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Fond Memories

Father Rob's Blog - Sat, 07/25/2015 - 10:32

Dear Friends,

While unpacking in a new city, I’ve been flooded with memories as I open boxes filled with t-shirts of every color from years of VBS.

What does VBS mean to me? It means special moments when the band rocks the church, the kitchen crew scurries to feed the masses, the games, crafts, and drama bring awe and smiles to kids of all ages. VBS is a chance for kids, teens, and adults to travel together as a crew building friendships. Bible verses and stories reaffirm the faith of some and introduce our faith to others. Teen nights after VBS are magical! Bonding over bowling, ice cream, or an outdoor movie are all special times at church. What is better than teens who want to spend time at church?

Over the years, VBS has been a way that our family grew in faith. Whether practicing hand motions to songs, making sample crafts for demo, trying out a game, or decorating the church, my three kids (who are now all young adults) all have such special memories growing up at Saint Matthew’s. VBS helped them to remember Bible verses, to share love and kindness with newcomers, and to keep their faith through rough times and life transitions. For me, it was always the best week of my summer!

Many folks ask which year was my favorite. I can’t answer because each year holds so many very special moments. Volcanoes, ranch hands, crocodiles, an airplane in the parish hall, a Biblical periodic table, and the backdrop of the African plain-they were all crazy ideas that allowed kids to discover God in a creative way. It wasn’t really about the theme, it was about the people.

VBS is a time when everyone does church together! A community of folks all moving in the same direction, to know and share God’s love. It takes a village for it all to happen, and it’s so much fun to be a part of. Spending time together whether you are that six year old in the pew and meeting your crew on the first night, or as a sixty year old volunteering as the photographer, the magic happens and you will feel God’s love. I will be praying that you all have a wonderful VBS and I hope that you are able to take time to be present with each other.

What an awesome way to spend time this summer! Peace, Jodie Leach

King of the... ?

Father Rob's Blog - Thu, 07/23/2015 - 12:04


At first light the other morning a couple fox kits were out in the field having a grand old time.  Eventually their play developed into a game of King of the Hill.

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Then it was ears up, listening for the dangers of the day, and deciding it was time to head for home.


Game of Thrones (July 12, 2015)

Sermons - Sun, 07/12/2015 - 23:28

Surprise! (July 5, 2015)

Sermons - Tue, 07/07/2015 - 01:51

Better Than Love (June 21, 2015)

Sermons - Sun, 06/21/2015 - 20:54

Connected (May 31, 2015)

Sermons - Sun, 06/07/2015 - 19:47

Shoot for the Sky (May 24, 2015)

Sermons - Sun, 05/24/2015 - 22:23

Eternally Grateful

Father Rob's Blog - Mon, 05/18/2015 - 11:07


"Would you like me to take your picture?" I asked the young woman.  She was taking a picture of her friend, and I thought maybe she'd like a picture of the two of them together.  "No," she replied, "We just wanted a picture of the donuts.  We waited an hour for them!"

They had arrived at the donut store--Duck Donuts, as I trust you have gathered--at 6AM...

She went on.  "Some guy ordered 16 dozen."

"Uh, that would be me..."  I admitted sheepishly.  And then  quickly added, "But I did order them a week ago." 

"Oh," she said.  "So you waited a week for them?  I guess an hour wasn't so bad!"    We laughed.

And the donuts?  Holy cow--they were every bit as good as everyone says.  Maybe better even.  Especially the ones with maple icing and bacon.


But you know what was even better? Being  able to do something nice for the folks at St. Matt's who do so much for  others.    For each and every one of the folks I am privileged to serve, I will be eternally grateful.


A Bust With A Nice Payoff

Father Rob's Blog - Tue, 05/12/2015 - 11:11

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"Blue lining" is a term for finding unnamed, unexplored steams that are basically just a blue line on a topographic map.  It takes a lot of research, but the rewards are worth it.  They just don't always include finding fish.

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I recently hike about three mile pretty much straight down only to find a shallow stream that quickly went underground.  Dang--not what I was looking for.   All that was let to do now was the brutal three mile hike that was pretty much straight up.  Turned out, though, that it was worth it. I saw a scarlet tanager just as I reached the top.

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There were also lots of interesting--and beautiful--wild flowers.  And lots of solitude, always a plus in my book.  After climbing back out, there was still time to hit another stream close by.  It had a few fish.

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Getting It (May 10, 2015)

Sermons - Mon, 05/11/2015 - 01:28

What Not to Do

Father Rob's Blog - Thu, 05/07/2015 - 01:10

At church this evening I was walking down a hall and heard voices of couple young ladies in the ladies.  I just assumed it was a couple of our youth group members, and it sounded like they were approaching the door.  So I hid around the corner and figured I'd play a little joke and jump out at them.

They came out the door and around the corner.

I jumped out.

They threw up their arms, screamed, and said "ACK!!!!"

But it was not teenagers from the youth group.  They were not members of the church at all, but from an Narcotics Anonymous meeting in a room in another building.  This was bad.  Very bad.  And though I don't embarrass easily, I was quite embarrassed.    Beet red, I think.  Mortified.

As quickly as possible I began apologizing profusely, explaining I was the pastor of the church, I thought they were teenagers in our youth group, and thought I'd play a little practical joke.  They were both very gracious and laughed.  One even said (when she caught her breath), "Oh, I do things like that all the time."

I was still mortified.

Get Up and Go

Sermons - Wed, 05/06/2015 - 23:26