Tag Archives: children

Sunday’s Service, Festival of the Christian Home

Yesterday was Mother’s Day in the United States. I know that it is a complicated holiday and not the least of which has to do with the sometimes chessy card and commercials that encourage people to honor their mothers. Yesterday in worship, I preached about how this holiday filled with both joy and sorrow. In the United Methodist tradition it is called the Festival of the Christian Home which allows the focus to be on home, rather than on whether or our mothers were amazing or a mess. In my own life, I heard from my kids, on Facebook my son said I was wonderful and my daughter posted this wonderful Story People card: (on if it is on Facebook it must be true, right?!?!)

How I would like that to be true….I certainly write often enough that I long to love that was God loves and they way I see God loving and gracing the world in Jesus. In the end I do trust that the Divine Spirit is making their Home with us, in fact I am clinging to it.  Here is the service from yesterday:



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My daughter’s letter

My daughter wants to move home to Kansas. I would LOVE that. Having her and her husband and my grand boys closer would make me very happy indeed. They have talked about it on occasion. She recently even looked into a business opportunity. In the end, she has decided she can’t move back, at least not yet. The policies gutting public education and watching as town after town and city after city are struggling with how to cut more from education has convinced her that Kansas doesn’t care about children or about their education. The link to her blog is here:


I am also reprinting it in this space with her permission. I would LOVE to have her closer to home, but I respect her decision to do what is best for her children by staying away. How many more are leaving and/or not coming back because of misguided policies. I love Kansas, but this makes me very sad indeed. Here are her words:

A Letter to Governor Brownback- please stop the insanity

I sent this via email and snail mail to the Kansas Governor office. My pessimism says no one will read it. So I’m sharing it with you. I want someone other than my husband to hear my frustrations and sadness. So here is my letter to Governor Brownback expressing my deep sorrow over the state of education and funding in Kansas

Governor Brownback,

I’m writing you about my deep concern surrounding education and educational funding in your state. Let me introduce myself, my name is Kristin Saner and I am a native Kansasan.  I was born in Kansas, raised in Kansas, went to college in Kansas, got married and gave birth to my three boys in Kansas. Five years ago I moved away to pursue graduate education. Now I long to move home. In fact I was exploring buying a business in Hesston, which is near my family and friends. Sadly your policies and new laws, which continue to cut funding to education, terrify me so badly that I decided that I cannot  move home at this time.

With 3 boys in elementary school, I am looking at what public schools offer for kids. I’m a huge advocate for public school, which provide education and opportunities to not only my kids but all our kids. These kids are our future. I know Kansas teachers are working hard day and night to make the education system the best it can be for the kids they teach. I hear about the daily struggles from friends, about how they are attempting to persevere. The reality is limited funding and resources continue to be huge barriers for both teachers and students.  My heart breaks knowing that friends, who have dedicated their lives to teaching, must face these barriers on a daily basis. But, at the end of the day, I have to look at what’s best for me and my family. While all the teachers and administration staff where I currently live have their own barriers and hurdles to cross, I feel we are making positive strides for the education my kids are getting. I cannot say the same for the schools in Kansas.

Governor Brownback, your policies have made it so that I feel I cannot move home. And I wonder, if I feel this way how many other thirty something adults dismiss our state as a place to makes roots?  How many other born and raised Kansasans  went somewhere else to pursue an education but don’t move back due to your policies? How many people look for a place to raise their own families but dismiss Kansas due to the current state of the education system? How many young families currently living in Kansas are fleeing because they feel their kids would be better off elsewhere? Listen to your people, Governor, for I know that they are working to fix your mistakes. They are trying to provide the best for our kids with what limited resources you have left them. I can only hope and pray that in the coming years things will get better. I pray this for my friend’s sake, for my friends kids, for the families I don’t even know.  Selfishly I pray for my own sake. While I can’t in good conscience move home now, I still long to do so. And I desperately hope, in a few years time, I can feel that it is safe for me to do so.


A Homesick Kansas girl



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Thanksgiving in view

This week’s Friday Five from RevGalBlogPals was all about Thanksgiving. You can read the prompt in the above link. This Thanksgiving, like last years is different. Last year, my family gathered to celebrate my mother’s life. Our hope had been that she would live that long and as much of her family as was possible would gather, as we had not for years to have Thanksgiving together. Instead, on Tuesday of that week, we had her memorial service and then cooked up a storm and ate together and shared together.

This year, like last is much different. For the the first time none of my children will be home for Thanksgiving. Life and circumstances often change celebrations. I am used to having more anywhere from ten to twentyfive for dinner. This year, there will be three, my husband, my husbands mother and myself. I am not sure how to “cook” Thanksgiving dinner for three, but am sure I will try and figure it out!

The prompt for today asked what is the cure for “mulleygrubs?” Aunt Bert says to “bake a cake” and there was a time when I would bake to cure any “mulleygrubs.” Sometimes I had dozens of cookies in the freezer from dealing with life. Today, though, I tend to “cook” rather than bake. When life piles up, I get myself into the kitchen and cook dinner. It feeds body and soul.

I will be home for Thanksgiving, menu yet to be decided and am deeply grateful to be home. I will miss the family that will not be here this year. I will deeply miss cooking with others. Last year for the first time my brothers and I cooked together. It was a deep joy to me to be in the kitchen with my brothers who are amazing cooks. I will miss cooking with my grandsons, just learning how to cook and enjoying the hustle-bustle of the kitchen.

Yet, I am grateful to have my mother in law, 94 years old to cook for and celebrate this Thanksgiving. No promise is given as to how many holidays any of us get to share, so each one is a gift of love. So I am thankful for family near and far, grateful I can cook and share what I create and deeply grateful to have people I love and who love me in return. I am graced to serve.

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Snow Day

I have always loved snow days.  When my children were small, I would be as anxious as they were listening to see if school was canceled.  There was nothing more fun than being home, playing in the snow, baking, making snow ice cream, generally just enjoying the “time out of time” that the weather provided.

Today, this is what it looked like outside my home after I returned home about 12:45.

ImageNow the snow has stopped, but they have promised that the “big snow storm” was still on its way.

I am grateful that I am part of the “non-essential” services.  Tomorrow West Heights UMC will be closed, the schools are closed and I can just be at home with Andrew.  I will do some “work” because of course, Sunday is coming.  The study guide needs to be finished, pictures for the powerpoint and then on Sunday, my office assistant and I will go in to run, fold and finish the work that has to be done for Sunday.

However, I still experience days like these as moment of grace.  Life is so often unrelenting, the calendar drives almost every waking moment and I long for some time that is unclaimed.  I give thanks for those who keep things going: police, fire fighters, emergency personnel, doctors and nurses and all those who take care of those who need health, healing, help and hope.  I pray for those without shelter or food.

I take this time as a gift of grace and of sabbath.  I hope and pray that you can do the same.

I am graced to serve.

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