A Harvest in Nzige
What a delight to recently receive an email from Niyigena Ephaste, the Rwanda director of International Child Care Ministries (ICCM)! He included a photo of the Nzige children enjoying their first meal with corn harvested from the school land. This is the first harvest grown on land purchased through our Linked with Love partnership.
Ephaste wrote: “I can now say ‘Amen!’ because this is what I was expecting that [by] making parents work together, at the end of the day, [they] can harvest for their children’s consumption instead of having ICCM supply food for the kids. I want to thank you for having enabled the school to buy its own land.”
Many of you participated in last month’s Exit Offering, which raised more than $2,000 for the purchase of cows that will be grazed on the school’s property. Thanks for your continued support of this vital partnership.
Speaking of Food
I found out today that Colleen Dick, a 5th grade teacher at Greece Christian School, had her class celebrate the Jewish Feast of Purim this year. This feast celebrates the ways in which God worked through Mordecai and Esther to deliver their people from the evil Haman. As part of the traditional celebration, donations of food are made to the poor. Colleen encouraged her 5th graders to bring in items to donate to the Pearce Food Cupboard. She sent me a photo of the marvelous response to her invitation.
SWAG in the Spotlight
Our Stewardship with a Goal (SWAG) is currently addressing a need that has developed over the past couple of years. It has become increasingly difficult to find replacement parts for the Family Life Center lighting fixtures, prompting Bob Antes, our facilities director, to explore other lighting options for this well-used room in our building.
Bob has identified an LED fixture that will solve the problem, as well as add the benefit of significant energy savings over the life of the fixtures. This second project in our 2017 list of SWAG is projected to cost $11,000. Your generous gift to “SWAG Project #2” will help us address this need and get our gym in fine shape for the fall. To date, we have received $1,867 for this project. Thanks for helping shed light on this situation!
Orchard Street Happenings
If you’ve been wondering what’s happening with the Orchard Street properties on either side of the entrance to the Pearce parking lot, I want to bring you up to date.
Six trees were identified, following March’s wind storm, as prime candidates for removal; and will be brought down no later than June 22. The removal of these trees will address a safety hazard, as well as enhance the beauty of our Orchard Street properties. Once the trees are down, we can then schedule the contouring and seeding of the two properties where the houses were taken down last fall. There are no immediate plans for the use of these lots, other than to provide increased green space.
My thanks to the Property Committee and facilities director Bob Antes for their attention to our Orchard Street lots.
Nostalgic Moment #478
Alright, I don’t know exactly what number nostalgic moment it was for me; but I recently experienced one as I was looking through photos from my first summer at Pearce. That year, we held a series of what we called “Lawn Chair Events.” For one of those events, held nine years ago this month, we had an outdoor ice cream social on a beautiful summer evening; and listened as Bishop Roller and his wife, Yvonne, engaged in some wonderful storytelling.
As I reflect on the recent past at Pearce, I am challenged to pray for our church’s future. Thank you, for joining with me in praying.
Pearce Reads Sale!
Over the past few years, I regularly featured books that I feel are worth your time and investment. I’m featuring some of those books this summer. Each of them is available for only a $5 donation. Stop by and pick one up to accompany you on your summer vacation!
Speaking of Good Books
I recently finished a fascinating history of the evangelical movement in America, focusing in particular on the movement’s involvement in the political area. If you enjoy history, this is a fascinating tour through the narrative of conservative Protestantism’s influence on our nation. The title is The Evangelicals: The Struggle to Shape American, by Frances Fitzgerald. (Fitzgerald was awarded a Pulitzer and a National Book Award for her history of the Vietnam War: Fire in the Lakes.)
The book has its weaknesses. The first two centuries of evangelical history is dispatched too quickly. Also, the author has a tendency to highlight the Reformed or Calvinist tradition over the Wesleyan-holiness camp. (Being in the Wesleyan-holiness camp, I missed hearing more about the rich history of our emphasis on personal and social reform.) Still, the book is more of a page-turner than is usually expected from 700 pages of history.
I am presently in the midst of Solitude: In Pursuit of a Singular Life in a Crowded World, by Michael Harris. Here’s my disclaimer, the author does not write from a Christian vantage point. Yet, he raises the issue of how our “social media addiction” deters us from experiencing real solitude. As a believer, I come from a tradition that has always encouraged times of solitude and reflection. Yet I find such moments increasingly rare in my own journey. Harris challenges me to be more aware of the shifts that our culture is experiencing due to the connectivity of our digital devices.
I noted that Harris does not write from a Christian viewpoint; I should add that Fitzgerald, as far as I know, makes no claim to faith in Christ either. As a college student, I was taught that all truth is God’s truth wherever it is found. As a result, my reading list has always included secular books to help me better understand this world and my role in it!
So what’s on your bedside table these days?