In September, as I drive down our country road in Batavia Township, there are signs of harvest everywhere. The green corn is tall and will begin turning yellow in preparation for picking. Soybeans and the third-cutting of hay will undergo similar pre-harvest changes. Beautiful summer flowers are giving way to autumn blossoms. Impatiens are impatient and tired of the summer heat. Once happy zinnia faces are replaced by the gorgeous autumn colors of Chrysanthemums. Even in our carport there are signs of ingathering: a rescued part-Siamese mama cat has given birth to four beautiful kittens.
Though it actually occurs in August (the 30th) this year, our annual Ingathering Service is a beautiful experience when Heritage Church families combine their individual waters into one stream of life that will flow out and touch a needy world community.
One way to be fruitful at Heritage is to become involved in the Religious Education program. Did you know that on any given Sunday morning at Heritage, that 30 percent or more of those in attendance are students, teachers and helpers in Religious Education classes? Amazing! As the current Board President, this reality personally challenged me. How can I really understand the importance and needs of our children and youth without participating in our excellent Religious Education program? The opportunity to team-teach 2nd and 3rd grade class will enable me to grow in this area and still be able to attend many entire worship services. How about you? If you are interested, even just curious, contact our Assistant Minister for Religious Education, Rev. Leslie Woodward.
Many of us were challenged and called to a deeper commitment to racial justice by Rev. Bill’s August 23rd sermon, “Black Lives Matter”. Be sure to frequently visit the “Faith in Action” tab on the Heritage website. There you can find ongoing opportunities for in-depth study and reflection about personal and systemic racism and ways to become involved in actual racial justice projects.
September 20th will be a busy Sunday at Heritage. The Fall Church Council Meeting begins at 8:30 a.m. in the Great Hall. There will be updates and reports from committees and working teams, information about new initiatives, and more. All Heritage Church members are welcome to attend! During that morning’s worship service we will experience harvest in a wonderful way: a Membership Ceremony will welcome those who have felt the call of church membership at Heritage. Following the morning activities and worship service, we will enjoy the bounty of Earth’s harvest and one another’s fellowship at our monthly Potluck Meal.
Phew! Harvest time involves hard work. Blessings on all of your efforts as you experience harvest in its many forms, at home, at Heritage and in the greater community.