New Life Episcopal Church

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Deacon’s Dismissal

Piety

Old book showing inscription inside front cover

A little leather-bound book, in French, published 1802, titled Exercices de Piété [Exercises in Piety]. My Aunt inscribed the flyleaf, “Bought at a book stall along the Seine, 1935-1936.” She translated the first paragraph, “How you will act the rest of your life and also the habits which are formed – either will lead you…

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Fall short

I can’t recall quite where we met. I see him from time to time, here and there. I always like being in his company. He has an equable disposition and nothing much riles him. He has strong opinions yet expresses them evenhandedly. He’s OK with it when I don’t agree, though mostly I do. He’s…

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Letter

A letter is a tolerable substitute for a visit. If I can’t visit, I write. I have an old Royal typewriter to help me. I roll in a bit of paper, type with two fingers, sometimes 30 words a minute. If you look up the word “visit,” you’ll find there’s some heft to it: To…

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Dining

The lady is elegant, dressed to the nines. We are a ragtag bunch, cooking and serving a monthly Sunday meal in the parish hall for any hungry folks who might show up. She comes to every meal, but arrives as the meal is ending. We know her well and greet her warmly. As the other…

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Spare change

Standing in the checkout line at a chain pharmacy, two girls just ahead of me clutched donuts, peanuts, chips, candy bars, and a crumply five dollar bill. Their items scanned, they were 35 cents short. “You can put something back,” said the cashier. The line shuffled. The girls looked at each other. Then, good luck!…

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Chores

I had chores as a kid. I took out the trash and I cut the grass. Frequently, I was dispatched to my grandmother’s home, not far away, to adjust her TV. The same problem generally occurred at the start of Disney or Lawrence Welk. The “horizontal hold” or “vertical roll” on her black and white…

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Be of good cheer

I hereby bid 2019 a hearty “Adieu!” … that’s French … à dieu … to God! Adieu, 2019! You weren’t much fun … not the best year … sad in many ways. In the year ahead, to one and all, I will say, “Be of good cheer!” With God’s beneficence, “Be of good cheer!” will brighten the day of…

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Solstice

The sun rises late this time of year. Nine hours daylight, the sun descends, we are in darkness again. This lack of light weighs upon me, more now than once, for the workings of the world are askew, enmity is abroad, and I long for the return of light. The days will grow longer and,…

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Sweep

In my early twenties, I took a job in a machine shop. I was low man on the totem pole save for the old man who swept the floor and redd up the shop. One day, I got myself into a mess on what should have been a simple job. I felt the sidelong glances…

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U-Haul

She’d been with him 20 years but whatever fire and energy had kept them together was all but gone. On a snowy January day, she packed what was hers into a U-Haul trailer, hitched it to her old Jeep station wagon and started west toward Seattle. She had a daughter there who was none too…

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