April 7th, 2010

be brave now

[18.1] Easter Wednesday reflection - "It's spring, even at night."

[FirstChurch Mailing List] Rest and Bread, and still we rise!

Dear Beloved,

The season has changed from Lent to Easter, from winter to spring. We are changing also. We go from indoors to outdoors, from hidden in the earth to pushing through the crust of the earth. We come out. We make plans to go to grad school, to new cities, to new jobs, to new relationships within ourselves and in the world. We make plans to stay but not to do it in an old dead way. God is making a new thing happen.

But for a moment, between work and home, between ill and well, between here and there, this job and that, come and rest with us. Come pray with us. Come for a moment of quiet rest.

Our service of Rest and Bread begins at 6:30. Music for meditation begins at 6:15. Elizabeth [surname redacted -- but spelled correctly in her email!] will open the Word for us.

Just after, the Deacons will meet.

Laura Ruth
The Subject line comes from Molly's email last night --
And this Sunday, we begin a new preaching series:  six Sundays of Eastertide: (borrowing a line from Maya Angelou) And Still We Rise. We'll be preaching about baptism and social justice, about near-death-experien ces, about the nexus of science and faith, Haiti rising from the rubble. Get up! Get on up (borrowing a line from James Brown). That's what Easter people do.

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Laura Ruth read the Scripture, and opening it she said, "this is a story of the discovery of Christ -- and a story of Mary who loved Christ;" Ari, I thought of you ;)

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I half-expected I would cry while preaching, but I didn't.  Laura Ruth did cry, though :)

After service, she told me and Keith, "You two are the bomb."  She was grateful to be able to just worship (she read the Scripture and did the Blessing & Benediction and led us in singing Opening Hymn “Now the Green Blade Riseth” [#238 vs. 1, 2, 3] and Closing Hymn “Christ the Lord is Risen Today” [#233 vs. 1 & 4], but Keith did the Welcome and Call to Worship and Prayers and Passing of the Peace and he and I did Communion -- I chose the Minister Two role because I wanted to say "siblings in faith of all genders" instead of "brothers and sisters in faith" ... yeah, when the service is mine and Keith's I want us to have a conversation about tweaking the Communion liturgy some, which conversation we should probably start having before Laura Ruth leaves) and also said that she doesn't feel at all anxious about this ministry after her departure.

And she told us that she loves us, and we both said, "We love you, too."

I got to church later than usual because I was finishing up some personal email at work and then talking with FCS-Ian on the way to the T and then saying hello to Antonio the spray paint artist.  And we're doing new music for Eastertide.  So when I got to the chapel, Keith and Laura Ruth were already there, and so we sprawled in the sunlight (sitting on chairs in the chapel, but still sprawled in the sunlight) and talked through how we were going to divide up leading worship and which verses of the hymns to sing (I didn't vote on that -- largely 'cause I suspected my vote would be "all of them?") and so on and so forth.  And it just felt really really right.  Yeah, this church is in many ways my home.  (And I know it'll be okay after Laura Ruth leaves -- it'll be hard, but it'll be okay.)  I don't think I had fully articulated that after Laura Ruth leaves Rest and Bread will be Keith's and mine until I was thinking tonight about revising the Communion liturgy, but it feels totally natural.