Summer is upon us, with many opportunities that are worthwhile. Families have the chance to get together and go on vacations and outings during off-times together. Baseballs fly through the air and cheering parents enjoy it as much as their kids who participate. Softball includes even many fathers and mothers who wish to have physical activity. Golfers are generally golfing all year round but maybe have more opportunities with longer daylight hours, and no freezing days. Fishermen, too, can find more opportunities to seek out their favorite fishing hole - and swimming is the delight of everyone as they try to beat the heat in a vigorous way. Of course, lawns to mow, hay to bail, weeds to cut, berries to gather, fruit to pick, gardens to tend, vegetables to can, etc., also add up to much additional work!

I was just taking a little inventory after last Sunday's service and I realized that a number of our families were already on vacation. We had the smallest attendance that we have had in a long time! I heard our Bishop say at Annual Conference that we weren't interested primarily in numbers, but he continued to say, "If my son was represented by the one number that wasn't there, I'd want you to be concerned."

I think his statement helps us to realize the value of church attendance. The family indeed is important, and there are times when we should be with our family rather than in a church service -- but to give our family leadership in the church is so important.

Oh, sometimes when you come to church your conscience is pricked, sometimes you may become depressed because your attention becomes focused upon your failures--but would you desire to live in a community without a church? Would you want all moral judgments hushed? Would you want the chaos that would come about in a completely permissive society?

On the other hand, where else can you hear about God's forgiving love, about God's acceptance, about God's desire to give you abundant life?

The church has great, meaning in our corporate life. Let's treat it that way. God bless you during this summer - but make the church a part of your plans - even when you, are in another community take time to worship God.

In this Memorial Day Week remember that a lot of men do not have the privilege of worshipping with us because they gave their lives that we might continue to have our freedom - including the freedom of worship. Anything worth dying for - ought to be worth living for!

Back to "Letters to St. Paul's"

Back to Homepage