Dear Kind and Gentle People,
Today is one of my favorite secular holidays. Yup, April Fool’s Day. This morning at 4 AM at the Portland, Maine airport, on my way to attend a childhood friend’s 60th birthday party in Grand Rapids, an inadvertent "April Fool’s Joke” was played on me. The airport marquee said that my flight was cancelled! HORRORS. Thankfully this turned out it was an error and all my worrying was for nothing, yet another life lesson taught by the cosmos, (again). I endeavor to forsake worry!
Spring in the Grand State of Maine has arrived. March started with a newfangled type of Ash Wednesday, “Ash and Dash,” from the back of my trusty 2005 Scion in the church parking lot and it was quite meaningful. I did open the second-floor windows of “The Mill” on March 18 and howled at the full moon about 1 AM (Yes, it’s true). My maple trees were tapped for the sweet sap to be boiled into syrup. The culmination of this was “Maple Sunday” last week, when we celebrated the gift of the Maple tree. Over 2,000 vehicles came through the sleepy village of Newfield to purchase and gobble up sweet maple products.
Other signs of the season: Mr. and Mrs. Bluebird are busy building a nest outside my door at “The Mill” and the hens have increased their egg production (I wash—not wipe). We have giant frost heaves that are quite dangerous for the bottom of your vehicle on many of our roads. Several of our dirt roads have been impassible due to MUD. Our country roads are posted for weight limits, meaning that pulp trucks and logging trucks do not get to use them until further notice, which also includes the appliance truck delivery. My favorite daffodils are starting to pop out of the earth and the well water has quite an “earthy” seasonal flavor! The giant crackling and frightening noise of the ice going out of the Mill Pond finally happened last week. The sheer sight and sound of this annual event never fails to remind me to respect nature and the Creator of all that is seen and unseen.
Yes, Spring has come and Easter is coming — but not before our hero Jesus is betrayed and tortured to death as a political prisoner. The culmination of our Lenten Journey with the reading of the Passion and the unfolding of Holy Week not so gently reminds us to be steadfast in our prayers. This journey culminates at the foot of the cross and then finally bursts into a grand celebration complete with all five verses of “Lyra Davidica” and hopefully at least two modulations. I pray that the way of life and peace will unfold in the most benevolent outcome for you as we enter the final cadence of our journey into the pure Joy of the Resurrection.
Gobs of blessings and heaps of happiness.
Rev. Dr. Peter Stickney, Chaplain
UCC Musicians Association
P.O. Box 370631
West Hartford, CT 06137
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