Hello All, I am filled with gratitude this morning. I am looking out onto a gray and snowy landscape, buffered by the twinkling Christmas lights and warm greenery decorating my space. I am aware of what a privilege it is to pursue this calling I love and engage my life with ever deepening connections to you and to all that is truly holy and sacred. We create miracles, by loving each other well, by being kind in ways both subtle and clear. With our honesty and our openness. With bravery and generous hearts.

As is true for most of us at this time of year, my calendar has been full, some days have been very long and there is still a list waiting. And so, I appreciate this time to reflect. I am almost half way through my collaborative ministry internship. I am writing my mid-year self- evaluation this week. In many ways, I feel like I just got started. I am still getting to know you all and I feel like I meet new people every week. It is a blessing.

This month I had the joy of seeing the Castine church give away a substantial sum of money to worthy organizations serving Hancock County. In a service both meaningful and fun, I heard lessons of generosity and commitment to service. We create miracles. Brian, Lilliana and I attended the Winter Solstice celebration at the Belfast Church and were moved through a story of light and darkness, of inward waiting and jubilant welcome. Through music and story, humor and pageantry we participated in the worship of the earth and her cycles. We create miracles. In Ellsworth I heard of a child dedication, of magic and synergy. I know of vespers happening each week that nourish souls and bodies, and though I am not there as much as I might wish, I feel more whole and content knowing such things exist. We create miracles.

In this time of waiting and preparing, of moving within and of resting life and light, May you all know the gift you are to the world. May you see your existence as a necessary part of the whole. May you hear the voice of wonder and peace speak within you and may you be brave enough to listen. Choose quiet and reflection when it calls you, let yourself know who you are and what you long for. My hope for all this season is an unabashed look at what is true. You are the gift. Whether your journey be big and bold, loud and public…or soft and quiet, gentle and steady. Know you are needed. Trust in yourself…and allow for giving and receiving in equal measure. May it be so.

A very merry blessing on all the Holy days we share.

Collaborative Ministry Intern, UU Belfast, Castine and Ellsworth