Home Forums Noticings… 190911 – Hurricanes

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    September 11, 2019

    We have now entered the liturgical season called Creation, where we take the time to contemplate and reflect on the sacredness of the world around us, the ways in which God’s Presence is incarnated in all of nature, and our place in relation to it all. The “Season of Creation” is a fairly recently marked liturgical season, designed to add some creativity and newness into the very long season of Pentecost which goes from June to November. Some years we focus our themes directly on the sacredness of nature, and other years, like this one, we will have those themes in the background.

    But there was nothing background about the way nature made itself known to us this past week. Hurricane Dorian dominated our news, and rightly so. The Bahamas bore the brunt of the storm and experienced colossal amounts of damage and loss. The United Church of Canada does have a fund set up that you can donate through to help those folks. Please click here if you wish to make a donation.

    Dorian’s impact was felt all along the eastern coast of the United States and into Canada as well. Many of our sister United Churches in Nova Scotia in particular had to cancel their Sunday worship gatherings because of loss of power or damage from Dorian. We saw images of trees uprooted and crashing into buildings, cars abandoned in rising waters, homes flooded and wind-damaged. But perhaps the most shocking thing I saw was the video of the crane in Halifax. If you didn’t see it, a massive construction crane started to sway significantly in the gusting winds, and then, incomprehensibly, it looked like all the metal had instantaneously transformed into cooked spaghetti and just it drooped and flopped over the side of a building. It was, to say the least, a lesson in humility.

    We love to wax poetic about the beauty of nature, but Dorian reminds us that nature also has a frightening side – frightening because the forces are so powerful that they confound our understanding. I think that helps us remember that while God is love, and God is beauty, and God is like a fragrant flower, God is also mysteriously like a hurricane – a powerful force that we can only be in awe of.

    I must also say that we should avoid thinking that a hurricane is somehow malevolent, or an expression of the judgment of God. Such theology is abhorrent. Hurricanes are decidedly dangerous, but invariably the damage is the worst in those places that are marked by much poverty. Richer folks have the ability to build stronger houses, or the means to travel away from the storm. Poorer folks do not. If hurricanes bring any judgment it’s on us, not the victims. Food for thought as we ponder the wonder of nature, the Presence of God, and our interconnection with all things in this Season of Creation.

    Songs For Sunday Night

    Here’s a way to make your Sunday Night Worship experience even better! Here’s a link to the songs we’ll be singing this week. Now you can listen to the songs before you come and enter into worship more fully! And if you can’t make it Sunday you can just click and listen for your own worship time. Sunday Nights at 7:15pm. (Bring a friend!)
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