Monday, October 29, 2012


On Saturday afternoon over a hundred women and three men enjoyed a fashion show and tea sponsored by the Fellowship committee at SPPC.  The organizers were gratified to see a sizable proportion of the audience came from the community.

  The models, all shapes and sizes, were  members of the congregation. 

There were helpers in the dressing rooms and in the kitchen.

Clothing was supplied by Sidney Casuals.  
  To make up for their lack of training on the catwalk, the models resorted to silliness, and the audience responded with cheering and clapping.  It was a very good natured audience, not the least dour.

  Once the fashion part of the afternoon was over, tea and sandwiches were served.  Then Alice and Tore Valdal presented their version of Oklahoma!  To the great relief of the audience this was a "minute for mission" performance and not the full two hour production. 

All in all it was a great way to spend a rainy, Saturday afternoon, enjoying a tasty tea and  lots of laughter.

My thanks to Janet Smith for sharing her photos.  
SPPC is extremely grateful to Sue and Sidney Casuals for their generous contribution to our event.
The proceeds of the day, approx. $600.00 will be split between Mission and Outreach and SPPC

Monday, October 22, 2012


By Linda Cliff

“Having a voice in decisions about your health care treatment is important.    There may come a time when, due to illness or injury, you are incapable of expressing your treatment wishes to health care providers.  By planning in advance,  you can be sure that your family, friends and /or health care providers know your wishes, and can ensure these wishes are followed.”  

   This is the opening paragraph to the Advance Care Planning Guide developed by the province of British Columbia.   It sounds very official and also touches on a topic that we would rather ignore than discuss.   It is hoped this session will dispel some of these feelings about discussing Advanced Care Planning.  
    Any discussion about care planning begins by thinking about your beliefs, values and wishes regarding future health care decisions.  It has been my personal experience that this discussion between family members can be both lively and reaffirming.  It is a time to share ideas with loved ones and gives you a way of having these discussions in an open and caring way. 

During the presentation (scheduled at SPPC for November 5 10:00am - Noon ) you will learn about: 

 Temporary Substitute Decision Makers
 Representation Agreements
 Advance Directives
 Enduring Power of Attorney 

As capable adults we tend to shy away from such discussions as we feel we don’t need this information now.  My question is why wait?   By working through the process of developing an advance care plan, thinking about your preferences about health care you will open yourself and your loved ones to a rich discussion about what you find important in your life.   It can also be an opportunity to share your faith with others as the discussion easily moves to the spiritual realm as well as the physical.  This is a discussion we should have when we are well.   Please come: 

Presenter:          Dawn Dompierre, RNDate and Time:  November 5 at 10:00am
place:               Saanich Peninsula Presbyterian Church
                       9296 E. Saanich Rd. (by the airport roundabout).

Everyone is welcome!  Tea and Coffee Provided.

Ed. Note:  Linda Cliff is a long time hospice nurse who has faced the issues of advanced care planning with many patients and their families.

Monday, October 15, 2012


  The sock,-- humble, taken for granted, mismatched, missing, holed, cotton, wool, bamboo, silk -- is an amazing wardrobe article. 

 It takes us hiking --

 It tickles our funny bone.

It bundles a baby in love.

It hangs by the fire filled with expectation.

It lets us show our team colours, or declare our nationality.

It can even become our friend.

But the most amazing thing a sock can do is hold compassion and comfort for someone living on the street.  Someone with cold toes and blistered heels.  Someone who is loved by God.

October is "Warm Toes" month at SPPC.  Fill a sock with toiletries, a treat, a message of hope, a book . . .
and put it in the basket in the narthex.  At the end of the month they will be delivered to Our Place, a token of Christian love.

Monday, October 8, 2012


by Alice Valdal

 Thanksgiving is one of my favourite holidays.  No presents to buy.  No cards to write.  No concerts to prepare.
   The garden supplies most of the food.  The decorations are easy and simple, a potted flower, a couple of pumpkins, a basket of home-made jam.  
   And turkey leftovers to last the rest of the week.  What's not to like?
   This year, with our streak of incredible weather, a surprise second crop in the strawberry patch and an autumn coloured maple tree outside my back door, the holiday is even better.
  I am aware that there are those with little to celebrate this weekend, no groaning table, no family gathering, no treasured friendships.  But even the lonely and disposessed can find a welcoming hand and a smiling face in a church congregation -- especially the congregation of SPPC.
   In Bible Study this week we looked at the calling of the first disciples.  When Nathaniel scoffed "can anything good come out of Nazareth," the answer was "come and see."  

   We invite everyone to come and see what's happening in the little church on the corner of E. Saanich Rd. and Willingdon.  Come and see the harvest heaped around the table.  Come and see the boxes of donations for the food bank.  Come and see the piles of socks for Our Place.  Come and see a friend at Fellowship Coffee.  Come and see our youth in the Christmas musical.  Come and see our joyful celebration of the Lord's Supper.  Come and see what it means to be "church" at SPPC.

Thanks to Jean Strong, Pat Aumonier and all who donated produce and helped to decorate the sanctuary.  It looks beautiful.


Monday, October 1, 2012

Indian Summer

Indian Summer

Along the line of smokey hills
The crimson forest stands.
And all day long the blue-jay calls,
Throughout the autumn lands.

Now by the brook the maple leans
With all his glory spread,
And all the sumachs on the hill
Have turned their green to red.

Now by great marshes wrapt in mist,
Or past some river's mouth,
Throughout the long still autumn day,
Wild birds are flying south.

           -- William Campbell

    These last golden days of summer bring to mind one of my Dad's favourite poems.  I can't see geese flying overhead or breath in the crisp morning air of an autumn day, or catch the scent of ripe apples without remembering my Dad at the kitchen table, reciting those lines.
     It's a lovely memory, an inheritance, that brings a lift to my heart and a smile to my mouth, and a tinge of sadness that those days are gone.  Rather like autumn itself, filled with ripe fruit and blue skies, but foretelling the season of winter.
    When I looked up "inheritance" in the Bible, I found verse after verse after verse describing the division of property, the rules for boundaries and the laws of succession, but that was not the kind of inheritance I wanted to reference.  Finally, in 1 Peter I found what I sought.  A description of our inheritance from God so much greater than lands or bank accounts. "An inheritance incorrupt and undefiled that fadeth not away."
     My Dad left me many physical gifts but they will fade, grow up in weeds, rust and eventually disappear.  My father's lasting inheritance is faith in God, love of family and a code of living founded in Christ.  I treasure those gifts from my earthly father, given because he loved me.  
    How much greater the gifts of my Heavenly Father, given because He loves with a love that passes human understanding.
    Praise God for the gift of this autumn season.  Praise God for His unfailing mercy.