The people I love

It’s been a good day.  Jamey and Sage drove up from Madison and arrived in Door County this evening.  More on that later.  But first, my pastor…

Nancy Bontempo

I met with Nancy this afternoon to talk with her about what’s going on with her.  She has a very balanced view of her new diagnosis.  She said she cringes when people say they will pray for her healing.  She says, “Who are we to decide what’s good and what’s bad?  If God allows something into our life, then it’s going to be good even if we don’t like it.”  My mother will be happy to hear that Nancy is considering treating her cancer with diet and other natural means.  One of the things we discussed this afternoon is how to take some of the stress out of her work at the church.  Her favorite part about being a pastor is preaching on Sunday mornings, so she will keep that, but she said that there are things members like me can do to help her with her load.

She always wants to make sure that everyone knows she loves them and cares about them.  Now her greatest burden is that there are people she should write to more often or reach out to and she feels as if she’s fallen down on that.  Mind you, everyone in my church feels loved by her, but she would like to be able to do more, and now she finds that she should do less in order to take care of herself.  She mentioned that another woman in the church and I are both good letter writers.  She said that’s something I can do even though I live an hour away from the church.  Another thing that is being considered is something I had started looking into a couple of years ago, an online website where people could fill out a questionnaire about their needs –  such as meals or rides to the doctor’s office or to have something fixed that they can’t do – and people in the church can opt to provide that help for them.  She is beginning to see the need for some sort of formal way to keep track of these things and delegate them to others.

The things we can be in prayer for her about are:

  • that people will step up to help her in her ministry,
  • that God will wrap her in His arms and let her know He loves her all the way through this journey she’s on,
  • and that she will be able to let go and do what she needs to for her own wellbeing.

If you are willing to hold Nancy up in prayer and pass the word along to any Bible study or prayer group you might belong to, would you please send me a short note so that I can tell her what parts of North America are covering her in prayer?  Thank you!

Jamey and Sage spent Memorial Day Weekend at a conference in Madison, or at least Sage did.  Jamey got sick and spent most of his time in the hotel.  They drove up to Door County today to spend several days visiting with me.  Knowing that Jamey has been sick, I was figuring on planning a laid back visit for them.

We have a group here called the Ellison Bay Beautification Project, or EBBP for short.  Last summer, they painted a couple of murals in town, built a butterfly garden, and put several cherry red picnic tables and benches around town.  This year, they are doing a fundraiser so that they can do more projects to try to make Ellison Bay a place that people will stop instead of just driving through.  An artist made fifty birdhouses and people are taking them and decorating them to be sold at local businesses.  I picked up some art supplies and two birdhouses thinking that might be something fun to do with Jamey and Sage.  We might yet do that, but it turns out they are hoping to go to Washington Island tomorrow if the weather is nice.  We will have to play it by ear because I am also expecting our new bathtub to be delivered tomorrow.  Either way, I am glad that we will be able to spend some time together.

I will leave you with a few pictures I took at Turtle Ridge where I picked up the birdhouses:

Turtle Ridge sells leather bags and also clothing and art.

Their grounds are lovely!

Sweetness and light!

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