Dave S and Amy S (different families and last names) are the winners of this first contest. Both pointed out that I left too much information in the name of the image. I've changed that now. It used to be that Blogger would assign a random name to an uploaded image. I didn't know that they changed so that the same image name was kept. Even so. A promise is a promise.
Dave will receive "Hyperion" by Dan Simmons.
Amy will get a Frank Herbert novel of my choosing.
I'll give one more prize to the next person who identifies the image without the information from the name of the image. I've changed the name now. So looking that up is pointless.
Incidentally, my post on Personal Idiocy has received some wonderful feedback, and so has the post on Yvonne G's funeral.
I thank all of you who read this blog. I thank you for your input and for your comments. I thank my parish members who read the blog and let me know what's going on. This is an additional plus about the blog. I do hope it is entertaining as well as informative.
One thing I've learned about personal presentation: It is far better to be humble than to depend on one's position.
Saturday we had our Christmas program/chatichization at Mt. Olive Lutheran Church. We have three children in Saturday School. The oldest is 7 years old and she is the aunt of the other two children.
They did their reciting so well! I'm glad that while the complex nature of my call to a parish that has 4 congregations that I can work personally with at least a few of the congregations' children.
Chantell, Anna, and Katy did a great job in reciting Luke 2 and singing "Away in a Manger" for their Christmas Catechization.
Mary and some of our children came to the program, and they enjoyed the festivities after the program at Mt. Olive.
When we got home we had a mad race to clean the house for the guests that we would have this afternoon. Laura and Jamie D's. family came over in the afternoon
We had a wonderful time with them and their family. We look forward to a good and enduring friendship. Jamie and I had fun not only with theological debate but also with self-defense and techniques in hand-to-hand combat.
I must admit that I am pathetically out of shape. I taught taekwondo and self-defense for 20 years in a variety of situations.
But I am so pathetically out of shape now. I need to get back into a regime of exercise so that I don't get out of breath after a couple of minuets of exertion.
This last picture was around midnight on the 22nd of December. The photo is out our kitchen window. It was pretty bright this evening. I've written before about how the shortest day of the year that one can have enough sunlight to read a book. This photo looks a bit darker than I remember the evening. It was a bright evening. I'm reading the "Bourne Supremacy" and probably could have sat on our deck to read the book. But I've had too much going on to want to stay up late to prove my theories.
Sunday we held Rite 1 of the Evangelical Lutheran Hymnary at St. Petri, Nazareth, and Oak Park.
After the first service at St. Petri I was greeting everyone and all of a sudden my right front pants pocket was hot. I pulled up my robe and quickly threw everything in it on the floor.
I had a lot of change in my pocket. But I carry several AA batteries in that pocket because I have microphones and a recorder that I use at each of my congregations. One of my AA batteries had made a connection through the change in my pocket. I have a burn, not severe, on my right thigh from the battery. I was able to get it out before it got too bad. But the plastic cover on the AA battery was melting when I pulled it out.
My great friend Steve S., pastor in Illinois, had a problem with his laptop computer. It burst into flames one day during class at seminary. The other students bough a fire extinguisher and put it on his desk after the fire.
Today, Eldon and several others laughed at my "hot pocket" experience.
Rechargeable NiCad batteries are an asset when a pastor depends on a remote microphone, voice recorder, or other battery powered tech. But a short-circuit for those batteries in the pastor's pocket can cause a great deal of pain. I'm thankful that I could get the batteries out before the burst into flame. When I look at the melted plastic on the specific battery I'm glad that nothing worse happened. And I'm also glad that some of my parish members could have a good laugh.
Tomorrow I have two Christmas Eve services. Tuesday I have two Christmas day services. May God bless you with the faith that your sins are paid for by the Christ Child. And may you remain in the faith that your sins are forgiven through Christ.