In the early sixteenth century, France used to observe New Year’s Day with celebrations that lasted from March 25 until April 1. Then, around 1564, with the arrival of the Gregorian calendar, the beginning of the year moved to January 1. However, many people refused to honor the change, since they didn’t think January 1st felt much like a new beginning. Consequently, they became known as April Fools.
When you think about it January feels like what it is – the middle of winter – a time of dormancy, hibernation and hunkering down. The beginning of spring, on the other hand, definitely has a vibrant sense of a fresh new beginning. And especially with Easter falling on April 1st this year, there is an even greater feel for the resurrecting power of spring.
It seems fitting then that on April 1st, we begin our fourth year as Senior Ministers at Unity Spiritual Center. Our very first official service was Easter 2015. The past three years have been a true joyride through many hills and valleys of experiences. With great support from the congregation, amazing staff and board members, we have weathered such challenges as a cancer diagnosis and treatment, the retirement of long time staff, the ups and downs of church finances and long distance grandparenting.
At the same time, we have shared and celebrated many successful accomplishments including classes, fundraisers, sacred service, small group ministry, beautification of our center, new staff members, increased pastoral care and book publications. We have seen people stepping up to be the change they are seeking in the world.
Each of you contributes in your own beautiful way to the success of Unity Spiritual Center. Your involvement and support truly matters, on the journey from a Minister-Centric to Mission-Centric Ministry.
In this season of renewal, we invite you to rise up, celebrate a new beginning and let the resurrecting power within you bring forth the change you wish to see in the world. Happy April Fools Day!
Blessings, Gary and Jane