re: Rector’s newsletter article for October, 2009

From the Rector’s Desk:

Marianne and I had a wonderful vacation during August on Dodge Pond near Rangeley, Maine. We took the dogs for walks and explored the area waterways in our kayaks.

I read a big book about Abraham Lincoln and his Cabinet by Doris Kearns Goodwin (Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln). I also read A Most Wanted Man by John LeCarre. I got hooked on a new series by Alexander McCall Smith: These are novels about a Scottish philosopher-busybody named Isabel Dalhousie who solves mysteries while editing the Journal of Applied Ethics and still taking time to have tea with her niece.

We worshiped at Church of the Good Shepherd, Rangeley. While we were in Maine the new rector, The Rev. Jud Pealer (and spouse Sandy) arrived and he officiated at his first services. Fr. Pealer was rector at St. Eustace, Lake Placid earlier this decade. Everybody looked very happy with their choice, and we pray the Pealers’ will find Rangeley a satisfying and fruitful missionary outpost for ministry.

While on vacation I thought how wonderful it would be to be able to row a boat next year in Maine. A few years ago Marianne gave me a birthday present of rowing lessons, and then I drove regularly to Fish Creek (Saratoga Lake) to row. The long drive early in the morning became too much for me (and too dark at 5 am during September as well), and I gave it up. But this summer I became obsessed with the idea of finding a used rowing shell to buy. I found a nice boat on Craig’s List in Falmouth, MA., but someone else got to it ahead of me. Eventually, I located another one in Boston, and I successfully negotiated the sale. When we returned from Maine we made the trip to Boston and brought the boat back on my trailer. We did the trip in one long day! After getting the boat home I made some needed repairs and painted the top. Fortunately, I had the able assistance of Adrain Clayton, who is a professional painter and small boat expert.

Coincidentally, earlier this year the city of Watervliet embarked on a long-range plan to develop it’s waterfront as a rowing center. So far they have installed a terrific new dock designed especially for rowing shells and kayaks. I am blessed indeed to have a convenient place to launch my new boat! This was totally unexpected. I had assumed I would be traveling to Albany to row my boat. God is good!

It happened that when I was getting ready to launch my rowing shell this afternoon, the city manager of Watervliet, Mr. Mark Gleason, stopped by to ask me if I was enjoying the new dock. He was quite pleased that I was making use of their facilities. He said that a number of local schools plan on using the dock next year. In the future there will be extra parking and boat storage space added, as well as other amenities.

I look forward to helping with the development of the new rowing center across the river, and God willing, making new friends with members of the various clubs and teams that will no doubt be drawn to this wonderful new recreational facility.

I never cease to be amazed at how God works in my life to achieve His purposes!

Blessings, Michael+


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