God is with us!
And greetings from Florida. On Wednesday I was able to celebrate the Theophany of Christ at St. Stephen’s Orthodox Church in Orlando, FL. St. Stephen’s is the parish where I was received into the Orthodox Christian faith back in 2003. Although I was only there for a short season before graduating from Stetson University and moving to South Korea, returning to worship with the faithful there always feels like a homecoming. Continue reading
December 8, 2009
Natumaini ufufuo wa wafu, hata uzima wa ulimwengu utakaokuja.
“I expect the Resurrection of the dead, and the life of the age to come.”
Greetings from North Central Florida! I had thought I’d be writing you from Ohio, where it was the plan to stay until the end of the year as I continue to build up my support network for long-term OCMC missionary service in Tanzania.
A phone call last week changed these plans. My Grandaddy Hargrave, here on a farm just north of Gainesville, passed away early on the morning of St. Nicholas Day, December 6th. I and many in my extended family were able to be with him in his last days. Please pray for the repose of Robert Henry. Continue reading
A certain man asked Christ what he must do in order to inherit eternal life.
Our Lord’s answer was hard: “Go your way, sell whatever you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, take up the cross, and follow Me.” Continue reading
It is rare for me to live in the same dwelling longer than one or two years at a time. Tomorrow will be the fifth time I’ve moved since April of 2008. I am not fond of moving, and so these past several days have been a small misery. Now, at the eleventh hour, there is yet work to be done. Sunday I’m scheduled to speak in Gainesville, so had better be out of Fort Myers by then!
My distaste for moving is not an aversion to travel, nor is it a reluctance to say goodbye. Goodbyes are a promise for meetings again; their sorrow is bright. What dismays me about moving is all the stuff. Continue reading
In the past two weeks, I have visited St. Philip Orthodox Church in Tampa, the OCA Diocese of the South Assembly in Atlanta, and Christ the Savior Orthodox Church in Brooksville, FL. Each was a very good experience and each very different. All three of these groups are pioneering missionary work in Florida and throughout the Southeastern United States. I’ve learned far more from them than the other way round. Continue reading
As part of training for my summer job, I will be in Chicago from Saturday May 16 until Friday the 22nd. Will be quite busy the entire time (8:30 – 6:30 daily), and without transportation. But still, I’ll be in Chicago (specifically, Des Plaines). Are you in Chicago too? Let me know.
This summer, I will be based in Fort Myers and spending a lot of time on the road teaching in a summer reading program. It’s a job I had a few summers ago and will be an ideal way to prepare for full-time “deputation” in the fall. (“deputation” = missionary lingo for hitting the road, visiting people and parishes and spreading the word)
So yesterday I left Gainesville and moved down to Fort Myers, where I’ll be through mid-August with family at a beautiful farm called ECHO. The farewell-for-now to Gainesville went very well, and dinner at the midpoint in Tampa with a good friend was also lovely.
Now I’m immersed in childrens’ books. From Where the Wild Things Are through Fellowship of the Ring, I’ll be teaching the whole gamut. And that means I get to do one of the things I’ve always loved best– become absorbed in the life of characters, feel their sorrows and joys and imagine myself in their shoes. It will be a delight helping kids and adults do the same thing.