Happy Thanksgiving from the Board/Giving Thanks

Happy Thanksgiving from the Board of Management

John Odell, President, Board of Management

I hope this finds you all warm, healthy and well. I am writing for three reasons:

First, as you may know, we have delayed implementation of the Wheel Academic Enrichment Program this year due to limited enrollment numbers. The Board and Entrepreneurial Task Force is exploring options regarding how best to move forward. Whatever the outcome, it now seems inevitable that we will be generating limited, if any, Wheel related revenue this year. The Board budgeted $10,000 in expected revenue, so a significant shortfall is expected. We have also invested approximately $5,000 to date in the program. This is challenging to be sure, but I remain optimistic that a new, viable path forward is possible. I will provide an update on our progress after the holidays.

The second item is that during last year’s all congregation meeting the Board was asked to review whether a cash-based accounting system was in fact better for our church or should we consider an accrual-based system. After a careful review by the Treasurer and the Board, the Board has decided not to move from our current cash-based accounting system to an accrual-based system. For those not familiar, and to quote Aaron’s favorite author Anonymous, “the difference between cash and accrual accounting lies in the timing of when sales and purchases are recorded in your accounts. Cash accounting recognizes revenue and expenses only when money changes hands, but accrual accounting recognizes revenue when it’s earned, and expenses when they’re billed (but not paid).” For us, the idea of moving to an accrual system had some allure, as it would allow us to better true-up the books at the end of the fiscal year. However, after her review, the Treasurer pointed out that this was the only advantage and such a system would ultimately cause more logistical headaches than it would solve. The Board agreed, so we will remain on a cash-based accounting system.

Lastly, we are continuing to move forward with devising a Master Plan for the church. I have found someone who could assist in providing us with a review of our physical assets and expected costs for planned (or unplanned) improvements. I hope to have a quote for this service for Board to review in January.

Hope you all have a wonderful and safe Thanksgiving Holiday!

Giving Thanks

Rev. Aaron Payson


A number of people inquired about the readings used during last Sunday’s service.  Below are three.  May your Thanksgiving be a time for good food, good friends, good family and an opportunity to reflect on all those and that which has given your life meaning, purpose, and fulfillment.  Many, and great blessings to all.


For What Shall We Give Thanks? by Laura Horton-Ludwig

The wheel of the year has turned again.
Once more the Thanksgiving season has arrived.
How shall we sing our song of gratitude now?
For what shall we give thanks?
For this moment;
for friends near and far;
for our breath;
for love;
for courage and clarity;
for strength;
for delight;
for laughter;
for beauty;
for the tables round which we gather;
for the food we enjoy with friends,
seasoned with love and memory;
for the sun and moon and stars in the sky;
for the trees who have seen so much
and still stand proud, stretching themselves to the sky;
for the bright voices of children;
for the wisdom of elders;
for actions that bless the world;
for hard work that makes a difference;
for music and art and celebration;
for generosity;
for compassion;
for endurance;
for joy;
for hope.
For all these things, we give thanks
as we worship together.

Gratitude by Swiftwalker

Let’s start with the people we love
and those who love us,
thankful they are in our lives
obliging us to open our hearts.
Let open hearts embrace the Earth,
the sea and soil and stars,
blessed by bold beauty,
the bounty of being.
Then with hearts open to beauty
let us embrace the arts
and the generation of learning
that we should have wisdom.
Let what wisdom we have,
wan and wanting, lead us to
strive so the seventh generation
hence can live more fully.
It is in that work, and that alone,
that we can express our thankful spirit.
May we make it so.
For the opening to make it
so, let us be truly grateful.

Be Thankful by Anonymous

Be thankful that you don’t already have everything you desire.
If you did, what would there be to look forward to?
Be thankful when you don’t know something,
for it gives you the opportunity to learn.
Be thankful for the difficult times.
During those times you grow.
Be thankful for your limitations,
because they give you opportunities for improvement.
Be thankful for each new challenge,
because it will build your strength and character.
Be thankful for your mistakes.
They will teach you valuable lessons.
Be thankful when you’re tired and weary,
because it means you’ve made a difference.
It’s easy to be thankful for the good things.
A life of rich fulfillment comes to those who
are also thankful for the setbacks.
Gratitude can turn a negative into a positive.
Find a way to be thankful for your troubles,
and they can become your blessings.