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Lessons Learned from Our Chidren

Posted by Heather, February 28, 2012

On Maundy Thursday, I was surprised by the reaction of my daughters to the end of the worship service. Similar to many Episcopal churches, Christ Church does a stripping of the altar. The communion ware is removed to the sacristy, as are the altar book, frontal hanging of the altar, and a few kneelers. The stoles that the clergy wear are removed and given up. Even the cross, which sits on the altar at Christ Church, is removed. My daughters were really disturbed by this. I could see them in the front pew, mouthing to me "What is going on? Why are they doing this? Why are they taking away the church things?" At the same time as trying to kneel and pray myself, I was mouthing back to them, "It is all okay. Everything is fine. We will talk about it later."

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Just Talk!

Posted by Ann, February 11, 2012

Just finished reading the in-depth and very disturbing piece in the February 6 New Yorker, The Story of a Suicide by Ian Parker. It provides much background to the suicide of Tyler Clementi, the young Rutgers freshman who jumped off the George Washington Bridge in October of 2010, after his roommate posted images online of a romantic encounter with another man. Of course it reveals much more nuance than Clementi was outed and was the victim of a hate crime. But the most astonishing thing we learn is that the two roommates barely spoke to one another.

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Lost In Motion

Posted by Ann, February 11, 2012

This clip is such a glorious metaphor for how God works in our lives. At the height of each of his leaps, he is suspended, upheld in midair by some unseen force. I have always felt that God asks us to leap first, and then we are carried through somehow, often with more grace than we could ever muster or imagine alone. Ok, so yeah, he’s totally easy on the eye and a gorgeous dancer. I admit I am confounded by the title, though. Rather than Lost in Motion, I think it should be called, Found in Motion.

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For the Sports Minded

Posted by Pierce, February 10, 2012

Time magazine recently observed that what wins football games is not the quarterback or the offensive line: it’s God. Joel Stein reported that if he wants to know who’s going to win the Super Bowl, he goes to the people who serve as middle-men between God and the players. He concludes the team with the best chaplain doesn’t simply win, but totally covers the spread. What else to NFL chaplains do? Well they run Bible studies, hold short services on Saturday night before games, and warn against the dangers of gambling. Chaplains claim their sermons are not about God helping the players win the game, but more about safety, health, and the strength to play with passion. Oh and they also like to talk about fatherhood for those who may forget to tuck their darlings in at night with prayer. As it turns out, the Patriots are one of the very few NFL teams that do not enjoy the counsel of a chaplain and they lost! Go figure.

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On Confession

Posted by Pierce, February 2, 2012

The story goes that a certain Father Magillicutty heard the confessions of nuns from a nearby convent for years upon years. One day, a friend asked the priest what it was like to hear the confessions of the religious week in and week out. With a twinkle in his eye, he replied: “It’s like being stoned to death with popcorn.” 

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The Time is Always Right to do Right

Posted by Pierce, January 20, 2012

Sometime ago, I attended the birthday party of one of our parish youth. When it came time to open presents, a friend of the honoree gave him a thin legal-size manila envelope with a bow around it. What could this be that did not come in a box?

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Holy Land Trip Sat / Oct 29

Posted by Ann, October 29, 2011

We came full circle yesterday when we made a visit to the Holy Land Institute for the Deaf in Salt, Jordan. This mission to deaf and profound hearing loss children has been operating since 1965. 160 children, as young as three and up to 20 years old, live together in this colorful, harmonious boarding facility designed to create one big family where everyone speaks sign language. The Holy Land Institute has long been dear to Christ Church missioners. Not only have we given our treasure in years past, we have also given time and talent. Some of our parishioners have spent time volunteering at the institute. Under the capable leadership of Audrey Grissom, and supporters like Joanne Metcalf, this vital ministry to the Holy Land was nurtured. While our commitment to the Holy Land hasn’t wavered, our support for the Institute has waned over the last few years.annblog1029boy.jpg

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Holy Land Trip Fri / Oct 28

Posted by Ann, October 28, 2011

Random reflections about Jordan:

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Holy Land Trip Thurs / Oct 27

Posted by Ann, October 27, 2011

Children of the Middle East who have disabilities are often hidden away because of the shame it can bring to families. In this culture, a disability is a black mark on the family’s honor and may affect the positive marriage potential of the other children in the family.

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Holy Land Trip Wed / Oct 26

Posted by Ann, October 26, 2011

Some of you may remember that my brother died in May of 2010. My family scattered Rob’s ashes in the desert outside San Diego in June of that year and again in the Vermont woods in July. I knew at that point that I would be making a Holy Land pilgrimage the following December with the group from Christ Church, so I reserved a small baggie of ashes with the intention of spreading them somewhere in the Holy Land.

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