Opinion - 26 April 2017
2 hours ago
|Me and the Jr. Warden, Feast of St. Andrew 2006. We were piped into the church that morning.|
|Photo by Brian: This is how Izzie and I travel|
|You can walk on top of the wall in York.|
|Ruins of Whitby Abbey|
|Old Town of Whitby from Abbey Steps|
|Whitby, West Cliffs Bathing Cabins|
|Steam Train from Whitby to Pickering|
|Firth of Forth|
|Oban to Mull Ferry|
|St. Colomba's Shrine|
|You can read the words.|
|Iona Abbey Buildings|
|Nave of Church|
|The Cloisters at Iona|
|Duck in St. James' Park|
|Flowers, St. James' Park|
Fire, the source of being: we cling so tenaciously to the illusion that fire comes forth from the depths of the earth and that its flames grow progressively brighter as it pours along the radiant furrows of life’s tillage. Lord, in your mercy you gave me to see that this idea is false, and that I must overthrow it if I were ever to have sight of you.
In the beginning was Power, intelligent, loving, energizing. In the beginning was the Word, supremely capable of mastering and moulding whatever might come into being in the world of matter. In the beginning there were not coldness and darkness: there was the Fire. This is the truth.
So, far from light emerging gradually out of the womb of our darkness, it is the Light, existing before all else was made which, patiently, surely, eliminates our darkness. As for us creatures, of ourselves we are but emptiness and obscurity. But you, my God, are the inmost depths, the stability of that eternal milieu, without duration or space, in which our cosmos emerges gradually into being and grows gradually to its final completeness, as it loses those boundaries which to our eyes seem so immense. Everything is being; everywhere there is being and nothing but being, save in the fragmentation of creatures and the clash of their atoms.After reading this wonderful description of how the Light of the World eliminates our darkness, slowly and over God's time, not ours, I realize how impatient I tend to be over the smallest of things. It also speaks to evolution as part of God's time and timing— patient and sure—growing to "its final completeness." This very long view of time and creation must come naturally to geologists who see the earth layered in its millions of years of change. And then to end the section with these most beautiful words of blessing over the living world and words of mystery for the evil around us — all living things are God's Body given for us and that the Blood shed for us are all those things bringing us to death.
Do you now therefore, speaking through my lips, pronounce over this earthly travail your twofold efficacious word: the word without which all that our wisdom and our experience have built up must totter and crumble — the word through which all our most far-reaching speculations and our encounter with the universe are come together into a unity. Over every living thing which is to spring up, to grow, to flower, to ripen during this day say again the words: This is my Body. And over every death-force which waits in readiness to corrode, to wither, to cut down, speak again your commanding words which express the supreme mystery of faith: This is my Blood.
Since once again, Lord — though this time not in the forests of the Aisne but in the steppes of Asia — I have neither bread, nor wine, nor altar, I will raise myself beyond these symbols, up to the pure majesty of the real itself; I, your priest, will make the whole earth my altar and on it will offer you all the labours and sufferings of the world.
Over there, on the horizon, the sun has just touched with light the outermost fringe of the eastern sky. Once again, beneath this moving sheet of fire, the living surface of the earth wakes and trembles, and once again begins its fearful travail. I will place on my paten, O God, the harvest to be won by this renewal of labour. Into my chalice I shall pour all the sap which is to be pressed out this day from the earth’s fruits.
My paten and my chalice are the depths of a soul laid widely open to all the forces which in a moment will rise up from every corner of the earth and converge upon the Spirit. Grant me the remembrance and the mystic presence of all those whom the light is now awakening to the new day.Offering ourselves to God through our labors is something I keep forgetting when I am not "employed." For a few years, while working at the Lab in California, I would walk down hill to pick up my van pool. The walk was through a cemetery and had views of San Francisco Bay and the Golden Gate Bridge. On sunny mornings it was easy to thank God for all I had been given and to pray a walking meditation. But even on foggy mornings, the memory of the views was still there and God's presence in that silent place gave me joy in a wonderful start to my day. At the bottom of the hill was Fat Apples with hot coffee and wonderful pastries to eat while waiting for the van to show up.
For me, my God, all joy and all achievement, the very purpose of my being and all my love of life, all depend on this one basic vision of the union between yourself and the universe. Let others, fulfilling a function more august than mine, proclaim your splendours as pure Spirit; as for me, dominated as I am by a vocation which springs from the inmost fibres of my being, I have no desire, I have no ability, to proclaim anything except the innumerable prolongations of your incarnate Being in the world of matter; I can preach only the mystery of your flesh, you the Soul shining forth though all that surrounds us.
The God of Truth bless you with the discomfort at easy answers, half truths, and superficiality so that you live and make decisions from deep within your heart. Amen
The God of Understanding make you tender in the face of pain and rejection so that others can know the comfort of your acceptance. Amen
The God of Justice make you fierce in the face of oppression and exploitation so that others can live with dignity in the midst of your respect. Amen
The God of all Wisdom bless you with enough foolishness to believe that you can make a difference in this world, so that you can lead other to do what many claim cannot be done. Amen.
And the Blessing of God Almighty, Creator, Redeemer and Life Giving Spirit keep you as Jesus' friends, in your search for a new leader, and forever. Amen.
It is love that permits us to accept the services of others as our priests [Countryman is using the term "priest" here in its most general sense]. We can trust others as priests only if we are persuaded that they have a genuine reverence for us and care more for our well-being than for their own authority. The priest who is mainly interested in a fee of some sort is not a true priest. The fee in question may be material, or it may be emotional or spiritual. The priest may want to get rich, for example, or to gain intimate power over the lives of others, to get and hold a reputation for being always right or to be praised as superhumanly supportive. There is a multitude of such temptations in the path of the priest, and the priest who loves the fee rather than the neighbor has failed an essential test of priesthood.
Love demands its own integrity.Countryman goes on to explain that it is what we do in love, for the good of the other that is important. When we try to get a "fee" of any sort (money, respect, compliments or reputation) we end up trying to control the other person, attaching them to ourselves rather than to God.
Love implies reverence for one another. In every person, ourselves included, we see one who God has created, chose, loved, forgiven, welcomed, and celebrated. We therefore see each person as a complex and beautiful mystery, worthy of all this outpouring of God's gifts......The mystery is to be honored in both of us. Love in the honoring of it.The honoring of the four-fold orders of the church is the honoring of the love that comes from the Creator. Each of us have gifts and, in community, those gifts can help bring about God's kingdom. The more we see the gifts in others (and ourselves) and recognize that we all each called to be priests to each other, the more we live into the life as a follower of the Christ, the great High Priest. We all fall short of that ideal, but with God's grace we can make a difference in our broken and needy world.
"Bastardi tells his viewers, “The picture you see here is the Goddard Institute for Space Studies temperatures for the winter and you can see it was a torrid winter according to this.” He then spins a long conspiracy theory suggesting that these numbers can’t be true and must be due to a “magical readjustment” because sea ice in the Arctic and Antarctic aren’t at record lows.
But the picture is NOT of temperatures. It is not warmer in the Arctic than in the United States, as Bastardi seems to imply. The picture is of temperature anomaly — the local temperature compared to the 1951-1980 mean — as anybody looking at the original can tell."Comment: I don't use Accuweather, I use Weather.com for weather information, so I had no idea this character exists. Apparently some people call it (in)Accuweather. One of the comments on the post suggested: "Anyway, it seems Bastardi’s and/or AccuWeather’s M.O. is to trash all government weather/climate services to spread uncertainty and doubt and to build up AccuWeather’s business." Someone else suggested that since Bastardi is paid he is a "professional idiot." In some ways he reminds me of the "bimbos" who used to present the weather forecast on the evening news, except they were they to be pretty, not to pontificate on conspiracies or misuse science. Presenting the weather versus forecasting the weather and climate research are quite different areas of endeavor
"This is petty vindictiveness," she said. "After the election is over, suddenly the money is revoked from poor people because of a political opinion held by the bishop."
Underwood said that many Catholics in Maine will now think twice before donating money to the church to help fight poverty. "People who are homeless should not be used in political games," she said.
..... Preble Street decided to join the coalition that opposed Question 1 because issues of sexual orientation are the single greatest cause of homelessness among youths.
Comment: I just shook my head. I think perhaps the good bishop is listening to Glen Beck. He seems to be agreeing that the church shouldn't preach social justice.
"I beg you," he said, "look for the words 'social justice' or 'economic justice' on your church Web site. If you find it, run as fast as you can. Social justice and economic justice, they are code words (for socialism.) Now, am I advising people to leave their church? Yes!"
Actually, we have most of the 60 now. It’s probably 6 to 12 swing Senators that will determine whether we have a domestic climate bill and hence a global deal (see “The central question for 2010: Will anti-science ideologues be able to kill the bipartisan climate and clean energy jobs bill?“