Spring renewal

A year into my ministry at Delta United Church (DUC), I received a request from two women who wanted to use the church kitchen to teach young parents how to make delicious, wholesome, and economically friendly food. Every week we gathered in the kitchen, often joined by community workers in the area, to watch them prepare a wonderful lunch. There was always lots of food, laughter, and story telling. This was my introduction to the Crown Point community and I have to say I was deeply moved by witnessing people coming together in community for a common goal.

A seed was planted within me, a seed that would deepen my commitment and passion for community ministry. In the fall of 2013, I purchased an older home in Crown Point within walking distance to Ottawa Street and DUC. I had finally arrived home.

A budding tree branch with blue sky and water in the background.

I have always been drawn to Hamilton, in part because of the easy access to walking along the shore of Lake Ontario, which I find very soothing and healing. I also appreciate the diversity of Hamilton as a city, the commitment to community development, and the focus on justice and health issues. As a person who deeply values community, connection, love and compassion, I hope to write reflections that you will connect with on some level. Renewal is a lovely spring word, for there can be renewal of creation, and renewal of our spirits.

I believe it is our spirits that connect us to each other, no matter what differences we may have; we are all connected in spirit. And it is in this spirit, that I invite you to reflect on how you can renew your spirit this spring… Here are two things that can help renew your spirit:

  1. Be intentional about doing things that bring you joy. Perhaps it is going for a walk in one of our many parks, listening to live local music, hanging out at a café or attending a community yoga class. Sometimes we might feel guilty or self-indulgent when we do things that feed our spirit, but it is critical to our well being to nurture our spirit so that we can go out into the world with renewed energy, hope and joy.
  2. Reach out and connect with others in your community. We know that when we reach out and connect with others for a common goal, we have the opportunity to recharge. Spring is the perfect time for this.
  3. Read your community newspaper and look for upcoming volunteer opportunities and events.
  4. Spend some time reflecting on what nurtures and feeds your spirit. Make a top-10 list, post it on the fridge and put a plan in place so you can enjoy all that life offers!

“We are not human beings having a spiritual experience. We are spiritual beings having a human experience.”
~ Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, Philosopher