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Thin Places

Iona, Scotland, 2013

On All Saints Day in my tradition, and many Christian traditions, we remember those people who have passed from this world. We pause to recall the ways people who have died have touched our lives and who, even in their death, continue to touch our lives. We tell stories, light candles, and remember that we are connected with all who have gone before. On Sunday evening at Setauket Presbyterian we will gather to remember members of our community who have passed. Last Sunday our children decorated cards for the families who are grieving. These cards are colorful, bright, and a reminder that love is not ended by death. My grandmother used to tell me that this time of year is when the veil between heaven and earth is at its thinnest. She is someone who, even though she died in 2000, continues to impact my life - I like to think that veil is always somewhat thin. 

In 2013 I spend a few months living on the small Scottish island of Iona. The founder of the Iona Community, Rev George MacLeod, described Iona as a "thin place where only tissue paper separates the material from the spiritual." Where are your "thin places"? Where is it that you feel the presence of the divine so pungently? Iona was one such place for me, yet there are more surprising places:  When I visit my friend on Tennessee's Death Row, when I sit in the chapel of Pax Christi in Port Jeff Station and pray with someone, and when people of faith from a variety of traditions gather together. May we all be aware of the ways the divine is calling us to pause and see the light around us. 

Peace,

Rev. Ashley McFaul-Erwin
Community Outreach Pastor
Setauket Presbyterian Church

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