March 28, 2020

A blessing for you for this time of “social isolation.” A Blessing for Solitude by John O’Donohue from his book Benedictus.
“May you recognize in your life the presence,Power and light of your soul.May you realize you are never alone,That your soul in its brightness and belonging,Connects you intimately with the rhythm of the universe.May you have respect for your individuality and difference.May you realize the shape of your soul is unique.That you have a special destiny here.That beyond the facade of your lifeThere is something beautiful and eternal happening.May you learn to see yourselfWith the same delightPride and expectationWith which God sees you in every moment.May we all feel blessed and strong during this difficult time.

My prayers are with you,Kara

March 27, 2020

Today as we continue to pray our breath prayers we also pray with lament and hope. 

Together we raise our song with resolve: “I will hold the Christ-light for you in the night time of your fear.”

Consider lighting a candle each day for a specific person or situation.

Where is hope needed most? For yourself? For your family? For our world? 

“It feels like things are not ok

And this ‘thing’ will never go away

Life all around is caving in

And no-one knows where to begin

‘What-ifs’ and fears are on the rise

And nobody’s able to disguise

The sadness of this sudden change

To life, a routine; it’s strange

But sit a moment with that thought

Forget the things that you’ve been taught

For awhile there’s no rat race

A slower life put in its place

We suddenly have the space to stop

The cusp of spring still breaks its sleep

Our birds return to trill and cheep

And hope and kindness start to bloom”

(author unknown)

As we practice necessary social distancing, may our prayers draw us near to God as God draws near to us with hope and love.

holding the Christ-light for you, 


March 26, 2020

Greetings all,     

My apologies to those of you who are receiving this twice today. I am still getting the “bugs” out of the group email.

On Tuesday we explored the ancient spiritual practice of “breath prayers.” Using Scripture we inhaled and exhaled deeply in order to be present and grounded at this tumultuous time. 

What Scripture (s) were you drawn to? Did you experience peace? hope?  

To further our “breath prayer” practice I have provided a guide to help us go deeper with God.

1. Sit comfortably, close your eyes, and remember that God loves you and you are in God’s presence.

2. Imagine God calling you by name, asking “(Your name), what do you want?”

3. Answer God honestly with whatever word or phrase comes from deep within you.

4. Choose your favorite or most natural name for God.

5. Combine your name for God with your word or phrase to form a brief prayer that flows smoothly.


What I Want 




Name for God



Eternal Light

Possible Prayer

Let me know your peace, O God.

Jesus, let me feel your love.

Eternal Light, guide me in your way.

Repeat the prayer for a few minutes, allowing the words to settle into a regular rhythm. If more than one idea arises, you may need to ponder what the deepest desire of your heart is. A helpful question to ask is, What do I want that will make me feel most whole? In creating your own breath prayer, you might take several days of reflection to discover what is best for you. Be patient, and let the words emerge from your deepest longings. When you have discovered your prayer, begin to practice it at different times during the day. You might pray it before you get out of bed in the morning or prior to retiring for the day. You may pray it when you are out for a walk.  You could breathe and pray when you become anxious, frustrated, or bored. 

Breath prayers remind us that praying is as natural as breathing.

Let us pray,


March 25, 2020

“When we call out for help, we are bound more powerfully to God through our needs and weakness, our unfulfilled hopes and dreams, and our anxieties and problems than we ever could have been through our joys, successes, and strengths alone. .” writes Brian McLaren in his book Naked Spirituality.

Today let us respond to MCC’s call to prayer and Pope Francis’ invitation to join globally, praying the Lord’s Prayer at noon. It is my prayer that as we pray we may be bound more powerfully to our God. 

God’s people globally pray the prayer Jesus taught his disciples in many languages and many versions. Perhaps pray the version that feels most at home for you and then pray an alternate version today. For example, the Lord’s Prayer which comes to us from the New Zealand prayer book. 

Praying with new language, be attentive to that which catches your heart’s attention. Is there an image that is prominent? What names for God resonate for you? Be curious. Be attentive. Be open. 

We offer our prayers today to God, trusting God the Creator, Redeemer, and Sustainer hears us when we pray and will respond with love and grace.  

Eternal Spirit, Earth-maker, Pain-bearer, Life giver

Source of all that is

and all that shall be

Father and Mother of us all

Loving God, in whom is heaven

The hallowing of your name 

echo through the universe.

The way of your justice be followed

by the peoples of the world!

Your heavenly will be done by all

created beings

Your commonwealth of peace and 

freedom sustain our hope and come

on earth

With the bread we need for today,

feed us,

In the hurts we absorb from one

another, forgive us,

In times of temptation and test,

strengthen us,

From trials too great to endure,

spare us.

From the grip of all that is evil,

free us.

For you reign in the glory of the power that is love now and forever.

And all God’s people said, Amen!!

God’s peace be yours,


March 24, 2020

“Cast all your anxiety on God, because God cares for you.”  1 Peter 5:7

          It is an anxious time as non-essential businesses are poised to shut down tonight. Anxieties related to finances, our health and that of our loved ones….. the list of concerns is long.  We are uncertain about many things as our Lenten journey continues. Amidst the uncertainty my heart is warmed to hear how we are adjusting daily. Today, I received an email with photo attached showing a face mask that had just been sewn. Further supplies are on order and response to urgent need is under way. In a  phone call earlier today, a congregant shared how she placed notes in her rural neighbour’s mailboxes asking that email addresses be shared with the hope neighbours could become connected at this uncertain time. How delighted that neighbours responded and are connecting.   

     How did you reach out today with your heart, with your words, with compassion where you could not touch?. Our loving actions are a way to counter anxiety and fear. Prayer also helps to keep us centered and present.

       The practice of “breath prayers” is an ancient form of prayer. A breath prayer is as simple as choosing two short lines to meditate upon. Inhaling deeply with one short phrase and exhaling through second, can help keep us grounded and conscious of God’s presence with us during this uncertain time. Drawing upon Scripture, here are some options:

Inhale: Humble and gentle One,

Exhaule: you are rest for my soul   (Matthew 11. 28-30)

Inhale: True Vine and Gardener,

Exhale: I abide in You   (John 15)

Inhale: Nothing can separate me

Exhale: from the love of God   (Romans 8: 38-39)

Inhale: Be still

Exhale: and know that I am God    (Psalm 46:10)

Inhale: On earth

Exhale: as it is in heaven   (Matthew 6:10)

Inhale: I will not be afraid

Exhale: for You are with me (Psalm 23)

May we draw near to God as God draws near to us for the living of these days. May we continue to reach out to one another as God in love reaches out to us. 

Inhale:  Peace of Christ

Exhale: guard my heart   (Philippians 4:7)


Held in prayer,


March 23, 2020

This morning as we pray for one another, our neighbours, and our world, let us be assured and comforted knowing the Lord is near. 

Rejoice in the Lord always: again I will say, Rejoice. Let your gentleness be known to everyone. The Lord is near. Do not worry about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. ” 

(Phil. 4: 4-7)

Beneath this morning’s blanket of snow, lies a spring that waits to blossom in all her beauty. What lies in wait within you? What seed is growing with new dimension? Following a fallow season, bulbs emerge from the cold earth with new life. Seeds need to crack open for new beauty and new life to appear. What’s growing within you with possibility?  As the song writer pens, “Unrevealed until its season something God alone can see.”       

A Morning Offering:

I bless the night that nourished my heart

To set the ghosts of longing free

Into the flow and the figure of dream

That went to harvest from the dark

Bread for the hunger no one sees

All that is eternal in me

Welcomes the wonder of this day,

The field of brightness it creates

Offering time for each thing

To arise and illuminate.

I place on the altar of dawn:

The quiet loyalty of breath,

The tent of thought where I shelter,

Waves of desire I am shore to 

And all beauty drawn to the eyes.

May my mind come alive today

To the invisible geography

That invites me to new frontiers,

To break the dead shell of yesterdays,

To rise being disturbed and changed.

May I have the courage today

to live the life that I would love,

To postpone my dream no longer

But do at last what I came here for

And waste my heart on fear no more. 

(by John O’Donohue, To Bless the Space Between Us p, 9)   

May God’s peace hold you and all you love. 

The Lord is near!

love & prayers, 


March 21, 2020

“Resurrection Christ,you germinate seeds ofnew life in the burned andbarren places in our world,and in the brokenness of our lives,growing beauty, hope, and loveon delicate stems rising up from the ash.”

– poem by Wendy Janzen, Pastor St. Jacobs Mennonite Church:

May God hold you and all you in love in peace, hope and love,


March 19, 2020

Friends,At this time of social distancing we draw near to God as God draws near to us in love.I am sharing this meaningful prayer which was shared with me by a congregant earlier this morning.Let us pray, 


 Yes there is fear.

Yes there is isolation.

Yes there is panic buying.

Yes there is sickness.

Yes there is even death.


They say that in Wuhan after so many years of noise

You can hear the birds again.

They say that after just a few weeks of quiet

The sky is no longer thick with fumes

But blue and grey and clear.

They say that in the streets of Assisi

People are singing to each other

across the empty squares,

keeping their windows open

so that those who are alone

may hear the sounds of family around them.

They say that a hotel in the West of Ireland

Is offering free meals and delivery to the housebound.

Today a young woman I know

is busy spreading fliers with her number

through the neighbourhood

So that the elders may have someone to call on.

Today Churches, Synagogues, Mosques and Temples

are preparing to welcome

and shelter the homeless, the sick, the weary

All over the world people are slowing down and reflecting

All over the world people are looking at their neighbours in a new way

All over the world people are waking up to a new reality

To how big we really are.

To how little control we really have.

To what really matters.

To Love.

So we pray and we remember that

Yes there is fear.

But there does not have to be hate.

Yes there is isolation.

But there does not have to be loneliness.

Yes there is panic buying.

But there does not have to be meanness.

Yes there is sickness.

But there does not have to be disease of the soul

Yes there is even death.

But there can always be a rebirth of love.

Wake to the choices you make as to how to live now.

Today, breathe.

Listen, behind the factory noises of your panic

The birds are singing again

The sky is clearing,

Spring is coming,

And we are always encompassed by Love.

Open the windows of your soul

And though you may not be able

to touch across the empty square,

Sing.  Amen

 Pastor Kara Carter

March 18, 2020

Dear friends,

“Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name, you are mine.

When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and through the rivers, they shall not overwhelm you; when you walk through fire you shall not be burned, and the flame shall not consume you.

For I am the Lord your God, the Holy One, your Savior. ….. you are precious in my sight, and honoured, and I love you. Do not fear, for I am with you.: (Isaiah 43: 1-5)

The prophet Isaiah’s word came at a time when God’s people were in exile. They were far from home including distanced from their place of worship. They were fearful and despairing whether their God had abandoned them. Into that wilderness time of uncertainty, fear, and displacement, God spoke words of love, hope, and the assurance of Divine faithful accompaniment.

These past days I have drawn comfort and strength through Isaiah’s prophetic message. As God’s people, we are assured that as we journey this pandemic wilderness season, God is with us. God holds us in a wide and strong embrace. God the Good Shepherd’s rod and staff are our source of comfort and strength (Ps. 23).

“Do not fear” – we hear this over and again throughout Scripture. While fear is a natural human response we need not be overcome. When we pass through that dark valley of fear, we are assured God is with us, loves us, and will bring us home.

We are living in an extraordinary time. We are holding our loved ones close to our hearts. We are concerned for our health and our global brothers and sisters especially the aged and vulnerable. Daily life has been disrupted. Children are home from school. Universities and colleges have ceased in-person classroom teaching. Recreation facilities and others have closed. Large gatherings have been banned. Changes in our work places are evolving day to day. Economic volatility creates uncertainty. Some of our congregational family members are in self-quarantine. Others are dealing with significant health issues including awaiting transfer for rehabilitation. Our hearts and love are extended to those who gather at hospice. In this extraordinary time be assured good people of God, “God is with us!!”

Last evening WMC Board met for an on-line email meeting along with Jane Kuepfer (SRC chairperson) and Grant Nafziger (Elders chairperson). WMC leadership and staff are learning new and creative ways to meet and I am delighted to share with you that last evening’s “experiment” was a success! I give thanks for WMC leadership!

Yesterday morning Premier Doug Ford announced a state of emergency for the province of Ontario. MCEC denominational leadership followed up, strongly encouraging the cancellation of all congregational activities (worship services, Lent services, in-person board meetings, etc.) until March 31. WMC Board believes cancelling all in-person gatherings is a faithful response for this time. While we cannot meet together at  

this time, ministry continues. We continue to be the church!

To keep you informed:

Staff Relations Committee has been in contact with all WMC staff. Work situations have been evaluated and adjusted to fit with current realities.

I will be working primarily from home but available by phone and email (cell 519-749-5008 or

Susan will be working mostly at the church with doors locked for safety. She is available by phone and email and will continue to look after invoices, offering, Info Sheet and other communications (519-656-2700 or

Clare will work exclusively from home. Jeanette will continue to clean the church and use time not needed for usual weekly tasks to clean more deeply and disinfect.

At this time of disruption, please pray for our staff and consider email and phone calls with words of encouragement and care.

Last evening the Board approved the formation of a “Pandemic Response Team.” This team’s primary agenda will be to monitor the situation, inform congregational leadership, and communicate, including offering recommendations. This vital team includes: Dan Lebold (519-504-1550), Delores, Schwartzentruber (519-504-7475), and Betty Ann Glauser (519-656-3582 from 7-9 pm).

Worship Committee has been in conversation over the past days, exploring a number of options for on-line worship. Further details will be forthcoming.

Because expenses are ongoing, please consider how best to continue regular givings. Stewardship & Finance offer a number of options:

1) drop cheques off in the outdoor mail box when Susan is in the office

2) write out your cheques and date for the Sundays that we are closed

3) etransfer:

4) contact a Stewardship and Finance for cheque pick up

Care Team encourages us to consider how we can help each other at this time. By getting groceries or calling people who live alone we can show the love of Christ to those around us. We serve a loving God and we have a living hope in Christ Jesus. Let us cling to this sure steadfast anchor of the soul (Heb. 6:19) and encourage others to find refuge in God, our sure and present help in times of trouble (Ps 46). At

At this time, we have an opportunity to be the church in new ways. While we cannot be physically present we can still connect through phones calls, emails, or video chats. Let us check in regularly with our neighbours and one another.

At this time of “social distancing” may we draw near to God as God draws near to us. “Do not be afraid” says our God “I am with you.”

With a pastor’s love,

March 13, 2020

Dear friends,

Recent news about the spread of coronavirus disease (COVID 19) has raised concerns for many of us for the well-being of people across the globe including potentially our own communities and neighborhoods. On Wednesday March 11, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared a pandemic.

In response, let us join in prayer for all who are affected by this disease. May God be with those who grieve, are ill, isolated and afraid, and the many first responders and people involved in medical and emergency care. We pray specifically for the people of China, South Korea, Iran, Italy, and other nations where the disease is spreading rapidly. May we together express support for our global neighbors and communities, that racism and prejudice be confronted among us. Let us also pray for world leaders that responsive policy be grounded in compassion and justice rather than fear and protectionism.

Let us also pray that we may resist allowing our fear to overwhelm us. We trust in “God with us,” and in the revelation of God in Christ Jesus who spoke often in the Gospels, “do not be afraid.”

It is important to be informed about risks and precaution at this time. While the Region of Waterloo reports that risk to residents remains low, there are a number of ways we can protect ourselves and others.  

Region of Waterloo Public Health and Emergency Services release regular community bulletins including precautions to prevent the spread of germs and viruses:

·         Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.

·         Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.

·         Avoid close contact with people who are sick.

·         Stay home when you are sick.

·         Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.

·         Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.

Wellesley Mennonite leadership want to ensure best practices in our worship and community life together, especially for the sake of those most vulnerable to this and other diseases.

Concerning specific worship practices, the following changes are being implemented:

 ·         Greeting one another in ways that does not include shaking hands or embracing is strongly encouraged.

·         Hand sanitizer is readily available in and around our worship and gathering spaces for everyone’s use.

·         Staff Relations Committee is following up regarding cleaning and disinfecting surfaces according to local health guidelines in our public spaces of worship and gathering, especially washrooms, door handles, light switches, kitchen surfaces.

·         Worship Committee has made a decision that microphone will not circulate throughout the congregation during sharing time. Additionally, offering plates will not be passed through the congregation. Rather, congregants are invited to bring their offerings forward during worship.

·         Conversation regarding best practices for Good Friday communion preparation and serving is ongoing.

·         In addition, appropriate food safe practices, including thorough hand washing, washing of dishes, careful preparing and serving of food and beverages will be followed for all gatherings.

·         Conversation is underway regarding providing electronic links to join worship services or meetings via video conferencing.

·         Food and drinks will not be shared.   

It is my hope and prayer that our appropriate concern for public health and well-being in our communities does not diminish our full and enthusiastic participation in worship and community life together. We trust in God’s continuing care for all in response to this health challenge before us.

May God bless us this Lenten season as we anticipate Easter celebration.

Yours in Christ,

Pastor Kara

March 31, 2020


While some of us are feeling the fullness of over stuffed days, others are struggling with isolation, loneliness, and depression.

Wherever you find yourself today, whatever you are feeling today, we pray together with confidence knowing we are not alone.  

Loving God,

our minds have much too much time these days…..

Help us to leave our fear and 

anxieties with You

that the living water you give us

might fill us with refreshing peace.

This day, let our hearts be fed by thankfulness…..

Let our heads be fed by a sense of solidarity……

for we are not alone

but rather are surrounded

by a great cloud of witnesses

and filled with the healing power of Your Holy Spirit.

Thanks be to you, O God. Amen

(this prayer was written by my friend Presbyterian Pastor Gwen Ament).   

May God’s peace hold you and your loved ones,