Emergent Worship Workshop
Oddly enough, our visit to the Bay Area was not to see old friends, although we did plenty of that, or to eat, although we certainly did plenty of that. We actually went to do some learnin'.
These photos were from the Wednesday morning Emerging Worship Workshop led by a faculty member and a student at CDSP (Church Divinity School of the Pacific). The lefthand photos show a station where we could make crosses out of twigs and thread, and hang prayers and thanksgivings on a line. On the right was another prayer station, where we could light prayers for the world. (Yes, those candles are laid out in the shape of the continents).
Here are some thoughts about the whole thing:
One, this is all very new, relatively speaking, in terms of the sweep of history of the church. Some of this is going to work, and some of it will be discarded. I'm sure there were plenty of experiments in the Reformation that simply didn't go forward, for many reasons. The hymns in our hymnal, for example, cover centuries of church music. It's the best of what we know from many time periods. More contemporary music and liturgical practices will get winnowed in a similar fasihon.
Two, it's interesting to me as our culture becomes more passive "consumers" vs. "producers," that people want to participate more and more in liturgy. As our culture becomes more faceless--harder to figure out how to participate as a citizen when you no longer know where the mechanisms of democracy and power lie in your community--that people want to not passively experience liturgy.
Umm, I need to go finish my Ordinary Time devotionals, (note to any who know me too well, I have started, really. . .so quiz instead of a real post. FOs and Berkeley photos to come!
|Who Should Paint You: Andy Warhol|
You've got an interested edge that would be reflected in any portrait
You don't need any fancy paint techniques to stand out from the crowd!
Husband has just retrieved the Hootie from the vet.
We have to put eye drops in 3x a day.
(Is there a saint whose particular intercessory specialty is dealing with the application of medicine to cats?)
it's all the cat's fault
Or, why I had no knitting in Berkeley. . .
I flew back from STL Saturday night, in various atages of collapse. Sunday I finished the mindless knitting project I had OTN, but was busy with getting ready to go to CA so I thought, I'll spend some time Monday in the a.m. organizing a project to take (any self-respecting knitter knows that means at least two things) because I'm getting so nice and organized on Sunday.
Monday arrived and I started the final packing touches. Houdini, as you may remember, had that cold back around Christmas, and has had weepy eyes ever since. It was slowly clearing up, but on Monday I realized that his eyes were swollen and red, one in particular, looking infected.
Our plane left at 9:30 a.m. Our vet opened around 8ish.
So instead of the nice relaxing morning I had planned (ha!)we spent the morning calling the vet, trying to figure out what our options were if we missed the plane, throwing things into suitcases, sneaking up on an unsuspecting cat and getting him in his carrier, taking everything in the car to the vet, hoping to make the plane, dropping the cat off at the vet and finally, getting out to the airport and making it on time. Ergo, no knitting. (And somehow I spent all that time in the Bay Area without getting over to a yarn shop. I'm going to have to turn in my Yarnaholic card. . .)
I'm hoping to pick him up today but I have to say that Wilbur doesn't seem to mind terribly much being king of the roost for a little while.
we came, we saw, we ate
After a week away, we have returned from a fine sojourn at husband's seminary, CDSP, up in Berkeley, CA. I was hoping to blog, but I didn't have good access to email. I was hoping to knit, but for reasons involving the Hootie and a last minute trip to the vet on Monday morning, I didn't have a chance to pack anything (I had just finished two mindless projects before we left, photos to come).
Despite not having access to these two mainstays of life, we did manage to thoroughly enjoy ourselves at the annual Epiphany West conference. And squeezed a trip in across the Bay to visit the DeYoung Museum in Golden Gate Park. And we ate really, really well.
(There was no blogging or knitting but there was definitely some very good chocolate).
Glad to be home. More tomorrow.
belated Friday Five
Just now getting to the RevGal Friday Five:
Five guilty pleasures:
1) Umm, I think we've covered the chocolate with hazelnuts thing.
2) A day of lollygagging (and can also include quantities of #1).
3) That 70s Show.
4) Napping with cats and knitting magazines.
5) Long conversations on the telephone with friends.
arriving on a jet plane
Just got back from another trip to St. Louis.
It's been a good trip, with mixed experiences: a memorial service, dear friends, and fabulous classes on Effective Meetings with Charles Fulton (who is at the national offices of the Episcopal Church).
So Jane Ellen, I haven't ignored your plea for help on knitting!
Much to report, but time for bed.
A Meme of Fours
via various RevGals:
Four Jobs I've Had in My Life
1. Library Aide (shelving is such fun!)
2. Museum Educator
3. Restaurant Hostess and Prep Cook
4. Day Camp Instructor
Four Movies I Could Watch Over and Over, and Have
1. Powwow Highway
2. Bull Durham
3. The Empire Strikes Back
4. Lone Star
Four Places I have Lived
1. Chicago, Illinois
2. Tucson, Arizona
3. Wickliffe, Kentucky
4. Fairview Heights, Illinois
Four TV Shows I Love to Watch (a few guilty pleasures, here)
3. vintage Star Trek
4. Project Runway (seriously guilty pleasure)
Four Places I have been on Vacation
1. Stockholm and Goteborg, Sweden
4. Legoland in Denmark
Four Websites I Visit Daily
3. various Oklahoma Knitters
4. Yarn Harlot
Four Favorite Foods
1. Pad Thai
2. Vietnamese noodle soups
4. European milk chocolate with hazelnuts
Four Places I would Rather Be Right Now
2. England and/or Wales
3. northern Arizona
4. someplace I've never been before
People I tag --
Anyone who hasn't been tagged and would like to jump in!
We know who's in charge
Twisting, Twisting. . .
I had the nicest thought driving home from Sunday services. It was a Knitting Guild Sunday!
We learned how to cable without a cable needle, thanks to our fearless leader,Susan.
I think knowing how to do this will come in handy, especially when I get back to my FLAK homework!
Quietish Rosemary (whose blog address escapes me)is showing off some wrist warmers that Terri
brought. There are good photos up on Kay and Susan's blogs as well.
There really isn't anything like hanging out with your fellow
knitters. The only problem is that I come away with even more ideas for projects. (Sigh).
(3rd Sundays. We 're hoping to start meeting at Belle Isle Library. Come join us!)
A Little Spiritual Housecleaning
This was the meditation I gave at the diocesan ECW Board meeting on Saturday, inspired by being on the Flylady mailing list, and by some recent personal experiences.
Do you have science experiments in your refrigerator? UFOs (unidentified frozen objects) in your freezer? Stalled craft projects in your closet? And when you think about them, are you kind of paralyzed? Feel guilty about the meal you never cooked, the sweater you never finished, the holiday leftovers that are now just—left?
The dark corners of our coolers and our closets are just metaphors for the dust bunnies we have in our spiritual life. Unresolved issues, hurts, deeds we have done and left undone—they pile up in the recesses of our souls and bodies, leaving us paralyzed, unable to move forward into the new life Jesus promises us in the here and now and in the life to come.
The good news is that Jesus has already forgiven us for the interesting shades of green in our refrigerator and in our hearts. We are already forgiven for the things we have done and left undone. But we clutch onto them because they’re familiar and safe—we think, and we collect clutter in our closets, both metaphorical and literal.
Does keeping the science experiment in the refrigerator make you feel any less guilty? Does it magically turn into something that it’s not—a delicious, life-giving meal to share with your loved ones?
Does hanging onto the failed science experiments in our spiritual lives draw us closer to Christ and to each other? Or does it just put more in the way?
It’s okay to throw out the things that haven’t worked. It’s okay to clean out our closets, and look at our failures with the healing power of the Gospel, and just let them be.
It’s a new year, and we can make some room for God to work in our lives, in our congregations, and in our work together as Episcopal Church Women. We can throw out the mold and the freezer burn, and see what new things come from making just a little room for the Spirit to move and work in us.
Here I Knit: I can do no other
with apologies to Martin Luther for the paraphrase)
Procrastiknitter of Knitting in the Heights tagged me for this photo meme--showing the world your knitting space.
The most interesting thing in the photo (don't tell Houdini) is the sofa. This little loveseat has been with me since my last year of seminary. I acquired it when the woman whose apartment I was moving into graduated. She was a lovely woman from the Diocese of Mississippi, and she told me I could have the couch, if I left a dollar in her student mailbox "because that's the way we do things in the South."My $1 sofa has lived in Evanston and Fairview Heights, IL, St. Louis and now Oklahoma City. It makes a good perch for knitters and cats.
The basket with my "at-home" knitting supplies is there, along with the usual pile of patterns for perusal.
I think I'll tag all of the Oklahoma knit bloggers (and welcome Terri
to blogland--go see her beautiful photo of Italian winter on her blog) and any RevGal knitters, feel free to jump in as well!
When last Beth
saw this, it was in pieces. I worked on it as my project for an Intermediate Knitting class last winter back in St. Louis at Knitorious. I made a couple of good faith efforts at finishing it, but when I realized I had made some mistakes fitting the drop shoulders in, I got frustrated, and it languished around our apartment in St. Louis, got packed for the move to OKC, and sat in its bag IN THE GARAGE here while I procrastinated dealing with it. (I. Have. No. Issues.)
Finally, Margaret helped me with my mattress stitch skills, and I finished the one side, but the other side was going to require MATH (liberal arts major here), or at least the ability to hold a measuring tape without stretching it, so I was grateful when Clanci started offering a finishing service through Gourmet Yarn.
Spiritual lesson learned: Having this sitting around kept me from starting another sweater. It's very liberating to have it done.
Knitting lessons learned: To watch carefully while working with variegated hand-dyed yarns. The skeins behaved very differently while knitting up. I had to alternate skeins on some pieces in order to not have major odd pooling. Also, Margaret taught me how to fix holes I created when I did the neckline and shoulders. When we were sitting there working with it, I couldn't believe how far I had come in being able to 'read' what I had done wrong.
Specs: Pullover from 'Hip to Knit' by Judith Swartz
Yarn: Araucania Nature Wool (I think it was the chunky version). But please don't ask how much or what size needles and all that.
it's a small church, after all
We all joke about how small the Episcopal Church is, that there's really on twenty of us and the rest is all done with mirrors, etc. etc.
I know all that and yet I'm still blown away when something happens like an incident this morning:
I was supplying at a church in the metro area that was new to me, and as I was vesting before the 8:00, the lay minister asked me if I had been in the Diocese of X? "Why, yes," I replied. "Well, do you know so and so?" "Sure, I went to seminary with her, and I miss her greatly."
"She's my daughter."
So I got to have breakfast with a seminary friend/colleague's parents, which was a trip and great fun.
(There are longer posts in the works, with photos and such, but blogging with a cold is just not very much fun at all.)
in which I come home and lie on the couch
Sinuses. Who needs 'em?
So in my bleary tv-watching, decongestant/antihistamine/ibuprofen haze, I start to wonder what it would be like if we were judged on our performance as clergy the way that figure skaters are dissected live and on television.
"Boy, her manual acts aren't that clean tonight."
"He's nailed that Sursum Corda in his last two communion services; let's see how he does today."
"She'll pick up those extra bonus points for the smooth transition between the Ministry of the Word and the Ministry of the Table."
Going to bed now.
Five significant trips you have taken: (Boy, I could go on and on with this one. I love to travel).
1) My parents and I went to Europe for the first time when I was 7. My father is originally from Austria and spent WWII in England. I LOVED England and Wales. I perhaps didn't appreciate all that he was trying to show me about his earlier life, but there was so much I enjoyed: English chocolate and ice cream, all those ruins, the beach in Aberporth (Wales) with the salt smell and the kelp (we didn't have that on Lake Michigan!), taking the Super Tour at Westminster Abbey at my insistence--I see a lot of myself and what I love now in that early trip.
2)Stratford--we moved to a pricey suburb and could no longer afford trips to Europe as a family, but we did go to Canada every summer for the Shakespeare Festival in Stratford, Ont. My mom ended up in the hospital while we were there one summer, and I got to go to the theater by myself since there was nothing I could really do. I remember feeling so very grown-up and free, buying my own ticket and sitting by myself.
3)choir tour to Switzerland and Germany, high school--Actually, it's kind of a painful memory. I was such a geek, and not very socially ept. And I got very, very sick. I had a lot of problems with motion sickness, and I had a bad cold on top of it, which all led to a bad case of vertigo in the Swiss Alps. We had a doctor with us on the trip, and he gave me good drugs and taught me how to properly use Dramamine to survive flying. I fly now without too much trouble, even reading. Also, got to go to Luxembourg for the day and see the Anne Frank house in Amsterdam before we flew home. Edited to add: My great grandmother died in the Holocaust and my grandfather and father were refugees, and I was finally old enough to understand all of that and what that might have been like for them
. And we left somebody in the Amsterdam airport--he went back to get something at the gift shop and we flew off without him!
4) Grand Canyon, sometime in my 20s. One of a few trips, but this time I went up to visit my then-boyfriend, a lovely Hopi man who was also a kachina carver. He was working at the Canyon for the summer for the Park Service We didn't last long, but I'm the richer for it. On this trip I went to the Hopi mesas, both with him and with some of the Park Service folks. I also hiked halfway down the Canyon by myself (and back up, not as much fun). And the trailer we were staying in got sprayed by a skunk one night--my car didn't get a direct hit, but there was whiff for days afterwards.
The funniest part was when he took me to meet his parents. As we pulled up in one of the little newer Hopi villages that are down off the mesas, and I opened the car door, I saw something slither in the grass beneath me. "Snake!" I jumped about ten feet in the air. Hopi boyfriend was rather amused at citified girlfriend running away from the garter snake.
5) Hawaii, 2002--honeymoon, whales, volcanos, jeeping around the Big Island, the solemnity of Pearl Harbor, listening to the ocean at night, watching the surfers, actually relaxing (something I'm not very good at).Edited to add a trip to Lake Powell, also sometime after graduate school. A msall trip with Episcopal Campus Ministry at the University of Arizona. Just a weekend away. We got threatened by crazy people at the first place we tried to camp, then found a quiet place by ourselves at another island. On Sunday morning, the chaplain asked me to hold his prayer book for him while he presided at Eucharist on the beach. And for the second time in a short period of time I felt a strong desire to slide the priest out of the way and celebrate myself. It was with a different priest in an entirely different setting, and I've blogged about this elsewhere in my faith story. I came home from that trip and stopped fighting the question of whether I was going to explore the possibility of ordination.
so glad times have changed
Tonight Husband and I hosted an Epiphany clergy part for the OKC Metro region. We were expecting 50+ people--in the end I think it was closer to 40, but of course I am very, very tired, have nothing profound to say except that it was very lovely, there was brisket and chocolate cake among other goodies, and that I enjoy hanging out with my colleagues, and that I'm glad clergy spouses don't have to do this very often anymore. Because I can only channel my inner Martha only on so many occasions.
(Strangely, I did notice that, thanks to reading so much about color lately, I was quite conscious of what color flowers I wanted to complement the blue candles we were using for decorations.)
For non-knitters, that means making a test run of your pattern to check and see if you as a knitter are getting the stitches the same size as the pattern writer.
I don't swatch often. I haven't made too many things that were dependent on my gauge. A dishcloth here, a scarf there. But sweaters require swatches.
I'm also not very good at following directions. I'm better than I used to be--nothing like going through the ordination process to realize that half the battle is showing up and following directions.
So learning to follow somebody else's lead is a good spiritual discipline for me. (Which is why I've gotten back on the Flylady wagon and am trying to just turn my brain off and follow directions. Because the stewardship of the household doesn't go so well when I try to figure it out myself.)
So I'm swatching. I'm immersed in the Follow the Leader Aran Knitalong (FLAK) which I stumbled onto when I signed up for the Aranknit Yahoo group. I have learned to tighten up my moss stitch (not to mention actually READ the ACTUAL directions--that cleared up some of my gauge problems right there.)
Part of spiritual maturity, I think, is learning when to think for yourself, and when get some help. When to leap in with both feet, and when to swatch.
For now, I'm swatching.
naptime for Wilbur
During the Houdini illness/daily vet visit drama, we had to deconstruct the upstairs loft on more than one occasion to retrieve a
thoroughly fed up
reluctant cat. One day he wedged himself under the futon and we had to turn it all upside down to fetch him.
We know cats don't like furniture being moved, but lo and behold, for the next few days, Wilbur claimed the futon, which had turned into a giant fabric clamshell. He likes to blend into dark surfaces.
Of course now I've gone and moved the furniture again. The loft is becoming a more habitable place to live. The cats now think the futon is simply another cat bed that we've placed up here for them.
As long as they stay out of the yarn.
and a revgal moment
So after church on Sunday at the parish I supply at regularly, we go out for lunch at a local diner. It's a great place, the food is plentiful and reasonably priced, one can get fried okra, and after a couple of visits, the server remembers your order.
But it's always crowded, and sometimes we have to wait to pull together some constellation of tables and chairs for the Episcopal crowd. So while we were rearranging the furniture on Sunday, a woman seated at one of the tables reaches up and offers me a hand. "Hi, I'm so-and-so." I shook her hand back, trying desperately to think if I've run into her before. I've supplied at so many places since our arrival in Oklahoma that I'm not always sure who I've met and who I haven't. She kept shaking my hand enthusiastically, adding that she knew the previous Rector at that parish, and finally she added, "I'm Catholic." So I said, "that's fine with me," (negative points for lack of creative response, but I said it with a twinkle and a smile) and she responded, looking meaningfully at my collar, "and you're fine with me, too."
Too bad I didn't have one of those RevGalBlogPals "Yes, Virginia, they DO ordain women" t-shirts on me.
I was in a bad mood this morning. I woke up late, hadn't slept well. Various critters kept me awake, and I find the sound of our current weather--high, dry winds that disturbingly rustle things on our patio--to be rather eerie, and not conducive to rest. And there were other things, too, not big ones, just the kinds of things that fall into the category of Clergy Annoyances that one must be patient with.
I had to really stay on top of things today, so after awhile I wasn't thinking about much beyond what came next. And wouldn't you know it, it was time to distribute communion, and I started going down the line of people at the altar rail, and suddenly, I could feel God breaking my heart open with love for the people at the rail, and the ones waiting to take communion, and for everything around me.
I'm grateful for that moment. And Lord, I'll try to remember it the next time I'm in one of those moods, but I probably won't, because I'm a mess like everyone else.
haircut and theology, two bits
So I went yesterday to Chain Haircut Emporium to get a quick haircut and had a new hairstylist. So after my professional vocation is revealed, the stylist starts to tell me about her issues with her church, which I never quite figured out what that was (although I did figure out she was of Baptist origin and considered herself Pentecostal.)
My favorite moment was when she told me she was thinking of staying home and essentially starting a house church. But "I know we need to be covered by a minister, we need to be accountable." She paused to snip. "I don't want to be, you know, the Church of the Flaky Biscuit."
(She got a very good tip, for being very thorough with my thick, unruly hair, and for giving me the quote of the day).
although we know the REAL Rev. Daniel Webster
We watched the "Book of Daniel" anyway.
It's really a soap opera, isn't it? It's like watching "Desperate Housewives," but with Almy instead of couture.
And by the way, why is the Bishop always at Daniel's church? And why was she vested in white when he was in green? And how many bishops are in that diocese anyway? And are any of them NOT sleeping with each other?
And where were the committee meetings?
Must be nice to have staff to fix "Sunday dinner" rather than our usual glassy-eyed collapse into some restaurant seat somewhere.
when you have nothing to say
insert photo of adorable sleeping Wilbur here:
in need of advice (or a smaller needle, or different yarn)
Here's the thing:
I was thinking, this January, of taking on some complicated project to rev up my knitting. Something that would stretch my skills and push me. When I saw that the Aranknit Yahoo Group was hosting a "Follow the Leader Aran Knitalong" I thought that would be perfect. I have an order in for a large amount of Cascade, and yesterday I sat down with some other Cascade to swatch.
The leader calls for a gauge of 22 stitches to 4 inches over moss stitch.
I started with size 5 needles. I got 16 stitches to 4 inches, before and after washing.
Apparently I am a LOOSE knitter. I am a floozy with the moss stitch.
Ok, so clearly, the only way I'd get 22 stitches to 4 inches is to go down enough sizes in needles that my hands would be cramping from holding them.
Here are the options:
1)Use the smaller needles.
2)Change yarn. Not a bad option, I'd be fine finding a use for the original Cascade. Something in a DK weight perhaps?
3) Change filler stitches. I'm usually a tighter knitter than this, so I think I could hit those 22 stitches to 4 inches over some other stitch.
I'm open to suggestions.
brought to you by the letter N
as in "the Nanny Diaries" and "Narnia"
Thoughts on Nanny: Um, sometimes it wasn't that funny, not because it wasn't well-written, but because reading about someone who's underpaid and underappreciated, and whose good nature is taken advantage of while she cares about members of the family is a little too much like real life for clergy. (But there were some lovely, arch scenes in the book, definitely enjoyable).
On Natnia: I enjoyed it, mostly, but I missed Lewis' prose. I read this book over and over as a child, and have dipped into it again as an adult, and helped lead a Leader Resources Narnia Lenten study with Sunday School kids (great fun), so I have to say I've almost got it memorized. For example, I missed Lewis' turns of phrase describing Edmund's reaction to the Turkish Delight--they tried to portray it via acting and camera, but I missed the actual words. But then, I'm a word person, so there you have it. I also noticed there were four screenwriters involved. Not a good sign, and I thought explained some of the clunky, non-Lewis dialogue.
Being shot in New Zealand, home of Lord of the Rings, sometimes I got the feeling if you just went over the hill you'd discover Peter Jackson and company (and if you browse around Narnia Web
you'll see other overlaps, for example, in clothing production).(Can I mention I was keeping an eye out for the knitwear? Should I mention that in my list of weird habits that Cathy tagged me for? Please tell me I wasn't the only one. Is anyone making Mr. Tumnus' scarf?)
Of course you can't take two clergy to see one of the classics of Anglican literature without moments like 'well, that's clearly substituionary atonement theology' and so forth. As a child I always understood the Biblical allegory, but it was fun, post-theological education, to see how Lewis was communicating some pretty complex theological issues via his narrative.
Well, we'll see how "Prince Caspian" comes out. I'm personally waiting for "Voyage of the Dawn Treader," which was always my favorite in the series. Who doesn't love Reepicheep?
last FO of 2005
I finished these during our quiet New Year's Eve celebration here at home.
Pattern: Lopi socks at Dawn Brocco
Yarn: Reynolds Lopi, 1 and 1/4 skeins
Needles: size 6 Addis
Bonus points for stashbusting! This yarn has been in the stash since our St. Louis days.
This was my first Magic Loop project. Dawn's pattern is written for DPS, and I was having trouble making any headway on them. The bamboo and the Lopi were sticking to each other too easily. Then I went to Margaret's Magic Loop demo at the OKC Knitting Guild, came home with the Fiber Trends booklet and needles. I had to do some figuring to translate Dawn's pattern into Magic Loop--I sat there with her pattern and the worsted weight socks in the booklet to figure it out as I went. It really wasn't too hard except when it came time to rearrange the stitches for picking up the stitches for the instep.
The photo doesn't quite do the color justice--the blue has hints of green and red, and I wasn't sure what felting would do, so I wanted to knit something out of this yarn plain. They are very warm and too big for even my clogs, but they will be great around the house.
too much sex
Knitters know what that means!
Stash Enhanching eXpeditions.
I thought I was going to reduce the stash. Today I merely reorganized it. There's some yarn that will be on its way to Gourmet Yarn for their charity knitting group. Which leads me to those knitting plans people have asked me about.
I've toyed with the idea of a no-yarn-buying resolution (temporary). But there were too many exceptions, like:
It would be okay to buy yarn if it meant I needed it for a project to use up old yarn.
It would be okay to buy yarn if I was making something for someone else.
It would be okay to buy yarn if I was making something for the charity auction at husband's church school in March. (I've already bought yarn, I know, but what if something else came up?)
It would be okay to buy needles and/or patterns to help use up the yarn.
And, of course, I would have to honor the order of yarn I placed at Gourmet Yarn for a large quantity of Cascade for a sweater project.
Somehow I sensed I wasn't really into the spirit of the thing.
And if I go on a yarn diet now, then what will I do during Lent? Giving up chocolate is NOT an option.
Well, today I bought no yarn. And I found a project to use up some yarn.
More seriously, I do intend to do some more cables and color projects this year. And socks. And at least one other sweater. And use up my yarns and use some of those patterns I already have.
I think I will just be smarter about my yarn buying. Natural fibers, and quantities enough for something larger than a short scarf.
And I think I will call as these "aspirations" rather than "resolutions."
bits and bytes
It's been a quiet weekend, here at Casa Wilbur y Houdini. Hootie's snoring has reached acceptable levels for our sleeping, so we've let him back in the bedroom at night. Also, he's eating and drinking again, and he must be feeling better, because he just drank out of my glass. Usually I shoo him away, but I looked on indulgently, relieved that he's (mis)behaving normally again. (We'll be back to shooing tomorrow).
Husband and I celebrated New Year's by hanging out at home and going to bed early. Which was fine until our neighbors turned out their stereo to eardrum piercing volumes at 11:45. So we did ring in the New Year by sharing a kiss at midnight, not exactly a glamorous, end of "Harry Met Sally" moment, but fine by us. We'll have a more exciting New Year's Eve next year, when it doesn't fall on a clergy working night.
If you happen to turn on CNN, yes, the fires in Oklahoma are bad, but somehow the newscaster makes it sound like we're all on the verge of evacuating (we're not). Please pray that some of that rain in the West comes our way, but it doesn't look good. The weather service is saying there's no real chance of rain for two weeks. Winds were high today and the temperature was in the mid-seventies. As I drove back from Guthrie, I could see clouds over OKC--I thought it was rain, but it was one of those weird dust storms. The sky turns a sort of pinkish brown and it's just odd and creepy. Thankfully I came back from Guthrie before the highway patrol closed I-35 because of a fire nearby. There are fires near Guthrie tonight, as well as some in the Oklahoma City metropolitan area, and it's too windy and dark for Chinook helicopters. Difficult conditions.
It's been a full week--I presided at a memorial service on Tuesday, and concelebrated at a wedding this morning (the deacon was the bride). And I had an email from a seminary friend saying she had taken a secular position, and noting that "her call to ministry was ended." So the New Year begins, with all the mixed feelings for those of us wandering around the church, but with hope always in the One in whose name we can trust above all others, on this Feast of the Holy Name, and every day of the year.