Loon family fishing for supper on Rangeley Lake. The little guy’s got to get big enough to fly away on its own after the parents leave without it in the fall. Talk about raising your offspring for independence

A gift to be simple

Herb House, Sabbathday Lake Shaker Village, appearing to be suspended between heaven and earth

‘Tis the gift to be simple, ’tis the gift to be free
‘Tis the gift to come down where we ought to be,
And when we find ourselves in the place just right,
‘Twill be in the valley of love and delight.
When true simplicity is gained,
To bow and to bend we shan’t be ashamed,
To turn, turn will be our delight,
Till by turning, turning we come ’round right.

I was disappointed to find that photography is forbidden inside the buildings here. I would love to have tried to show the beautiful contrast between white walls and blue trim in their open, airy worship space. Couldn’t help noticing, though, the contrast between the old photos of that space filled with people and the small group of benches arranged there now. Like so many churches these days. What will our future worship spaces look like? Or have we stopped needing that?

Wedding prayer

Sebago Lake, Maine. We’re here for a wedding later today. Thirty-nine years and 11 months ago, we and the bride’s parents were married on consecutive weekends. I remember waking up early on my own wedding day in a room filled with golden sunlight and thinking, OMG, what am I getting myself into. And the rest, as they say, is history.

Fill them with joy in their life together, and may they be strengthened for the promises they make this day.


I was given this rose to bring home from a funeral I did this morning. She made it to 100 plus 10 days or so, and she was a character. She was still coming to church every Sunday when I started in the parish, and one of the sweetest photos I have is of her hanging decorations on the tree in the narthex along with one of the children.

At first I wasn’t going to bring the flower home because we’re leaving tomorrow on vacation and I knew I’d only have a very short time to appreciate it.

But isn’t that just the point.