From the Pastor’s Desk – June 2018

June 5, 2018

Once again I am amazed at how fast we have arrived at the end of another school year!  Speaking of school, the Carmel New Church School’s commencement ceremony is on Friday morning, June 15th, then the students are off for Summer Break!   I know I am looking forward to a little bit of relaxation this summer myself, because this past year was either one of the busiest years we’ve had or else I’m just getting older and slower.  Either way, I know that I’m ready for some rejuvenation.

This year our New Church day celebration will take place on Sunday, June 17th and the pageant and worship service will be out back behind Waelchli Hall (the gym) at 11:00 a.m.  At the pageant, the ushers will be handing out New Church Day flags and children are invited to bring them up and place them in the flag holders.  Immediately after the service, we will have a BBQ lunch for everyone, please bring a salad or appetizer to share.   After that service, the original part of our Church & School building will be closed for the summer while we do major renovations.  So on June 19th we will have an adult vespers service at the manse to commemorate the 248th birthday of the New Church, since the building will be off limits that week for asbestos removal.

For the rest of the summer, Church will be held in the School in the main hallway with the “chancel” being the front foyer, and the seating down the hallway.  We will also provide mats on the floor up front for the children to sit on.  After consulting with the Pastor’s Council and the Board, it has also been decided that for the duration of the summer we will only be having Family Services.  This means there will be no Sunday School, just a talk for everyone.  There will be a space provided downstairs for a Nursery for those who have infants.

In closing, I was struck by this passage in the Apocalypse Revealed which talks about what the two essential elements of the New Church are supposed to be:  “…that the Lord alone is God of heaven and earth, whose Humanity is Divine; and that people ought to live according to the Ten Commandments” (Apocalypse Revealed 485).   I am particularly interested in the simplicity of these two essentials for the New Church and how easy they are to understand, and yet how we seem to have such difficulty with that second essential – living according to the Ten Commandments.

So as New Church Day approaches this year, and as you prepare for the Holy Supper on June 10th, I invite you to reflect upon which one of the ten commandments you could do a better job of abiding by in your lives.  Also think about how much further along the establishment of the Lord’s New Church on earth would be if people outside our community were to look at our congregation and say to themselves, “There must be something special taught there, everyone seems to shun evils, to act charitably towards their neighbours, and to love worshipping the Lord!”  “And behold, I come quickly; and My reward is with Me, to render to each according as his work shall be. Happy are they who do His commandments, that their authority may be in the tree of life, and they may come into the gates into the city.” (Revelation 22:12,14).

Happy New Church Day to you all! Rev. Brad Heinrichs

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