Books would define my decor ~ an interior decorator’s nightmare I suppose. It’s like being surrounded with friends that I love and if I knew everything in every one them I’d be a pretty smart cookie. As you might expect there are many theology books, lots of books on prayer. Bibles and books ON the Bible. It is a much more extensive library than the one at Msalato Theological College.

As Jessie and I prepare to go to Alexandria, Virginia tomorrow to see Sandy McCann before she returns to Africa and to see Moses, Daniel, Stephen, Venuce and Daudi (our African friends) I am beginning to pack an army duffel bag with gifts from many of you. Clergy shirts and collars, sweaters from Emmanuel’s Thrift Shop, 3 laptops that were donated, money for Pendo who lost her home in a recent deluge and a beautiful Prayer Book/Hymnal, an unheard of luxury in Dodoma. I am so touched by this gift from Dick Molvin whose wife, known to many of us, Bobbie, died a few months ago after a courageous and long battle with cancer. Dick called me the other day and wanted to donate Bobbie’s Book of Common Prayer/Hymnal to someone in Africa. At the moment it is lying on a pass-through between my entrance foyer and the living room. Since getting it yesterday I have walked by it probably a dozen times, maybe more, and each time I stop and think of the generosity and love behind this gift. “Wouldn’t YOU like to keep it,” I asked Dick. No, he wants it to be of use to someone in Africa who never in their wildest dream could imagine owning a Prayer Book/Hymnal. It moves me that the book that Bobbie held in her hands and held close to her heart when she served as a Euchristic Minister will now be in use in Africa. We Episcopalians are people of a Prayer Book ~ it “guides our private prayer and is the source of our theology” writes Leonel Mitchell in a book I had in Deacon’s School. There is a Latin maxin: “lex orandi lex credendi” which means that the way we pray determines the way we believe. Our Prayer Book continues to shape my life. Goethe wrote that “we are shaped and fashioned by what we love.” There were a few prayers and papers in Bobbie’s book ~ Dick left them there. I suppose I will too, words to be read by someone in a faraway country. They are too many to share in this blog but pasted on the first inside page of the book are these words from 2 Timothy. “I have fought the good fight. I have finished my course. I have kept the faith.” It would seem that Bobbie has not finished her course. On earth, yes, but in heaven, no. Bless her, bless Dick and bless all of you faithful readers.
Tally and Jessie

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