Devotions from Tri-City ELCA Churches – Pastor Barbara Caine of Holy Redeemer, June 23, 2021

Devotion for June 23, 2021 from Pastor Barbara Caine of Holy Redeemer:

“It’ll take a while to get the hang of it,” I said to my five-year-old grandson, Mason.  I’m making him an afghan and, just like his older cousin when he turned five, I let him pick what pattern and colors he wanted.  He loves the vintage Mario Brothers game his dad lets him play as a special treat, so he chose a Mario Brothers afghan.

The problem is, it’s taken some getting used to.  Actually, it’s really hard!  Finding a pattern, adjusting it to the characters Mason wanted, and ordering 25 colors of yarn was the easy part.  I’ve gone through tons of videos, started it three times, pulled it all out and have finally settled on the hook, the tension and stitches I’m using to complete the panels. The next steps involve blocking each panel, connecting them all and putting on the border.  Phew!  It ain’t easy!  But it’ll be worth it to see Mason cuddling up in it, to know that this work will allow him to feel my hugs even when I’m not with him.


“It’ll take a while to get the hang of it,” we agreed at our Planning Group.  We were talking about holding in-person worship after a year and three months of worshiping online.  We need to pick out a new pattern, and what colors we want.  The problem is, it’s taken some getting used to.  And, actually, it’s really hard!  Choosing the software, getting the electronic adapters, the hardware, and deciding to try blending Zoom and in-person worship, is complicated, but that is the easy part.  The hard part is finding the pattern, working out the hook, the tension, and the stitches.  In other words, developing a pattern of worship, advertising, making an in-house plan that is safe, and putting it all together.  

We’ve already dismantled our ideas and started again a few times.  We’ll all need to work together to complete the job descriptions, cable the service together, and move forward into this gift of re-examining our worship practices and finding patterns that are meaningful.  And it’ll all be worth it when we raise our voices in a blend of electronic and in-house worship!  What joy to be able to continue to join together in many ways, worshiping this God who holds us close, and has held us close throughout these difficult months!  And it’s worth it when this work will allow us all to continue to feel God’s presence, no matter where we are.

In Christ,
Pastor Barbara

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