Return to Sequoyah

I’m headed back to Mount Sequoyah today, the retreat center that inspired the song. And, I’m heading back to see many of the very people that inspired the song, actually. One of our group of friends, Larry Norman, has orchestrated a reunion of sorts, and many of our old gang are up there all this week…some for just a day or two. I’m going up tomorrow, and heading home Friday morning…

And as I prepared to head out, it strikes me how weird it is to actually be living out something I wrote about in the song:

And if we never meet again, we wonder how we’ll cope,
So trust reunion’s not in vain, and in this trust keep hope.

May the seasons change, then back again, allowing me to see
All the friends and smiling faces that become like family.

Should be interesting, going back to see those good friends. Haven’t seen many of them since the day I wrote the song all those years ago.

It’s Spring at Sequoyah now. Haven’t ever been there in the Spring. Like the song says, we always went in October. But Spring is good. I bet it’s beautiful right now.

Many seasons have changed. And back again too. We’re all older. We have moved on with our lives, just as the song predicts. Still, though, it’s a good thing to keep up with old friends, you know? The older I get, the more valuable and rare they seem.

I’ll let you know how it goes.

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Eric Folkerth is a minister, musician, author and blogger. He has been Senior Pastor of Northaven United Methodist Church in Dallas, Texas since 2001. During his tenure, church membership has grown almost 30 percent, and a completely new church facility (sanctuary and education building) has been constructed. Northaven is a leading progressive Christian congregation in the Southwest. Northaven is an eclectic collection of gay and straight families, artists, musicians, theater folks, academic theologians, lawyers and judges (go figure), socially conscious community activists, people who don't "check their brain at the door," and a wide array of others who either see it as their "last chance" inside the "institutional church," or their first trip back in decades. Eric is an avid blogger and published author.  Eric is also an award-winning singer-songwriter, who performs throughout Texas and the Southwest. He's an engaging live performer whose first CD was released in 2000. His songs have won honorable mention in both the Billboard and Great American song contests; and he's been a finalist in the 5th Street Festival and South Florida Folk Festival songwriter competitions. Eric is also a leader of Connections, a unique band comprised of United Methodist clergy and layfolk from throughout North Texas. Connections performs "cover shows" of artists like Dan Fogelberg, Chicago, Eagles, Doobie Brothers, Billy Joel, Stevie Wonder, James Taylor and others. Their shows draw crowds of between 300 and 1,000 fans, and they have raised more than $240,000 dollars for worthy charities. Eric has led or co-led hundreds of persons on mission trips around the globe, to places such as Mexico, Haiti, Russia, and Nepal. He has worked with lay persons to build ten homes, and one Community Center, in partnership with Habitat for Humanity of Dallas. He's a popular preacher, and often tackles challenging issues of social justice in his writings and sermons. His wife, Judge Dennise Garcia, is a State District Judge for Dallas, County. As judge of the 303rd Family District Court, she consistently gets high ratings from area lawyers, and was named "best judge" by The Dallas Observer. First elected in 2004, she was the first Latina ever elected to a county-wide bench in Dallas County. She was re-elected for a third term in 2010. They have the world's best daughter, Maria, and an incredible dog, Daisy. (As always, if you like this post, then "like" this on Facebook by clicking the box below, so others can see too...)

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