Showing posts from June, 2011

Monday Morning Musings

Yesterday, at the 10am worship service, the congregation I serve participated in the Faith Shared project by offering an interfaith worship experience. Our effort was distinctively NOT an effort at creating one world faith, as some critics of the project have suggested. Rather, we worked to bring in elements of Jewish, Islamic, and Christian worship. So, we began the service with three openings:a call to prayer in Arabic, the opening acclamation "the Lord be with you..." from the Episcopal liturgy, and the lighting of candles and prayers to begin the sabbath, from the Jewish tradition. We heard a reading from the Torah (Numbers) with a fabulous reflection on hospitality based on the reading. That was followed by a reading from the Qu'ran, which was sung by a nine year old boy, and his ten year old brother interpreted it for us in English. I proclaimed the Gospel and reflected on the reading and the week past, where our church co-sponsored the Worldviews Seminar. We sang…

RevGals Friday Five

Over at RevGals I posted a Friday Five meme considering the various cultures and religions that we may have, or would like to experience.

In response I offer these quick thoughts:

I have studied yoga for many years, and through that a bit of Hinduism. I have also studied Buddhism and meditation. I am however a faithful practicing Christian. I'd like to know more about the faiths that have grown out of the Abrahamic tradition, Judaism, Christianity, and Islam.

Also, I have had some experience with Hispanic cultures in Puerto Rico, the Dominican Republic, and Mexico. I've always wanted to explore the Mayan and Incan cultures and visit their ancient lands in Mexico and Central America.

And, lastly, I often dream of being inParis, although I have never been there. I think it would be fun to understand why Paris is a destination of my subconscious and then to visit that city.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Monday Morning Musings

This week the congregation I serve is hosting the Worldviews Seminar in Dearborn, Michigan. It is the ten anniversary of this seminar, created as the brainchild of Lucinda Mosher, Episcopal Relief and Development, the former rector of Christ Church, and Claude Jacobs, professor at the University of Michigan, Dearborn. It is a week long continuing Ed opportunity to learn about world religions. My hope, as the rector of this church and a member of the planning team, was to be very present for this seminar.

But it seems that life has other plans. I now have an interment on Tuesday for the sister-in-law of a parishioner and then a wake and funeral for parishioner who has attended this church for over sixty years. The wake is Wednesday and the funeral with interment will be Thursday.

In addition we hosting a number of small group sessions for me to meet parishioners, two of them will be this week.

Then, on Sunday we plan to participate in the interfaith worship scheduled for June 26, by hav…

Trinity Sunday

(Invite the children to join me).
“So, I have a riddle for you.”

“How do you make the number one disappear?”

“You add a 'G' to it, and it's 'Gone'”

“What kind of a bean can you not grow?”

“A jelly bean.”

“What goes up a stairs but does not move?”

“A carpet.”

“Can you help me understand
what it sounds like
to clap our hands together?” (clap, affirm their effort).

“Now can you help me
understand what it
sounds like to clap one hand?”

“Oh, now that is a
curious riddle isn't.

Thank you for helping me,
you can go sit down now.”

Asking the question,
“What is the sound
of one hand clapping?”
is a spiritual question
used by Zen Buddhist teachers
with their students.

Questions like this
are called “Koans.”

The intent of giving a student
a koan is to aide that student
in deepening
their spiritual awareness
and insight.

A koan is a question
which has no absolute answer,
although sometimes
the meaning is very simple.

For example
the meaning…

RevGals Friday Five

Jan over at RevGals offers this Friday Five:

I am currently reading a book entitled Stairway of Surprise: Six Steps to a Creative Life by Michael Lipson. His premise is a quote by Ralph Waldo Emerson: "I shall mount to paradise by the stairway of surprise." Lipson's book is about practicing or developing six inner functions--thinking, doing, feeling, loving, opening, and thanking.

So these categories of attention are a jumping off point for today's Friday Five:

Pick five of the six actions and write about how you are practicing them today or recently. For a bonus, write about the sixth one you originally didn't choose!

What or how are you

1. thinking? I am thinking about my homily for Sunday. It is my goal to preach without a text as often as possible this summer. I also need tom preach shorter reflections that take in to consideration that our children will be with for the entire service. For me this is an opportunity to engage the kids at the sermon time. So, I…

Monday Morning Musings

The last couple of weeks have been busy with preparations for a round of rituals designed to honor this new ministry. Now that those are over, and I have a relatively quiet week. Next week the Worldviews Seminar begins so life will get busy again. The church I serve is a host site for the seminar, the former rector being a founding member of it. As a host site we offer a place for the group to gather every day for a catered lunch, an afternoon session, and place for cars to be parked while the group takes their bus tours to the various religious centers in the Dearborn/Detroit area. I'm excited to be a part of this and look forward to the presentations. But, that's next week.

This week will be a bit quieter, and for that I am thankful. I was quite exhausted yesterday afternoon, and found myself grateful for a yoga class within an easy bike ride from my house. This particular yoga class is held at 5pm every Sunday, it's a "Restorative" class - with slow easy postu…

Infused with the Spirit

A reflection on Pentecost, Baptism, and 1 Corinthians 12

12:4 Now there are varieties of gifts, but the same Spirit;

12:5 and there are varieties of services, but the same Lord;

12:6 and there are varieties of activities, but it is the same God who activates all of them in everyone
12:12 For just as the body is one and has many members, and all the members of the body, though many, are one body, so it is with Christ.

12:13 For in the one Spirit we were all baptized into one body--Jews or Greeks, slaves or free--and we were all made to drink of one Spirit
Although she was only nine years old she knew that she wanted to be baptized. She went to church, week in and week out, walking herself down the street to the local congregation. Her parents were much more relaxed about church. So she asked them if they would arrange for her to be baptized. At first her parents thought she should wait until she was older. But eventually, as her asking became persistent, they relented, and a baptism was arr…

RevGals Friday Five: Memorable Moments

Dorcas over at RevGals took her four year old grand-daughter to hear Mozart's Requiem at a live concert venue and offers this Friday Five:

She was hopping with excitement, but we gave her lots of coaching, and when we arrived she gazed about with wonder at the lovely venue, and when the orchestra began to tune up she sat up straight and gazed, enraptured, with her mouth literally open. It was pure delight to watch her enjoying brand-new sights, sounds and surroundings.

This experience led me to remembering times of discovery, of new experiences. Some were my own experiences and some were remembered from my children, or those of others. Share with us today about five memorable moments of insight, discovery, awareness--from childhood or later, something you experienced or something you shared with someone else.

1. Gardening: when I was young we moved to a small town in Wisconsin. In the yard of the house we lived in we discovered a garden of large dark purple grapes, asparagus, and r…

Monday Morning Musings

This morning I am recovering from a busy weekend. My husband and I spent most of Thursday, Friday, and Saturday preparing for a party we hosted Sunday afternoon. (Note to self, a Sunday afternoon party, following two morning services, may not be the best planning - although it turned out well for us).

The party was a thank-you event for the Search Committe members and their families, for the long hard work they did on behalf of this congregation, and my husband and me. We had about 17 people, some of whom do not eat dairy or meat, and one who is allergic to peanuts/nuts. I planned carefully, and served:

Appetizers: homemade guacamole with chunky salsa and organic chips; veggies with a garlic humuus dip.

Dinner: chicken salad with yogurt/mayo dressing, celery, green onions, salt, pepper, and basil. A curry brown rice lentil dish served warm, a salad of organic greens with add your own toppings - mandarian oranges, strawberries, dried cranberries, honey pecans (on the side and ok for t…

A reflection on prayer for Easter 7A

A reflection on John 17:1-11

I was two years old when I had to have my tonsils out. Back in those days they kept kids over night. The evening before the surgery my parents delivered me to the hospital, got me ready for bed, and then when visiting hours were over, they had to leave. Parents were not allowed to stay overnight. I remember standing in the crib, in my pajamas, and saying over and over “Let me out of this crib, I am not a baby!” And, when the nurses refused to let me out I started shaking the crib. In my memory, which might be faulty, I shook that crib across the room. And, at some point I managed to climb out of it. I refused the magic fairy juice, which I'm sure was intended to make me go to sleep. I have no idea how long I tormented that hospital staff, but it was daylight when I arrived, and it was long dark when I finally fell asleep. But, what I remember most clearly about that night is my uncle. My mother's only brother, and an “Elder” in the church, came to …

RevGals Friday Five: Rerun Edition

Songbird, over at RevGalBlogPals, is commenting on summer reruns for her favorite television shows. She wonders:

In honor of this annual Time Warp, please share five things worth a repeat. These could be books, movies, CDs, recipes, vacations, or even TV shows.

I rarely re-read a book. In fact, I never re-read fiction. (although I may change my mind on that, as I have a few favorites now on my iPod. Listening to audiobooks while knitting is very relaxing. I also listen to audiobooks while driving). I do re-read theology books, liturgy books, Bible "interpretation" and ethics. I also re-read Mary Oliver poetry books, again and again and again.

Some of my favorite, easy breezy, comedy movies, I watch over and over. Usually I catch them on a television movie channel, midway into the movie, but since I've already seen it, it becomes background entertainment while I do something else. That something else is usually blog, or read blogs. The same holds true for a few action or d…