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A Taste from across the Pond

Were you up before the crack of dawn on Saturday, hat on, a pot of steaming hot tea at the ready? Thirty-two million Americans positioned themselves in front of their streaming devices (we used to say TVs) to watch the royal procession from Buckingham Palace to Westminster Abbey that began at 5:15am (Eastern). Thirty-eight coronations have taken place in Westminster Abbey with the Archbishop of Canterbury presiding. The religious ceremony is steeped in tradition, largely unchanged for a thousand years. King Charles sat on a 700-year-old coronation chair from Scotland as he placed his hand on a King James Bible to take the oath of office. Charles was just three years old when his mother, Elizabeth II acceded to the throne in 1952 after the death of her father King George VI. For seventy years, Charles has been the heir apparent waiting for his moment in history. That moment finally arrived on May 6, 2023. Two thousand guests from 203 countries gathered at Westminster Abbey for the religious ceremony that would officially crown Charles Philip Arthur George as King of the United Kingdom and the 14 other Commonwealth realms remaining in the British empire. First Lady Jill Biden was in attendance, but the President was not- by tradition no US President has attended the coronation of a British monarch since the founding of our country. Did you join the crowd of 277 million anglophiles world-wide that tuned in for all the pomp and circumstance on Saturday?

While I did not join the crowd for the royal coronation, I was in attendance for the Ladies’ Tea at Lenape Valley the next day. Let me be clear, the connection between the coronation and teatime at church was merely a happy coincidence. The Fellowship team wanted to honor the ladies of our church the weekend before Mother’s Day to leave that Hallmark holiday free for families to celebrate as they choose. On May 7th Fellowship Hall was beautifully decorated, roses on every table, each place setting prepared to welcome a special lady for a delightful event. The four-course meal followed the traditions of a British High Tea, beginning with tea and scones, followed by quiche and salad, tea sandwiches (the peanut butter and jelly treats were cut in the shape of hearts!), and trays of sweet treats to round out the culinary experience. A local balloon artist delighted the children (and adults) with his creations- ladybugs, horses, giraffes, and so much more. Ben Richlin is a Central Bucks high school student with skill beyond his years in his balloon craft. The morning event concluded with a fascinating presentation on Bluebirds by Lenape Valley’s own Darlaine Manning. To our surprise, we learned that we have baby Bluebirds in the birdhouse located in the ‘pollinator garden’ on the far side of the parking lot.

Sunday’s High Tea was an “immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine” experience. Months ago, my O-ye-of-little-faith heart hoped for 50 women to attend this special event. The Fellowship team imagined a crowd of 60. But the God who loves to surprise us, invited 107 women of all ages to share in a special moment of fellowship at a Lenape Valley. Four generations enjoyed conversation and laughter over china cups filled with tea, sweetened by old-fashioned sugar cubes that brought back memories from childhood. The men of Lenape Valley did a wonderful job of serving, learning the intricacies of High Tea on the job. Thanks gentlemen, for your gracious care of our ladies on Sunday!

But most of all, a special thanks to the faithful women of our Fellowship team. These ladies are dedicated to creating opportunities of welcome for our faith community. During the pandemic, when we could not gather, they went out to our most isolated members with poinsettias and Easter flowers, and even with special tea-kits complete with tea bag and biscuit. Those visits offered moments of grace in a lonely time. And now that we can gather again, the ladies host coffee hour, receptions after events, and food for our VBS picnic, the Fall Fest and our kick-off picnic. Throughout the year, they create moments for us to gather and share in fellowship. They offer day-trips to plays and gardens. They invite us to Iron Pig games where we can enjoy baseball up close and personal with our LVC friends. Their sacrificial work strengthens the ties that bind us together in Christian love. Please join me in thanking God for: Linda Brenneman, Carol Brown, Joan Doerr, Tricia Drozd, Valorie Gough, Linda Hamp, Linda Maynard, Marilyn Mitchell, Amy Murray, Judy Orr, Eileen Spencer, and their visionary leader- Sharon Sandt.

With you, celebrating the faith community of Lenape Valley,

PS- The Fellowship team would welcome you to join them in their special mission!
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