Monthly Archives: January 2011

A prayer service with the people of Sudan

The clear highlight of the day was the blessing of participating in a prayer service with the people of Sudan. Here is a reflection originally written for Swords into Plowshares, the blog of the Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations.

Remember.

The interfaith group who gathered today in the Tillman Chapel at the Church Center for the United Nations to pray with the people of Sudan in anticipation of the referendum on self-determination in Southern Sudan did that.

Remember.

Times and places when people made hard decisions and peace prevailed were named.

Remember.

The violence and the pain, the death and the suffering, faced by the Sudanese people through the years, was recalled as was their courage and grace, hope and faith.

Remember.

Participants held pictures of people from Sudan as reminders of those for whom prayers were said – those with whom prayers were said – for the people of Sudan are and have been and will continue praying in the days through the referendum and its implementation and beyond.

Remember.

Re-member. Bring the members back together. The members of the human family. In Sudan. Around the world. All the human being tribe.

Remember.

“You are not forgotten. We remember your names.” The song echoed off the chapel walls and guided the participants from the chapel to the Isaiah Wall in the cold and snow.

Remember.

Large snow flakes and the swirling wind made it impossible to light the candles the participants carried even though they could not extinguish the candles of hope and love and faith that are lit in human minds and hearts and spirits.

Remember.

As the service closed, the participants together recited the ancient words of the prophet Isaiah, “they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruning hooks; nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more.”

May it be so. For Sudan. For us all.

See you along the Trail

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Filed under Current Events, Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations

Whiteout

Yes. I figured it out – at least who did it – but not the reason for their greed.

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Another day, another trip

Flew back to NYC (Shire East) from Louisville (Shire West) late this evening after a day of meetings.

The meetings went well. I watched Whiteout upon returning. An OK escape, but nothing profound. It seems to winding down, I will see if I figured it out. Not sure I have been paying enough attention to be sure about my suspicions.

Tomorrow is the interfaith prayer service for Sudan. There are signs of hope . . . may they come true.

See you along the Trail.

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You travel too much

That’s what my friend and colleague Petero told me when he learned I was returning to Louisville this afternoon. Of course he has travel scheduled to Zambia, Uganda, Tanzania, and several other countries in February. He works for the Episcopal Church and holds their Africa desk.

The morning began with a visit to the office by a group from Eckerd College. They were in NYC for a class on the United Nations. They made their first stop the Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations. I had the privilege to talk to them about our ministry and to respond to questions. It was great fun!

After meeting with the group, it was discovered that the PC(USA) email system was done – so instead of email, the phone was necessary to make arrangements for Friday’s prayer service on Sudan. Fascinating to realize how much a part of life email is.

Then headed to LGA. The security line was about as long as I have ever seen – but it moved quickly and people were very patient. The flights went well – picked up the rental car and made it back to the Shire. Renovations have continued in preparation for selling the condo.

A limited number of dvds remain at the Shire – that was probably poor planning since the Shire on the Hudson has cable and the Roku box – should have left more to have more variety. Watched Amazing Grace.

Tomorrow I travel back to the Shire on the Hudson.

See you along the Trail.

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Filed under Movie, Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations, Travel

Meeting with the Committee on Ministry

The highlight of the day was a meeting with the Committee on Ministry of the Presbytery of New York City – a step in transferring membership. It was actually quite enjoyable. Lots of questions – but fun questions to answer. I believe that seeds were planted for future conversations as well. I think that gathering small groups of folk to talk about ways to partner in ministry may be worth pursuing.

In terms of goals – I ate well again; got a normal blood sugar reading; and walked 10,236 steps. I have not gone to the gym or engaged in concerted walking as I have a couple of sore spots on my feet. I am taking care of them and am seeing some progress so hopefully the exercise/walking will commence soon.

I got home from the COM meeting soon enough to watch Ohio State play in the Sugar Bowl. It would really be good for them to win – or at least I know many folk who would like that – I assume there are many folk who would like Arkansas to win, I just don’t know as many in that position. Things started really well, but the tension is rising. Ohio State just went on fourth down and came up short giving Arkansas good field position. This could ugly for Buckeye fans.

Tomorrow there is a meeting with the Eckerd College group; then I will do some work on the Interfaith Harmony Week; and then head to Louisville where I will stay in the Shire West for one night with a CPJ coordinators’ meeting on Thursday.

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Filed under Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations

Day 1 (again)

A travel day – often the most challenging – so easy to stop into Hudson News and pick up candy or nuts (not bad in themselves but a problem when a couple of bags are consumed at the same time).

A travel day – made even more challenging by a variety of frustrations – the plane was late and got later as the day went on – and the internet connection in BWI was pretty week.

A travel day – an emotional day, leaving family behind, realizing that I don’t really have a place to call home in the sense of a place where there is family/community, experiencing the realities of trying to live in three places.

A travel day – on which overeating did not occur, indeed eating was appropriate – only 6,700 steps but that is a few more than expected.

A travel day – the first day – more to follow.

See you along the Trail.

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Filed under Exercise, Travel

Patience

Stuck in BWI. Not sure how long it will be. Air card not working real well. Patience not my strong suit. Good news is that I have not allowed this to be an excuse for overeating. At least not yet.

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