Happenings at an inner city church in Allentown

Archive for the ‘Pastor Lorraine’s ramblings’ Category

Christmas Gift Jigsaw Puzzle

"Firetruck"This Advent season I spent two weeks putting together a jigsaw puzzle in the shape of a firetruck for my grandson Bryce.  He is almost two years old, and loves firetrucks.  I guess part of his fascination is the fact that they live right next to a fire station.  The second thing is that his daddy is a volunteer fireman, and more at this fire house.  So would I be misleading in saying that it runs in the family.  Who knows.  But I do know that whatever Bryce does, he will do it passionately and in a caring way. 

I am so excited to see what Bryce will do when he sees it on Christmas Day.  He already has a jigsaw puzzle of a water hole with lots of animals in his bedroom.  It gave me great joy as I was working on this puzzle these past two weeks, knowing it was for this very special little boy.  It did have my wondering if I had lost a piece or two because it was not the traditional puzzle in a rectangle shape but in the shape of the fire truck.   The ironic thing is that I couldn’t make it on the puzzle table because I am stuck on a puzzle that is taking me forever to finish.  So I put it on the dining room table.  But I finally completed the fire truck, with no pieces missing.  Thank you, God.

May all you who read this have a blessed Christmas and a healthy 2012.  Pastor Lorraine

Puzzles n’ more Puzzles

   These are three of my favorite jigsaw puzzles:  the lighthouse reminds me of God’s light that shines on us all, the butterflies represent new life, and the one by the lake, it is called “Autumn Lake”. 

   They have given me much inspiration this past week as I nap in the spare bedroom.  I feel like I am just like my grandson, Bryce who takes a nap in the morning and the afternoon faithfully every day.  I do that too now, as I recover from surgery.  It is so amazing how much the naps help me feel better.

   The last puzzle I made was “Autumn Lake” and as I was working on this one, I remembered why I love making them so much.  Growing up, my parents, me and four other siblings lived with my grandmother.  In the winter time, she would always lay out a jigsaw puzzle in the living room on a card table.  All winter long, we made one puzzle after another.  And there was  no cheating, we were not allowed to find the outside pieces first, like I do now.  I loved sitting with my grandmother, helping find pieces to create the finished puzzle.  That was our special time together.  

     I guess that is why I always enjoyed making jigsaw puzzles with my granddaughter, Jordan.  I saw it as making special moments for Jordan, as my grandmother made for me.  I look forward to making some of those special moments with Bryce as well.  We are just beginning to make some of those heavy, wooden puzzles.  I hope those of you who read this, will remember some of your special moments with grandparents, parents or other family too.  Such precious memories we have and can share with others.  

    On this Labor Day weekend, may you have a day of rest, relaxation and time with family.  God bless all of you!   Pastor Lorraine

Jigsaw Puzzles

   First jigsaw puzzle I finished in a long time.  Finally over vacation, I made a space in the spare bedroom where I can keep the puzzle up no matter how long it takes me.  I really missed putting puzzles together because they are so relaxing and with each piece, you eventually come to see the whole picture. 

    Recently I even finished reading a book entitled, “The Pattern in the Carpet” by Margaret Drabble.  It is a personal history with jigsaws especially going into how they came to be, when and where.  Drabble also goes into some history of games.  It truly was interesting and it certainly peaked my interest again in putting jigsaw puzzles together.  I have many in my home that I glued and then framed.  The one I just finished today is a picture of 85 cats that my granddaughter gave me two Christmases ago.  So you can see how long I pushed aside something I truly love to do.   A perfect way to end my vacation – one more day and then back to church and work. 

    Even though I spent most of my days at home, doing this or that, I truly did enjoy every minute I had, catching up on things that went by the wayside.  I am soon ready to come back to the real world and be involved in ministry at St. James.   May God grant to everyone a time of renewing and relaxation this summer.


  This July 4th weekend, as we attend parties and picnics, let us not forget the real reason we celebrate – our FREEDOM!   Much has changed in our country since 9/11 and I believe now more than ever it is important to show patriotism.  So fly your flags and remember the Pledge of Allegiance:

         I pledge allegiance to the Flag of the United States of American, and to the Republic for which it stands:  one Nation under God, indivisible, with Liberty and Justice for all.

  A Patriotric Prayer                                                                                                                   

      Long may our country’s flag  Proudly wave Over our nation So strong and brave.   Long may our hearts beat With trust and pride As we ask God, the Father To be our loving guide.                      Written by Dorothy Heibel

Saint Pio Centre and Museum

   On the first day of vacation, I went to one of my favorite places to visit – the Saint Padre Pio Centre and Museum.  The center is located off of Rt. 100 South, on Barto Rd., Barto,  PA.    If you have never been there, and are in need of a peaceful, quiet place that’s free, check it out.                                                                                                    

    The rolling hills of Barto, the sacred statues with thousands of prayer requests, rosaries, the chapel, the gift center and museum make this place very sacred.  It’s true I am a Pastor in the United Church of Christ and not catholic, but I do have a love for Saint Francis and Saint Pio.  This center however is about Saint Pio, his life, his miracles, and his healings.  The museum even has a video which I recommend watching as it tells about his life along with the many he healed.

    If you are in need of a quiet place to rest, to gather your thoughts, to reflect, then think about coming to the Saint Padre Pio Centre and Museum.  There are benches at various places for you to sit and just be. 

   PRAY, HOPE AND DON’T WORRY – one of the sayings of Saint Pio.

Home Sweet Home

   How do we handle it or how do we protect ourselves, our families, and our homes when we’ve been burglarized?   This question comes way to close to home as I think about my next-door neighbor whose home was burglarized yesterday afternoon. 

   The policeman who came to speak with me and other neighbors told us to be on the alert, keep everything locked up and be on watch for anything out of the ordinary.  The burglars are believed to have been interrupted either by my leaving at 1:55PM or the owner coming home at 3PM.  And since they didn’t get what they wanted – we were all told they would be back.

    It really is scary when I think about it, both for our neighbors and for us, Stan and I.  Because other than the same neighbor almost having their truck stolen from their driveway about two years ago, we’ve really not had any problems for over 25 years since we moved in.                                             
    We all felt safe living here, but now we question it.  Even though my home was not broken into, my sense of safety, of a safe haven has been altered.  So what to do?   How do we keep our homes and those in them safe? 

   One statement comes to mind from Joyce Meyer’s book, “Power Thoughts”:         1)  I will not live in fear.

   I also try to remember the verse from Joshua 1:9:  “Have I not commanded you?  Be strong and of good courage; be not frightened, neither be dismayed; for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”

    As I work through what I am feeling, maybe my sharing will help you in what you face in your life.   Aloha (the breath of God is in our presence).