Bird watching can be spiritual | News

RUTHERFORDTON—Rev. Billy Vaughn and his wife Brenda believe that observing God’s creation can draw you closer to Him. Especially when it comes to birds.

Billy and Brenda have been bird lovers for more than 40 years. It all began, Billy said, when he was making a pastoral visit to two elderly sisters who were members of his church, in Kershaw, S.C.

I sat down in their home, and happened to look out the window. I was amazed, that there were 30-35 birds eating from a tray just outside the window,” he said. “And they began naming the different types of birds.”

Since he expressed a genuine interest, a couple of weeks after that incident the sisters brought Billy two gifts: a bluebird house, and a 1947 edition of “The Peterson Field Guide to the Birds.”

That is what really got us started,” he said. “We put up the birdhouse right away.”

Throughout his ministry, and now in retirement, birds are a part of the couple’s everyday routine. They can observe them from dining room windows, or while sitting on a sofa in the living room.

Bird feeders, houses and birdbaths are strategically located in the back and side yards of their Rutherfordton home. The birds are almost constantly singing.

Billy and Brenda can speak from experience about every sort of bird they have encountered, from cedar waxwings, red breasted grosbeaks, and hairy woodpeckers to the white breasted nuthatch and goldfinches. They love the bluebirds, cardinals, indigo buntings as well as hummingbirds and Carolina wrens.

They purchase various types of bird feed in bulk, and often mix their own. Billy and Brenda have learned that it is necessary to take special precautions or squirrels and other animals will try their best to eat the food left for the birds.

They couple installed birdhouses and feeders whenever they moved to a new area.

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