Quite the storm we had this week! Very grateful it waited until Sunday night into Monday. If I remember correctly last year we had storms mostly on Sundays. This year is good for the ministry, not so good for the schools. However, we are both better equipped because of COVID and can shift to online if needed.
Although we are in the midst of winter, attention is being directed to spring and Earth Day, gardens, and cleanup. If you have interest in helping plan an Earth Day event, please talk to Mari, Betti Lu Lewis or myself.
I also had a Zoom meeting this week with Cynthia Talbot and Anna Ritchie to discuss writing a grant for our garden. We need to refurbish the raised beds, create a few new ones, get fencing to keep the deer out, and carry through on a few other wonderful ideas. Remember how much we all benefitted from the produce last year. We want to have that again and to also raise enough to give to the Windham Food Pantry or other places where food is needed. Stay tuned because we will be needing a team to make this a reality.
Last Sunday was a first for me! It was the Lunar New Year, or also known of the Chinese New Year. I have never done a talk on this before and I had such a good time. What was so interesting was the feedback I got was how much others enjoyed it as well. One person said they were going to go home and research the animal that was for their birth year.
This year is the year of the Water Rabbit. It is rare for the Water Rabbit. The last time was in 1963. The animal sign comes up every 12 years. For the Asian population this is a highly celebrated holiday.
While Western astrology is detailed, Chinese astrology is even more complex and nuanced, incorporating not just the 12 Chinese astrology signs but also the five Chinese zodiac elements—earth, metal, water, wood and fire — and yin and yang energy.
What makes this year special is because the rabbit is combined with the water element.
“The legend is the signs were decided by a race across the river to the palace. Rabbit finished fourth, after being saved from drowning by Dragon and the appearance of a passing log.
Therefore, Rabbit years bring lucky breaks and partnerships, for those on their true paths. Although Rabbit is not the strongest animal, its charm and speed attract money, fertility, lovers and success.
There are many special traditions for the Chinese New Year. I highlighted eight and they are:
1. Clean up to prepare for the new year.
2. Decorate to invite good fortune.
3. Visit family.
4. Eat delicious and auspicious food.
5. Hand out red envelops.
6. Watch dragon and lion dances.
7. Make some noise.
8. Protect yourself in the Zodiac year.
If you want to learn more, watch the service.
Next week we will begin the Season for Nonviolence. The talk series will be from the book written by the Dalai Lama called Ethics for the New Millennium.
You are a blessing in my life,
Rev. Patricia Bessey
P.S.: Just a reminder to take care and pay attention to what your body is telling you. If you feel great, join us in person; if you don’t feel so great, join us online.