Thursday, June 21, 2018

2018 Tour - Day 5 - Evening Report

The bus ride after the Florida UM Children’s Home to Palm Beach Gardens was about 2 hours. On the bus, stories of microwave misadventures were shared. Jonathan Works and Jordan Anderson were greeters. 

Sasha Kuznetsov and his crew won the Fork story award for a story about scoping out an attractive woman at Universal. His group of six guys were all in line for a ride (Noah, Scott, Connor D, Cole T, Jonathan W) - staring at this young woman, and the woman turned and looked at them, and then they argued about which one of them she was staring at for the rest of the day and low-key stalked her. It was hysterical the way Sasha told the story. Second place was the group of guys who removed their shirts for all the rollercoaster ride photos.

We arrived at St Marks Episcopal Church around 4:00 pm and enjoyed walking around their lovely campus. They have a new church building and a private school with enrollment of 500, so it’s a big place. Our host Daniel Bayless, the church’s music director, went on choir tours as a young person and anticipated our needs. 

DUMC member Lora Maynard has a sister, Susan Wood, who is a member at St Mark’s and made the connection for our visit. They are two peas in a pod, and it was fun to see them together. 

We had a rehearsal in the sanctuary and ate a lovely meal of sandwich wraps, pasta salad, chips, and fruit platters. By this time in the tour, the simplicity and freshness of fruit platters are a beautiful thing. 

We got dressed for the concert - the gals dressing room had a tv and Family Feud was watched by many. Some folks had a moment to play basketball on the outdoor court and others played frisbee. Downtime is a good thing!

We gathered in the courtyard in a circle before the concert, and the breeze was lovely. We’ve had great weather so far! I (polly) reminded the group that perfection is not our goal but that the imperfections are what create character and ultimately beauty. Jonathan Colborn reminded us all to be caring for each other and to be aware of what others might be experiencing before leading our pre-concert prayer. 

The concert went really well, and a new feature was a setting of How Great Thou Art shared by a men’s chamber ensemble. We sang Omnia Sol, which always speaks volumes to our souls and the audience.

It was a host home night, so most of us got matched up with families. Stephanie Greer got to spend the night with her grandparents and Kelly Bratburd came to the concert - she is officially joining up with the tour in Venice but came early to listen and see a friend. 

A group of us stayed in the church gymnasium. Jim (the pastor) and Karen Cook greeted us and provided pizza and drinks. We (Kae, Derek, Polly and Tom) shared stories of youth ministry while our group of mostly boys with Phil Hulcher played basketball and ultimate frisbee inside, and we got to interact with a mission team from Georgia that is working on houses while staying at the church. They also were staying overnight in the church facility. Making fast friends in Christ is an amazing thing. So is sleep after a long day of living in relationship and mission with the world around us!

~ Polly

Click Here for Photos from Day 5

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