Friday, March 30, 2007

The Church Gray Goose Struts Its Stuff

Is this really a crisis?

Which way do I lean?

Let's go in peace to love and serve the Lord!

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

A Thoughtful Gift

Last weekend we were expecting that it would be our last time this year to spend time with my brother and his wife Nancy. For several weeks Roger had been working on a set of tables and chairs to be used by the granddaughters on their playhouse roof garden.
I would estimate that Roger spent more than 40 hours carefully planning, cutting, constructing and finally painting these intricate chairs, including an adirondack chair he cut out based on one he looked at in our neighborhood, along with a matching picnic table. As you can see here, the table is quite an accomplishment. It was a thoughtful gift, don't you think?

So, the granddaughters and all the family were invited over to see what Roger had done and to enjoy the new playhouse addition. Here are the pictures we took Saturday of Emily in play, along with Annabelle in a game of "I have your nose, I have your ear" with aunt Nancy. Noses and ears were disappearing into the funniest of places, only to be found by Annabelle with great glee. Here Nancy is offering Annabelle back her ear while Uncle Roger and daddy look on.

Sunday, March 25, 2007


In the legend of El Dorado the legendary king Zipa used to cover his body in gold and, from his raft, he offered treasures to the Guatavita goddess in the middle of the sacred lake. This old Muisca tradition became the origin of El Dorado legend.

El Dorado is also sometimes used as a metaphor to represent an ultimate prize or Holy Grail
that one might spend their life seeking. It could represent true love, heaven, happiness, or success. It is used sometimes as a figure of speech to represent something much sought after that may not even exist, or at least may not ever be found. Wikipedia

We have a new restaurant in our little town, El Dorado. It is run by El Salvadorian immigrants who came to the United States to escape the bitter life in their home country. The waiter spoke softly with me of the memory of the years of war in their country, of brothers, friends and families lost, of a society that was shattered in a long war.

He shared with me the memory passed on to him by his father: of a time when his homeland was sufficient to provide its people a manner of living. He came here when he was a young boy, not speaking our language. Now he speaks it seamlessly.

He tells me he is the owner and created their menu. They make good food. So good that the new restaurant stays full through the lunch and dinner hours.

He is surprised that I know anything about his country, about the war, and what they endured. He tells me he feels for the people of Iraq because he knows how the war affected him and his family.

Yesterday was the birthday of Oscar Romero, martyred bishop of El Salvador, who said: “Let us not tire of preaching love; it is the force that will overcome the world. Let us not tire of preaching love. Though we see that waves of violence succeed in drowning the fire of Christian love, love must win out; it is the only thing that can.”

Thursday, March 22, 2007


Bishop John Howe of Florida:
I think there has been a better sense of collegiality than we have experienced for a long time.

Susan Russell (Priest):
"This was a huge step that the American church was not willing to go back into the closet about its inclusion of gay and lesbian people in order to capitulate to those who would exclude us...."
Michael Hopkins (Priest): A Day for Humble Thanks: I slept well last night for ther first time in weeks...
Elizabeth Kaeton (Priest): ...a simple, clear, strong statement that this is who we understand ourselves to be as a family of God, and that we are willing to stand by all of the members in our family.

Father Jake Stops the World:
Thank God! It is a good day to be an Episcopalian!
Father John (Priest):
The bishops show themselves to be a mature, adult, self-differentiated body with the savvy to push back the anxiety thrust upon them by the Primates.
Richard (Caught by the Light) Priest:
I am almost speechless....This raises a serious question for many, from the Archbishop of the Church of Nigeria, to the Primate of the Southern Cone, to the Archbishop of Canterbury. . .Do you really want to aid and abet one of the worst aspects of Western culture: the severing of relationship when the going gets tough -- the real threat to our unity in Christ?
Click above title for today's article by New York Times on the Bishop's Meeting.
and mine:
Antiakinolaestablishmentarianism? OR I'M NOT SURE I CAN DO THIS
Goodbye, Anglican Home (a song from the wrong side of the Atlantic)
you were home of Shakespeare and Chaucer
the rubrics I learned but never had to write down
you were the ancient graves near the Thames
the lofty Cathedral where little boys sang
Tallis, Tavener, Durufl, Ives, Purcell
nearby Whitehall, Trafalgar, and Ludgate Hill
messages from the ABC I sometimes read
at nights before I went to bed
the Sunday services, those at Christmas Eve
the processions with princes and Queens in their grief
you were the tiny brass crucifix
and the smell of incense, in thurible mixed
you were the balcony with pipes of all sizes
liturgy spoken in well cadenced phrases
post-wedding pictures, baptismal cries
fragrant altar flowers, and smiling eyes
you were the coffee, the tea, and the cakes
the wooden seats that made young hips ache
an awkward hug at the passing of the peace
the momentary innocence of confessional release
a man for all seasons standing in his time
preparations, a prayer book, both bread and wine
always the questions, rarely demanding an answer
the poetry of psalms, the liturgical dancer
the raising of prayers for those hurt, lost and alone
for a friend in need, or on their way home
the candles extinguished as the service ends
a moment of silent kneeling and matters to mend
my place of second birth, my spiritual door
now you're the dream we lived before

Wednesday, March 21, 2007


Yesterday the House of Bishops of the Episcopal church rejected demands of leaders of the Anglican Communion to alter our polity and accept intrusion of the Prelates in our Communion. This was done on account of our full inclusion (blessing same-sex couples and consecrating a gay bishops) of gay persons.
When I read the news online, I was immediately filled with relief and joy and a deepened regard for the courage of our Bishops.
Thanks be to God

Read Mind of the House resolutions

And we are reminded by anothe blogger that: "On this day (March 21) in 1556, after denying earlier forced recantations, Archbishop of Canterbury Thomas Cranmer, author of the Book of Common Prayer, was burned at the stake by Queen Mary.

Thursday, March 15, 2007


Deep peace of the running waves to you.
Deep peace of the flowing air to you.
Deep peace of the quiet earth to you.
Deep peace of the shining stars to you.
Deep peace of the Son of Peace to you.

The Lake Isle of Innisfree
I will arise and go now, and go to Innisfree,
And a small cabin build there, of clay and wattles made;
Nine bean rows will I have there, a hive for the honey bee,
And live alone in the bee-loud glade.
And I shall have some peace there, for peace comes dropping slow,
Dropping from the veils of the morning to where the cricket sings;
There midnight's all aglimmer, and noon a purple glow,
And evening full of the linnet's wings.
I will arise and go now,
for always night and day I hear lake water lapping with low sounds by the shore;
While I stand on the roadway, or on the pavements grey,
I hear it in the deep heart's core.

Harmony shall echo and re-echo
Throughout the length
And breadth of the world
When each human being
Values the beauty and divinity
Of self-offering
Sri Chinmoy
The Hope of Loving

Meister Eckhart

What keeps us alive, what allows us to endure?
I think it is the hope of loving,or being loved.
I heard a fable once about the sun going on a journey
to find its source, and how the moon wept
without her lover’s warm gaze.
We weep when light does not reach our hearts.
We wither like fields if someone close
does not rain their kindness upon us.
Early Spring:
Rainer Maria Rilka
Harshness vanished.
A sudden softness
has replaced the meadows' wintry grey.
Little rivulets of water changed
their singing accents. Tendernesses,
hesitantly, reach toward the earth
from space, and country lanes are showing
these unexpected subtle risings
that find expression in the empty trees

How wonderful it would be if one could onlybe worthy of hearing the song of the grass.
Each blade of grass sings out to God
without any ulterior motive and without expecting any reward.
It is most wonderful to hear its song
and worship God in its midst.
The best place to meditate is in a field where things grow.
There one can truly express his thoughtsbefore God.....
The best place is to meditate is in the meadows outside the city.
One should meditate in grassy field, for grass will awaken the heart

Nachman of Bratzlav Trans. Aryeh Kaplan