Dear Brothers and Sisters,

Week 7 — How are you doing? And just as important… what are you doing to feed your soul… to lift your spirits… to rejuvenate or restore yourself so you can stay as healthy as possible and able to complete the 2020 COVID-19 marathon we are running?

By now many are weary from the isolation… and ready to get back to “normal” — whatever this may be! Yet we also know that we (Canadians, and Ontarians) have yet to flatten the corona curve enough to allow this to happen safely. So how will we survive… and help our loved ones survive the middle section of the race; when tiredness has set in, our beings yearn for human contact and we long to see the finish line in sight?

Here are a few thoughts…

  • Try to stay positive – keep connected, laugh and smile often
  • Focus on what you can control – the virus is beyond your control, yet you can keep yourself (and others) as safe as possible by following guidelines and laws
  • Limit you media intake – Personally, I allow myself (once a day) to check on world, Canadian and regional virus numbers, knowing how the climbing number of cases/deaths saddens my heart. I stay informed, yet limit my time on social media and news networks as over-exposure can be overwhelming and exhausting and depressing.
    Too many Zoom meetings or emails can be exhausting too!
  • Invest in uplifting yourself and others – make phone calls, share uplifting or funny videos, encourage others with your words and actions
  • Engage your 5 senses daily in an intentional way – SAVOUR the smells, the sounds, the tastes, the textures, the sights around you. It IS a beautiful world we live in!
  • Embrace blessings and live with gratitude – daily note one thing you learned, accomplished or are grateful for. This helps to dilute the negativity we absorb from that comes at times of great angst and uncertainty. THANK PEOPLE often.
  • Practice random acts of kindness – sure to put a smile on your face (and the person receiving your kindness) and make you feel good!
  • Help others and let others help you! If you are struggling, reach out… there are people who care and would love to help out! Pay kindness forward!
  • Do something fun EVERY day – read, dance, sing, paint, bake… do woodworking, gardening, genealogy, jigsaw puzzles, run, walk, … whatever brings you joy!
  • Pace yourself – a pandemic is a marathon, not a sprint! Allow yourself quiet time to do nothing… to listen… to be with God. Give yourself permission to “be” rather than feeling you must “do”
  • Imagine the reset button we are all being invited to push! Re-imagine a “new normal”. What changes might you consider in the coming days? What values and priorities REALLY matter and how will you pro-actively act upon these values when the race is over? Perhaps you will advocate more strongly for the environment… for a living wage for all store workers…better recognition and compensation for front-line workers… greater investments in healthcare and restoring manufacturing… greater regulation of long-term care facilities and investment in the same facilities and their staff…
  • Pray for others. Pray for yourself.
  • Breathe deeply. Meditate. Journal. Note “God sightings”, “God winks” where you see God present in your midst. GIVE THANKS!

With a thankful heart for the blessing each of you are!
Be gentle with yourself!

Looking for the latest info regarding COVID-19 from The United Church of Canada?

From the National Church or

From our Horseshoe Falls Regional Council

Worship Offerings/Opportunities

Please find bulletins, full worship liturgies, puzzles, Sunday’s messageand a reminder that communion is included in this week’s home worship as this is the First Sunday of the Month! Have some juice/wine and bread (pita, bagel, cracker, small bun…) ready to partake as we remember one another and are connect by the Spirit of Love in Community!

I encourage folks who know of someone who is shut-in to make a connection with them and if you are able to share some of the resources with them that are being provided on a weekly basis. Maureen has volunteered to print copies of the full service and sermons for Donna, Mary and Jack and Thelma. If you know of someone who would like a copy, please send Maureen an email request.

Lastly, here is the link to some of the weekly offerings for on-line worship (334+)! I hope you are seeking out different experiences, music, worship styles and settings and are open to see how God is blessing in these different contexts and communities!

This week’s prayer as you journey…

God, you are always with me.
You are with me in the day and in the night.
You are with me when I’m happy and when I’m sad.
You are with me when I’m healthy and when I am ill.
You are with me when I am peaceful and when I am worried.
You are with me in my weariness… my busyness…
my moments of being overwhelmed… punchy… peace-filled and panicked by the pandemic.

In this moment, I am feeling (name how you are feeling) because (reasons you are/might be feeling this way).

Help me remember you love me and all your creation
and you are with me and all you have given life.

Be with me… with us… with all your beloved children, creatures and creation;
reminding us in each moment of your peace, your presence and your promises.
In Jesus’ Name I pray. AMEN

Be well!

Sue Cowan
Supply Minister
Carlisle-Kilbride United Churches