Putting their money where their mouths are

Clergy and lay delegates at the annual council, faced with a slashed budget for Shrine Mont camp scholarship budgets, were strident in their call to have the funding restored.

But of course, when you restore something in one line, you must cut it somewhere else, right?

So it was put to the council: how many of you would be willing to give $100 now, to restore this funding?

Hands around the room shot up. Tellers went around to do a count, and instead got checks and cash donations, on the spot. The estimated return to the program was $19,000.

Bishop Lee, noting this unusual development, said, “Can you imagine Congress doing this?”

Discussion that followed underscored the importance of taking this back to your congregations.

GIVE!

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Live from the Diocese of Virginia Annual Council

🙂 I’m at the press table, although if any of you are here you’re not likely to be reading this since you’re at Eucharist.

But I will probably be here tomorrow, too, so please find me!!

sticking my neck out

Wah. I am starting to sound like a one-note flute sometimes, I guess, when I defend the fringes. But there is one place I’m hard and fast on when it comes to tradition, and that’s church music.

I love hymns and anthems, and I really should be in the choir, but EfM takes precedence right now and I’ve been too peripatetic in the past. I have a good chunk of the 1940 hymnal memorized because most of my churchness was before 1982. When your mom is the choir director, it becomes second nature.

But I find myself just… totally, BLEAH over so-called praise music. I love gospel music, stained-glass bluegrass, orchestral music, international songs of faith, spirituals, secular-music-brought-over, and, most of all, traditional hymns from the 18th and 19th century.

But I went to a church service not too long ago with a creative liturgy, adapted from the one we all know and love, and really enjoyed it. Except for the praise music.

Just wanted to let all my traditionalist friends-in-faith know that I’m not completely outside the box.

That’s me in the corner

OK, if I’ve managed to figure out one thing, it’s that I want my ministry to be in the world and vaguely evangelistic, because I don’t really like that word but don’t have a better one for it. And it occurred to me, that …

If I was new to the church, and walked in one Sunday, bewildered, new, questioning, the last thing I’d want to hear about the @#$%ing schism. Same goes with our focus on what we blog on.

Are we so preoccupied with ourselves, with how this and that is wrong or right, that we’re forgetting that our ministries aren’t just about ourselves and if we’re directing all our spiritual energy toward fighting each other, aren’t we just killing the spiritual energy of those hungry for a meaningful spiritual experience? How can we transform lives if we can’t put ourselves beyond this dissent which, for lack of better language for it, Satan has sown among us?

ARGH! I tie myself in knots. Focusing excessively on the drama in New Orleans is physically painful for me, as is every time Stand Firm tries to demonize me. I’m one of your best ambassadors in the world, because i can talk about authentic faith to disenchanted agnostics between 25 and 45. I can influence them to open their hearts and minds to something bigger than themselves. But NO. I’m cast out from the “orthodox” and seen as some kind of enemy by a population of the church that is so ironically preoccupied with how we’ve lost our way.

It’s bewildering, I tell you. Bewildering.

Is it me, or are Pisky-Women…

… more likely to be astute admirers of English Literature, particularly of the Austen-Woolf corridor?

I’m starting to feel typecast in my own novel. Well, at least I don’t have a collar and a crush on the local police chief.

Welcome to Episcopalia

Now some round these parts might think to be all splittin’ hairs over this and that in the anglican communion, but really, nothing gets Episcopalians up in a row more than standing firm about their parking spaces.

For future reference

Cool sermons from St. Mark's in Philly. Must visit.

http://www.saintmarksphiladelphia.org/sermons/