Thursday, March 29, 2007

Give it up for my friend Mr. Adorable aka Gunfighter

I invited my good friend Gunfighter to guest blog when I saw this post over at his place. There has been a lot going on in The Episcopal Church this last week and I've spent an inordinate amount of time reading everything I can find. So much so that I simply haven't been able to articulate my thoughts and feelings. Luckily, articulation happens to be one of Mr. Adorable's most shining qualities, along with his huge, kind heart! So, heeeeeeeeeeeeere's Gunfighter!


Something is bothering me and I'll tell you what it is: What has me bothered is the continuing unrest in the American branch of the worldwide Anglican Communion, which we refer to, in the United States, as the Episcopal Church. A Church body that is in full communion with my own. You see, the American branch of the Anglican communion has taken a courageous, and wholly Christian stance (in my view) by not only ordaining women, but electing openly gay people to serve as priests. This has caused a great deal of unrest in American church, as you might imagine.

It was reported, three days ago, in the Washington Post, that Colorado's largest Episcopal Church, Grace Church & St. Stephen's academy (est. 1872), in Colorado Springs, Colorado, has elected to leave the American Episcopal church, and enter into association with an ultra-conservative Anglican church body from Nigeria.

Why? Because various congregations in the United States want to use the word of God to codify their bigotry.

This isn't a new thing, unfortunately. In recent years, the Episcopal church has done some things that don't sit well with it's more conservative members. First, in the 1970's the U.S. church started ordaining women as Priests, Next, in 2003, an openly gay Priest, The Reverend Gene Robinson...

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

...was elected and consecrated as the Bishop for New Hampshire. In 2006, a woman, Bishop Kathrine Jefferts Schiori, of Nevada, was elected as Presiding Bishop for the entire American church.

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket


That did it! The conservative elements had had all they were going to take. Many Parishes left after the consecration of the gay Bishop, and over the past year, dozens parishes had elected to leave the church with Jefferts Schori's ascension and the determination of the national church body to continue to bless same-sex unions and refusal to exclude gay members.

I, for one, applaud the action of the Episcopal church. At a time when many churches are taking the stand of exclusivity, as if the church is some sort of country club that needs to keep out the rabble, and in some cases deciding to not decide, the Episcopal church has taken a stand, that I consider to be in line with the theology of Jesus Christ: That all are welcome.

I mean, I could get deeply scriptural here, but I won't... there are plenty of places you can find that if you want. Here it is: Why is it that churches will split over homosexuality, but not over adultery? over homosexuality, but not over lying; sexual infidelity or "sexually inappropriate" behavior by the Pastor; theft; spousal abuse; and on and on? I'll tell you why... because people like having another group to hate... and it is particularly helpful to hate a group that you can get the clergy to agree with you on. You see, we Christians like to feel holy when we sin.

I'll say that again: We Christians like to feel holy when we sin.

It isn't fashionable to be openly racist in America anymore, especially in the church, but thankfully we still have one group that we can openly attack, and we can even try to use scripture against them You guessed it, gay people. Isn't that great? black people, white people, Latino people... we can all hold hands, sing Kumbaya, and exclude gay people from the body of Christ! AMEN!

I'm ill about it.

My oldest sister is gay. She is an ordained minister. She is leaving her church. She has to, before the congregation that loves the way she preaches the gospel, finds out about her love life. I have friends, some of whom read this blog, that no longer are active in their churches, because of the stances of their churches. I have a friend that is seeking ordination in the very same denomination that is struggling on this issue, and I am very proud of the courage that she has shown in the face of all of this furor.

People the world over have tried to cover their hatred of gays by quoting a few passages from the Bible while conveniently forgetting the most important parts of the Gospels: "For you are saved by grace through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: not of works, lest any man should boast." **Please note that this passage from the second chapter of Ephesians doesn't add the caveat "unless you are a homosexual"**

If nothing that I have said makes any sense to you, let me close with this: Excluding someone from your church or it's sacraments because of their sexual orientation is not only a sin, but it's un-American.

That's what I said, un-American. You see, we claim to cling to the notion that <"We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness."

You see, the pursuit of happiness, which includes matrimony, is an American right. A right. A right that the church shouldn't be able to ignore because of the bigotry of some adherents.

American slavery began to be abolished in 1863, and it took until 2000 for the last prohibitions against interracial marriage to end in this country. It may take a long time, but I say to those who are waiting... be of good cheer, history is on your side.



Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Help me!

Will somebody please explain to me why he's not gone?!!!

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Tiny glimpse into my psyche...

cartoon from

Cartoon by Dave Walker. Find more cartoons you can freely re-use on your blog at We Blog Cartoons.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Evangelism? I don't think so.

Ok, so I wasn't exactly handing out tracts, an activity that I strongly disagree with and have never engaged in, but I did spend my lunch hour on the street handing out pamphlets to passersby, telling them about what my company does.

And may I say that I have brand new respect and pity for those who do this on a regular basis, or heaven forbid, as a job. Do you have any idea how hard it is to stand there with a smile on your face, searching for the few individuals who will give you eye contact and be willing to let you hand them something? It is mortifying I tell you! Anyone who needs to experience those feelings of rejection should give this a try for an hour or so.

In future, when passing someone giving stuff away on the street, I will look at them, smile, and take whatever they're giving away, if for no other reason to help them get rid of their stack and be able to get off the street. Please join me in taking pity on those poor brave people (and do smack me upside my head if I ever consider volunteering for such a task ever again!)

And just in case anyone was actually interested in my views on evangelism, I'm the one looking for a t-shirt that says this:
"Preach the gospel at all times and when necessary use words."
--St. Francis of Assisi

Thursday, March 15, 2007

The next 3 years will be spent...

in New York City!

Prestigious CT school did not take me and it is ok! It really is. I was drawn to each school for completely different reasons and I feel like this is the answer to the prayer of, "Lord, lead me to the place that is best for me."

So I am very excited that now I know! I am excited at all the wonderful experiences ahead, the wonderful people I've already met and will meet in the future; the community that I will be privileged to be a part of; the learned experts I will sit under; the challenges that will deepen my call and cause me to grow! I am so glad and deep in my heart feel that this is the right choice.

Thank you for all the support and encouragement~every thought, kind word, and prayer has helped bring me to this place and I am so happy to get to share it with you!

To steal the favorite phrase of a very dear friend:


Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Perched on the Precipice

There are moments when it seems fitting to stop, process, and reflect; like on New Year's Eve or any other moment when what comes next will change the rest of your life. So, with wine in hand, I'm taking a moment.

Tomorrow I will know where I'm spending the next 3 years of my life. Perhaps that doesn't quite measure up to the vast change that happens when a child is born, or marriage vows are taken, or someone dies. But for me, it is the moment when I finally leave the "Land of Uncertainty."

I have lived in this place for over 4 years. I have surrendered over and over and over again, praying, "God your will be done." Actually, the prayer was not quite that eloquent or succinct. It was more along the lines of, "Lord, I have no idea what we're doing here and I really want to know what you want, so if this isn't it, please close the door. Be clear with me because you know how dense I am. You are good and whatever you will for me is good so please help me to accept and embrace whatever that is."

I have told the truth when it meant a potential end to this process of formal discernment. I have bounced like a ping pong ball back and forth when my truth threw the authority that is in place, into a quandary: "Well we've never had this happen before...(a 40 something year old woman coming out in an attempt to be completely honest and authentic) and we're not really sure what to do with her..."

I realize that I've put down roots in this land of holding things loosely, and now when I am about to find out a certainty that will shape the direction for my career and potentially the rest of my life, I am undone.

I have spent close to 4 1/2 years desperately wanting to know the end of the story, or at least part one. I have wiggled and struggled in the restraints and tried to calm my heart. I've been tossed back and forth by others and tried to stay open to the idea that maybe this was God speaking through circumstance. And now here I am, in complete amazement at this place in which people have said "yes" to my call, trying to take in that God has said "yes" to the offer of my life on Her altar, and the thing that I have waited for so long--the decision--unhinges me.

My rector and parish said yes. My second rector and parish that so graciously took me in after I came out, said yes. My peers said yes. My Bishop said yes. Tomorrow, my school will say yes and I will know where the next set of uncertainties are to be lived out.

I am amazed to have been brought this far. I've lost count of the times when I readied my heart for the door to be closed, and yet, miraculously, here I am. I still don't know what I'm doing here and in truth, I am completely daunted at what lies ahead. But, there is no question in my heart that this is the path. Tonight I will not think of where or how. I will enjoy the bliss of not knowing. I will dwell in the land of maybe. Tonight it's all undecided and I find that I actually like this place. This place that I've done everything I could think of to leave, is the place I now grieve to leave.

But happily, for me there will be many, many more places of uncertainty to come.

Anything is possible.


Thank you dearest Lord.


Thursday, March 08, 2007

Time for laughter in the waiting room

Update: cat scan neg, surgery successful, the final seminary decision will be posted on the 15th. Thanks for the prayers and good wishes! Hugs!

Now a little something to make you smile--these were so cute, I just had to share!
(note to Syd, thought #2 might be appropriate for TLF!)

I was driving with my three young children one warm summer evening when a woman in the convertible ahead of us stood up and waved. She was stark naked! As I was reeling from the shock, I heard my 5-year-old shout from the back seat, 'Mom, that lady isn't wearing a seat belt!'

On the first day of school, a first-grader handed his teacher a note from his mother. The note read, 'The opinions expressed by this child are not necessarily those of his parents.'

A woman was trying hard to get the ketchup out of the jar. During her struggle the phone rang so she asked her 4-year-old daughter to answer the phone. 'Mommy can't come to the phone to talk to you right now. She's hitting the bottle.’

A little boy got lost at the YMCA and found himself in the women's locker room. When he was spotted, the room burst into shrieks, with ladies grabbing towels and running for cover. The little boy watched in amazement and then asked, 'What's the matter, haven't you ever seen a little boy before?'

5) POLICE # 1
While taking a routine vandalism report at an elementary school, I was interrupted by a little girl about 6 years old. Looking up and down at my uniform, she asked, 'Are you a cop?' 'Yes,' I answered and continued writing the report. 'My mother said if I ever needed help I should ask the police. Is that right?' 'Yes, that's right,' I told her. 'Well, then,' she said as she extended her foot toward me, 'would you please tie my shoe?'

6) POLICE # 2
It was the end of the day when I parked my police van in front of the station. As I gathered my equipment, my K-9 partner, Jake, was barking, and I saw a little boy staring in at me 'Is that a dog you got back there?' he asked. 'It sure is,' I replied. Puzzled, the boy looked at me and then towards the back of the van. Finally he said, 'What'd he do?'

While working for an organization that delivers lunches to elderly shut-ins, I used to take my 4-year-old daughter on my afternoon rounds. She was unfailingly intrigued by the various appliances of old age, particularly the canes, walkers and wheelchairs. One day I found her staring at a pair of false teeth soaking in a glass. As I braced myself for the inevitable barrage of questions, she merely turned and whispered, 'The tooth fairy will never believe this!'

A little girl was watching her parents dress for a party. When she saw her dad donning his tuxedo, she warned, 'Daddy, you shouldn't wear that suit.' 'And why not, darling?' 'You know that it always gives you a headache the next morning.’

While walking along the sidewalk in front of his church, our minister heard the intoning of a prayer that nearly made his collar wilt. Apparently, his 5-year-old son and his playmates had found a dead robin. Feeling that proper burial should be performed, they had secured a small box and cotton batting, then dug a hole and made ready for the disposal of the deceased. The minister's son was chosen to say the appropriate prayers and with sonorous dignity intoned his version of what he thought his father always said: 'Glory be unto the Faaather, and unto the Sonnn, and into the hole he goooes.' (I want this line used at my funeral!)

A little girl had just finished her first week of school. 'I'm just wasting my time,' she said to her mother. 'I can't read, I can't write and they won't let me talk!'

A little boy opened the big family Bible. He was fascinated as he fingered through the old pages. Suddenly, something fell out of the Bible. He picked up the object and looked at it. What he saw was an old leaf that had been pressed in between the pages. 'Mama, look what I found,' the boy called out. 'What have you got there, dear?' With astonishment in the young boy's voice, he answered, 'I think it's Adam's underwear!'

Monday, March 05, 2007

Life as a waiting room

Next time someone asks me, “What do you do?” I would like to answer, “I wait.”

I’m beginning to think that most of life is lived in the “waiting room.” Here’s an example of what I’m talking about.

I’m waiting:

· to see where I’ll go to school;

· what the result of the cat scan is;

· if my family member’s surgery will be successful;

· how my friends and family weather the storms of life, etc.

So there I am, merrily skipping along, ignoring the obvious so that I can feel like I’m in control. Everyone does it. In fact, I’m not so sure that it isn’t one of life’s unacknowledged yet universal goals.

And then something happens, or doesn’t happen the way I want it to and I am faced once again with my limitations, vulnerability, and dependence on the goodness of others and the grace of my God. In the good moments, I squirm and wiggle, in the bad I can be found screaming and throwing a tantrum. God doesn’t seem to mind either one. Eventually, I’ll calm down, or wear myself out, and in that moment I find that it’s ok to be powerless because I’m being held and loved and protected by the One who has all the power.

“All shall be well. All shall be well. All manner of thing shall be well.”
--Julian of Norwich

Thursday, March 01, 2007

Life is full, life is good!

OK before I get to the good stuff—KMae keep your pants on!—I would like to say that I have a bit of good news. I got into the NYC seminary! Now as excited as I am about this, there is still the decision of where I will actually go. Confused? Well, the other school in CT won’t let me know if I’m accepted until March 15, and truth be told, I am not yet clear about which school would be best for me, which means that there will be a tad more agida for the next few weeks as I sort through my pro and con list while listening to the Spirit and my heart.

Now on to last weekend and the Blog get together at Sassy and Fran’s. First, may I say that they are the consummate hosts! From the moment I walked in the door, I was in heaven—beautiful location, gorgeous home that was perfectly decorated to make anyone feel instantly at home, warm and generous hostesses, and food food food!

Now I’d had the privilege of meeting Sassy and Fran before so I wasn’t nervous about meeting them—but I must confess to a tad of trepidation about meeting the rest of the gang. (Yes, I am an introvert—INFJ to be specific.) But silly me! What a great bunch of women—the overflow of estrogen was a truly heady thing! (Sorry KMae, but I don’t have any pics; you are just going to have to be there next time!)

It’s such a fun thing to be able to hear the online voices in a whole new way. Sassy is the very essence of warmth as is Fran; Tropopause is just as smart in person but with a southern gentleness that is completely engaging; Courtney is a southern version of sweet and sassy; Syd is Syd but in an understated gentle kind of way; K, Syd's wife is shy at first but once she gets comfortable, can you say “life of the party?”; Weese has the most delightful dry sense of humor and I’m sorry I didn’t get to talk to her until the end of the party; D., Weese’s wife, seems like kindness itself and I’m sorry we didn’t get a chance to chat more; Wen is exuberant and a definite extrovert; Suburban Lesbian is also very outgoing and engaging (aside: these 2 lovely ladies also went to the trouble of bringing everyone a little present from their native state, with commemorative cards…very very thoughtful!); S, sister of SL was so interesting—an ex-Buddhist nun and very gifted artist; Emerald Pillows was warm and we unfortunately didn’t get a chance to really chat—next time E!; Maxine didn’t get a chance to chat with you either but I’m glad you were there; Bent Fabric is not only a vocabulary geek as evidenced by her posts but also a most irresistible small child; Kitty Litter has a wicked sense of humor and kept us all laughing; L, KL’s wife is a sweetheart and it was a joy to watch her with their little one (with whom I fell completely in love!); hmm, who did I miss…oh yes, Amanda, Trop’s and C’s daughter, she was a total trouper hanging in there when she was sick all weekend, and the total antithesis of the bratty teenager—a complete delight! All in all a great group of ladies! It was a blast!

Web Site Counter