earth!
Once you are in full rhythm with the heartbeat of Mother Earth, thank our planet for giving us what we need to live and love so fully and completely. Thank Mother Earth for the many blessings she showers upon us. Feel her strength and courage and become connected to these powerful emotions. Ask her forgiveness for our inability to look after her properly, for the many abuses we are heaping upon her these days. Ask her to show us the way to be more loving and caring of her. Give thanks to Mother Earth!
Guardians of Being: Spiritual Teachings from Dogs and Cats
by Eckhart Tolle and Patrick McDonnell
"I have lived with many Zen masters, all of them cats."
“This wonderfully unique collaboration brings together two masters of their fields, joining original words by spiritual teacher Eckhart Tolle with delightful illustrations by Patrick McDonnell, the creator of the acclaimed comic strip MUTTS. Every heartwarming page provokes thought, insight, and smiling reverence for all beings and each moment.
“More than a collection of witty and charming drawings, the marriage of Patrick McDonnell's art and Eckhart Tolle's words conveys a profound love of nature, of animals, of humans, of all life-forms. Guardians of Being celebrates and reminds us of not only the oneness of all life but also the wonder and joy to be found in the present moment, amid the beauty we sometimes forget to notice all around us.”
Spiritual Formation Gathering and Luncheon
Tuesday, June 16 in the Pavilion’s Upper Room at Noon. Reservation through the Office of Pastoral Care
330-456-0486 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Dogs Balance the Energy Field in Our Homes
by Eckhardt Tolle
Learning to forgive from your dog. Eckhart Tolle and Cesar Milan discuss how dogs bring hope, forgiveness and love into our lives. Dogs balance the entire energy field in the home and connect us with nature.
Eat to Live: The Amazing Nutrient-Rich Program for Fast and Sustained Weight Loss
by Joel Fuhrman, M.D
“EAT TO LIVE offers a highly effective, scientifically proven way to lose weight quickly. The key to Dr. Joel Fuhrman's revolutionary six-week plan is simple: health = nutrients / calories. When the ratio of nutrients to calories in the food you eat is high, you lose weight. The more nutrient-dense food you eat, the less you crave fat, sweets, and high-caloric foods.
“EAT TO LIVE has been revised to include inspiring success stories from people who have used the program to lose shockingly large amounts of weight and recover from life-threatening illnesses; Dr. Fuhrman's nutrient density index; up-to-date scientific research supporting the principles behind Dr. Fuhrman's plan; new recipes and meal ideas; and much more. This easy-to-follow, nutritionally sound diet can help anyone shed pounds quickly-and keep them off. In this new edition, which incorporates the latest scientific nutritional data, Fuhrman's restrictive diet plan is designed for clinically overweight people who suffer from a spectrum of lifestyle/obesity-induced conditions like diabetes and heart disease and need to drop a significant amount of weight fast—about 20 pounds in the first six weeks.”
The East Ohio Conference Pastoral Care Office:
1445 Harrison Avenue NW · Suite 301
Canton, Ohio 44708
Toll Free: 866-456-3600
Office Hours: Monday through Friday 8:30 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
©2016 EAST OHIO CONFERENCE. All Rights Reserved.