A Gift of Spirit
As Sarasota Center of Light celebrates its 71st year anniversary as a church, we look back at the gifts given and received that established it’s foundation and sustained it’s expression all these years.
Life is an ever-changing, wonderful opportunity, that allows for us to both discover what we can get from it and what we can give to it. It is how we see it, how we choose to be and what we choose to do that determines how the scales may tip from one side to the other as we seek this balance in life.
For Rev. Dorothy and Dr. Russell Flexer, the founders of Sarasota Center of Light, their nature was to give, and as a result the gifts that they received were immeasurable. The two of them would give everything they have, everything they are,day and night, to establish and develop a church that would make a difference in peoples lives. They believed in the laws of attraction and abundance, and as a result, the gifts that they would receive were both precious and priceless.
They gave with and from their heart and soul, not for reward or return, to be of service and make a difference for others. They would attract to themselves and their spiritual purpose the people who would join with them as spiritual family to help fulfill their dream.
Their dream that came true was a church that would allow for those who would come to experience healing, connection and communication with Spirit, inspiration, education, support, encouragement and fellowship. A church that would make a difference in how they saw themselves, life, and how they lived.
In 1949 it was called Shrine of the Master. Today it is called Sarasota Center of Light and the original vision, purpose and dream lives on. It is reflected in our current vision statement: “A World Awakened to the Love and Light of Spirit”.
The story of the founding of our church and center is a wonderful example of how we can live and give today. We can carry on the legacy of those have come before us. To join together as spiritual family, sharing heart and soul in how we choose to be of service in our lives and in the world.
Now, maybe more than any other time, it is so important that we embrace each other as community (common unity) with compassion, respect, understanding and acceptance. In this way the WE that we are can create the difference that comes from where two or more are joined.
Rev. Dorothy and Dr. Russell were not only inspired by Spirit, they were guided by Spirit, and Spirit work through them to fulfill their purpose. It is our Spirit within, our connection to and expression of Spirit, as each of understand it, that powerfully influences our expression and experience in our lives.
During this month of celebration and Thanksgiving, let us each be the gift that keeps on giving, living our lives from our heart and soul with each other, for the highest good of all. In this way we can all be and receive A Gift of Spirit.
Happy Anniversary to Sarasota Center of Light and a Happy Thanksgiving to all of you!
“Gratitude can transform common days into thanksgivings, turn routine jobs into joy, and change ordinary opportunities into blessings.” – William Arthur Ward (1921 – 1994)
Ideally, most of us would like to feel and express our gratitude on a daily basis. Yet, throughout the long, summer months of isolation and solitude that we have experienced (and continue to), it is just as likely that a number of us have found that to be a constant challenge.
If we are able to penetrate the many layers of our human existence, and dive deeply into that part of the Soul which still recognizes our ordinary and not-so-ordinary opportunities in spite of what the world is doing all around us, we can still find a way to turn our “days into thanksgivings”, as Ward says. Heartfelt “gratitude can transform…and change…opportunities into blessings.” And, I’ll readily admit…although I know those opportunities are right in front of me, it doesn’t mean that I am always able to see them. Still, I keep looking!
You will have noticed that the Board has undergone a number of changes in recent months. Changes that we did not anticipate, and changes that have brought challenge. But change and challenge also brings growth and expansion and that is where we have all locked our scope. We continue to do the work before us.
The Board is working diligently to move forward and, like many of you, looks so forward to opening its doors again. This is a sensitive topic that produces two opinions. There are those who want the Center to open immediately, utilizing strict safety measures, and there are those who feel it would be a disservice to its members, possibly bringing harm to them. Please know that this is a topic under careful deliberation and one in which the Board seriously and equally considers both points of view.
Within the past two months, the Board has established new committees and appointed, by majority vote, new chairpersons. During October, the new Organization Committee, under the direction of co-chairs, Kathleen Curtin and LaVerne Duff, began assessing all the storage areas in our buildings and are readily making plans to clean and organize these areas with limited volunteers and with little-to-no cost to the Center.
We have also established a new Library Committee and appointed a chair, LaVerne Duff. The Library will also house a Gift Shoppe. The Board’s earlier decision to redesign the Foyer for your return presented the perfect opportunity for the library’s expansion. It is now housed in the Learning Center. The bookcases have been moved, painted snow-white, and are in place. Their shelves are full of metaphysical literature and guidance. All the books have been listed and are now being entered into a database for ease in finding exactly what you might be looking for. Plans are also under development for designing a beautiful and serene “Serenity Room.” Our very first designated Healing Room. This room was approved by a previous Board and we are more than happy to see that it is carried out.
A Finance Sub-Committee was established during an Executive Session and had their first meeting in October. They are working hard to identify: 1) how to increase badly needed income, and 2) how to reduce costs. We are no different than any other establishment or church; we have all been hit hard by Covid19.
We look forward to building a new Education Committee going forward…one that will bring a variety of teachers, speakers, and a wide array of topics to choose from.
So, it is an even greater blessing to realize, we are still standing and we will witness another Founders Day Anniversary on November 4, just as we will do for many more years.
We will continue to, as Ward says,
“…transform common days into Thanksgivings, turn routine jobs into joy, and change ordinary opportunities into blessings.”
Happy Anniversary and Time of Thanksgiving,
The Board has approved another Elegant Evening fundraiser to be planned for next year. Our theme will be Winter Wonderland.
We are letting you know in advance, as we are requesting some donations you may want to part with after you have created your Christmas holiday this year. We are interested in:
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 about items, please contact LaVerne at muttsr4us@gmail or 410-440-5288.
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. 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. 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.
We are very excited about the new location of the library and book & gift store. We think you also will enjoy all that it will offer!!
The organizational committee has been formed to organize some of the areas within our buildings to better serve the needs of our members.
We will sort out items that are used by the church, donate items we are no longer using , and store items that we are using into organized closets, cupboards and other areas. This will be accomplished, if possible, while we are not yet opened so that when we do reopen, it will be tidy and inviting.
We welcome any assistance with this task. If anyone is interested in helping, please contact LaVerne or Kathy Curtin.
LaVerne (email@example.com 410-440-5288
It takes time for the great and wonderful God Power and the Angels of Light to bring about all the things that you are praying for; all the things people need. If you have the faith and you don’t give up or give in, that power will work for your benefit; not for a moment, nor just for an hour, but for always. You can count on it. It is divine and it never fails, but remember, you must not lose faith.
Many people imagine that the angels are not pleased with the way things have been handled. The angels don’t lose patience with you, but people of earth may lose patience with each other. The angels understand you and the situations that may depress you. The moment you begin to give way to negative feelings, you hurt yourself and make it almost impossible to receive angel help.
People put up smoke screens between themselves and their angels due to their lack of faith and their inability to recognize the results of their prayers. They seldom see what they thought should manifest. Don’t blame the angels for leaving you. Blame yourself for not understanding and not keeping the faith and for not having patience. Set your pattern by being positive and by coordinating your prayers and goals with the Angels of Light. They know more than you know and see more than you see. The God Power is for everyone to benefit by and from and the angels have closer access to that power. Don’t stand in the way of your own happiness and prosperity. Forgive yourself and keep the faith.
You are loved.