Although we are now right in the midst of Advent there has continued to be some good work done around Day Camps 2013. 

             I have been able to establish the 3rd Training Camp location, which is a great relief, now we need to recruit 3 experienced Team Leaders for the 3 Training Day Camps.

          This coming Monday is our December committee meeting and I’m pleased that only one member will be absent ( due to the writing of an exam) so we will certainly be putting our heads together to come up with a short list of potential candidates.

          This week also brought the unfortunate news that our 2012 volunteer translator will not be available to help in 2013. This may put a stop to tentative plans for one or two Francophone Day Camps. Translation is such a specialized field and is most time consuming work, worthy of decent payment so to find anyone able to volunteer for the task is not at all easy. If God wants some French language Camps in 2013 He will need to show us the way forward.


       I am looking forward to Monday’s meeting, as the day to day work of this Ministry can sometimes prove lonely. I so value the opportunity to share in decision–making and planning. More on the results of our deliberations next week!


           Despite the frenetic pace around here in the last few days, I have managed to carve out a few spaces of “peace” and have cherished those reflective times away from the kitchen tumult!

      
One glorious discovery was the newly uploaded 2012 Advent Carol Service from Trinity College Cambridge. 


         It is so lovely and I happily watched it over 2 evenings while moving ahead on a couple of pairs of crocheted slippers from the pattern to be found here.




         The two catered meals which I referred to in the previous Post were, thankfully, most successful.  They proved to be extraordinarily labour-intensive, but that was my own fault for suggesting such complex dishes
 ( sigh). If I am asked to do it again next year, I fervently hope I will remember to bear that in mind when assembling possible menus!

Now I just need to deliver the hors d’oeuvres  at the end of the coming week. After that I think my final challenge will be the stuffing and roasting of my friend’s turkey on the 27th.


           
 And so I look forward  to the 3rd Sunday in Advent, tomorrow. After church I am having a young couple to lunch. Guylaine is my former secretary, she and Matthew, who were married last July, now live in Ottawa.
       I am also hoping for a quick visit with former Team Leader, Brenda, who is visiting Montreal this weekend.
    

    

 Tomorrow afternoon, Matthew and Mike ( sons of my Pastor ) are coming for a sleepover while Nick and Sue escape to their cottage for a short Anniversary retreat!

    We are going to make candles together, share High Tea in front of the fire and the boys also want to watch a movie. They are both off to school early Monday morning so I will have a clear field to prepare the dinner for the Day Camp Committee, although Jillian is popping by for an early lunch that day too!

        For that lunch I plan to serve my Roasted Red Pepper Soup, which is very quick and easy to make but delicious and such an appropriate “Christmassy” colour!
                                          Roasted Red Pepper Soup


2 cups chopped roasted red peppers

1 28 oz. can diced tomatoes

2 Tbsp olive oil

1 cup chopped green onions

1 tsp sugar

 1 ½ tsp dried basil


 In a large  saucepan, warm the oil over medium heat and saute the onions for 5-8 mins. Until soft.

 Add the stock, peppers. Tomatoes, sugar and basil. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, cover and simmer for 15 mins.

Puree soup in a food processor, until smooth.

Sevres 4-6 Sunday Thoughts ........

     And now it is Sunday evening. Outside it is snowing hard. Inside I'm snug with my furries, with a gentle fire burning on the hearth.

 The boys are watching "The Nutcracker" on the other laptop, Klara is reading in her room, another moment of peace, Sunday evening as it should be.
     Jenna Smith, from Christian Direction Youth Ministry preached at church this morning on Zephaniah 3:14-20. The Passage contains an exhortation to "Rejoice" directly after a number of prophecies of "woe". Jenna challenged us to  offer our personal definitions of what rejoicing or being joyful look like from a Christian perspective.
     Interestingly many were moved to tears as they spoke about the ways we need to "make room for joy" in lives that can seem filled with tribulations and as we look at our broken world with so many nations in distress and in light of such horrors as the tragedy in Connecticut.
Everyone spoke of how "joy" is definitely nothing to do with "being happy", but is a much more powerful and deeper state of being, and given to us through the indwelling of the Holy Spirit in our lives.
  The whole Service was very moving and offered a "week's worth" of deep thoughts on which to reflect. 
Not at all what one would expect as the secular world spends the Sundays leading up to Christmas in the malls, seeking ways in which to "buy happiness."