Showing posts from April, 2014

A Celebration of Life: Mary Jo Searles

One sunny cold day in February, Mary Jo and I met at Panera Cares for lunch. We spent a couple of hours over salad and coffee talking about home repair, the harsh winter, and her anticipated move into Henry Ford Village. She felt good that day and our conversation was filled with joy. The next time I saw her was Ash Wednesday; she was in the hospital with shingles. I brought her ashes and communion. Little did we know, then, that her body was failing quickly, and she’d leave us seven weeks later.

Like the rest of you Mary Jo has played a significant role in my life. Mary Jo was one of the wardens of the Vestry when I arrived here in May 2011. Along with Pete Kenney, who was the other warden, she anchored me in the ways of this parish and guided me with wisdom, humor, and insight.

Mary Jo lived a remarkable life, and all of it right here in Dearborn. The Dearborn Patch has a photo of Mary Jo and some of her friends meeting at the Good Times CafĂ© in August of 2012. They were meeting to pl…

Spring Fling: RevGals Friday Five

RevDeb over at the RevGals blog offers this Friday Five:
Woohoooo! I wore sandals this week and my toes didn’t go numb!! That’s how I know winter is really over. For this week’s Friday Five, tell us 5 things that let you know “Spring is here!!” In your part of the world.

1. Rain. (instead of snow)

2. Green grass, buds on the trees

3. Daffodils and tulips

4. I begin to plan my garden.

5, No winter coat!

Easter: revealing our truest self

One of the primary reasons people my age enjoy Facebook is the opportunity to take quizzes. Many of these quizzes are about identity. Through answering a set of random questions the quiz will determine what state you should live in (New Hampshire); what religion you really are (Hinduism – because I know down-ward facing dog?); what color your aura is (violet, which means I am psychic and wise…). Playing these games always cracks me up; they are all in good fun.

But beyond the silliness of the quizzes is a deeper question concerning our desire to know our “true selves.” As Christians we are on a life-long journey of coming to know our true selves, and Jesus is our guide along the way. From the earliest of days, the Christian journey has been one of shedding the artificial sense of self formed in part in response to the pulls and pushes of the world around us. The artificial self is a natural defense to being told that we are not good enough, thin enough, experienced enough, young enough…, and, me

A Maundy Thursday reflection on the Passion, from the perspective of Judas.

Scene: it’s very late on Thursday night and Jesus’ followers have gathered together in grief, anger, and confusion at his arrest just a few hours before. Into their midst stumbles a man dressed in a rumpled blue business suit. His eyes are read and he appears out of sorts. He makes his way to the front of the room and sits on a chair facing the audience. He waits for several moments before speaking, first staring out the window and then into the eyes of the people in front of him. Finally, he begins to speak…

I’m Judas.

Did you know Judas is a very popular name? In Hebrew, Judas means “the praised one.” Did you know that? Many people name their boys Judas…

That may change.

Why are you here? (sardonically) He’s not coming.

The Romans have him. (Judas gestures, as if to say, “finish the sentence for yourselves.”)

I gave them to him...It was me...the Centurians didn’t have a clue what he looked like...I heard some of th…

The Passion According to Matthew from the perspective of St. Peter

(Peter enters panting deeply, gasping for breath as if he has been kicked in the stomach. He keeps looking behind him, as if he were being followed. He grimaces from pain in his head and his stomach. He gasps, blinks his eyes, and rubs his head with his hands, as if he were going to pass out.)

[caption id="attachment_354" align="aligncenter" width="300"] The Passion according to Matthew from the perspective of Peter[/caption]

Oh my God, what just happened? … What’s happening? Am I safe here? … Where are the others? What did I do? … What have I done? I have to sort this out. I can’t really believe all that has happened, just the way HE said it would. It couldn’t have happened, not that way ….

It all seemed fine. We were just sharing our evening meal together, like always. Most of us were talking and laughing, about things like that ridiculous parade a few days ago, when we came back to the City. It was just another night together, only we were happy and no on…

Friday Five: short and, well, short.

 RevKarla, over at the RevGals offers this Friday Five - heading toward Easter!

1.  What is your favorite Easter candy? Jelly beans, but real flavors not the cheap bad tasting red one's, if you know what I mean.

2.  Do you have an Easter memory from childhood to share, then please do.  Or any Easter memory. When I was about three or four I remember attending Easter morning services at the Tabernacle at Temple Square in Salt Lake City. My mother, brother, and grandmother were there. I was wearing a very frilly dress, hat, and gloves. The entire service, in my memory, was the Mormon Tabernacle Choir singing.

3.  Speaking of, what your most favorite day of the past two weeks been?  Why? Can't say that I have had a favorite day, too many parish deaths and other crud going on. However, with the spring weather, most days have included a dog walk - and that is always a favorite part of my day, especially when the weather is beautiful.

4.  I am kind of digging’ Chipotle’s sofritos these d…