Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

June 19 is our outdoor service and picnic. We have standardly held this service the third Sunday in June every year. I can only remember one year where we varied due to a scheduling problem. This means that every year the service coincides with Father’s Day. June was the month of my father’s birthday; it was also the month in which he died. So for me, this month is filled with reminders of my father.

Each person in a family is important. Each person is unique, whether it is mothers, whom we honor in May, or fathers honored in June or grandparents or children, we are each gifts to one another. Still, there is some benefit to focus on one family member for a day. We do it regularly with birthdays. In June, we do it for fathers.

Fathers, with their quirks, unique ways, and traits, are an important part of us being who we are. I know in our family, my father was very important to who we were as a family. There is no doubt that my siblings were all who they were partly because of my father’s patience and sense of humor. What is interesting is how easily it is to take family members for granted.

Many people spend much of their time searching for God and his gifts in the world around us. Some people travel to seek for God and his gifts. Some seek God out in hidden corners. The irony is, that the gifts of God are often closer than we think. God’s gift to us starts with the very gift of family, from family members we are close with, to those who take a bit more work. Father’s Day is not to set up fathers as superhuman. But it does point us to recognizing the gift God has given us in the family member in right front of us.

Come to our service and picnic. On that day, remember fathers, without forgetting brothers, sisters, and mothers. Remember your father. Look no further to see a gift of God. For all the good points and bad, it is a gift right before our nose.

Yours in Christ,

Rev. Martin H. Horn