The Illinois Great River Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church meets in Peoria during August of each year. There are approximately 1500 delegates and friends who attend the conference which normally runs from Thursday evening to Saturday noon. There is great music, great peaching, many reports, work with finance, new churches being started and others closing and more. It is a great and inspirational time. But in the year of 2020, Pastor Sheri and I sat on couches in the Living Faith community room and watched the proceedings on a computer on Saturday afternoon. Not quite the same! There were two churches in our area which closed their doors for the last time. The Methodist Church at LaHarpe opened in 1850 and the Methodist Church in Vermont opened in 1837. With such a long history, it hurts my heart to see them close. My own church, Friendship, closed several years ago but at least the building survives at the Old Threshers grounds north of Hamilton. So sad to see these long standing churches close. I do understand that there are less people in rural areas due to the small farm largely being part of our past and now there are mainly huge farms so fewer farm families.
A customer brough me a bag of tomatoes so I had to get some bacon and make BLTs. Look forward to them every year.
There was a photo of the Metzger family taken in front of my porch posted on face book. I asked for a copy of the photo as I try to bring all things Metzger back to the family home. As I did not get a reply, I took the photos on my phone to Walgreens to get copies made. That did not work very well. At Walgreens in Macomb no one had on masks despite a sign on the door requesting that they be worn. Makes me uncomfortable as one would think they would do all in their power to protect their customers who likely have health problems or would not be going to a drug store.
On Monday, one of the devotionals which I use asked us to pray for the staff of assisted living facilities. Their jobs are very stressful right now so I was glad to do that. I know several people who work at nursing homes and cannot even begin to understand the stress that they are under trying to keep both the residents and themselves virus free.
You know things are pretty quiet when a high point of the week includes a cactus bloom. I have two very large flat leaved cactus plants. They have bloomed once earlier in the year. First a small bud appears, it grow larger and finally bursts into glorious bloom for one night. Four blossoms began to open on Thursday evening and all were in full bloom by ten pm. They only bloom for one night and by morning the blooms are hanging limply but what a glorious few hours they have. The cactus is called epiphyllum for those wondering.
While speaking of plants, I got one milk weed to live from my yearly planting. It had three Monarch caterpillars on it this week. Hope I can add a few butterflies to the world.
An “average weather day” for yesterday has a high of 85 and a low of 65 degrees. Yesterday those were the high and the low so it was an “average” day. Hope you enjoyed it.
Got a call requesting “ one of those things on legs that looks like a funnel but does not have a hole in the bottom and has a wood thing that goes around and round in it” for working fruits and vegetables. I could not think what it was called either but figured I had one at the store. Looked and sure enough had a colander. Both the customer and I were happy.
Noticed that the solar panels at the Clampitts are complete. One panel at the church was broken this week. Probably a rock was hit by a lawnmower just right. One can see where the projectile hit the panel and the rest of the glass shattered like the windshield of a car would shatter but remain in place. It is my understanding that the panel still will work. As it is only one panel, it will be easy to replace. I think mine are far enough back in my yard that this should not be a problem. Mine continue to work well and continue to help the environment as well as my electric bill.
There was a large gathering in Plymouth on Saturday. There were no masks, no social distancing and no limit to the crowd. For the sake of those present and the families they went home to, I certainly hope that no one there had the virus or had been exposed to it. Though we would all love for “life to get back to normal” is it really worth the risk. Many schools begin this week so please keep all the teachers, students, parents and other staff in your thoughts and prayers.
The weather for the coming week looks beautiful. Enjoy it. “Do no harm, do good, stay in love with God”. Thank you John Wesley and still very good advice. Scatter Kindness.