First Congregational Church of Kent e-Spire
Volume 2, Number 30
You know, it seems like it never fails. Usually, I have a devil of a time trying to come up with things to write in this space every week. No, really, its true! Most weeks I can stare at my computer, walk aimlessly around the room, and then go get something for lunch, and for all of that I can’t think of anything to write about. Then, week before last, I wrote that article about the Public Religion Research Institute and possible revival of mainline Protestantism, and how our church can be a part of that. And as I was writing that article I thought to myself: “Hey, this is great! After writing this first article I can do a whole series of articles about this!” Yes, friends, I thought that I was all set.
But, as it turned out, last week was Don Connery’s memorial service, so I dedicated my article last week to him. Which was, of course, exactly the right thing to do, and what’s more I thought I could just pick up this week where I left off the week before. But, as things would have it, it now seems I have another thing to write about this week, because it is now just a couple of weeks until September begins, which means its just a couple more weeks until we kick off a brand-new program year here at church on Sunday, September 12th with a little thing I like to call–Rally Sunday!
What is Rally Sunday, you ask? Well, like I said, its the day we start a new church program year, buts its more than that! It is also the day Sunday School starts, so we’ll have the chance to pray for our Sunday School students and teachers. It’s also the day when we’ll bless our schoolkid’s backpacks, and also pray for the folks in our congregation who’ll be teaching in our schools this year. And if that’s not enough, well, as Ron Popeil would say, but wait, there’s more! Because there will be a cookout as well, with food and games and hours of good clean wholesome fun for the whole family.
And while we’re on the subject of the cookout, we could use your help with that. You see, the church will provide the burgers and hot dogs and buns and condiments and so forth, but it would be swell if folks in the church would bring along some side dishes and deserts. And I feel pretty confident about asking this, because I was at the reception following Don Connery’s memorial service, so I’ve seen at first hand how good you folks are at supplying side dishes and deserts! So why don’t you plan on whipping up your favorite dish or desert and bring it along to the cookout following Rally Sunday on Sunday, September 12th. Hey, and while you’re at it, why not invite a friend, so they can enjoy things along with you!
The Hymn of the Week
Our Hymn of the Week for this week is the ever-popular, Fairest Lord Jesus. The words of the hymn are a beautiful meditation on Jesus as the ruler of nature, and on the beauty of nature as both a tribute and a witness to Christ. The hymn is originally German, and it is sometimes referred to as the “Crusader Hymn,” because of a tradition that German crusaders sang on their way to the Holy Land. This tradition is, however, both spurious and wildly ironic. It’s spurious because the words may have originated within the Jesuit Order, which was founded centuries after the Crusades ended, and because the tune only dates back to 1842 (it was adapted from something composed by Franz Liszt, by the way). Its wildly ironic because its difficult to imaging doughty German crusaders singing a song this lovely when they were headed of to the Holy Land to kill as many Muslims as possible–its just not much of a fig.