Autumn has truly arrived.  The weather has chilled and the days have shortened.  As last year ended I would leave the building after meetings with daylight still streaming through the trees.  Now evening meetings begin with darkness embracing the windows.  

            There is something enlivening about autumn.  The brisk air seems to call me out of summer somnolence. 

There is also something comforting about autumn, I feel enwrapped in a blanket of security and peace.  It is something about the early darkness that does that for me.

That seems a perfect combination: enlivened and enwrapped.  (And a seeming contradiction; but who cares.  Life is full of happy contradictions.)

This coming weekend (which will be this past weekend by the time you read this) our congregation will be physically “divided”.  Some will be here in Belmont for one of our two Sunday services, others will be at Sandy Island where yet another Sunday service will take place.  We will be separated by geography, by environment and by that Sunday’s experience, and yet we will remain one congregation, one Church.  A paradox; a contradiction.

When I was young, contradictions irked me; but if described as a paradox, they intrigued me.

Funny how a name can change things.  Of course, if I use the word “paradox”, I am implying that both things are true.  But if I use the word “contradiction”, I often do so in a somewhat condemnatory manner.

May we all feel enlivened by the spirit and energy of autumn and by the spirit and energy of this congregation; and may we all feel enwrapped in the security and peace of autumn and in the security, peace and support of this community.  And may we love the paradox.