We are grateful not only for John McFadden’s presence this morning, but for Dianne Droster, who will be leading our prayers. Many of you will recognize Dianne from the many ways she volunteers here at her “home of homes.” What you may not know is that she also completed four years of the Wisconsin Conference of the United Church of Christ Lay Academy, has taken several seminary courses and works as the Caring Ministries Coordinator at First English Lutheran Church where she visits the hospitalized and homebound, teaches adult education, leads the Stephen Ministry program and preaches on occasion. We asked Dianne to share some words on how God’s calling is working in her life, since she has recently been affirmed as a Member in Discernment in the Northeast Association. Her description is as follows:

Recently, botanists in Siberia discovered a cache of seeds from an ancient squirrel’s burrow buried under 124 feet of permafrost, near layers containing remains of mammoths and wooly rhinos. Even though the seeds dated back 32,000 years and showed signs of damage, with nurturing and the proper growing environment, they blossomed and produced seeds of their own.

Now I’m not quite as ancient as those flowering seeds! But as some of you know, I wandered into this church a few years ago after a 30-year dormant period, and I heard the still-singing voice of God. Even as I write this, I feel a lurch in my heart and the
in-breath of God, and I wonder if that’s how germination feels.

For I am something of a late bloomer. 

Last week just before my 59th birthday, after receiving the blessings of our pastors and the Council, I was formally approved as a Member in Discernment on a path toward ordained ministry by the Committee on Ministry of the Northeastern Wisconsin Association of the United Church of Christ.

This designation is often shortened to the acronym MID, which I pronounce like the word “mid,” derived from the Greek word mesos. It means “among and amidst and in the middle of.” And that is where the seeds of ministry have been nurtured in me; among and amidst and in the middle of all of you.

I am now working with the committee to determine what further education I will need as I prepare for my first official call. I take comfort in knowing that our scriptures are filled with stories of folks who also answered a call later in life.

I will continue to need your help too; my dear sisters and brothers in Christ. Over the years, so many of you have encouraged me. From you I have learned how nourishing a kind word can be and how amazing the growing power of a proffered prayer is.  I ask for your guidance and prayers in the days ahead.

 – Much love and many blessings, Dianne Droster

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