To receive and share God’s accepting Grace, challenging Wisdom and transforming Love

STEDY, July 4, 2018

“Where’s Papa going with that ax?” said Fern to her mother as they were
setting the table for breakfast. “Out to the hoghouse,” replied Mrs. Arable.

This summer I am doing a rather indulgent challenge as I am trying to read as many of the Newberry award winning books as possible. There are some books so wonderful they shouldn’t only be read when you’re a kid. Last week, between “Bridge to Terabithia” and “Number the Stars” I decided to lighten the mood with “Charlotte’s Web”. I had never actually read this book because I knew the ending and as I opened the cover my dread was only aggravated by the opening lines. An ax, really? I took a deep breath, told myself that if they guillotine the baby pig at the beginning of the story then there would be no story and I forged ahead. I read through Fern, a skinny little girl arguing vehemently with her father to save a seemingly worthless piglet. I cooed over the pictures of her pushing him like a baby in a stroller and was relieved when her uncle agreed to buy Wilbur and keep him where Fern could visit on a daily basis. It is in that barn and from the pit of deep loneliness and homesickness for Fern that he meets a spider named Charlotte. At first Wilbur is a little put off by Charlotte, in particular her eating habits of catching flies and sucking out their blood. She is quick to point out that she has seen what he eats and his habits are also far from elegant. As the summer sets in the two develop a deep friendship and Wilbur becomes quite happy in his barn.
Although he has been spared Fern’s father’s ax, Wilbur’s life was far from safe, especially as fall approaches and thoughts of a Christmas morning bacon feast begin growing in the mind of the farmer. Charlotte promises to help save her friend’s life and she does so by writing “some pig”, followed by “terrific”, “radiant”, and “humble” in her web. Her work draws the attention of the community who agree that this small, seemingly mundane pig does fit these descriptions. The attention earns Wilbur a trip to the fair where he is awarded a prize. Now famous, his life is safe, Wilbur is free to grow old in the warm barn that has become his home.
As the book draws to a close Wilbur and Charlotte have a very candid conversation about their friendship.

“Oh Charlotte,” he said, “to think that when I first met you I thought you were cruel and bloodthirsty!”
When he recovered from his emotion, he spoke again.
“Why did you do all this for me?” he asked. “I don’t deserve it. I’ve never done anything for you.”
“You have been my friend,” replied Charlotte. “That in itself is a tremendous thing. I wove my webs for because I liked you. After all, what’s a life anyway? We’re born, we live a little while, we die. A spider’s life can’t help being something of a mess with all this trapping and eating flies. By helping you, perhaps I was trying to lift up my life a trifle. Heaven knows anyone’s life can stand a little of that.”

Wilbur, overwhelmed by Charlotte’s generosity and sacrifice is upset that he almost missed her friendship simply because she ate differently. The ever-eloquent Charlotte replies that we all have things about us that aren’t pretty, we all have parts of who we are that could turn people away. We also have other, wonderful or terrific parts that sometimes simply need pointing out.
This Fourth we celebrate the birth of our nation, a country divided right down to its immigrant families. People are so angry and have so many unproductive webs where they can suck the life out of others or they can bring life. Hopefully this weekend we can set aside our initial disgust at the things of people’s mouths and instead cling to simple words like “radiant” or “humble” and remember that life is only made beautiful when it is about doing things for others.

~ Upcoming Events ~

Please Note: There will be childcare in the nursery
but Sunday school will be at the beach.

Sunday, July 8
Sunday at the Beach and Paddleboard Yoga

The study of Acts will take us through the middle of July.
What better to complete a book full of islands and shipwrecks than
by spending a Sunday at the beach!
Mother’s Beach in Marina del Rey is a beautiful spot with lots of parking, nice bathrooms, calm water, life guards, picnic areas and a playground. Families are welcome to join us at any point during the day and stay as long as they like.

If you want to come for some early morning sun and stretching, join us for Paddleboard Yoga! The first 30 minutes of the class is dedicated to learning how to properly use a paddleboard and enjoy a peaceful paddle around the harbor. The remaining hour is dedicated to yoga on the paddleboard. Each board has an individual anchor that is dropped down before the Yoga portion of class begins so that the student does not drift away while focusing on their practice. YOGAqua classes are open to “all levels”. Students are taken through a Vinyasa Yoga flow with customized and detailed instruction for the paddleboard so even if they have not been practicing yoga for years, or if they have never been on a paddleboard, they will be able to follow along with no problem.
A single class costs $44 which includes use of a paddleboard.
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Sunday, July 15
Team 3 Acolyting

Children’s Liturgy
10 am | Chapel

Sunday School
10:30 am | Sunday School Classrooms

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Sunday, July 22
Team 4 Acolyting

Children’s Liturgy
10 am | Chapel

Sunday School
10:30 am | Sunday School Classrooms

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Sunday, July 29

Children’s Liturgy
10 am | Chapel

Sunday School
10:30 am | Sunday School Classrooms

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Sunday, August 5
Team 1 Acolyting

Children’s Liturgy
10 am | Chapel

Sunday School
10:30 am | Sunday School Classrooms

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Sunday, August 12
Team 2 Acolyting

Children’s Liturgy
10 am | Chapel

Sunday School
10:30 am | Sunday School Classrooms

Blessing of the Backpacks

Please bring your backpack or any other school supplies
to be blessed before the school year begins.

Please feel free to contact Heather if you have questions.