I was asked to do the invocation for our Town Meeting in Stoneham tonight. I found myself thinking a lot of those who had spoken words of meaning to this group in the nearly three hundred years we’ve been meeting like this.
On the 14th of December, 1803, Reverend Mr. Stevens preached a sermon on the book of Haggai to the assembled town, as they gathered to dedicate a new meeting house for the Stoneham. According to Deacon Silas Dean, the sermon was focused on the words, “I will fill this house with glory”.
As we come together today, we remember the legacy of hundreds of years of good governance, careful planning and thoughtful preparation that have given us a town filled with green spaces, beautiful buildings and strong institutions. We live in a town where our children and our elders are both carefully treated and dearly loved – where the happy sounds of the soccer fields float through the historic windows of the senior center.
Let us come together, in a sacred intention to build and sustain our community so that those who live in our town in another 200 years may look to us as examples of wise planning, good decisions and respectful communications.
Inspiring spirit, be with us in this time and place. Let our decisions be well-thought and wise. Let our speech with each other be patient and kind. Let our community thrive from our efforts. And let all who live within the bounds of our borders benefit from our good planning. Let us, like our ancestors, fill this house with the glory of good governance. Amen.