Greetings from Pastor Lee Barstow

, 2020

Dear LCC Community,


As we move through this unknown landscape without our familiar landmarks, we need new
navigation skills… landmarks that help us navigate… a clear sense of where we are going. It
is as if we have been pushed into a master class of spiritual growth… a PhD program for
learning how to survive in a threatening environment.

More than anything, we need hope. And yet hope can seem the most elusive of all.
We are used to finding hope by imagining good outcomes… by being optimistic. But in the midst of so much uncertainty, it’s harder than ever to imagine how things might turn out.

But there’s a different kind of hope which one of my favorite teachers—Richard
Rohr—calls “mystical hope.” It is the hope that comes from the wellspring within us.

We cannot avoid the fear and the worry and the grief and all the other feelings that
color these challenging days. But we can help ourselves navigate them by seeking our
essential, connection to the presence of pure Spirit… by seeking our innate awareness that
God is in all of us and in everything.

Says Rohr, “Mystical hope is not tied to … the future. It lives a life of its own,
seemingly without reference to external circumstances and conditions. It has something to do
with presence… the immediate experience of being met, held in communion, by something
intimately at hand. It bears fruit within us … in the sensations of strength, joy, and
satisfaction: an “unbearable lightness of being.” But mysteriously, rather than deriving these
gifts from outward expectations being met, it seems to produce them from within.... The
journey to the wellsprings of hope is really a journey toward the center, toward the innermost
ground of our being where we meet and are met by God.” (1)


As we walk through the season of Easter, may our tradition help us ground us in
mystical hope. The light within us will never be overcome by the darkness. We can trust that
no matter what happens, we are held in the embrace of the Love that is our source and our


Peace and blessings,

Letter from Lee




Leverett Congregational Church

4 Montague Road

PO Box 324

Leverett, MA 01054



Sundays at 10 AM

ALL are welcome

Handicap accessible

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