From Father Iain, All Saints Chiang Mai
Harvest Festival on the farm – October 2015
How did you read this week’s title? Live now, meaning we should live in the present, or live now, meaning it is happening now, at this very minute: live on TV? Sometimes we are so taken up with watching live events – sports, concerts, politics, disasters and crisis – that we fail to live in the now ourselves.
Our 2018 Harvest Festival is coming up in two weeks, and the picture above shows some of the younger people of All Saints at the harvest festival in 2015. They have all grown, almost beyond recognition, and two are now back in the States. Children have the blessing of living in the moment. They want things now, because now is the only time they know. That can be good and bad, but most of us adults have the opposite problem. So often we are so much longing for that future event, that new job opportunity, that holiday, that new relationship, that retirement, that we fail to live in the moment. In doing so we can fail to live at all.
Living in the Now!
I am excited about the new possibilities at All Saints: a new building, a registered foundation, new opportunities for work and service, but I have realised that it has been leading me away from the joy of living in what God has given now.
Counting the congregation is useful, as it gives us an indication of how we are growing, but it can lead us into the false idea that things will be so much better in the future when we have more people. Likewise, the desire for a new building can remove our focus from worshipping God where we are now, and it is God we worship not the building, or even the people.
We will never get to the future, for when we do get there, it will no longer be the future, but simply more now. Now is that time that God has given us. Let us be thankful now, and really live each day that God has given us.
Our scripture readings this Sunday will be Song of Solomon 2:8-13, James 1:17-27, and Mark 7:1-8, 14-15, 21-23, and we will be singing the hymns All Creatures of our God and King, O Thou Who Camest from Above, Let All Mortal Flesh Keep Silent, and Oh for a thousand Tongues to Sing! The readings can be found via this link and the sermons from Sunday 12th and Sunday 18th August can now be viewed via the All Saints audio-visual page!
As mentioned above, our Harvest Festival will be on Sunday 16th September! We will again have the great blessing of meeting amongst the animals and nature at Thung Dong Farm.
September is early for Americans, who celebrate Thanksgiving at the end of November, and quite early for Canadians, who celebrate at the end of October, but it is the normal time for English harvest festivals. In any case, our date has been chosen as it is the only time the farm is available in the next three months!
We hope once again to be joined by children from the Youth Charity Foundation orphanage.
Cars will leave All Saints at 9:30 a.m., arriving on the farm around 10:45 a.m. The service will begin around 11:30 a.m., and we will share in a potluck lunch at around 12:45 p.m. (Please bring lots of food to share!)
In the afternoon we will have a chance to tour the farm, play games, or just relax.
There will be tea and refreshments around 3:30 p.m. and then we plan to leave the farm at around 4 p.m.
We should arrive back at the church by about 5 p.m.
All are welcome, but please sign-up or email me to say you are coming!
All Saints Hymnal
The draft of the All Saints Hymnal is now complete including most of the hymns we have sung regularly over the last five years. I have now to add in the new suggestions you have submitted!
Please let me have any other ideas as soon as possible, or you will miss this chance to help develop our worship at All Saints!
All Saints’ Trustees Meeting
The next meeting of the All Saints Trustees will be on Monday 3rd September at 6 p.m.
If you don’t know the way to All Saints, directions can be found on the Where and When page.
Most people get to hear about us via the internet or by word of mouth, so please feel free to pass on this email to others.
All are welcome to join us as we share the presence of the risen Jesus in our lives! We hope to see you soon and that you will enjoy worshipping with us,