Thursday, 5 October 2017
Dear Epiphany Family,
The time at Thousand Island Park was everything for which I had hoped. The weather wasn’t great the first month, but this past month it suddenly turned to summer and there’s been ample time to enjoy The River; more boating than swimming, but I’m not complaining.
Tom and I have never been here for this length of time, nor so late in the season when so few cottages are occupied. The quiet is bliss. Typically our 4.5 mile morning walk is interrupted because of conversations with neighbors and friends, but these past three weeks we often encounter only the birds and squirrels. Esther loves being able to run free.
We had grand intentions of worshiping in Canada, at least for a few Sundays. There’s a nice cathedral in Kingston (only 30 minutes drive), and several parish churches nearby, but it was too enticing to hop in the boat and drive across The River to Clayton, to Christ Church, where we have gotten to know a few people, and even took part in their major fall fete to raise money. We did miss one Sunday, however. We started out for Christ Church from the boathouse admitting that it was pretty foggy, but we both felt certain the fog was lifting; we could see the island just across from ours. But no sooner were we underway when another blanket of fog rolled in. It took us 20 minutes to go only 2 miles, and we were both a little rattled. So we landed at a friend’s island where “the liturgy” that morning included coffee and breakfast. We didn’t get home until after 11:30 because it took that long for the fog to lift. So we’ve had some adventures, of course.
A week from today we fly to London. Neither Tom nor I have been to Durham, and we hope to scoot up there for worship on Sunday the 15th. On Tuesday the 17th I leave for Malta, and Tom will stay in London for a few days before heading home. I promise to write to you from Malta. You might have read that the Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall were there this week giving a boost to the Cathedral’s fundraising efforts. I’m sure my colleague, Fr. Simon Godfrey, has been busy preparing for the royal visit. I’ll wait until early next week to remind him that I really am planning to be at Holy Trinity Church in Sleima on the 17th. I hope he is planning on that, too!
Among the blessings of such extended time with Tom has been a regular practice of saying Evening Prayer together. It’s something we’ll cherish from these weeks, and through it God continues to connect my heart with each of you. Your prayers, and mine, are offered up in the wake of hurricanes, and the aftermath of violence in Las Vegas, so that even though we’re physically separated, we remain with one another in Christ Jesus.
On a more personal level I’m thankful for your prayers for Tom’s cousin-in-law, Vic. Tom’s cousin, Linda, with whom he’s very close, and her husband, Vic, were vacationing in Cooperstown, New York, last week; they live in Orange County, California. Vic had a major heart attack, and has since been air-lifted to Rochester. He’s not out of the woods, by any measure. Life is short and we do not have much time to gladden the hearts of those who travel with us, so be swift to love and make haste to be kind.
When I wrote to you in August I said, “I promise to be present where I am, to keep you in my daily prayers, and to trust God who does infinitely more than we can desire or pray for. May God keep you.”—all of that remains true!With my deepest love and respect I am faithfully yours,