Showing posts from September 18, 2011

Randi and her boys

Randi lives in a neighbouring community.I do not know her last name.
But I know that she had an illustrious career as a dog trainer.She now owns four sheep dogs, all “rescues”, including a German shepherd.
Randi is completely mobile, but her husband needs to use an electric wheel-chair.
They say that “necessity is the mother of invention”, and Randi has put this proverb to good use.She zooms around the neighbourhood in the wheel-chair, and her four leashed dogs trot along merrily, enjoying their work-outs.It’s a wonderful sight.
Here are some pics of “Randi and her boys”.Sadly they do not convey the wonder of the sight when they are all in full trot.

St. Boniface Church - trial run audio sermon

St. Boniface Church on Siesta Key in Sarasota FL is working towards having audios of sermons on its website.
My 8:00 a.m. sermon was recorded last Sunday and is attached to the website for a trial run.
http://www.bonifacechurch.orgwill take you to the website.  Then click on Worship.  Go to the bottom of the page top hear the sermon.  The sound quality is a bit quirky at the beginning.
The sermon is based on the parable of the workers in the vineyard  (Matthew 20:1-16)
I was surprised to hear how “English” I sound.  I also thought that my voice sounded a bit “parsonical”, and that was not good.
And of course it’s hard to perceive from either a written text or an audio only version the sense of engagement with the congregation which brings preaching to life (or kills it!)
It’s also a bit hard to discern the two places when I was speaking tongue in cheek (here they are in the text form)
1.And, truth to tell, life has been very unfair to me.  If I had gotten only that which I’d deserved I most …

As I walked out

On Tuesday 20th September 2011 I was honoured to be a guest for dinner at the Lakewood Ranch, Florida home of Muriel Quinn, a St. Boniface Church, Sarasota parishioner.
Muriel hails from Oldham, Lancashire.  She is a fabulous woman of my generation, a former teacher of the French language, and now a wonderful singer in our Church choir.
It’s “kinda” cool that she and I have become friends in the fourth quarter of our lives.  Since my move to Florida in 2006 I have come to understand that we humans are never too old to make new friends.
Muriel served us superb rib eye steak, together with baked potato and a delicious salad. ‘Twas a good evening.
Muriel was very happy to include my dog Penne in the invitation.  I was so proud of my pooch.  After her quick exploration of a new space she relaxed and settled down, causing not a moment of anxiety. ‘Tis so wonderful that I can take Penne out to dinner, knowing that she will be so well behaved.

Earlier as I drove to Muriel’s home I passed a wee p…

Class warfare (Retail 3)

It cannot be easy to work as a cashier/clerk in a retail business. The hours are long, and/or unpredictable.Most of them are spent standing up: - it’s leg and back aching work.The pay is low, and in these United States the benefits are minimal (few or no paid holidays, no health care insurance, no pension scheme). And that’s just the start.
1.The local store management might be considerate and understanding, or it might be tyrannical – I’ve seen both.
2.But the regional management (at, for example, a district office) seems to have no understanding of human needs. That level of management lives in the world of goals, objectives, spread-sheets and sales targets.Theirs is a deeply de-personalised world.
3.If the store is quiet the cashier/clerk is expected to “tarry forth” and stock shelves, all the while with “eyes in the back of her/his head” for the lone and impatient customer who comes to the check-out with his gallon of ice-cream and five out of date coupons.
4.If the store is busy the ca…

Retail (2) Good - Odd - Not so good - Very bad. At Best Buy

GOODI visited our local “Best Buy” to shop for a Tablet. I knew a little bit about the difference between the iPad and the Android systems.I also knew that I’d be likely to use the Tablet for features such as internet access, Skype phone service, and e-books – but that I would not often(if ever) use it to download music or movies, or to play games.
The man who waited on me was polite and attentive. I’ll call him “Rod”. He “knew his stuff” and clear and concise in addressing my many questions.This was customer service at its best.
I bought a Toshiba “Thrive” Tablet.(Yes I know that iPads are sexier and are set up for so many more Apps, but they are also more expensive -and I will not be in the market for many of the Apps).
“Best Buy” always has a front desk staff member who greets customers as they arrive, and salutes them when they leave. On that day I asked this “greeter” to convey to “management” that I had been well pleased with the service “Rod” had provided, and especially that he h…

Sermon for 18th September 2011.

Sermon for 18th September 2011.  The Revd.  J. Michael Povey at St. Boniface Church, Siesta Key FL Matthew 20:1-16
When you’ve looked at a bin of onions in your local store have you ever thought “that vegetable has a dry and brittle outer skin, it can’t possibly be good to eat?”
When you’ve looked at a bible have you ever thought “that book has a distinctively unattractive and slightly forbidding cover, it can’t possibly have anything worth reading”?
The business of understanding the books of the bible is a bit like peeling an onion.  We need to get beyond the obvious surface, and then go layer after layer. In that process we discover that biblical texts are capable of a multitude of meanings.
One of the layers in today’s story raises the question “why did Matthew include this story as he assembled his writings?”   If you know a bit about the gospels you will recall that “Matthew” is a nom de plume for the leader or leaders of an early part of the Jesus movement.  In the first place, all t…