Flowers brightly blooming, weather quickly changing from overcast to hot and humid and crowds of people everywhere which result in long lines, bring the reality of summer actually being here to all of us.
There are several sets of very happy new grandparents in Oak Bluffs this week. Walter and Donna Tomkins and Robin and Danny Meader are the grandparents of a new baby boy Cory Tomkins. Cory is the son of Jaime and Calvin Tomkins, former Oak Bluffs residents and now residents of Nashua, N.H.
Peter and Judy Williamson finally were able to hold their long-awaited new granddaughter Maggie Mei Xiao Moffet. Maggie is the child of Julie and John Moffet of Edgartown and has an older sister, seven-year-old Caroline. This journey of love began in September of 2004 when John and Julie started the process of adopting a child from China and ended last week when they brought her home. While they were in China going through all the legalities for the past two weeks, their daughter Caroline happily stayed with the Williamsons, where all three excitedly awaited the arrival of Maggie.
We send Birthday Smiles to Claire Gibson on July 9, Hope deBettencourt on July 10, Colleen Farrissey on July 11, Lauren Weaver on July 13 and grandson Nick Rivers on July 15.
A week of music, worship, and friendship began yesterday at the M.V. Campmeeting Association in Oak Bluffs. Tonight at 8 pm will be an "Evening with Ed Kilbourne, Preacher, Storyteller and Folk Theologian. A dialogue with Rev. Tony Campolo, "How Are the Children," will be held Friday morning and Friday night there will be an evening service with Rev. Campolo and special music by the New England Gospel Ensemble. On Saturday night, the 55-person Millennium Gospel Choir of the New England Conservatory will give a concert. All are welcome to the events at the Tabernacle and Camp Meeting events and all events are free with a free will offering taken. For information on times and more events, you may call Craig Lowe at 508-693-9594.
Beginning on July 11 there will be movies on Tuesday nights at the Tabernacle presented by the M.V. Film Society. Films start at 8 pm. Among those scheduled are Moby Dick, The Endless Summer, and Life Boat. For more information, call Richard Paradise at 508 603-9369.
Good Shepherd Parish Music Minister Karen Felder, accompanied by choir members Evelyn Christopher and myself, traveled to Stamford, Conn., last week to attend the National Assoc. Of Pastoral Musicians Eastern Regional Convention. There we attended many music workshops, learning the newer liturgical music. We sang with approximately 600 plus singers from all over the East, and met and sang with some of the most well known contemporary music composers and singers.
Debra and Dion Alley and their children Sam, Ben, and Paige arrived from their South Carolina home this week to spend two weeks vacationing in Oak Bluffs. They are staying with their cousins Jack and Sarah Lavolette while here and have been visiting their parents Megan and Dennis Alley, their siblings and the children's many on-Island cousins and of course their great grandmother 94-year-old Elizabeth Alley, who is once again at home and well after a short stay at our Community Hospital.
First Lt. And Mrs. Steven Kelly of Twenty Palms, Calif., paid a visit recently to the Donald Billings Family. Steven recently returned from a tour in Iraq. Sarah, formerly an Introvigne from Stafford Springs, Conn., is a cousin of Donald's and has visited the Island practically every summer of her life and wanted to show her new husband around. She had been in her first year of teaching while her husband was away and they have purchased their first home in Twenty Palms, as Steven will be stationed there.
Hope your July 4 holiday was a safe and happy one. Enjoy your week and send your news along to me, please.