November 13th, 2005

(hidden) wisdom


mari4212 recently posted about some midrash she had read recently, specifically one about the story of Abraham sacrificing Isaac. I mentioned I should probably post the essays I wrote last year. Around the same time, my dad sent an e-mail including an excerpt from Bob Dylan’s “Highway 61":
Oh God said to Abraham, "Kill me a son"
Abe says, "Man, you must be puttin' me on"
God say, "No." Abe say, "What?"
God say, "You can do what you want Abe, but
The next time you see me comin' you better run"
Well Abe says, "Where do you want this killin' done?"
God says, "Out on Highway 61."
I could strain and make some connection to Veteran’s Day what with sacrifice and all, but instead I’m just gonna post the links to the essays for Mari and anyone else who cares.
(hidden) wisdom

First Congregational, take two

No mention of Veteran’s Sunday. Which honestly is fine by me. The front of the bulletin said “Twenty-Sixth Sunday After Pentecost,” which is the sort of thing First Churches does.

I’d forgotten that there was a church budget meeting after church today, so of course everybody was there.

And they mentioned that Santa will be attending their All Church Christmas Banquet. I may have to avoid this church for the remainder of the holiday season. (Incidentally, I edited my Santa!hate entry to include explanation of my childhood experiences, in case anyone cares and didn’t see it.)

     Responsive Call to Worship:
Are any among us weary? Who carry heavy burdens?
Here is a place of rest, of healing and of grace.
Are any among us frantic and scattered, breathless in our busy-ness?
Here is a place of deep peace, where we meet the unhurried God.
Are any among us feeling dry and broken?
Here we drink from the living water – tranquil and ever-present.
Are any among us reaching out for God’s presence?
Then let us praise the living God, the Almighty, the God of Creation.

The Processional was “Praise to the Lord, the Almighty,” which title I didn’t recognize, but which had a familiar tune and turned out to be a hymn I’ve grown up with.

     Unison Prayer of Confession:
Creator God, you have given us talents – gifts with which we were born. Somewhere along the way, we have forgotten that these talents are to be shared. So we hoard them, building up stockpiles of things we don’t need. Or we waste them, squandering them on the meaningless and the insignificant. Or we bury them, like the servant in the parable, thinking that we can protect your investment in us. But you ask us for more, and more often than not, we fail. Sharing our talents is risky business – it leaves us open to opinion, leaves us susceptible to exhaustion, even finds us looking for approval. But life, when lived in your light, is risky business. Give us courage. Forgive our cowardice. Amen.

I was surprised -- and pleased -- to see that they don’t in fact use the same Unison Prayer of Confession all the time.

The Assurance of Pardon was “Asking for forgiveness is the promise of forgiveness. Amen.” Must ask him about that.

I’d forgotten that Pastor John does the children’s message as well as the adult one. He talked about how the parable of the talents is a football parable. A basic pass play has a 70% chance of succeeding, a running play 30%, and a quarterback keep 0%.

Pastor: “You have given the ball...”
kid: “To the wide receiver.”
Pastor: “Away.”

In the adult message he talked about how 1 talent ~ $400K in today’s wages ~ 15yrs of wages for a servant and how this parable used to always bother him, how if your friend entrusts you with their nest egg you don’t go gambling with it, and he talked about how he’s come to see it as a metaphor. (See unison prayer above.)

There was a budget meeting after church (and apparently it was Stewardship Sunday at United -- my mom pointed out they all have to do their budgets around the same time, and you don’t wanna be doing it during Advent -- and they had the passage about storing up treasure in heaven) so he talked about how the church is currently on a preservation budget and is living off the generosity of predecessors (endowments) and how the church is not a charity where you just write a check and forget about it. Powerfully done message (and brief, as it had been preceded by a 12-minute survey). After being somewhat disappointed last week, I am back to being pleased with his preaching (though I personally could do without football).

Prayer of Dedication: “Here are unburied talents. Do with them what you will.”

Recessional was “Creator God, Creating Still.”

I actually sang all the hymns today.
hermione by oatmilk

Much Ado About Nothing (NHS)

Press release:
The Norwood High School drama program will perform two versions of William Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing over the next two weeks at the Savage Center. The original play, transplanted to the rock club world of an 80's teen movie, complete with Pac Man, Rubik’s Cubes, great music, and bad haircuts, will be performed [snip]. Shakespeare’s classic comedy of loves, lies, and the “merry war” between men and women features the quarreling Beatrice and Benedict, the noble Don Pedro, young lovers Claudio and Hero, and the deceitful Don John in a fun-filled night of Shakespeare and swatches.

The local thespians will also perform John Quinn’s contemporary original adaptation of the play, Love Hurts, at [snip], also at the Savage Center. Set at Messina Prep in rural Massachusetts, the play explores the biting rivalry of the witty and beautiful Beatrice and her comic nemesis Benedict. The malicious pranks of the evil Don John and the dangerous matchmaking of his half-brother, the charming and popular Don Pedro, and his accomplices disturb the harmony of the school in this offbeat slapstick romantic comedy.
I had never read/seen Much Ado before, so I figured since I’m not keen on Kenneth Branagh that I would jump on this opportunity. To nobody’s surprise, I learned that I do not like this play. [Clarification: I saw Much Ado today. And since the play is pain, I do not expect to be seeing the remix next weekend, though I admit to being tempted.] Collapse )
cc coy [wickedripeplum]


So, while I was thinking about cereta’s post and Without a Trace fandom’s reaction to the newest cast addition and restraining myself from actually posting, assorted BNFs made rants about femslash being the redheaded stepchild of fandom (see metafandom for a fairly comprehensive list). Nice when people do my ranting for me. No one bitched about Without a Trace, but I’m okay with that.

I especially enjoy nos’s off-the-top-of-her-head list of interesting female characters.