I Am the American Flag

flagsSunday Message by Rev. Pat Bessey

In just a few short weeks it will be officially summer, and I don’t know about you, but I haven’t seen spring! I am writing this on Monday, Memorial Day, and it is cold and gloomy. I did get some annuals planted yesterday, and the beauty they create in my yard always makes me happy. However, it wasn’t without help from the black flies and mosquitoes!

Memorial Day is a time for us to remember those who sacrificed their lives in service for our freedom. Many of us have family members or close friends that we have lost, and we have the opportunity to honor them on this special day.

Memorial weekend also kicks off the summer season for many. It means opening up summer cottages and camps, gearing up for vacations, and attending graduations and weddings. And those of you from my generation will remember this — it is now appropriate to wear white shoes (smile).

On Sunday I chose to do a reading called “I Am the American Flag.” It has three requests of each of us.

The first is to “be proud of our country.” There is so much about her that is beautiful, compassionate, tender, powerful, yet gentle.

Second is to “be humble.” Look not at the mistakes that still remain. Settle for nothing less than to make a commitment to what you can do, where you are, with what you have to clean up the error and the shame.

And the third is to “be renewed.” Yes, renew your faith in God. Renew your pledge to follow the spiritual path.

The American Flag has a lot more to say. so I invite you to listen to the message.

I am very excited to meet and learn from our special guest, Coleen O’Connell, this coming weekend. We are celebrating the Season for the Earth, and Coleen is perfect fit for us. Here is a little bit about who she is and what she’s done.

O’Connell, director and founder of Lesley University’s Master of Science Program in Ecological Teaching and Learning, has been named 2013 Eberhard Thiele Environmental Educator. The award, bestowed by the Maine Environmental Education Association, recognizes her distinguished work and enduring contributions to the environmental education field, and lauds her creative and innovative approaches to environmental education programming.

“Anytime you’re recognized by your peers, it’s a wonderful thing,” said O’Connell, whose career in environmental education and ecology studies spans 30 years. “In a sense, this award really recognizes that commitment and that passion of the last 30 years of my life.”

You do not want to miss this on Saturday. This is a critical time in our country’s history, as well as that of the planet. We are being called into service — Coleen will help guide us as to what we can do in our corner of the world. Lunch will be provided. The cost is $60 for the day; however, we never turn anyone away. Whatever you can contribute will be accepted. She will be speaking on Sunday morning and doing a two-hour presentation following lunch on Sunday.

Speaking of lunch… this week will be Potluck Sunday, so your contribution to providing a treat to share will be greatly appreciated. And lastly, I want to extend a special thanks to the angels who gifted us with a brand new grill. This will be perfect for our vegan BBQ potluck on June 30.

You are a blessing in my life,
Rev. Patricia Bessey

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