Minister's Post, Fri Sep 3

Dear Ones,

Sign up for a Journey Group! You may want to try out a different group -- or you may want to stay in the same one (if it's available). Or maybe you haven't been in a group. Whatever the case, it's time to sign up and indicate what group you'd like to join.

Please go here to sign up:


ICYMI (In Case You Missed It)

The Aug 29 worship service, "The Origins of Happiness," is here:

See our channel for many other past services HERE.

Covid Review

The Worldwide numbers are not reliable, and likely are greatly underestimating the actual prevalence of Covid-19. These numbers may nevertheless give us an indication of trends.

New Cases
Average New Cases per Day, worldwide:
Peak week (Apr 23-29): 828,292
Lowest since peak (Jun 15-21): 360,515
Four weeks ago (Jul 30 - Aug 5): 618,849
Last week (Aug 20-26): 657,378
This week (Aug 27 - Sep 2): 636,151

Average New Cases per Day, US:
Peak week (Jan 5-11): 255,849
Lowest since peak: (Jun 15-21): 11,955
Four weeks ago (Jul 30 - Aug 5): 102,782
Last week (Aug 20-26): 156,577
This week (Aug 27 - Sep 2): 164,185

Average New Cases per Day, Westchester County, NY:
Peak week (Jan 6-12): 861
Lowest since peak (Jun 17-23): 11
Four weeks ago (Jul 30 - Aug 5): 143
Last week (Aug 20-26): 186
This week (Aug 27 - Sep 2): 199

Average Deaths per Day, worldwide:
Peak week (Jan 20-26): 14,808
Lowest since peak (Jun 29 - Jul 5): 7,688
Four weeks ago (Jul 30 - Aug 5): 9,436
Last week (Aug 20-26): 10,050
This week (Aug 27 - Sep 2): 9,401

Average Deaths per Day, US:
Peak week (Jan 7-13): 3,517
Lowest since peak (Jul 2-8): 243
Four weeks ago (Jul 30 - Aug 5): 557
Last week (Aug 20-26): 1,170
This week (Aug 27 - Sep 2): 1,226

Average Deaths per Day, Westchester County, NY:
Peak week of 2021 (Jan 28 - Feb 3): 11
Lowest since peak (Jul 21-27): 0.0
Four weeks ago (Jul 30 - Aug 5): 0.1
Last week (Aug 20-26): 0.4
This week (Aug 27 - Sep 2): 1.0

Worldwide, new cases and deaths are now declining. In the US, they continue to climb, with some fluctuation. New cases of Covid-19 in the US are now 164,000 -- which is 64% of the peak last January and 14 times the low in June. Deaths per day in the US are over 1,200 -- which is 35% of the January peak and 5 times the June low.

The delta variant surge is indeed alarming -- though there is a modicum of relief in the fact that new cases are less likely to result in death than they were 8 months ago.

The US vaccination rate is climbing, albeit agonizingly slowly. The percent fully vaccinated is up to 53.3 -- up from 50.2 a month ago. Meanwhile, the Westchester County fully vaccinated rate is 65% -- up from 62% a month ago. The world might (might!) have turned a corner, but the US and Westchester have not yet. Hang in there and be careful. We'll get through this.

Practice of the Week

Draft Your Obituary.

This summer we’re highlighting spiritual practices in the “occasional” or “give it a try” category. This week’s practice is: write your own obituary. The exercise is from Robert Hardies. He writes:
Editors from papers like the New York Times and Washington Post do some calculations to try to figure out what famous people might be dying in the near future. And on the basis of those predictions, editors assign reporters to interview these “subjects” about their lives and ask them how they want to be remembered. Obituaries are written and filed away until the appropriate time. Most of us won’t make the obituary page of a national newspaper. But the story of our lives matters deeply too. It matters to us and to our conscience. It matters to those whose lives we touch. We all play a role in shaping the unfolding drama of creation, so the story of our lives matters on an ultimate level, too. So let us be good and faithful stewards of our lives stories. Let’s pay attention to how the story is unfolding.
Take a moment today and write your obituary as if tomorrow were the last day of your life. Reflect on what has been most important. Use your journal -- or any piece of paper, or your computer keyboard.

For the full post, see: “Draft Your Obituary.”


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