Andy’s Flaming Chalice – February Column

February greetings! I always enjoy February, a rather whimsical month of Aquarians and Pisceans that is leaping this year to a 29th day. February celebrates the mysterious prognostication of the Groundhog, the sturdy virtues of Presidents Lincoln and Washington, the romantic (if historically unattested) honoring of St. Valentine. February is named for the Latin term “februum,” meaning purification, in reference to the purification ritual Februa held on February 15th (full moon) on the lunar Roman calendar. January and February were added as the calendar’s last months by Numa, second King of Rome, in 713 B.C. February would remain the calendar’s last month until about 450 B.C., when it became the second month.

For us at Starr King, February comes directly after the annual Board of Trustees/Committee on Ministry Retreat, which gives these two important church bodies time to reconnoiter together and consider how best to serve our congregational mission and prepare for the coming year(s). If you’re curious about what happened at this retreat, feel free to buttonhole anyone on either the Board or the COM and quiz them!

February is also the month of our Bi-Annual Service Auction, which will be held on Saturday the 25th. This is our congregations’ biggest single fund-raising event, so wide participation is important. Have you pledged any goods or services for the auction yet? There are lots of things to offer: a special theme-dinner that you’ll cook for a certain number of people; a special cake or garment or service that your aesthetic flair will make special. Don’t feel creative? Many more prosaic services are popular too, like a ride to the airport for 1 or more people – all you need for this is a Driver’s License and an alarm clock!! If you would like to participate (you would!) but need inspiration, talk to this year’s Service Auction coordinator Sherry Thomas or to any member of the Board.

Then, of course, come to the Service Auction on February 25th with checkbook in hand!

Finally, be sure to look at your Flaming Chalice to find out about the special worship services we’ll have in this second month of our four-month Minister’s Sabbatical period. We have interesting offerings and gifted speakers and you won’t want to miss them.

Be well, and enjoy this month of ancient purification and the leaping year, oracular groundhogs and love.
Warm regards,