Submitted by Brad Inglis
I believe that they call this the home stretch. Labour Day is on the horizon and the pace around the village will once again make its natural shift. With any luck, all those folks we told that “it’s better in September”, will take our advice and come and visit then, extending the tourist season (but at a much more leisurely pace).
Whereas city churches tend to go full throttle, come September, we tend to ease into the season. Most the programs around here will be starting up again. Yoga begins a new season on Tuesday September 3rd. The bridge players have continued to meet all summer and will keep going Thursdays at 1:00 pm and anyone is welcome to drop in. The local writing group, The Tobermory Muses will gather in September. You are welcome to contact Ferelith at (519) 596-8359 for further information. The needle arts group, Tai Chi, Book Circle, Coffee with Brad and drumming continue throughout the fall and their times can be found on our web site where you will find all of the weekly events www.tobermoryunited.ca.
Some churches host Back to Church Sunday in the fall as a way of re-introducing church opportunities to those people who are curious, wanting to re-visit their faith, have just moved here or have been out of the habit of going to church. Although we don’t host a particular Back to Church Sunday event, September is a great time to re-connect with church communities and see how they can meet your needs. We are fortunate to have four faith communities here in Tobermory, each offering a rich and spirit filled experience. There is the Catholic congregation who gather Saturday mornings at 11:30 am here at our church, Light and Life Community Chapel on highway six and they meet Sundays at 10:30 am and St. Edmunds Anglican Church at the end of number six and they meet Sundays at 10:00 am. Our service is at 10:30 am on Sunday mornings with coffee, tea and juice served prior to church. Each church has a web site that will give you more information about them and what they have to offer.
Happily, we all work together with and manage the Community Outreach Fund and this assists those in the community who may need some additional support in their lives. In the past we have helped families and individuals with transportation costs, summer camp, medication that is not covered, emergency shelter and a variety of other obstacles they may experience in their lives. Tobermory United also operates a volunteer driving program to help people get to appointments. You can contact Linda at (519) 596-2333 for more information about transportation and any of the four churches will help you access the Community Outreach Fund.
Church is a changing place these days. I don’t believe that it is the same as it once was. For one it is much more casual (Tobermory casual, as I like to call it). No one keeps attendance and visitors are always welcomed with open arms. No topic is off the table. To stay current, we have to be willing to discuss what is happening in the world and sometimes it means tackling issues that make us uncomfortable – but that’s ok because there is no room for judgement and healthy conversations move us forward. Church today means being more open minded and challenging outdated ideas. You might be surprised to find that there is a place of community for you in these changing times.
Brad Inglis is the minister at Tobermory United Church. He can be reached at email@example.com