The brethren wrap up their
Tabernacles reports for 2004
Following are Feast of Tabernacles reports readers have sent to The Journal. This is the fourth and final installment of reports covering the 2004 festival.
Note that The Journal will sometimes publish more than one report per Feast site when multiple reports are submitted.
GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. --God's festival honored the beautiful Grand Valley of western Colorado for the fifth year in a row in a nonaffiliated site open to all Christians. The observance was hosted by the Christian Church of God of Grand Junction.
We were surrounded by high mountains, desert vistas and orchards and wineries dissected by the Colorado and Gunnison rivers, and we were greatly blessed by the presence of God's Spirit.
Daily attendance varied between 63 and 74, and the Feast was dominated by a feeling of freedom, openness, excitement and friendship.
Brethren came from as far away as New York and California and many points in between.
Truly an interdenominational gathering of the brethren, the Feast saw Messianic groups and many individuals not affiliated with any group.
The ground shared by all, however, was to want to have their names to be found in God's book of life, the true Church of God.
The subjects of Feast messages included Christ, our High Priest after the order of Melchizedek, by Rich Traver; the holy days, an overview of God's plan for man, by Rod England; how our mistakes help us to grow, by Charter Chadwick; the many blessings mankind receives from God's law, by Coy Colbert; examples, pro and con, of wine and strong drink in the Bible, by Tom Kelly; the importance of choosing your friends wisely, by Elbert Keefauver; holy times, a gift of great value established forever, by Bob Wright; God's educational program for the Millennium, by Mr. Traver; the source, the power and the blessings of love, by Eric Katzer; and the Last Great Day and the new beginning, by Del Leger.
Activities included a get-acquainted social with lots of good food and friendly conversation; a complimentary gourmet senior luncheon enjoyed by 36 of the brethren; an actively participated-in open-forum Bible question-and-answer session; a complimentary family day at a fun park with paddleboats, bumper cars, batting cages, miniature golf, etc.; an excellent video presentation proving the route of the Exodus; a riotous, fun-filled, all-volunteer variety show; and a western dinner-dance with really good music you would actually dance to.
Inspiring special music, congregational singing and prayer services gave all a feeling of piece, tranquillity and real joy in the presence of the Holy Spirit.
Make your plans now for 2005 by visiting www.geocities.com/gjfestival or calling (970) 858-9299. Pastor Del Leger, Grand Junction, Colo.
Supporting orphans at the Feast
GUADALAJARA, Mexico--An unusual tradition began five years ago when a group of people gathered to discuss how they would organize and plan a Feast of Tabernacles. "What will be our sacrifice before God?" was a question they asked.
This was a catalyst for a completely different way of looking at the eight-day festival observance.
The desire to spill over into the community in which we chose to operate the Feast was our goal. Another way of describing the community-service project that we seek out from year to year is our effort to reveal the heart of our Father to those around us.
This year the opportunity for service presenting itself was an orphanage in Guadalajara. We received information about the critical needs of these children from a group of Canadians and Americans living in the area who provided the only means of support for the orphanage.
We learned that the nuns caring for the children were, on occasion, eating every other day so that the children would have food. These were street kids, and many were victims of HIV-positive families.
Armed with our lists of supplies and a Spanish dictionary, we hired two vans and two drivers, making our first stop at Sam's Club. Like service projects in years past, we divided our lists, assigning each of the five couples the supplies they were to shop for. We arrived at the orphanage with food and supplies, clad in work clothes, with our sleeves rolled up.
We were prepared for whatever jobs we might be able to help at. The needs of the orphanage were so great they were overwhelming, but we tackled what we could.
We know that eventually the food runs out and the supplies are all used up. Certainly one day of labor will not fix any of the problems these people face from day to day.
Those of us who have participated as well as those who have lent support discovered that what we take away from the experience from year to year is more valuable than whatever we leave behind. Kaye H. Murphy, Scottsdale, Ariz.
Grace and peace, brethren
HARRISON HOT SPRINGS, B.C., Canada--God's children gathered in the millennial setting of Harrison Hot Springs for the fifth year in a row. Canadians traveled from cities, towns and villages in British Columbia, Alberta, Manitoba and Ontario. Their U.S. brethren drove and flew in, representing Missouri, Utah, Texas, Iowa, Colorado and Kentucky--quite a family reunion for Feast of Tabernacles 2004 sponsored by members of the Church of God International.
The tone was set on opening night at the hospitality get-together. God's Spirit was in abundance as familiar friends and brethren shook hands and hugged, melting away the past 12 months as though they were mere minutes. New acquaintances quickly forged family bonds that will last into eternity.
"All Things Are Ready, Come to the Feast" was the first hymn as 60 brethren lifted their voices in praise to our Father and Brother.
Bob Swimm, Paul Messier and Alex Kennedy served as worship leaders during this year's Feast. Special music enhanced the services as Frank Bean and Messrs. Messier, Kennedy and Swimm each provided solos.
On the Last Great Day moving and emotional versions of "The Holy City" by Vivian Rust and "How Great Thou Art" by Sharon See were heard via audiotape. We were blessed to have Pansy Alcorn play the keyboard for services as well as accompany some of the special music.
Bob Swimm had the honor of giving the first-day and Last Great Day sermons. His "The Train's Done Gone" opening message stressed the urgency to be ready and prepared to board the train to the Kingdom.
The Last Great Day presentation compared the fallacies of the world's "great" religions and the simple truth of God's Word as to life after death, moving nearly everyone to tears as Ezekiel 37 came alive with descriptions of scenarios at the graves of our loved ones: wee infants, little children, 50-year mates and beloved grandparents as they again receive the breath of life and, now, God's Spirit.
Charles Groce, operations manager for the CGI, based near Tyler, Texas, abandoned the lectern (as is his style), connecting personally with the brethren as he spoke on why it so vital we keep the Feast, not only as an act of obedience and worship but because it lights the way for those whose lives we touch on a daily basis.
His second message warned of the iniquity around us.
Ken Kerr Jr. preceded Mr. Groce's first message with a sermonette comparing us with salt (once a valuable commodity) and suggesting we can be a continual offering to God.
Ben Chapman interrupted his Feast at Salt Lake City, Utah, to bring us a sermon confirming that the Feast of Tabernacles has a lot to do with government. Two days later he spoke of a "silent" gift in the church that needs to be greatly increased and "shouted": the gift of healing.
Again, Mr. Kerr gave a sermonette preceding Mr. Chapman's second sermon, warning of Satan's attacks on our time: the diversions of television, music and the computer from our need for prayer, study and meditation.
Alex Kennedy spoke of another of the gifts we need to avail ourselves of as he emotionally delivered his message, "The Gift of Forgiveness and Love."
Robert Alcorn asked, "Are you willing to follow Jesus Christ?," citing the many examples from the original disciples.
Festival coordinator Ken Register preached a straightforward sermon examining our calling, noting that "not many wise men now are called, not many noble."
Bob Swimm's Bible study went through the lessons from "The Preacher" in Ecclesiastes and how our lives are at best the "vanity of vanities" as we plod our way to the permanency of the Kingdom from our temporary "tabernacles," our very bodies.
Rain (and it occurred only once) forced the cancellation of our outdoor picnic, so we just moved it indoors to the Chilliwack Room.
There was the third annual talent and fun show, with the brethren showcasing their gifts at singing, guitar, keyboard, skits and readings. The highlights were the recitation by Ken Lofts of the sad tale of "Sam McGee" and Frank Sinatra wannabe Eddie Rolecki, who brought down the house.
Our other planned activity was the pizza dinner, after which we viewed the video of the 2002 fun show, and again it was Eddie who drew the most applause and gave the most pleasure.
Another activity some of the brethren engaged in was a tour up Lake Harrison toward the Frasier River, viewing the natural beauty of the area from the other side.
Most days the brethren gathered for a community lunch in the Chilliwack Room or over at The Pub.
One other note on the spiritual side were two presentations by Mr. Kennedy and Mr. Swimm on the "new" part of some of our worship services, the intercessory prayer. This was prompted by Mrs. Gertrude Moore having to leave after the first service because of illness. It wasn't the same without Gert. Mr. Chapman's sermon had a major impact as more than 20 brethren asked to be anointed.
Several of the ladies met with Mrs. Register to discuss women's role in the church and make preparations for Feast 2005.
Another wonderful accomplishment was the formation of a new fellowship that was to begin immediately over in Penticton. Last year's Feast bore the fruit of a new CGI fellowship group at Calgary, Alta.
Many people made this Feast the best ever, but a special tip of the cap to Mrs. Alcorn and Ken Kerr Jr., who brought his recording equipment and was responsible for the wonderful sound system and taped everything. He had hoped to webcast live to those unable to attend, but the hotel's facilities did not have the required setup.
The 2004 sermons and pictures are available to be viewed by logging on to the CGI Canada's site (www.cgicanada.org).
We were saddened not to have Wilf Seal, who passed away earlier this year, but were heartened to have Joan, whose service and grace to the brethren were not abated in spite of the hurt of her loss.
Mr. Groce set the tone for the Feast when he opened with "Grace and Peace, Brethren." Mr. Swimm closed with the same words and added: "God be with you all till we meet again." Bob Swimm, Southgate, Ky.
HOT SPRINGS, Ark.--I'm happy to report that both United Christian Ministries festival sites, at Sevierville, Tenn., and Hot Springs, were successful. The theme was "Behold, I Make All Things New."
I want to thank the speakers who gave sermons, sermonettes and lectures that seemed exceptionally inspired. God just poured out His grace and truth for us.
The singing was inspiring and upbeat. The special music was wonderful. Thanks to everyone who served in any way.
It seems that everyone who attended was in a wonderful attitude, and we experienced a little foretaste of what it will be like when, at last, the events that are pictured by the festivals will be fulfilled. We will then be with our Savior and Lord, Jesus Christ, and our Heavenly Father in His Kingdom. Then we will finally have peace on this earth.
It is not possible for man to bring the kind of peace God has for His family, but soon we will see it in all its glory. Let us pray always for His Kingdom to come so all of God's creation can finally live without the curse Adam, through Satan's influence, brought to man.
The attendance in Sevierville was very close to last year, though most of the Birmingham congregation attended in Hot Springs. The combined attendance was about 450.
I want to give a special thanks to Fred Porter and the Sabbath Day Church of God congregation in Hot Springs. Because of the size of our attendance and a problem with scheduling at the Embassy Suites, we had to make a last-minute change. The Hot Springs brethren graciously opened the doors to their building for us, and it was just ideal for our meetings. God has blessed them with a very nice building, and they use it for His glory.
We discussed the possibility of combining our efforts next year to accommodate more brethren who want to keep the Feast with us in Hot Springs. If it is God's will I would certainly like to do that. We will keep you informed as we draw nearer to the time.
We also plan to continue the site in Sevierville. There is a core group that needs to attend there.
We invite you to attend with us next year in either location. Ray Wooten, Pelham, Ala.
LOS OSOS, Calif.--U.S. and Canadian brethren of the Church of the Eternal God in the U.S.A. and the Church of God a Christian Fellowship in Canada met together in Los Osos for the Feast of Tabernacles.
We used the outstanding facilities of the Sea Pines Resort, which allowed most attendees to stay in this campuslike setting. Highlights included a special '50s-era dance, horseback rides to the adjacent beach area, wine tasting and dining in the surrounding Central California coast communities.
We are pleased to welcome Joe Bourque of Colorado as a newly baptized member of God's church. After morning services on Oct. 1 Mr. Bourque was baptized. Most of the brethren were present, and we all joined in celebrating this meaningful occurrence.
One infant, Caymus Harris, son of Robb and Laura Harris, received the special blessing of little children on Oct. 3. We also had guests attending our site, adding greatly to the warm atmosphere of fellowship.
Sermons from this year's FOT will be available on the church's Web page. Also, Edwin Pope announced that we plan to use this facility again next year. Dave Harris, Fort Collins, Colo.
MERIMBULA, Australia--And greetings, friends around the world! The last day of September was the first day of the Feast, and after an early-morning barbecue we met at the Sapphire Community Center in Merimbula for a GTA (Garner Ted Armstrong) video that was recorded on the first day of the Feast on Oct. 5, 1998.
In the afternoon we left town and went to Tura Beach to attend a United Church of God meeting.
We arrived early before the United Church of God meeting began. It was a joyful and exciting experience to meet and greet and see the looks of unexpected surprise on the faces of old friends we had fellowshipped with in earlier times as they arrived at the hall.
With the hugs and handshakes and being surrounded by our friends, some of whom we had not seen for many years, it seemed like being in a miniresurrection.
After the meeting we spent more time talking and sharing news with them, and it turned out to be an especially good and enjoyable day.
Back at our Intercontinental Church of God Feast in Merimbula, we had at least one GTA video and a barbecue every day. On the sixth day, Tuesday, we were joined in the afternoon by United Church of God members who decided to hold their picnic barbecue at the same park on the shores of Merimbula Lake.
Our numbers were also boosted by some pelicans that joined us for lunch.
There was hardly enough room on the two cookers to cope with all the burnt onion rings and other things, but we had another enjoyable time together.
Some of the more adventurous went out to sea to see some of the thousands of whales that travel south to their summer feeding places at this time of year.
The GTA videos we watched each day at our meetings were mostly about the Feast of Tabernacles, which, Garner Ted agreed, chronologically represent the millennial Kingdom of God. But also GTA said that, if this was all there was, we should be living in temporary dwellings all year and live in permanent dwellings at the Feast.
So he further expanded the figurative meaning of the Feast to represent the dwelling or tabernacling of God's Spirit together with the spirit of man in the minds of our temporal bodies from the time of baptism until the resurrection.
The Last Day was a Great Day too. After a breakfast barbecue and watching a GTA video at our morning meeting, we went to Tura Beach again in the afternoon, making more the merrier, filling each other in on things and helping make the moments linger longer. David Moffitt, email@example.com, North Sydney, Australia.
Rejoicing before the Lord
TAGAYTAY CITY, Cavite, Philippines--Every Feast of Booths provides reasons for it to be fondly, particularly and specially remembered. This year the Church of God Internationally Affiliated Associates (Church of God -IAA) has plentiful reasons to rejoice and to remember the Feast.
Overlooking the famous Taal Lake and Taal volcano, having refreshing and relaxing weather, the GSP Maria Kalaw-Katigbak Retreat Center in Tagaytay is a wonderful setting. It is ideal for enjoyment, fellowship, meditation and worship.
Surrounded by the splendor of God's creation, the brethren could not help but be inspired.
Indeed, even this year's exceptional sukkot was undoubtedly both inspired and inspiring. Instead of simply throwing in coconut leaves above a four-post bamboo frame, the coconut leaves were woven and made into roofs and walls.
Astoundingly, when the sukkot was almost finished, two beautiful rainbows appeared right above it. The brethren were so moved that they could not help but pray and praise God.
Also amazing was how our sukkot survived a night of strong winds and rains. It was actually amusing that, on the morning after, the first thing everyone did was to check whether the tent had stood against the night's weather.
Later that morning, however, our sukkot gave in to the winds and rains, compelling the brethren to build a new sukkot and serving as a reminder that, even if one works hard on some material thing, it too will fade away.
But immediately the brethren picked up the pieces and reerected the fallen structure.
This incident reminded us that a righteous man may fall seven times but he will always stand up (Proverbs 24:16).
In spite of the occasional rains, however, the Church of God -IAA was blessed with sunny days that were made even more enjoyable by numerous outdoor activities.
This year's main outdoor game was a scavenger hunt wherein the brethren were divided into two teams. The hunt ended with a motivating and touching message--"Let brotherly love continue"--and with a fond fellowship over scrumptious bread baked by one of the brethren.
The, "battle," though did not end there because the next playing ground was Jollibee's play place. There the fun and games were continued and the birthdays of four Church of God -IAA brethren were celebrated (Ruby, Bebe, Eryka and De-Anne). The exciting party was made even wackier by the "baby bubot" costumes donned by everyone.
On the other hand, chilly nights were made cozier by joyful singing. With everyone circling around whoever was playing the guitar, songs ranged from pop songs to worship songs. It was during one of these nights that it was excitedly declared that the group would perform a song-and-dance number on the Last Great Day.
"When the Spirit of the Lord" and a Hebrew folk song taken from Psalm 133 were sung by The Virgin Daughters of Jerusalem group (daughters of church members), together with the Women of Israel group (the mothers and wives) dancing with tambourines, and the Mighty Men of Israel (the husbands) with The Sons of David (sons of church members) playing the musical instruments, it was stirring to see the brethren united in performance and in worship.
Of course, the Feast would not have as much meaning and impact without the motivational and inspirational sermons and sermonettes for eight solid days.
The theme for this year's festival was "Rejoicing Before the Lord." Sermons defined biblical joy, which is a disposition in life because of God's promises and great acts and blessings as opposed of a feeling of being happy.
There were sermons that spoke about the poor and destitute and how God expects His people to treat them. Will there be poor in the Millennium? Definitely! And there are laws to be restored and to be followed to develop godly character by teaching the people to treat them the godly way.
Sermons and sermonettes also revolved around the way of life of the church in the first century, which we must again restore so that the church can have a community life and relationship with one another to develop brotherly love and godly concern, working on a single goal to preach the gospel of the Kingdom of God.
There were also living testimonials of the speakers in sharing their life struggles and examples of faith by overcoming obstacles just to follow God, which definitely inspired the congregation, knowing that most of the brethren have the same struggle in this life.
The Feast essentially ended with a composition made by the pastor saying that with everything he has seen and experienced during this Feast, referring to the many problems in this life and the way to the Feast and yet the brethren having the faith to still keep God's Word, he believes that it is possible we will all make it to the Kingdom of God as well.
Now, even with the many reasons the Church of God -IAA had this year to keep the Feast, there is no reason that can top rejoicing evermore with the Lord. Chrys Chua and Enrique M. Gabuyo, Calamba, Philippines.
OCHO RIOS, Jamaica--With high attendances of 271 on the weekly Sabbath and 266 on the Last Great Day, the Church of God International celebrated the Feast of Tabernacles in Ocho Rios.
"Ivan the Terrible" (Hurricane Ivan) left the area along the north coast from Montego Bay eastwards of the largest English-speaking Caribbean island mostly unscathed. So this site blessedly escaped the ill effects of this year's busy hurricane season.
Since the local church has rapidly grown in attendance in recent years, it met for the first time in a large meeting room above a restaurant called The Ruins. This location supplied the gathered Feastgoers listening to sermons with a striking millennial backdrop outside. As seen to the congregation's right through the bank of windows that mostly formed the room's walls, a nearby waterfall flowed through lush tropical greenery.
The general theme of the speakers consisted of warnings against materialism and making this life our priority as Christians when Tabernacles in type points to our present lives as being aliens and sojourners in a temporary world.
The local speakers employed a particularly powerful metaphor by comparing this world to Babylon, which represents not merely sin, confusion or a false religious system but economic power and wealth (See Revelation 18:9-23).
Resident pastor Ian Boyne, in his Last Great Day message, "Confronting the Twins," pointed out it's much easier for people in the Church of God to condemn Roman Catholicism, Babylon's religious side, than to escape the pressures exerted against Feast and Sabbath observance and the temptations presented by the desires to pursue wealth, Babylon's economic side.
We need, he observed, more sermons condemning materialism, not just those attacking Babylon and her daughters, since people in the Church of God movement will find economic Babylon's offers of pleasure, money and illicit sex much more alluring than the doctrines of Catholicism.
Other messages Pastor Boyne gave argued the case that people cannot be true Christians without observing the holy days and that Jonathan's self-sacrificing relationship with David has not been sufficiently extolled or appreciated by Christians.
Deacon Glenford Smith gave a powerful message against passion, pride and pleasure that perhaps for many was the outstanding message delivered at this site.
The traveling speaker was Duane Nichol, who gave strong messages about the "Cortez principle," of burning our bridges with the world, and the "poignancy of the fig tree," about the need to produce fruit.
Other sermons were by local deacon George Ramocan, who spoke about how not to be distracted by Babylon's allures and financial traps while pursuing the Christian life and that we shouldn't think God has left us to struggle alone despite the hardships and sacrifices we make as Christians, since He gives us help in fighting evil spiritual forces, such as through His unseen angels.
Ray Curtis, a speaker from an American independent group, also gave one sermon.
Social activities at the Feast site included the spectacularly successful Jamaican Juice Night featuring karaoke versions of popular American songs unusually well sung in most cases by local talent (mainly choir members or special-music performers).
The next night's Family Fun Show, with the theme "The Pride of Africa," was full of inventive musical acts and a play with a spiritual theme.
Other social activities were a quiz competition between junior and senior teams, sports day, youth Bible study, couples' rap session and singles' mingle.
A spiritual workshop, led by Deacon Ramocan, allowed the congregation to share its solutions to three theoretical dilemmas of Christians torn between spiritual and physical goals.
As for the annual Herbert W. Armstrong Memorial Presentation, Sandra-Mae Robinson once again emerged triumphant. She faced down a strong second-place challenge by Erlett Findlay while speaking against the sacred-names doctrine.
In this contest, which had four entrants this year, each speaker is given up to 20 minutes to defend as effectively as possible the same distinctive doctrine of the Church of God movement. Miss Robinson retained the trophy and claimed a first-place prize of J$10,000, or about US$167.
On the Last Great Day, on the morning before services, Pastor Boyne and Deacon Paul O'Connor baptized 11 people in the ocean off the main beach in Ocho Rios.
For a local church of around 230 in attendance in two congregations, this is a remarkable level of growth. (By contrast, even including all the international visitors, the United Church of God in Jamaica had 148 at its Feast site and the LCG roughly 120. Only about 20 Americans came to the CGI Feast site, so it was attended mostly by local people.)
What helps make this growth possible, besides God's blessing and calling? Part of it results from dynamism of the local leadership and the flexibility the local church has to have religious services in a traditionally emotional Jamaican style (including an emphasis on music) while maintaining a strong doctrinal and intellectual focus.
More specifically, the Jamaican CGI's evangelism has adopted the strategy of deliberately targeting other Sabbatarians, such as Seventh-day Adventists and Church of God (Seventh Day) members, on the wedge issue of the holy days.
Most conspicuously, some 20 CG7 members attended at least part of the Feast with the CGI while still going to regular Sabbath services with their own church.
As a result of a strong emphasis on local and personal evangelism, including public debates with traditional Christians of various denominations, the Jamaican CGI has undergone remarkable growth in recent years.
With North American congregations of the Church of God movement generally treading water or in decline as the number of deaths likely exceed baptisms in many congregations, we may find it wise to learn from what the Jamaican CGI congregations are doing when such fruit is borne during their Feast itself. Eric V. Snow, Wixom, Mich.
Like coming home since 1987
WAGONER, Okla.--The Church of God International has held the Feast near Wagoner continuously since 1987, so being there feels like coming home to many of us who have attended there year after year.
Set in Sequoyah State Park and on a peninsula in Lake Gibson, the venue is scenic and peaceful; the deer are thick; fish wait to be caught; the folks who attend there are loving and committed to making each other's Feast the best ever each year.
This year about 200 people attended and participated in activities planned by Ron Elkins, festival coordinator, and his wife, Clara, along with help from many other volunteers.
The activities included an outdoor potluck, two hayrides and outdoor catered meals, a boat ride, sports tournaments, dance instruction (from Kelly Meyer, a member who is a professional instructor), a family dance and a fun show.
Music abounded at the Feast this year. Two evening hymn-alongs provided opportunity for singing. Because of so many volunteers for special music, we had two or three musical presentations at each service.
After several years without a choir, we even had a small group of singers who harmonized together.
On the first day I had an announcement made for interested singers to come to the piano after morning services. By afternoon we had nine people singing "Come to the Feast," and they did a nice job. Some joked about the "five-minute practice," but it was really about 30 minutes for some good parts singers to learn their parts.
I had announced that it would be a "group," but the announcer upgraded us to a "choir," and by the time our performance was announced we had become the "Tabernacle Chorale." You gotta admire the enthusiasm of announcers.
Uplifting sermons came from Mr. Elkins, Wayne Turnbull, Carl Fritts, Vance Stinson, Barnabas Grayson, Frank Marang, C.L. Osterloh, Max Davis and Bronson James (who preceded his Last Great Day message with a powerful vocal solo for which he accompanied himself on the piano). Jim Ryan also gave two sermonettes.
Children's Sabbath-school classes were directed by Suzanne Loomis and conducted for enthusiastic youngsters. Classes were provided for teens. The little ones did a superb job of performing special music on Youth Day. The teens also did a fine job of providing prayers, announcements and song-leading that day.
A teen, Gerald Saul, organized teen social activities and did a lot of work with the sound system and with directing music at the hymn-alongs.
Another young adult, Daniel de Jarnette, directed music during services. A great group of young people is waiting to contribute to the church in the near future!
We were blessed with glorious fall weather for nearly the entire Feast, which allowed the many outdoor activities to be successful. But it finally began to rain on the Last Great Day.
My family drove halfway home from the Feast in the rain but then drove out of it and saw a rainbow for many miles as we traveled. I hope that's a sign of a good year coming. The rainbow reminded me of lines from the song I'd sung for special music earlier in the day, "May the Good Lord Bless and Keep You."
The lines I thought of: "May you long recall the rainbows, / Then you'll soon forget the rain. / May the warm and tender mem'ries / Be the ones that will remain."
I hope everyone has good memories from whatever Feast site he attended. Kathy Coleman, Manhattan, Kan.
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