We share the Stories

Good Morning!

Many of you have heard me say often that we are a people of story and by nature are story tellers. As we share with one another our lives are shaped; our hopes are formed; our understandings are clarified. Some of our stories are new, created as we experience life and all that it brings our way. Others stories are passed on to us by our ancestors offering us insight and wisdom. As we tell the stories of our ancestors we continue to share their story and enable them to continue to shape the world. For each of us, the stories that shape us will be different as we come from different places and the people that influence us are varied. However as we share those with one another their influence expands to people and places that are almost unimaginable. This morning I want to share the story of a man who has lived an incredible life of love, passion, care, compassion and witness. He, himself ,was an amazing story teller and as he shared he brought light and love into the lives of countless people and communities. Rev. Richard Humby was born in the fishing community of Summerville, Newfoundland. The pages of his story were blank and waiting to be filled. Like so many others in this village Richard started his working life on the fishing schooners along the coast of Labrador. This time in his life shaped his character and helped prepare him for what he would eventually devote his life to. He would often return to these days recounting the stories of adventures on the sea that taught him team work, courage, faith, the value of hard work and determination and gave him a glimpse of the sacred that would call him from the water and onto the land to witness and work for the gospel. In 1950 he was ordained as a Minister in the United Church of Canada. I recall him telling me the stories of his first mission fields 64 years ago in Newfoundland where life was very different than it is today. The people he walked with whose lives were often filled with great hardship but marked with a deep and abiding faith were the ones who first grounded his ministry. Richard loved what he did and did what he loved moving from Newfoundland to Nova Scotia sharing his passion for the gospel and his love of people. His pastoral presence brought hope and peace into the lives of those he touched and this world is a different place because he walked upon it.

Throughout my life I have had the privilege of being invited into the stories of many individuals. Each person has made a mark on my journey in some way and been woven into the tapestry of who I am becoming. Richard Humby was one of those people. I remember him from the first years in my ministry but it wasn’t until I became his minister that I really began to hear and share his story. That was three years ago and his presence has been a true blessing for me. I have experienced his pastoral care as he often stepped into minister role on our visits checking to see that I was taking care of myself, praying with me in a couple of difficult moments and sharing his deep faith. I have had the privilege of seeing him when he “let his hair down” and in true Newfoundland form made people laugh with his wit and humour. I have been on the receiving end of his candour as he “told it like it is.” All of these things and so much more!

Today I celebrate Richard Humby as he joins now the company of the ancestors and my soul rejoices for who he was and who he continues to be in the story that is life and death and life beyond death!

Blessings, Valerie

Reminders of the Week

A Service of Celebration for the life of Doris Grant will take place this Sunday 1-3pm at Colchester Community Funeral Home.

A Service of Celebration for Rev Richard Humby will take place Friday October 3, 1pm at First United Church. Visitation will take place Thursday evening 6-8pm at Mattatall-Varner Funeral Home. For those who are able to lend their voices to the choir for this service please come and join us. Call time for the choir will be noon on Friday the 3rd

Tomorrow night, Friday, September 26, at 7:00 pm in St. Andrew’s United you are invited to join Chris Bowman, Minister of Music First United, and Fred Graham from Toronto for an evening of singing. This is a Maritime Conference-wide festival of music and hymns of the church. All are invited to make a joyful noise together.

Sunday Morning 10:30 – What is the Bible? This is our question for worship this week. For worship we will be meeting in the Memorial Hall!!!!! Be prepared for fun and games, exploring the bible, singing our faith, and praying as one!!

Sunday Evening 7pm – We are invited to join with our brothers and sisters at St. James United Church, Great Village for their service of de-commissioning. We gather to celebrate the ministry of this congregation as they end this part of their journey and prepare to move into ministry in a different way .

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