As I write this, I’m preparing for vacation. I’m checking off all the tasks I need to do in order to walk away without leaving anything on my to-do list. In reality, I’ve narrowed that list down to the essentials, knowing there are things I should do, but cannot realistically do in one day.

As you read this, I am likely on a plane home, back to the desert. I hope I will be able to say our vacation was filled with quality family time with my parents, my two aunts and my uncle, my two sisters and their husbands, and my one niece. I hope I will be able to say we kayaked the Wekiva River, swam in the springs, saw alligators and monkeys, rode all the new rides at Universal Studios, and enjoyed the new experience of camping at Disney’s Fort Wilderness. I’m most likely going to say I’m exhausted and need another week of vacation to recover from all we packed into our week!

Why do we overschedule ourselves? This was one of the perks of the pandemic—my schedule became less complicated. Sure, there were definite downsides, but I try to claim the perks when I can! With no in-person school, we weren’t running kids to school and activities. We could take a walk at lunchtime. We could play a game of pool after they logged out of that class. We could watch a movie because they had their schoolwork done in record time (or didn’t bother to do it).

I wonder if we are ready to go back to the tightly scheduled lives we once knew? Does it matter if the kids do all the sports? Is everything we “ought” to do really important? Even with all the busy-ness, our vacation is designed to be a way to connect with the kids and with my family again. Whether we kayak, see Mickey or Harry and Hermione, or discover alligators and monkeys, we will be present with our family, experiencing life together. I pray that gift of presence will be what we all remember, for it is exactly what we need.

See you soon,
Pastor Lynn


(Please note, masks are required during all services as well as inside all St. Mark’s buildings.)

Join us for worship at our new times:

  • 8:30 a.m. Traditional service with choirs in Sanctuary and child care in Rm 15
  • 10 a.m. Modern worship service with Praise Team in Fellowship Hall
  • 10 a.m. Traditional service with choirs in Sanctuary
  • 10 a.m. Youth and children’s Sunday School and child care
  • 10 a.m. Pre-recorded worship premieres on YouTube and Website

Three ways to access our pre-recorded service:

  • From the main menu on our website click “Worship.”
  • Go to YouTube and search for UMC St. Mark’s Oro Valley or use this link.
  • The YouTube link will also be shared on Facebook St. Mark’s UMC Tucson or use this link.