Now it’s back to the routine as we head into 2016.  We have made our resolutions which will likely betray us in the not too distant future.  The college football bowl games are over, save for the final “Championship” game.  The NFL is moving into their post-season playoff games.  The college basketball season is now into its conference phase and the NBA continues to play meaningless games in preparation for their playoffs, which don’t come until it’s nearly summertime.  No more major holidays are on the horizon, just a few scattered here and there for a few months.  We are back to work and school and THE routine.  You know, routine isn’t so bad when you consider all the busyness of the past six weeks.  So, let’s all settle in for the ordinariness of the season.

I do want to share a couple of things.  We are getting a new phone system at the church.  As the result of efforts to enhance our website and upload content to the internet, we found it necessary to change our internet/phone provider.  We are now using TWC (Time Warner Cable) for these services.  We also found it to be an opportune time to upgrade the phone system which has been in use for the better part of 40 years.  Our new system has been installed and if all goes well will have its “final” connections made before the end of January.  The new phones will have voice mail for Mary Catherine, Ben, Rebecca and me as well as a general voicemail box (no more answering machines in the closet!).  It has other features that are not available with our current system, too.  It will take a month or so for the staff to get used to the new set-up, so be patient with us!

The other day, as I was checking one of the answering machines (see above), I found a message from a woman, Kathy, whose mother is a resident at the Christian Care Communities downtown campus.  She was calling to thank the church for giving her mother a nice Christmas present.  Kathy wanted us to know how excited and grateful her mother was and how appreciative she was of JCC.  I believe the CWF is the real agent of love here, delivering anonymous gifts to residents of our CCC facility downtown.  We do a lot of little things as a congregation that make a difference in other people’s lives. 

I saw a quote from the Talmud on facebook the other day that stayed with me: “Do not be daunted by the enormity of the world’s grief.  Do justly, now.  Love mercy, now.  Walk humbly, now.  You are not obligated to complete the work, but neither are you free to abandon it.”