DECEMBER 2020 FOCUS NEWSLETTER

DECEMBER 2020 FOCUS NEWSLETTER

PRESIDENT’S MESSAGE

“What is Christmas? It is tenderness for the past, courage for the present, hope for the future. It is a fervent wish that every cup may overflow with blessings rich and eternal, and that every path may lead to peace.” Agnes M. Pahro

I used to wonder if Christmas, one of the grandest of all holiday celebrations, signified more the end of one year or the beginning of another. Perhaps it is more like a timeless leitmotif, symbolizing a rhythmic blending and unification of all years and many faiths, to the extent that they can be. Regardless of which bygone year your thoughts may linger in (yes even this one), if one looks hard enough I know they’ll find some heartfelt tenderness within it.

We have all been tested during 2020, maybe more than ever before: as individuals and within groups, albeit it groups of family, church, or humanity as a whole. Regardless of how one looks at what is currently developing within their individual lives; our Center; and the world, it is so important to observe what is happening with a courage for the present.

Every decision by the current Board has been led by a hope for the future, a hope that our pews will again be filled with members, and our Sanctuary with song and laughter. What, we have all asked ourselves, will help us recover from 2020 and what direction should we go in 2021? Our hearts have always been directed toward betterment, enrichment, growth and unity. It is often hard to know which direction to take in reaching that goal. Regardless of where any path takes us, may we all strive together for peace and Goodwill on Earth?

Our committees have continued working tirelessly to prepare a faith-filled welcoming home for each of you. And we wish we could tell you when that will be. We have been trying to find our way to a “soft opening,” but it requires attorney review and the rewrite of our liability waivers. Even as we make those kinds of plans we watch as the number of cases begin soaring again. At the very heart of all our decisions lies a determination to keep this entire Center and its members safe. We ask for your patience.

Our Acting Ministerial leader, Rev. Phyllis Lambert, assisted by Associate Minister, Jeffrey Rosenthal works tirelessly to ensure that you are spiritually guided and fed on a weekly basis; an Educational Committee works simultaneously to ensure that a variety of speakers and teachers are made available to the Ministerial team, and ultimately to you; and an Organizational Committee presses on in an effort to clean up areas long neglected due to the Covid19 pandemic. We are making progress. Repairs are being made. Bills are getting paid. And, on December 3, we will see a replacement for one of the oldest and remaining original roofs on the rental properties we have. Clean up has begun on property #2680 and we set a deadline for having it rented out and producing income. We set goals. And like many of the wonderful Boards before us, we are getting things done.

In recent weeks we have seen an increase in visiting guests and speakers. We will see an even greater variety of what is offered in 2021; much planning is being done now to ensure the calendar for the New Year is filled. We will see our Sanctuary and classrooms full again.

Committee chairs have been asked to share a message with you in this Focus. They seem so excited to be of service and promote growth.

With a deep tenderness for the past, let us all come together in a new and unified hope for the future. Know that if any of you feel compelled to work toward this unified effort, your ideas and suggestions are always welcomed by this Board. We want to bring you home, all of you.

We wish [for each of you] that every cup may overflow with blessings rich and eternal, and that every path may lead to peace. Linda Viddish

MINISTERIAL MESSAGE

Holiday Greetings Dear Friends,

“And the Angel said unto them, fear not: for behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy which shall be to all people.” (Luke 2:10)

I pray this message finds you well. Here we are approaching the end of another year; 2020. Thank God for the holidays! No matter where you are in life at this moment or where you have been we can spiritually come together for the celebration of the holidays whatever your tradition. As we know the holidays are not about gifts in a material way but gifts of family and loved ones spending time together even it means over a computer or phone.

It makes my heart joyous to drive around town and see the beautiful lights and decorated houses. To me this is positive affirmation that the human spirit continues to soar in faith for better days ahead especially after the year we have all experienced. We have also put the Christmas tree up in the sanctuary and will light the garden as we do every year in joyous celebration of the Spirit of the season. Shining your light will also bring joy to all those around you and out into the world. I ask each of you to shine your divine light and help others by giving what you can to those in need. I am reminded of Matthew 5:14; “You are the light of the world.” A beautiful reminder of who we are meant to be.

I ask you to imagine a Stocking for the world with each of us putting in loving kindness, peace, joy, compassion and service to one another. These are the best gifts we can give to achieve peace on earth. This is my wish for all of you.
Together in love and Spirit,

Rev. Phyllis Lambert

EDUCATION NEWS>

Greetings, from your newly appointed Education Team. We look forward to bringing you classes/workshops, teachers and outside visitors, once we are able to open the Center and welcome you all back. We also want to give our teachers, students and volunteers’ time off during the Holiday Season.

As you know SCOL has had a wonderful healing program over the years, and this will be offered once the Center is open and it is safe for us to be together. We feel the healing program needs to be in person, rather than using Zoom.

SCOL’s other focus has been mediumship classes, they too will be offered once the Center is open.

We would like to offer you the opportunity to add your voice to what type of classes/workshops you would like to see, and be willing to support. This will help the team ensure that the classes and workshops would be well attended, and bring to you an opportunity to learn and grow spiritually. We welcome your suggestions, which can be directed to the church office, email churchoffice@sarasotacenteroflight.com.

Our focus for now is to work with the Ministerial team to assist them with the Sunday a.m. services by bringing in some well known, and some new faces to SCOL to give the spiritual talk during the service. We are exploring the idea of incorporating spirit messages into the a.m. service, by using Zoom. Once we have a schedule of who will be doing the talks, they will be published on the website and via constant contacts.

We look forward to seeing you all again soon, in the meantime, stay safe and healthy. We wish you all Very Happy Holiday.

Lyn Mulder and Kath Curtin
Co-Chairs Education Team.

LIBRARY NEWS

The library has moved to a new home in the Learning Center!

We are reorganizing the look and feel of our amazing array of books to peruse and borrow. Come in and sit while you look for an inspirational book to read or borrow. We have books on Healing, Angels, Spirit Communication, Cosmic Awareness, Self-Help, Notable Authors, and many more.

It will soon be joined by a book store and a gift shop, which will feature items from local artists. We are exploring vendors who may be interested in selling their items on consignment with us, as well as artists to display their work. If you or someone you know may be interested, please contact LaVerne. Work is still underway to create this exciting new addition to our Spiritual experience, but will be completed when we open our church to the public again.

A Healing room in the Learning Center is also being prepared and will be opening soon for the use of our in house healers as well as others.

We are very excited about the new location of the library and book & gift store and Healing room. We think you also will enjoy all that it will offer!!

We are trying to resume a modified Psychic Saturday, plans are being discussed with the board and Tina is keeping a list of those interested in participating. Please contact the office to be put on the list (941-953-6620).

LaVerne Duff
410-440-5288
muttsr4us@gmail.com

ORGANIZATIONAL COMMITTEE

A new committee has been developed to re-organize and clean up the buildings on our campus.

Some items that are not being used in our facilities are being considered for donating, while other items are being stored in cleaned closets and cupboards. We are freshening up the waiting area for guest speakers and mediums in the back of the Sanctuary to make a calm welcoming place for them.

There is a great need for volunteers to help in the clean-up of the Sanctuary, like molding being wiped down and windows being cleaned, as well as moving some file cabinets.

We welcome any assistance with this task. If anyone is interested in helping, please contact LaVerne Duff or Kathy Curtin.

LaVerne Duff
410-440-5288
muttsr4us@gmail.com

HANDS OF LIGHT

Thanksgiving is over and we are looking forward to the winter holidays. Since this has truly been a strange year, many of us are still uncertain about how we will be celebrating them. There is one thing that is certain—your Hands of Light team is excited about hosting coffee hours, fund raisers, fun activities and offering a helping hand where needed once we can safely swing open the doors. Until then, enjoy this holiday season as best you can with all the restrictions. Just think how memorable it will be!

If you have any suggestions for activities, questions or information about joining our team, please call Sherry Brune at 478-461-7581 or email sherbear72811@gmail.com.

HAPPY HOLIDAYS Everyone!!
Your HOL Team Leader,
Sherry Brune

ELEGANT EVENING
2021

Planning for another Elegant Evening fundraiser for next year is underway and it is very exciting. Our theme will be Winter Wonderland.

We are still seeking donations of Christmas decorations you may want to part with after you have created your Christmas holiday this year. We are interested in:

Artificial trees, White lights,
Silver & white balls
Silver wrapping paper, white bows and ribbon,
White poinsettias (artificial), Pine garland, pine cones, etc.

If you wish to donate any of the above items, or have a question, please contact LaVerne at muttsr4us@gmail or 410-440-5288.

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