Tuesday, August 30, 2005

On the great church divide

Whee-yoo. Take a look at some of the discussions going on at Father Jake's and Salty Vicar's sites (see links at right). It's pretty hot between the fundies and the...True Anglicans, I'll call them, because I take Fr. Jake's and Salty Vicar's sides.

As I may have mentioned once or twice or a dozen times, even though I live in an ultra-conservative diocese whose leaders seem to be thinking of going the way of the foreign bishops, I won't go. The Diocese of Central Florida can go do what it feels called to, but I'm just not going in that direction.

Like Fr. Jake, I find the Pat Robertsons and the Archbishop Akinolas and the Bishop Duncans and the IRD cut out of the same cloth of intolerance and fascist thinking. Nothing doing.

There's a nice Methodist church here in my town, some nice UCC churches who are welcoming of everyone, there's home church. Maybe even just watching a preacher or two on television on Sunday mornings.

What I'm really anticipating is there will be plenty of other people who won't go if the diocese is foolish enough to pull this. Even many of the more traditional believers won't be pulled out of their church.

We'll just have to see what happens.

God and me

I've stepped back from church activities the past couple of months. That's partly because I need some time to heal from all the family stuff I've dealt with. It's partly because I was exhausted before I went on the June mission trip and need time to rest, too. And maybe partly because I just don't trust what my diocese is up to.

But I have been spending time meditating, thinking and praying. And I've felt myself moving closer to God. I've been pretty angry with him/her/it/The Almighty at various times in the recent past. I've felt distant from my creator.

This time alone has been good for me. I've gotten away from excessive business. I've been reading scripture. I've even watched a television preacher or two. I've even (shockingly) been reading St. Augustine's Confessions.

I've been reaching out to God, and that presence has surrounded me. I'm healing, though the process seems slow.

I like having some time alone with God. I cherish it.

Thursday, August 25, 2005

A year of Jack

Last week I was going through files and found photos of the vet bringing Jack the Brat into my house. That was Aug. 5. It's hard to believe I've had this little guy for a year.

Last year, just before all the hurricanes started to hit, he turned up at the vet's door. She was preparing to go out of town. She was new in practice and didn't have much place to leave him...but she remembered I'd just lost a cat a few months ago and would be an easy touch.

She was right.

Tiny little Jack, barely old enough to be weaned, came with a torn-up face and a punctured eyeball. Something had seriously gotten hold of him. With antibiotics, prayer and Jack's natural resiliency, he recovered, and was able to keep the eye. The only sign left of Jack's early trauma is a black spot on his eye.

He fell in love with Betsy the dog, as soon as he came into the house, and Betsy mothered him and took him on as her play buddy. They still tear around the house, playing chase. I gave up long ago worrying about him getting hurt. He's the one who starts the games with a 45-pound dog.

Jack's still a small cat. I don't think he's grown any the past two or three months, so I imagine he'll stay small. But he's maybe six pounds of muscle, bone and claw.

Elvis, the big black-and-white cat, (try 20 pounds to Jack's six) has always been a big baby, one who used to run away crying when Jack would jump him. Now, though, he seems to enjoy a bit of roughhousing, and I'm treated to a nightly Clash of the Titans on the living room floor.

Jack's my little sweetie. He loves on me and loves for me to rub his back. He's always right there, in the middle of whatever I'm doing.

For all his swagger around the house, he's terrified of anyone besides me, and hides under the bed when visitors come in.

Jack is the brat who loves to tear up cardboard boxes, and tear into unopened bags of cat food. He's the one I hear getting into things in he middle of the night, knocking things over just for the fun of it. He's the brat who tries to crawl into the refrigerator with the shrimp I put there, but won't eat it when I offer him one; he's the brat who tries to help himself to what's on my plate.

Jack's the brat who weaves in and out between my ankles, the one who tries to stop me from going out the door.

Ah, Jack, you're such a brat. And you're a cutie-patootie.

Thursday, August 11, 2005


I am almost asleep ... drifting.

Drifting ... oh, God, hold me safe in the palm of your hand. And my bed becomes the hand of God, and my pillow the soft flesh joining the palm of his hand and his thumb. I am warm, safe, secure, comforted.

Drifiting ... my bed becomes a boat on the Mediterranean, far from shore. The dome of the sky is clear, blue, and a million miles away. The boat, stroked by slight, warm breezes, rests on crystalline water. I can see the grains of sand on the floor of the sea, and swimming fish. It's a moment of God's perfect peace.

Drifting ... my bed moves through the cosmos, through the dark night sky and the Milky Way. I see stars as big as silver dollars. Comets flare across the blue-black depths of space. The belt of Orion, novas, nebulae and exploding universes all contribute to the spectacle I observe, the beauty of God's handiwork.

Drifting ... I'm aware of my dog and two cats curling up at my knees and at the foot of my bed, my special craft.

I am asleep.

Sunday, August 07, 2005

Oh me, oh my

Ha, ha. Hee, hee. It's surreal pie.

First, the Church of England comes up with a "Kiss, but don't tell" policy regarding certain sexual unions among its priestly types. That's strange enough. It's ok to have a gay civil partnership, same-same as marriage, just no sex.

At least, they better not admit to it, as they share lives, households and bedrooms.

I have to admit, that's a bit surreal.

Next, the good Archbishop Peter Akinola, aka "The Man Who Would Be Pope," jumps on that, citing the Windsor Report (which has become the right-wing justification for everything, somehow).

Archbish Petey wants to kick the C of E and the Archbishop of Canterbury out of the Anglican Communion, or suspend them at least. Let's see, can we still call it the "Anglican" communion? Surreal.

That's a rather neat and simple way to handle those who disagree with you -- just kick them out.

ECUSA and the Canadians shouldn't have agreed to a suspension, I think.

Well, we'd better keep this all very quiet. What if Prez. Bush gets wind of this -- he'll kick all those pesky Democrats out of Congress! Just a few years' suspension, he'll tell them. They can appear at some [obviously, who else will be left?] Republican-led hearings to explain themselves.

Maybe it isn't so far-fetched or funny after all.