Tag Archives: cleaning

19 Dec #Wash #AdventWord 2018

19 Dec #wash

The Advent devotional project, #AdventWord  is offered by the Society of St John the Evangelist. Each day a word is provided and participants are invited to share images and/or reflections and to use hashtags so our reflections may be included in an Advent Calendar with others from around the world.

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Scouring the Shire, part II

Shire

10:04:54

15 February 2014

Physically exhausted,

emotionally drained,

the scouring continues.

After a nap.

See you along the Trail.

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Scouring the Shire

photo (59)09:58:34

15 February 2014

Snow blankets the Shire, powdered sugar on pastry.

The aroma of coffee, strong coffee, fills the air.

A friend comes to visit soon,

no mark on the door needed for me to know.

Time to prepare, to make ready, to clean.

photo (58)Enthusiasm seizes me, energy surges through me,

the scouring begins.

See you along the Trail.

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Angelito

I confess that I do not like to clean. I am not sure that makes me unique in any great way. I suspect an overwhelming number of people share that view. I may be part of the crowd, but I do want it known. I also want it known that I do not expect anyone to clean up after me. I never – well at least very, very rarely – complain when others do not clean. And I have instructed people not to clean up after me.

In a somewhat paradoxical act, I, one of the elite non-cleaners in the world, volunteered to help clean the office at West-Park Presbyterian Church last Saturday. It proved great fun with a wonderful group of co-cleaners.

photo (14) (1024x965)At one point we take a break to view some art that Angelo has donated to the church. Bright, vivid colors. Mexican influence. Indigenous influence. Intriguing mixture of Roman Catholic, indigenous, and abstract imagery. Good stuff.

Tonight at a meeting of the Committee on Witness to Society and the World of the Presbytery of New York City, my friend Bob, pastor at West-Park, tells me that the church has hung one of Angelo’s pieces depicting scenes from the life of Jesus in the sanctuary. I look forward to seeing it.

Bob also tells me that Angelo paints angelitos that he gives to friends and neighbors and even strangers. And then Bob gives me one. A companion, a blessing for the journey for which I am grateful.

See you along the Trail.

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That words do not come too late

Spent the day writing a sermon. Tomorrow I preach at St. James Presbyterian Church. I am looking forward to that.

The day also brought a cleaning surge here at the Shire on the Hudson. Things had been getting pretty grungy. Now they are just kind of grungy. One step at a time. The laundry did get done. That’s always a good thing.

A number of movies have been viewed over the past few days. Some oldies that I have seen before – Batman: The Dark Knight (Heath Ledger is amazing – and then there are Christian Bale and Morgan Freeman and Michael Caine and Gary Oldman and the list goes on); The Bourne Identity, and Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets.

The most interesting new one was Get Low with Robert Duvall. He turns in a strong performance and the cast supports him well.

The story, supposedly based on truth, is fascinating. Duvall’s character, Felix Bush lives as a hermit. And he decides he wants to hold his funeral – before he dies – while he is able to attend.

I found myself recalling one of my favorite scenes from Waking Ned Devine. Jackie O’Shea is speaking at the funeral for Ned Devine – and when the lottery man arrives, Jackie quickly changes the focus because the town has told him that Ned is still alive. Michael O’Sullivan is masquerading as Ned so they can cash in Ned’s winning lottery ticket.

Jackie pauses for a moment and then says, “Michael O’Sullivan was my great friend. But I don’t ever remember telling him that. The words that are spoken at a funeral are spoken too late for the man who is dead. What a wonderful thing it would be to visit your own funeral.”

In Get Low, Felix Bush decides he wants to do just that (as he did in real life, apparently). Of course there are some twists and turns to get there. But get there they do. And the truth is told – painful, heartbreaking, hard truth – truth from the past – truth that has shaped, distorted, truncated Felix’s life and the lives of many others. And it seems that forgiveness and some measure of reconciliation occurs.

Felix’s tale in Get Low took my thinking in two directions. 

Direction One.
I don’t want to attend my own memorial service. At least that’s what I think at the moment. I also don’t want that memorial service to happen any time soon. And I realize that memorial services are for the living not for the one who has died. But I do have an idea what I would like to see happen at that service – years and years from now.

That idea comes from Waking Ned Devine. The memorial service should be a time of celebration and giving thanks. And after the service, all of my family and all of my friends should gather for a party – a mighty party – a party with music and food and drink – a party with stories told and memories shared – a party filled with tears and laughter – a party that lasts through the night. Then, in the morning, the still quiet darkness of the morning, all who are able should fill their glass and make their way to the highest point that is nearby and their they should toast me as the sun rises.

Direction Two.
I need to be sure that my family and friends know what they mean to me. I need to make sure that my words do not come too late. May it be so.

See you along the Trail.

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