Easter seems a distant memory and yet we are still in that Liturgical Season . My Orthodox Christian friends are only now entering Holy Week sothis is still very much Eastertide!

   Most of this week seems to have been spent hunched over the keyboard, answering inquiries, sending off Program Manuals and acceptance letters, typing up Minutes, editing documents etc. etc. etc.

    Crosstalk Ministries AGM took place on Tuesday on a lovely Spring evening, in stark contrast to the Blizzard which caused the cancellation of the original meeting. The turnout was small but we had some interesting discussions, particularly around the future of Focus Weekend (A Retreat, historically held on Labour Day Weekend and geared to University age participants), which seems to no longer be meeting a need. It is hoped that a “Re-Focus” group can be formed, composed of young adults in that age range and from whom some new ideas and suggestions might be gleaned.

    It looks as if we will not be able to send a Team to the Reserves of Northern Saskatchewan. This is terribly disappointing and, on a practical level, means a real scramble to find an alternate itinerary for the Team we have been setting aside for that Mission.Fortunately the week also brought the confirmation of several “iffy” Day Camps in other provinces, which is encouraging.

     There is still an urgent need for Team applicants of Leadership age. We have a great group of potential Members but are still woefully behind in terms of those over 18years.

     Next Saturday at this time I will be hosting “Crafts Day”, when a group of Team members gather to make samples of Day Camp Crafts.  At the same time I shall also be babysitting my 2 little Godsons  (William and Alexander) which looks a bit like a recipe for disaster, however several of the “crafters” have expressed delight in having the boys here too, so we will see if any crafts actually get made!


   Spring Cleaning continues apace! I have touched up paint all over the house, cleaned the pantry, washed decks and floors, and got a lot of work done in the garden. Today the first of the Alpine Tulips have popped into bloom and every bush and tree is suddenly looking “greenish’ instead of “brownish” which is very exciting!



 I’ve even squeezed in a bit of sewing. This afternoon I made some really cute Baby Bloomers, with the modifications found here. They are to give to my friend Emily who is about to have a baby girl any day now.

  

 Last evening I made a pot of Red Clam Pasta Sauce, which somehow seems like a suitably Springtime treat. It is very yummy, easy and quick to prepare and freezes well!!

 What could be better?


                                           Red Clam Sauce


2Tbsps. olive oil

1 large onion, chopped                

3large garlic cloves, minced

3Tbsps. oregano

1Tbsp. basil

1tsp. red pepper flakes

1/2cup red wine

¼ cup tomato paste

2 28oz.tins Italian Plum Tomatoes, undrained

2 14oz tins clams, drained with ¾ cup juice reserved

1/3 cup chopped fresh parsley


In a large pot, heat olive oil over medium-high heat and sauté onion and garlic for 10mins. , Stirring frequently. Add herbs, wine, tomato paste, clam juice and canned tomatoes. Bring to a boil and simmer for 30mins,stirring occasionally and breaking up tomatoes.

Add clams and parsley and simmer for another 10mins.

Makes 3 quarts. Sunday Thoughts Once again we have been treated to a beautiful warm and sunny Sunday. Our Service this morning was Holy Communion, which usually takes place on the first Sunday of the month; however Nick will be away at a conference next weekend so it was pushed back to today.
Nick preached on John21:1-14, choosing to show us this video instead of reading the passage. 
     Several members commented that this particular version far better than some of the "cheesier" Biblical films, well-worth a look!
Blair, Fred and Nick played for the worship sings. One of the songs Blair had chosen was "You Are My All in All". I like that song but, unfortunately, as we were singing my mind did a flashback to Liturgical Dances at St. Matthew's and i found it hard not to burst into tears as I thought about beautiful Spring Sundays in that lovely and familiar sanctuary.
    Then ,just a few minutes ago I had a phone call from the former secretary of St. Matthew's telling me of the sudden death of a long-time parishioner whose whole family I have known for many years.
    My dad died on May 2nd,(almost 5 years ago) and I actually think that Spring is a comforting time for a Christian to deal with the death of someone close because all around us we are reminded of God's wonderful promise of renewal, as we look at the wonder of the trees and flowers and grass and, of course as we celebrate the time of Resurrection.
I think I'll Google some of those lovely Orthodox Easter Chants and let my Spirit be uplifted!