My first Sunday back after my sabbatical was December 3,2017. My last day here was August 31st, summer was ablaze! Now the night’s are cold and very long. Winter is definitely approaching.

I was so grateful to be back home. I was welcomed with loving arms and I am very grateful. The Sunday flowers were given in my honor. I took them home last night after Wednesday’s Wisdom.

There was also a tasty and beautiful chocolate cake which proclaimed “Welcome Home!”
There were three candles to signify the three months I had been away. After two attempts I finally blew out the three candles! (I guess I was internalizing the enormity of what had transpired in those three months.)

It is really great to feel valued.

But the greatest feeling in my heart is gratitude.

Rev. Pattie and me

I am so grateful for  Rev. Pattie Mercado and Rev. Judee Chapman, our two Assistant Ministers, and the consciousness they brought to our Center especially in my absence.  Not only did they each speak once  a month, but also they did all the other work, plus they both continued to do an excellent job in their own ministries. Plus they have their homes and families to look after. Rev. Pattie’s full-time job is Youth and Family Ministry, which grew in my absence. Rev. Judee is the CFO of Mark Optics. Both already have very busy lives! It is an amazing gift of love that they both gave. Some of their responsibilities included: They attended the Board of Trustees Meetings, they ensured that all the administrative work was taken care of, they met with the practitioners for their license reviews, and they did so much more. Rev. Pattie left me a detailed report of many of the activities that they supervised. It is in two-inch-thick file folder.  They hosted the guest speakers. They planned, organized and participated in our annual pledge appreciation dinner. They communicated to the staff and other ministers. They are angels and I am greatly blessed. They kept the Center working so well that many people were surprised that I had already been away three months.

Rev. Judee and Santa
June Dickson, me, Rev. Judee and part of Diane Hennessy 

I am grateful for Rev. Karyn Allen and the excellence she provides as the Creative Arts Ministry. She selects the congregational music, plus AllenDale is the usually the guest musician on the first Sunday of the month. Her contribution is immeasurable. For the guest musicians that Rev. Karyn has arranged and for special concerts, I am grateful. 

I am also very grateful for our Administrator, Diane Hennessy. She has been doing two jobs for several months — upstairs receptionist and business manager, Mondays through Wednesdays, then Thursdays she has been finishing her church-related projects. She has been such a gift to us all, with a consciousness of love and service. Diane’s newest project is to create a Directory of Membership that is up-to-date. We have been eagerly awaiting this idea!

I am grateful Claudia Nelson, our Suites business manager and receptionist for Thursdays and Fridays. She does everything with grace.

I am grateful to Juli Isola for her brilliant work in marketing our Center. Juli’s addition of  the Good News e-newsletter has been a big hit and  a grate help in communicating what was going on in our Center. She has been working closely with Rev. Pattie to plan a strategy for marketing our Center for the past three months but also has developed a plan for 2018.

Then there are all our practitioners, and the rest of the staff ministers, and the many ways in which they contribute.

I am so grateful for all the people who have continued to attend our Center in my absence; each one has blessed us all in a myriad of ways.

Gratitude is a multiplier of good. “My cup is over-flowing so I am drinking from my saucer.”