[mou] The Journey + Fox Sparrows

Pastor Al Schirmacher pastoral at princetonfreechurch.net
Thu Oct 11 13:10:46 EDT 2007

I moved to Minnesota four years ago.

The birding has been terrific.

Most of the birders I've met - serendipidously or on field trips - have been 
terrific as well.

On occasion I hear criticism of other birders, particularly of the "names" 
in the field, or of leadership.

On occasion I hear that people will not post due to (perceived or real) 
attacks or criticism.

Once in a while I've been criticized - often justly (frankly, I'm not as 
detailed or as thorough I should be - learning this has been painful but 
very healthy) - a couple of times unjustly.

Since I'm a pastor as well as a birder, the occasional gossip, attacks, 
reluctance to share sadden me.

As a communicator, I've wanted to address the situation.

Today it hit me.

I don't need to point fingers at others.

To do such would be hypocritical.

Frankly, sometimes I've participated in the gossip.  I've criticized, 
sometimes ignorantly.  I've become angry on occasion - even lashing out.

So, to put it simply, I want to say I'm sorry.  Instead of being part of the 
problem, I want to be part of the solution.

Life is too short.  The journey is too much fun.  Birding is too excellent 
of an avocation.

(Fox Sparrows finally arrived in the area today - is there a more glorious 

Good birding to all!

Al Schirmacher
Princeton, MN
Mille Lacs & Sherburne Counties 

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