August 27th, 2008

moon house

Rest and Bread ("Neighborhood")

The Psalm was Psalm 65, and the Sacred Text was Psalm 137 -- By the rivers of Babylon... our captors asked us to sing, and we said, "How can we sing the songs of the Lord in a strange land?"

LauraRuth talked about moving up to Cambridge, MA, from the south side of Atlanta, GA, 21 years ago to go to seminary.  She said her prayers were songs, one in particular about a whippoorwill.  Well, Cambridge, MA, doesn't have whippoorwills.  And she found that she could not pray in this strange land -- had to learn new songs.  It was interesting to me to hear her story, because I tend to not connect to physical places in the way that lots of people do, and my relationship with God has always been something I carry around inside me.

She said some good stuff about neighborhoods which I now can't remember; and I sometimes felt like she was conflating "neighborhood" and "community," but I guess that's somewhat inevitable.

During Communion she said, "The gifts of God for the people of God," and I said, "Thanks be to God," 'cause I've gotten used to that sort of responsive from CWM (and possibly CHPC?) with readers often saying "The word of God for the people of God -- thanks be to God."  But she wasn't expecting a responsive and so just kept talking, so I stopped myself and was like, "Sorry," and we laughed, and she was like, "Yes, thanks be to God."

In talking before and after service, she reiterated how glad she was to have spent time with me yesterday, said it is good to "be with [me]" and that I'm a "marvel" :)

***

Jeff's the Protestant chaplain at Tufts and gave the Benediction at their Matriculation (read: Convocation) today.  We were chatting afterward, and it turns out that when he's composing a benediction for an occasion like that, he's thinking particularly of atheists and how to include them, which I was really pleased by, since I feel like usually in those situations anyone who doesn't believe in some Higher Power is elided (it honestly feels a little weird to me, now that I'm thinking about it, that there's still this explicitly religious holdover in a secular institution/event).  I asked him to repeat a particular bit 'cause I was trying to commit to memory and could only remember as far as "May the Center and the Source of all that you  hold most sacred and precious" and he actually had a hard copy on hand which he gave to me.  Heart :)

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hermione by oatmilk

My life is actually more interesting than this -- but only slightly.

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This morning I read transcripts (from the DNC website) of Hillary Clinton's speech last night, Brian Schweitzer's speech from last night, and Republican Jim Leach's speech from Monday.  Yeah, this is kind of my preferred way of doing it, 'cause I'm just not as good at focusing when I'm watching a speech than when I'm reading a text -- though yes I know that means I lose all the dynamics of a public speech (though I'd already seen lots of clips of Clinton's speech on CNN at the gym, so I could kind of extrapolate for that one).  I did watch the "move to vote my acclamation" clip tonight -- hi, Smith house meetings :)

mjules, I learned from ESPN this morning that Obama is a White Sox fan -- which shouldn't surprise me . . . Chicago South Side and all that, but it still made me think of you.