So I’ve got a sister, name of Anne. And not only is my sister an honest to goodness American Baptist Minister, but, just this past weekend, she got installed (which still sounds a bit like something you would do in your kitchen, but the verb works well here, too.) as the new pastor of the First Baptist Church of Clifton Springs, New York.
Clifton Springs is a charming town just north of the finger lakes. About a hundred years ago, it was the sort of place rich and famous people would go to receive the benefits of the “waters” — sulfur springs that gave the town its name. It’s now a bedroom community a couple Thruway exits outside of Rochester, my old home town. Clifton Springs is dominated by these great gothic buildings — the very places where the “cure” was dispensed. And just up the hill from these buildings is a small white church — the First Baptist. It’s a very pretty church, with big , mostly stained-glass windows that let in a lot of air and light. And it’s a very warm and friendly church. I attended both the morning service and the afternoon installation, and I felt very welcomed. I think Anne’s found a great place to preach, and the church has found a great preacher.
Here’s a picture of me and my sister at the reception after the installation. As you can see, the two of us share no family resemblance whatsoever.