Our summer has included some good fun. We’ve been reading and conversing; studying the Bible and the gift of morning, evening, and noonday light; sharing celebratory milestones; supporting a vibrant Vacation Bible Camp; going and coming on adventures involving travel, service, and learning. Thankfully, summer is not over yet! Still to come are various possibilities for connecting and growing together: Drop-In Drawing (Saturday, August 5 from 10 a.m. to noon in the Aldersgate Room), Sierra Service and Mission Project Sunday (August 20 at each of our three worship services) and a discussion of Hillbilly Elegy by J.D. Vance (Monday, August 28 at 7 p.m. in the Choir Room), to name just a few.
Hillbilly Elegy was written to offer a window into an American subculture with roots in the Appalachian Mountains. The author recounts his childhood and young adult years, the struggles of his family, and the gifts and challenges present in his community. Vance’s perspective is generally one of amazement that he ultimately had the opportunity to attend college and graduate school, as well as puzzlement that so much social and economic distress within certain regions and demographics of our country continue to go largely unaddressed. Among other themes, he reflects on the role of religion and faith in his life thus far.
Hillbilly Elegy has been on the Hardcover Nonfiction bestseller list of the Los Angeles Times, in one of the top five positions, for nearly a year now. Vance is deeply concerned about endemic poverty and the consequences of entrenched feelings of helplessness and despair. New York Times reviewer Jennifer Senior says, “Mr. Vance doesn’t have all the answers. But he’s advancing the conversation.” All readers are welcome to join the discussion on Monday, August 28, at 7 p.m. in the Choir Room. I look forward to seeing you there!
Whether this summer is bringing you joy, or sorrow, or a mix of both, may you continue to feel God near.