This is the second last Sunday of our six-week stewardship campaign in support of the budget passed at the annual Vestry meeting earlier this month.
We ask that all of the commitment cards come in by next Sunday. They can be placed on the collection plate, where they will be blessed along with other monetary gifts to the church.
We want to stress that the commitment cards will be kept confidential. Only the envelope secretary, Sandra Colbert, will see them and always confidentiality is part of her job. She will provide data only, without any identification of donors, to other church leaders, particularly our treasurer, to do some analysis of the stewardship program.
The campaign’s theme of Gratitude causes us to remember that our gift to the church – in time, talent and treasure – is returning to God a small portion of the bounty that God has given us. In that exchange, the operations of this church are an expression of our love and service to God.
This is the final week for talks by people about what they are thankful for at this church. So today we welcome Diane Robinson to speak about her experience.
When Sandra Coulson asked me to tell you why I am grateful for Ascension, my first thought was “Don’t get me started” as I was overwhelmed by the list of blessings I have received from my relationship with my family here at Ascension.
- That’s the first one: Ascension is like a family — only better. I get to see all of you more often than my own family, and have Sunday lunch with some of you on a regular basis. And it wouldn’t be family without mentioning the many children who have been baptized and grown up in our Sunday School during the past 17 years.
- It is here within this family that I met, got to know, fell in love with and said good-bye (for now) to the love of my life. Most of you were there through all of this, especially our wedding and later, Dave’s final celebration of life.
- I am grateful for the memories and the friendships that have grown out of this family, some going back over 40 years. I owe most of my house to people like Murray Trussler , who did so much to get it up to speed. In fact, Murray was the first Anglican I met after we moved back to London in the early 1970s.
- I am grateful to be part of this Ascension family that actively seeks out community needs and addresses them, such as the results of the ever-changing Holiday Tree in our Gathering Space, Undie Sunday, Fill the Purse project, prayer shawls, Monica House mother and baby needs, Daily Bread Food Bank, all-candidate meetings at election time, the free blood pressure clinic that is part of our Community Breakfast, the twice-weekly seniors’ exercise program and so many more
- We are a family that seems to run on food, and since I haven’t missed too many meals, that makes me grateful. Our monthly Community Breakfast and seniors’ lunch as well as our dinner never fail to garner compliments. But we also run on spiritual food. There is something very comforting and supportive about sharing a meal around the altar with my Ascension family, a high point in my spiritual life. This makes me very grateful.
- I love belonging to a family that share what it has — whether it is our church space, our personal time, or talents or our prayers.
- I am grateful for the humour, the compassion, the generosity, the love and the friendship evident in so many ways here at Ascension.
- I am grateful for the varied programs and services as well as the musical and organizations talents that have produced dances, concerts and coffee houses held at Ascension over the years.
- I am certainly grateful for the spiritual leadership provided by our priest and associate clergy, our music leaders as well as our students and occasional visiting clergy.
This is a condensed list of my gratitude for Ascension. I hope I have given you food for thought to create your own list of things you are grateful for at Ascension.