Scrooby, England and the Mayflower Pilgrims

As far as I’m concerned, the Mayflower story begins in Scrooby, England in the very late 1500s and early 1600s. Come with me to explore this little community far off today’s beaten path. According to a Legacies of History article about Scrooby, the village’s population then was between 150 and 200 people. Today it still a small village, with a population of less than 500, located on the River Ryton, near the confluence with the […]

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Earth Day 2020 in a COVID-19 World

April 22 marked the 50th anniversary of the first Earth Day. I intended to blog about that, taking a break from anything COVID-19 related. However, as I sat down to write this blog, I learned more of my 2020 plans were cancelled, because of COVID-19. I thank all those decision-makers who have to make these unpopular announcements. Still, my plans included a once-in-a-life time opportunity to celebrate with other distant relatives the 400th anniversary of […]

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Easter 2020

Last Sunday was the strangest Easter of my life. In my childhood Easter meant a basket filled will jelly beans and various forms of chocolate. Occasionally it also meant a new Easter dress and a visit with Mom to likely a Presbyterian or Methodist service. One set of grandparents claimed Methodist heritage, so when Mom wanted to attend a service it was usually one of theirs. I have zero memories of ever attending an Easter […]

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The Great Dying and Coronavirus

We wait and wonder, “How long until the WHO and CDC declare this novel coronavirus pandemic under control?” How soon can we resume our normal routines? Will we fill our church sanctuaries Easter Sunday 2020? Responsible clergy will not; but rather are at work this Holy Week planning alternative ways to bring folks together virtually. As several of my pastor colleagues have point out, there was no crowd there at the first Easter. The Great […]

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A Tribute to the Great x11 Granddaughter of William and Mary Brewster

Were she still alive, my mother, Elizabeth J. Hieber, would have turned 106 last Sunday (March 29, 2020).  She died at the age of only 78. I say “only” because her mother lived to the age of 96. I am grateful to her for the example she set on how to face adversity and obstacles. Her lessons have proven invaluable during this coronavirus challenge. I credit her for my love of reading. Her curiosity led […]

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