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Friday, March 31, 2006

Dearest RevGals

I am working in my copious spare time to put final touches on the book. I still have a couple of outstanding entries (actually, I was going to yell over the internet -- until I realized that the majority of the ones missing were MINE. Uhm. Yeah, I forgot to add mine in after I wrote them. Whoops.) If you are willing, I'll send you a text -- this would be a great opportunity for some of the newbies, if they wish.

Second, because of space considerations, I need a two sentence bio from each person who wrote a devotional. I don't think we are going to have space for pictures and full bios. Please include your blogname and URL. I'll collect what I can from this and the ones missing will get an email.

As soon as these tasks are finished, I'll get a proof from the publisher.

If I've been silent recently it's because I have feverishly been editing.

RevGal Friday Five: As my mother used to say...

This morning I had a moment in which I found myself wanting to reply to my teenager the way my father used to reply to me. Most of us have some classic family phrases or retorts or truisms handed down from parents to children.

Name five things you used to hear your mother or father (or even a grandparent) say, especially things you might be surprised to hear coming out of your own mouth.

Let us know in the comments if you play!

Thursday, March 30, 2006

RevGalBlogPal Profile

(Whoops! I authored this for last week -- but time slipped by! I apologize.)

Emily of Hazelnut Reflections

I'm a native Chicagoan, Episcopal priest, married to another Episcopal priest, voted in junior high as the person most likely to have her nose in a book. Currently living in Oklahoma City and working as an Interim Rector in the OKC metro area.
Why do you blog?
Some friends of mine were blogging, and I saw it as an opportunity to put some thoughts of mine about faith out on the web. I keep blogging now because of the community I'vediscovered.

What has been your best blogging experience?
Being able meet in person those who I have only known though blogging. It really helped ease the pain of moving to know I had blogfriends in my new state.

What would be your main advice to a novice blogger?

1) Think about how much you want to put yourself out there before you set up your blog. Blogging psedonymously, anonymously, or vaguely publicly does affect what you're going to put in your blog.
2) Get to know other bloggers by reading and commenting. If you're just posting and expecting others to come by and read your fabulous prose, you're missing out the possibilities for building community online.

If you only had time to read three blogs a day, what
would they be (not RevGal blogs, please)?

the one and only Yarn Harlot
The Panopticon (another outrageously funny knitting blog)
Thinking Anglicans

Who are your spiritual heroes?

Julian of Norwich, Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Hildegard of Bingen, Martin Luther King, Jr., Thomas Cranmer

What are you reading at the moment?

A book about the history of Color. As in paint/fiber colors, not as in race.
Various commentaries on Exodus.
my NCAA brackets

What is your favorite hymn and why?

I put them all in my ordination service:
St. Patrick's breastplate ("I bind unto myself this day. . ." (I know it's too long, but it has such associations for me with dear ones' ordinations, and I love the Trinitarian imagery)
Tora Ora--a Hebrew song about Scripture that's in the Episcopal hymnal. I have recent Jewish ancestors on one side of the family tree, and this makes me feel connected to them.
Veni Sancte Spiritus--the Taize version
Let us Break Bread Together on our Knees--because for me, it is all about the gathering at the table

My faith is so tied up in the music of the church--all kinds--that I'm going to stop now.

What worldview do you think is most important to

The dehumanization of fellow human beings. Every culture defines "insiders" and "outsiders." Outsiders are always seen as something less than human, and therefore it's okay to exploit them. I think much of Jesus' ministry was aimed at getting rid of the boundaries between insiders and outsiders.

If you could affect one major change in the
governing of your country, what would it be?

Our seeming current inability to do what's best for the country, instead of what's best for a political base.

If you could affect one major policy change in your
what would it be?

That we would stop being such lone rangers as congregations and clergy and work together to build the church.

What would be your most important piece of advice
about life?

Know yourself.

What, if anything, do you worry about?
What an Episcopal Church divided by schism would mean for us.

If you were to relive your life to this point, is
there anything that you'd do differently?

Realize sooner that I'm not perfect, and stop trying to hide it.

Where would you most like to live (other than where
you do now)?

Somewhere with snow.

What do you like doing in your spare time?
Read, knit, chat with friends.

What is your most treasured possession?
My wedding ring and my Seabury cross.

This is Definitely Not Wednesday - N thru Z

It's funny how life is moving routinely, slowly and almost boringly - and then - BLAM! You get slammed. You all know how it is! Here's a quick round-up:

Check out beth's genealogy. Sounds like she might be related to the Addams Family. Don't worry, Beth, I'm pretty sure I'm distantly related too!

See what natty got invited to!

Add willow to the list of RGBP's who've gone on retreat at a monastery.

Laila aka "Mudbucket" has taken over Stacey's blog.

Amy at Talk with the Preacher had an epiphany of sorts while participating in a day-long photography class. Cool!

St. Casserole has received replies regarding her "Miss Manners" entry. Also check out her latest purchases!

Don' Revem gets asked the question"Are you really the pastor?" Lettsee, I've been asked, "Church secretary? Choir director? Sunday School teacher? Director of Christian Ed? Custodian? (And my favorite) "The girl in 'Accounts Payable?'" Welcome to female clergydom, revem! Keep your sense of humor!

Quotidian Grace is singing "I Got the MOTB Dress Huntin' Blues!" Besides being a songwriter, she's a pretty fair story-teller too! Check it out!

Will smama blogs about pastoral care and professional courtesies.

Juniper68 over at Possible Water is divesting herself.

And over at Narrow at the Outset, Steph puts a new twist on an old story.

Apologies to all the friends I've missed! Leave a note in the comment blog and we'll check YOU out! Caritas!

Hey! Is this Still Wednesday? (a thru m)

Jan's son put his feet where his faith is.
South Dakota (for better or for worse) continues to inspire some of the best posts I have read on our webring. The latest is from Cheesehead.
Dash uses quotes to commentate on The Fear Rainbow.
Jean puts a human face on Iran.
Polity and procedure - ikk (This is under the subheading of denominational/church politics.)
Gord askes about pre-approved religious holidays.

Where is the best place to live? Micah Girl wants to know.
Susan Rose is off to the Jersey Shore on a not-so-secret spy mission.
Julie posts - and I am guessing not for the last time - Things They Should Teach You in Seminary. My list is currently about 20 pages long - hang in there Julie!
Miranda is nervous about a homecoming sermon.
Here is an interesting query about a co-worker.
Tripp is chorally satisfied... and needs a nap.
Somebody's birthday is coming up...
The Bishop, dogs and pics can be found at Good in Parts (not necessarily in that order).
Heavy Revvies - Great haiku! But, ummm, could you make the volume thingy for the music that automatically plays a little more accessible for those of us cruising the internet at ungodly hours of the morning?
Sue, just leave it to pastors for ruining a good thing.
Ooo! Game Night!
Do even the spring peepers read jo(e)'s blog?
What?! No post from Love During Wartime? His quest to have 1500 posts in time for his third anniversary may have fallen short, but he certainly seemed to do his best on my round-up days! Come back on Wednesdays, brother... I missed you today!
LutheranChick continues caring for her mom and has now suffered the ultimate indignity - a $20 cell phone.
Wendy checks out her quirk factor.

Anna gives us some thoughts on the annunciation.
Our Bible bloggers are at Romans. (Wasn't sure whether to put that in this category or the one below.)
Eternal Echoes asks the questions that few mainlines want to hear.
Pretty Pentecost!
Hipchickmamma has entered the realm of the Prodigal Parable. Truly this is on the short list of great, juicy parables.

The Book of Bebb

One wonders how much 'hiding' Bad Alice will be able to take.
Brother Terry (o)
HeyJules, it's time.
Has Leslee lived up to her own expectations?
Hazlenut reflects.

Katherine is enjoying her family. (sniff, sniff, sniff - What is that smell?)
Carolyn returns and gives us an update on some illness and some vacation and one very sweet grandbaby.

The Inside Man is reviewed by bethquick.
Cathy knits... and prays both for (thanksgiving) and with (intercession) her ipod. I might need to seriously get one of these things... how do I make that a professional expense? Anyone?
When is Clever Title going to come back and give us her firsthand account of the eclipse?

Here is a great example of how you can use laughter as a tool for survival.

Have you seen Pink's video Stupid Girl? Thanks to Gavin at Hit the Back Button to Move Forward for putting the video on his blog. IF YOU ARE A WOMAN, HAVE A DAUGHTER OR think it is time to break the trend of escalating emaciated, plastic-filled, empty-headed girls to celebrity status then you need to check out this video.

Incidentally, Pink dresses in a lot of ways in this video - including quite trashy - in order to make her point and I still thought she was the most stunning and beautiful in the more dressed up vignette as President of the United States.

NOTE TO SELF: When you wait until the end of the day (or worse yet, the beginning of the next one) there are A LOT more blogs to write about.

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Tuesday Lectionary Leanings

The three faithful members of the congregation I serve came out on a drizzly cold evening once again to discuss the passages for this Sunday, the fifth Sunday in Lent.

Together we agreed that we could listen to Jeremiah's Book of Comfort all day long! There was some discussion of the use of the word "husband" in verse 32, which one member of the group wisely surmised was there to signify God's desire to be intimately connected with us--without any prompting from me! The hopefulness of this passage, and its description of a people so in love with it's God that it will make the law a part of its very being was truly comforting in this age of skepticism and detachment from deep relationship.

The Mystic Fourth Apostle, such a contrast from Mark with his Suffering Servant, sure packs a lot into a pericope! Once again, as a few weeks ago, we were talking about the idea of losing one's life in order to gain it. One gentleman said this,"Are we willing to let go of the status quo in order to serve God's purposes, or do we grasp it tighter, hoping that God will see things our way?"

I couldn't have said it better myself!

What's on your mind as you approach this last Sunday before Palm/Passion Sunday?

Let's try this again

You might have noticed a double-blog-post... perhaps this will help!

Greetings, this Monday eve --

Tammy Jo is mid-step -- pondering options and playing out scenarios. Thoughts and prayers be with you ... it's never easy to be in the midst of such transition!

Jan shares her love for her little sliver of an ipod but goes on to share some great music that she wishes the church could sing... good thoughts!

JWD writes about marking changes, being her body and emotions that are close to the surface -- a nicely-turned phrase for what can be so incredibly painful.

Happy 2nd Birthday, A -- and a red wagon, too! Check out ChaplainMom's recounting of the day.

Cheesehead goes to the eye doctor... and she could 'see' the results coming... (sorry, I couldn't resist.)

Tripp has been asked to sing and reflects on Sunday's sermon...

Erin went and talked to the rector -- well done, well done! Go see what she learned.

Sarah is heading for Louisiana and trying to digest what it all means -- good questions, good ponderings.

Another Sarah shares some information about LEAC -- find out more here!

Hey Jules has submitted some writing and will be sharing them with us via her blog before and during Holy Week. Thanks -- I suspect they will be a respite for many of us during that time!

Gord is preparing the last in a sermon series ... and Gord, I can't say that I envy you. Best wishes!

Leslee tells us what she wants... sounds good to me!

*giggle* Thanks, Girl, for giving us all a good reason to remember to double-check e-mail addresses before hitting 'send'... and I have to admit, I laughed out loud at this ... Thanks!

Kathryn shares her Mothering Sunday.... which sounds really delightful -- I hope you did enjoy the chocolate with your name on it!

Emily has one of "those moments" in the checkout line... We've all been there... oh, yes!

HeavvyRevvy compares us (life, human beings) to cake... a mighty fine comparison! Except now I'm hungry...

HipChickmamma has a pondering on her way home ... those are good questions at the end of the entry, too.

Loud, Brash and Dramatic is thinking 40 isn't so bad... Those are great gifts!

James has done a quiz to find that he's Kermit!

This is a few days old, but since it hasn't been covered, please keep Lutheranchik and her mom in your prayers.

Peace and blessings to all,
Pink Shoes

Monday, March 27, 2006

Mmmmmonday'zzzzz Round-Up

From M to Z, here's what's new on the last Monday in March:

Our discerning Susan Rose hasn't left yet, but the departure-related weirdness has begun. Mark has a snowball's view of call...but at the same time PamBG links us to Maggi Dawn for a Top 10 List: Why Men Should Not Be Ordained. (I thought it was very amusing, but I *am* contrarian. And shouldn't apply to Mark.)

Heather shares some sermon thoughts; what's in the basket, anyway? What do you say when someone compliments your sermon? purechristianIthink wants to know. The tentmaker didn't mince words in his. Ginger is learning that when she preaches it's not all about her, and that feels good. And Stacey has learned something very important about what goes into making her sermons good ones.

Micahgirl is celebrating a mysterious word, while Rachel explores Sabbath.

will smama browses the headlines, then and now, and Ann links to a story you must read, but won't like.

Amy is glad to have the rest of the pastoral staff return, and Revem is glad to be back at church.
Natty wonders how to address a Bishop?

If it's all too much for you, why not join Reverend Mommy for Morning Prayer?

Scog Blog's family has health worries. Why don't you pop in and leave an encouraging word?

reverendmother lets us know what happened on the first day of The Writing Workshop!! (How about some word from peripatetic polar bear? Nothing just yet.)

Lorna posts while away from home; what shocking thing is she blogging now?!? It's good to hear her son is feeling better.

Being Shielded knows she needs to do more planning, so she has made a little list.

Sister Mary Alternative is grateful for the god box. Carol appreciates a great end to a rough week. And Mary Beth had a wonderful Alpha weekend!

Soozi gives us a spiritual review of The Three Burials of Melquiades Estrada.

At Steve's house: like father, like son.

Amy likes to sing along in the car (and really, who doesn't?)

Beth's blog owns a small portion of her. (Some of us would be very afraid to take this quiz. VERY afraid.)

And I've been thinking about Mary Winkler.

What's on your mind?

Prayer Pals

A rose by any other name would smell as sweet...

When I finally shook off that irksome fever, I realized I had missed the opportunity to name us Prayer "Pals," to go along with the WebRing name. Those of you who received pairing e-mails from me today probably saw "prayer pals" in the subject line. Those I did the other day still said partners. At this point, everyone ought to have received pairings. If you think you signed up to be part of this, but did not receive an e-mail from me, please send another!

Round-up later this evening...

Saturday, March 25, 2006

Sunday Prayer

God, you know me better than I know myself. You know what unsettles me and what excites me, what energizes me and gets my creative juices flowing. God, you know that there are some Sundays when I play it safe and deliver a message that is easy on the soul and pastoral in every respect. I confess to you that sometimes that safety is for my sake, and other times it is for the sake of the congregation. If I know that many people have suffered personal crises over a few weeks time, I tend to deliver a message that comforts more than it challenges.

Today is not one of those days. Today is a day that takes me out on the homiletical edge and pushes me gently over the side, where I cling to a single branch and hope I can hold on. Yes God, I'm kind of freaking out a bit. What made me think this was a good idea??? We have a canoe in our sanctuary!

(breathing, breathing, breathing....) Ok God, this one's in your hands now. I believe with every part of my being that the Holy Spirit can make this worship and work that we are sharing here this morning into something sacred, memorable and blessed. Bless us all as we embark on this adventure in our spiritual journey together. Bless our visioning, our imagining, our prayer and our song, for it is offered to you in faithfulness and praise, in Jesus' name. Amen.

Prayer Partners Update

Dear friends,

40 people have signed up for Prayer Partners. I have sent out e-mails to 15 of you so far, with your match-ups, but e-mailing and sermon-writing have collided tonight. I'll be away tomorrow night and will get back to work on e-mailing Monday! This first round will be April through June, so we have a few more days to get started.

Blessed Sunday to all of you,

Saturday Update: K through Z

It's official! Books will be all over Planet RevGalBlogPals. Songbird's Friday Five drew a lot of players this week and every response I read mentioned books--usually as the first item. Chocolate was a close second, once again proving that great minds run in the same track.

A hearty RGBP "howdy" goes out to new blogger Kim of Kim's Knitting. She's a full time seminary student and former civil engineer.

Today's roundup includes a number of posts about life in the church. Jean attended the ordination of a friend and reminisced about her own ordination. PamBG wrote about ways the church alienates people from Christ. Susan Rose is continuing her journey towards the Groovy Sisters by beginning her application to enter the novitiate. Pulpit quote suggestions are being solicited over at Rebel's place. Revem's 6 year old son has some intense questions about God. Priorities, stewardship and discipleship are on Soozi's mind.

Amy describes (and posts cute photos) her family of activists. Violent sermons to captive congregations disturb Yodabeth. Wendy explains why she is performing in a play called Sordid Lives. Kinesis has had some fallout from her public identification with the new training program Beyond Good Intentions. Kirsten, Sister Christer and Ann rejoice in the release of the remaining members of the Christian Peacemakers Team. I posted an update about the controversy over the admission of an atheist to membership in a PCUSA church and want your comments and ideas on a Da Vinci Code class series I am developing.

Lutheran Chik is out of circulation for a few days as she tends to her mother who had triple bypass surgery Friday. Stop by her place to offer prayers and sympathy. Pet lovers will sympathize with Perapetic Polar Bear's loss of her beloved cat, buddyboy.

Philosophy Over Coffee offers his weekly Friday Pop Culture Review which includes thoughts on Thomas Merton's book Seeds of Contemplation. Lorna also has a book review at her place: So Much Love: An Invitation to Christian Spirituality. The RGBP blogring is certainly the right audience for book reviews!

Winding up today's review, I find Juniper going on retreat with 70 other women this weekend,
Chaplain Lydia running out of peanut butter kisses, RuthRe getting over herself, and Rambling posting links to women's impact on the world.

It's a beautiful spring day in my neighborhood and I hope that it is in yours as well! Please add anything I missed in the comments.

Saturday A-K -started early, finished late.

Sat a.m. early:
It's my Alpha Weekend, so I'm starting this before and will finish afterward. What are others up to?

Let's see...

Many of us playing the "Planet YourName" meme game, including Cheesehead, Cats, Gord, Net, Grace upon Grace, Emily, Sue, (did I miss anyone?) What a wonderful set of fantasy places to go!

Many of us (including yrs. truly) are looking forward to Songbird's Prayer Partner initiative. The e-mails are currently going out to those signed up, and these pairings will run through June.

Brick Wall shares a wonderful & special resource for families grieving the death of a baby (or a stillbirth).

StarvingArtists tells us what various celebrities require when travelling.

Peter considers books started and not finished: "The reasons are varied, but they all boil down to "reward not sufficient for the effort." Gosh, I wish I could remember the ones I've started & not finished...too much effort to think of them.

Katherine's sister Elizabeth is the winner of a great award: "She is among the 25 scrapbook artists who were named to the Hall of Fame 2006 for Creating Keepsakes." If you scroll down a bit you may read a marvellous sermon by Katherine herself. Indeed, their parents have amazing daughters!

Mindy has so much to be GRATEFUL for including rain in West Texas! Blanket in the Grove is grateful for WorkRave - a snazzy little shareware program that reminds you to take a break from your computer!

The Bible Readers are in Luke. Brother Terry is outraged. Cathy has a miracle dog to tell you about. Chaplain Mom is preaching to an immensely diverse group and I can't wait to hear how that goes!

Cheesehead (whose lectionary discussions on Tuesdays in this space are adding so much!) shares her sermon for today.

Clever Title has been to visit a Coptic Orthodox church. Fascinating stuff.

I love this from the AngloBaptist: "It is a shame that using U2 in a sermon may be cliche." Not in my circles, not yet! Keep it up!!

Erin's playing a meme on identity. Cool. Gord has determined he is Tevye in the Fiddler on the Roof Character meme.

Contemplative Chaplain has shared...something...with a street preacher. Welcome to Sarah from Contradictory Notions! She's got great cat photos.

Dash is musing about the upcoming foot washing - do you ever feel uncomfortable with footwashing, if you do it? Well, it is SUPPOSED to be uncomfortable. Go look at the scripture. And Dylan's back, after a long time away. Sally's had her first CafeChurch.

Keep Jules in your prayers - she's had a heck of a weekend and is coming back slowly. Gallycat, too, could use a shout out to God on her behalf. HeavyRevvy needs special prayers for a possible adoption and a little one named Thomas. Sue is giving up caffeine in hopes of getting rid of cluster headaches. I know she needs prayer!

Leslee's got another photo contest. The Hershey Kisses have been getting the better of Girl. Me, I just can't start with those. AT. ALL.

It's Mothering Sunday in the UK. Go read about Kathryn's special marvelous service & activities.

Grace upon Grace has been published in the Salt Lake Tribune! A revised blog post, yet!

Jo(e) has been at a blogger meetup. Woo woo!

Kinesis has been getting some press for her Ally training. Hey, Kinesis, I'm an Ally! at my university, but still. I say, YOU GO!

Timing update: Now it's Sunday am before church. Alpha's Holy Spirit weekend really took it out of me...I came home and fell down fast asleep. I think sleep is a gift of the Spirit, too. :)

Blessings on you all...

Friday, March 24, 2006

RevGal Friday Five: Planet Your Name

In the spirit of Refreshment Sunday:

Yesterday, as I drove past Planet Fitness on my way to Planet Dog, and remembering there is also a Planet Hollywood, I wondered, "If there were a Planet Songbird, what would it look like?" I began to envision a store selling all my favorite things, probably in the kind of house I lived in as a child, one of those late 19th-century houses with a long hallway on the side and double parlors on the other, with windows to the floor facing the front porch. Visit my place for a longer-winded version of this meme.

Name five things that would be on the shelves of Planet (Your Name).

Let us know in the comments if you play! And have a refreshing weekend.

Thursday, March 23, 2006

Prayer Partners

(Last opportunity for this cycle!)

Dear RevGalBlogPals,

We often highlight requests for prayer in the context of doing web ring round-ups, and it occured to me that perhaps we are being called to more conscientious prayer for one another. I would like to suggest that we try setting up a system of Prayer Partners. Each interested ring member would be given another ring member's name, and you would pray for that person. Meanwhile, someone else will be praying for you. And, yes, you will probably end up praying for the person who is praying for you, too. But my thought is that you have one praying person who is responsible for you, and one person for whom you are responsible to pray, perhaps making it easier to share a particular need.

It would work this way:

1) Send me your name if you are interested. (

2) I will develop a list of those who contact me.

3) I will give you the names and e-mail addresses of both your "pray-er" and your "pray-ee."

4) The extent to which the "pray-ee" shares specific information or needs will be up to the individual, but the "pray-er" will commit to hold your "pray-ee" in prayer whether you or not you are aware of immediate concerns.

Edited to Add: Thirty people have signed up for Prayer Partners thus far. I will have time on Friday to do the match-ups and send out the contact information. If you would like to sign up, please send me an e-mail by Friday morning.

I am suggesting this will be a three-month commitment, at which time we will re-evaluate and perhaps change partners. How does that sound?

Questions? Comments? You may leave those here.


Wednesday, March 22, 2006

N - Z Sorta

Hi all! I spent the morning trying to clean off my desk and do paperwork (gagging noises). Had to ... I swear someone snuck in the study and set off a paper bomb on my desk. Sigh. And now, on to the countdown ... er, round-up:

If you think little girls are made of sugar and spice and little boys frog, snails and puppy dog tails, check out what revem is made of.

Sounds like Stacey at The Almond Branch is doing some spiritual sping cleaning.

Reverend Mommy wants to know your thoughts on prayer. (It's a good thing do do?)

Sr. Steph has a guest blogger who invites us to celebrate the feast day of St. Benedict.

Welcome to Connie at What's She Got Up Her Sleeve? She shares her thoughts on a text from this week's RCL.

Talk with the Preacher's Pastor Amy shares her monthly Pastor's Column, gives a wonderful testimonal to her sisters AND shares pictures of her biggest fan! Everyone needs a La-La.

Rachelover at The Big Dunk finished the Hebrew Scriptures for her "Bible in 90 Days" discipline. On to the New Covenant.

Miss Manners, I mean St. Casserole blogs her Top 10 "No-no" List. 'Scuse me. Thank you. You're welcome. Can I supersize that for you? And just what is wrong with our feline furbabies?

Pink Shoes got a birthday card from a "special" someone. Found out who it is! Belated Happy Birthdays, by the way, Shoes!

Quotidian Grace gives a book review and a blog about being used as a sermon illustration. Please remind your pastor, QC, to give credit where credit is due!

PoCcomments on the latest UCC advert.

Let's all aim a big groan in the direction of Singing Owl and
Lorna. Have a wonderful time in Helsinki, Lorna!

And finally, send big cyberhugs to will smama and Carolat the Smallest Angel.

That's about it! If I missed you, I'm sorry! Leave a note in the comment box and we'll get back to you as soon as possible. Have a nice day.

A thru M... 'ish'

Two out of four of our parental units are in the hospital so I am going to have to keep this short. With apologies and encouragement for all of you to comment on your brilliant posts that can be found on your blogs.

First, be sure to let Songbird know if you would like to be paired up with a prayer partner. Rather I should say to let Songbird know if you would like to be 'prayered' up... (hee, hee - me thinks I could use some sleep!)

Jan would like to know who your mascot is?

Chaplain Mom ain't preaching to the choir, but rather to the sorority.

According to Jules, that ain't pugly, it's funny!

Net has been putting out some brushfires.

hipchickmamma seems to be in a pretty good place right now.

Jo(e) gives us the weather forecast for the Big Midwestern City Where the Big Four Seas Conference is Being Held This Week that has at Least One Very Tall Building and a Hotel that Kind of Reminds her of the Titanic and Two Baseball Teams One of Which Always Loses.

LutheranChick is feasting with Joseph.

James posts on current events.

Alas, my allotted time is now up. Please be sure to mark the 'comments' card and don't forget to tip your waitress.

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Tuesday Lectionary Leanings

For this fourth Sunday of Lent, my Monday night lectionary discussion group explored this wonderful quirky story found in Numbers 21:4-9, and also one of the most famouse Gospel passsages of all time, John 3:14-21.

The group found the parallels between these two passages fascinating. I admitted to the group that although lots of people will state that John 3:16 is the verse that changed their lives, I find that John 3:16 doesn't mean as much to me when it is seperated contextually from John 3:17. The two combined are the whole of the gospel in a nutshell for me!

We spent a lot of time discussing that serpent in Numbers. What was it about gazing at that thing that provided healing? Also, the group pointed out (with very little prompting from me) that although the Israelites could be healed from theri snake bites, there were still snakes in their lives; in other words, although Christ came to deliver us from sin adn eternal death, being a Christian does not mean that we will no longer have trials or tribulations. Salvation does not mean an easy life. The snakes are still out there.

What are you pondering this week as you preapre to preach (or not to preach)?

Monday, March 20, 2006

Monday, A-L

Greetings on this Monday night!

Against a Brick Wall blogs the ipod meme.

Jan went home and writes about it beautifully. Sometimes it's good to go home! It's also nice to be able to welcome home those who have been away. Poor Mad Peter's Em is home!

Katherine writes about health and I, for one, have learned something.

Find out what's happening in Bad Alice's world! Cathy also recaps her week. Heavy Revvy reviews what makes a day! Leslee has made an adorable penguin cake and shares some other tidbits!

Beth shares some of Jesus' Greatest Hits

JWD is living into the mystery.

Terry is beginning a reformation.

Church Lady has chronicled the importance of staff meetings ... mmmm.... staff meetings.

Clever shares the power of memories through tears. Some days are like that.

Contemplative Chaplain has an earworm -- you know, one of those songs that gets stuck in your ear.... so frustrating!

Sally is preparing a Bible study on God's love... check it out!

Girl has a talk with the Boy and Kathryn has found her (Kathryn's that is, not Girl's) diary!

Gavoweb shares some thoughts about myspace and church...

Sue responds to a hard question with graciousness and beauty. Thank you for sharing your response.

Breakfast anyone? Check out Jo(e)'s blog.

Kinesis shares the Way of the Cross.

Loud, Brash and Dramatic struggles with the questions of discernment.

Lutheranchik is reading Chittister and thinking about the blogging community as "being church." Great questions and thoughts!

I hope and pray you're all well -- and as a reminder, check out the prayer partners posting!
Pink Shoes

Sunday, March 19, 2006

Sunday prayer

Gracious and Holy One, this is the day that you have made and my heart rejoices in it. The sky is blue and signs of spring are all around me. The days are lengthening and before long new life will appear in the form of spring flowers. Thank you God for every sign of hope that lightens the burden of this long Lenten walk.

God, this morning I'm struggling with how to reconcile Jesus' action of turning over the tables in the Temple courtyard with protests around the world that have turned violent.

You call us to stand with what is right. Jesus stood up for the people's right to worship without being conned. The students in France are standing up for the right to fair working standards. Where O God is that fine line that divides the righteous act of social justice and the act of rioting?

There are no easy answers to the struggles that divide our world, are there? I hear you inviting us to stay the course, always remembering that you call us first to Love - not law, or doctrine or dogma.

As we worship together this morning, God, may the Spirit of Christ inspire, teach, and comfort each one of us. The journey is long and the road occasionally curves in ways we had not expected. It is good to know that you wait for us at every turn.


Saturday, March 18, 2006

Spring Break Saturday K to Z

A lot of you must be preoccupied with spring break activities because I noticed Songbird had fewer players than usual for her Friday Five meme topic --which was all about spring break! There were also fewer other posts yesterday and so far today, but there's still a lot of good reading on the ring, so here goes.

St. Patrick's Day inspired a number of posts. Susan Rose spent the day with the Groovy Sisters who include a number of Irishwomen in the group. Twerpette reports that the Houston archbishop gave the Irish dispensation to eat corned beef on St. Patrick's day this year instead of the usual Lenten fish on Friday. Lorna, Sister Christer and Stacey also marked the day with special posts and I saluted the Irish monks and provided the Grace Family's Irish themed menu.

Speaking of cooking, Reverend Mommy is baking up a big batch of "sin-crushing bread." I need some of that! Steph is exhasperated, but not by the bread baking.
On the social/political front, Kinesis is piloting a new training program for LBGT allies at her seminary and Preacher Mom doesn't like Congress' new immigration reform legislation. Natty is disturbed by rising gas prices--$2.65 in her area!

Loud, Brash and Dramatic
is celebrating her milestone 40th birthday--have a good one! Mibi survived her Commission on Ministry interviews but St. Cassarole was stressed by a long day guiding denominational officials around the hurricane-devastated Gulf Coast. Fortunately, Amy reminds us "all shall be well
Poor RevEm was mistaken for a burglar and nearly got arrested! Ann asks for comments on a purity versus evangelism issue at her church.

James posted a five part poem. Was it inspired by the West Texas wildfires, James? At the regular Friday Pop Culture Roundup over at Philosophy Over Coffee there is an interesting note about a new book by the author of Fight Club.

The newest blogthing may be the one I spotted at Beth's. It is hard to describe but involves pairing questions with a random song shuffle.

We are supposed to get some much-needed rain here later today. So I hope to join Rachel in a good nap.

Please let us know what's up with you this weekend if I missed noting it here. And a blessed Sabbath to all.

Soggy Saturday A-K

Forgive me if I missed it in an earlier roundup...but even if so, it deserves saying again. Jane Ellen has received and accepted A Call! Here it is in her words (and she needs to be prepared for me to be on the way to visit her!):

So come this summer, I will be priest-in-charge for the congregations of
Yellowstone Episcopal Ministries-- a regional ministry of churches just
outside Billings, Montana. Four small mission churches, each with different
gifts and challenges, working together for the Gospel. Yes, there is an
assisting priest, thank God-- and one who seems both focused and flexible.
We're going to get along well, I think. We're moving to Montana!!

Jan meditates on two versions of March Madness. BrickWall offers some great options for celebrating St. Paddy's Day. Katherine shares some writing from her 13-year-old self with us (what a concept! could you all bear it if I tried something similar? or would the Internet explode from the sheer drama and self-pity? 'Course, I never wrote anything like this.)

Bad Alice has a number of things going on! including new next-door peers for the young'uns.

BethQuick has a post & link to a CNN article about Rev. James Tramel, who earned an MDiv and has been ordained as an Episcopal priest while serving time in a California prison for a 1986 murder. He received parole from Gov. Schwarzenegger. Is this right? What do you think? What about Tookie?

Tripp at Navel Gazing has lots of good articles for your consideration, too.

Mindy's latest cow is a good ole Plainview advertisement. Mindy, I sure hope you all have gotten some of this good soaky rain we're enjoying!

The Bible in 90 Days folks (whom I have deserted) are all the way to Matthew. Brother Terry is practicing his turkey call!

The Spring Break Friday Five was played by Cheesehead, Clever Title, Construction Time, Eternal Echoes, others?

Gord's got a great engagement story AND picture! Congrats to you all, 4 years down the line. Speaking of pictures, Leslee's caption contest is back.

Kathryn shares from Henri Nouwen and Grace upon Grace, from John Donne.

Emily is dyeing! I can't wait to see how it turns out and what you make with it...

ChurchLady gives excellent suggestions for using the multiple, multiple phone books she is receiving.

Sue shares a list of what is making her smile today. Go read it if you'd like to smile, too!...

and Kinesis has had an amazing window into grace. God bless us, every one.

Friday, March 17, 2006

RevGal Friday Five: Spring Break

We've all heard stories of Spring Breaks, good and bad. I always think of "Where the Boys Are"--no, I'm not that old!! It came out the year before I was born!

For today's Friday Five, tell us about five ways you have spent a spring vacation or holiday, pleasantly or un-. And as a bonus question, describe your dream spring vacation.

If you play on your blog, let us know in the comments!

Thursday, March 16, 2006

Thursday Poetry Blogging

¶ Lent.

WElcome deare feast of Lent: who loves not thee,
He loves not Temperance, or Authoritie,
But is compos'd of passion.
The Scriptures bid us fast; the Church sayes, now:
Give to thy Mother, what thou wouldst allow
To ev'ry Corporation.

The humble soul compos'd of love and fear
Begins at home, and layes the burden there,
When doctrines disagree.
He sayes, in things which use hath justly got,
I am a scandall to the Church, and not
The Church is so to me.

True Christians should be glad of an occasion
To use their temperance, seeking no evasion,
When good is seasonable;
Unlesse Authoritie, which should increase
The obligation in us, make it lesse,
And Power it self disable.

Besides the cleannesse of sweet abstinence,
Quick thoughts and motions at a small expense,
A face not fearing light:
Whereas in fulnesse there are sluttish1 fumes,
Sowre exhalations, and dishonest rheumes,
Revenging the delight.

Then those same pendant profits, which the spring
And Easter intimate, enlarge the thing,
And goodnesse of the deed.
Neither ought other mens abuse of Lent
Spoil the good use; lest by that argument
We forfeit all our Creed.

It 's true, we cannot reach Christ's fortieth day;
Yet to go part of that religious way,
Is better than to rest:
We cannot reach our Savior's purity;
Yet are bid, Be holy ev'n as he.
In both let 's do our best.

Who goeth in the way which Christ hath gone,
Is much more sure to meet with him, than one
That travelleth by-ways:
Perhaps my God, though he be far before,
May turn, and take me by the hand, and more
May strengthen my decays.

Yet Lord instruct us to improve our fast
By starving sin and taking such repast
As may our faults control:
That ev'ry man may revel at his door,
Not in his parlor; banqueting the poor,
And among those his soul.

from The Temple (1633), by George Herbert

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Wednesday Round-Up Part I... uh no, I didn't forget...

Tune into Miranda's Farcical Existence for a good ol' fashioned
seminary library duel.

Wendy at My Backyard gives us the tale of two houses in two different posts - the one we worship in and the one we grew up in.

Micah Girl reminds us why to cherish the morning. I am guessing she does not get screamed at by a one year old for running out of banana... but I digress.

Wanna go to a Lutheran Carnival?

James is kneeling at the altar.

Preacher Mom is missing her grandmother.

Have you got any books for Kinesis to offer those who are just starting their Christian fact finder journey?

I don't know about you, but I am seriously considering inviting myself on retreat with jo(e) next year. In her latests she admits she brings friends.

Sue has been rewarded not ONLY with a blessed visit with a congregant but also withsweeeeeeet sneakers. And actually I do think the 'S' stands for Sue.

Gavin has covered everything from basketball tournaments to schools to unruly children to fun with anglicans.

Welcome home from Iraq Brad!

Check out the pretty sunset.

Grandma Jean needs some of your opinions on the Grand Sweep: Genesis to Revelation in 354 days.

Grace Upon Grace posts her sermon for those of you who get stuck coming up thsi Saturday night... I mean if you want to be inspired! Great thoughts - go check it out.

There are decisions to be made at Good in Parts.

Girl Gone Great has been sorting through relationship advice.

Gallycat has got the diet for you. Praise the Lord!

Go pop in on Leslee. She has quite a tribute to a friend who is gone too soon.

Another beer quiz player.

Cats leads us to a funny link.

Spring has sprung!

Dash directs us to learn more about Tom Fox.

The Chaplain is getting Contemplative about the body and the spirit.

Tripp is a-'musing'.

Chaplain Mom is facing some frustrating hurdles on her way to
France. Hope those meetings went well.

The Bible bloggers are having conversations about saving Psalms for later.

JWD blogs on baseball and posts some poetry at Blanket in the Grove.

Mindy has a gorgeous painting and a great post to go with it.

Beth Quick asks: redemption or not? You be the judge.

Happy Birthday Poor Mad Peter.

I wish there was an orchestra playing songs that reminded me of spring in my lobby. Of course, I also wish I had a lobby.

Jan is halfway there.

Wednesday Round-up

Hidee-ho friends! Here's the Wednesday Round-up, Part 2

NotShyChiRev is a little under the weather as is several of our group. Sending virtual tea and Mucinex his way!

Stacey has strep.

As seen at Susie's
(and several others) "What's YOUR beer personality?"

Sister Steph wants us to know she's still alive. That's always good to hear, Steph!

juniper 68 has lots to say.

I think someone needs to cross-stitch wills mama a hanging that says "A clean desk is the sign of a cluttered mind." Any takers?

Terri C at Psalm 121 is My Friend is trying to clearify her call and she asks for prayers for two of her friends.

Caroline blogs about a healing service that was!

A potential candidate visited Sister Christer's religious community and that got her thinking (and blogging).

Soozi is thinking about our mixed-up priorities.

PJ aka "Rev PJ" had a rough week! Lots of prayers, PJ!

Beth at Wide-Eyed and Laughing asks a darned good question. Perhaps some of you Greek/Hebrew buffs can help her out? She also is thinking about the bias some high teachers have when it comes to reading womyn's literature. I agree!

Lorna (as usual) gets us thinking with the question, "Do You Know Who You Are?" Pop quiz tomorrow.

Em has gone to the beach for a week.

It's a mighty good thing Songbird has children to help handle new fangled technology!

mibi 52 wore me out just by reading her blog!

The full moon is on Natty's and St. Casserole's minds. Nice beagles, Natty!

It seems some of our RevGalBlogPals have seen some pretty interesting people lately:
Amy at Talk with the Preacher saw author Marcus Borg at the National Cathedral in DC; Rachel at The Big Dunk heard Father Thomas Keating at Brown University, and Singing Owl
experienced BB King (yes, the REAL BB King & Lucille!).

Prayers go up for Joel and his wife, Sandra from The Tent Maker. You will find a beautiful eulogy for Joel's mother-in-law there.

Prayers also go up for the family and friends of Tom Fox, who was killed in Iraq. There is a poignant piece written by him the day before his abduction. You can find it at Tierra y Cielo.

This week's "Oh My!" Award goes to my buddy, Quotidian Grace for blogging the answer to the question "Why Should We Move to Houston?" and for her wonderful poem "Big Bunny FuuFuu." You go, Gretel!

Finally, as I live in a household that takes college basketball very, very seriously, I say to RevHRod "Go D---! (My seminary who is the top seed in NCAA Men's Tourney and third seed - I think - in the Women's). And as our Daughter #1 commented about Villanova's player who sustained a serious eye injury, "It's all fun and games until someone loses an eye." She was quoting one of my mom-isms from her childhood.

And with that, I'm going to go listen to "Devil with a Blue Dress On!" Ciao!

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Tuesday Lectionary Leanings

Well, last night was meeting #2 of my lectionary discussion group, and I'm happy to report that we had three new people show up, doubling the number of people over last week! Hooray! Thanks be to God!

This weeks passages that I'm especially looking at are Exodus 20:1-17 better known as the Ten Commandments, and John 2:13-22 better known as "Jesus tears up the Temple".

Onw important point that was brought up last night is that there are commandments regarding things about which we are very clear are wrong: lying, stealing, killing...but how many of us worry about neglecting the Sabbath? This turned into a long-winded discussion about how society does not honor sabbath-keeping in any form. Employees are seldom encouraged to use all their vacation, except in the punitive "Use it or lose it" sense. How important must it be to God that we set a side time to honor the Sabbath, if it ended up being one of the Creator's "Top Ten" ways to honor God?

In the John passage, folks were fascinated by the discussion that the sellers of cattle, sheep and doves were in fact part of the system that made Temple worship work--that folks could show up empty-handed, and purchase what they needed to sacrifice appropriately. I was left wowdnering if Jesus was overwhelmed by the fact that he would soon be the sacrifice, and that this is what caused him to react so strongly to what he saw going on.

Trying to tie the passages together (which I warned the group wasn't always feasible in the light of the events of a single week) people were left with a 'Grace vs Law' thought that I'm sure will end up somewhere in the sermon.

What are you thinking this week, homiletically-speaking?

Monday, March 13, 2006

A Not So Rigorous Round-Up

It's Monday. Pink Shoes is on a trip, and I am enjoying my husband's company for the one full day he is home between month-long jobs out-of-state.

So I hope you will forgive a non-inclusive round-up on this day.

We're going to try the "next" blog method and find the first ten blogs that have updated in the past day or two.

Erin has been on retreat at a Benedictine Abbey, where she had a dramatic experience of the Labyrinth.

Katherine is on retreat as well, leaving today for a--wait a minute! she's headed to a Benedictine monastery, too! (Did I miss out somehow? Are we all going on retreat?) She shares a story of a past retreat and how the silence affected her.

Teri describes the service at which she preached this weekend and also wonders about how we determine the boundaries between worship and pastoral care, when one of our worship leaders is not really up to the task anymore. Good questions!

Willow brings us some words from Tom Fox and asks what we are doing here?

Her name is Juniper, and she's a blogger. Why and when do you blog?
(Absolutely anywhere and anyhow. Does that suggest a problem of some kind?)

Hipchickmamma is having "the talk" with her 10-year-old daughter. (Been there! Still there!)

Quotidian Grace contemplates a controversial action and its aftermath.

Lorna has some deep thoughts on prayer.

Gavin wonders if bloggers are modern day prophets?

And finally, Beth Quick wonders about women and blogging, including some kind words about this community of bloggers.

Please feel free to leave a comment here directing us to your blog entry today. As Beth points out, sometimes women bloggers (which is most of us) are disinclined to self-promote. But don't hesitate to do it here.

Also, take a minute and check to see if your RevGalBlogPals sidebar item actually works. Some of ours do not. If you find you can't get "next" or "random" to work, or if clicking on the web ring name takes you to Reverend Mommy's blog instead of here, please send me an e-mail ( and I will send you the corrected code.

Monday blessings to all!

Sunday, March 12, 2006

Sunday Prayer

Holy One, blessed Mother of us all, thank you for this day. God, when my sons were babies, I would check them in the night and watch them sleep -- their tiny world alive with the dreams of innocence. I treasure those moments. Holy Parent, as you watch us sleep, I wonder if you stand in the doorway and treasure us in the same way. I suspect you do. And now we joyfully greet the new day together.

This day is like a fresh page in a journal. I can make it what it will be. Guide my steps God, as I lead in our worship this morning. May the deep joy that I feel in your presence be shared in this place, and may the Holy Spirit's lively and unpredictable nature be celebrated.

As I move through Lent, I need to know you are with me God. All of us, your people, we need each other because sometimes the way is rough. Lent challenges us in so many ways. As the cross comes into focus, we have to ask ourselves some hard questions. Who are you? Who is Jesus? How then shall we live?

Be present, God of all seasons and all times, for we need you, praise you, and indeed, we love you. Amen.

Saturday, March 11, 2006

A Question

How many of you are coming to the Festival of Homiletics on May 15th to 19th? How many would be interested in a "Mocktail" hour? Fingerfoods? Would you prefer a room at Peachtree Road (may be cheaper) to convene in or do you want to convene at Doubletree Hotel?

Personally, I'm actually pretty concerned about parking everyday -- PRUMC is not known for it's generous amount of parking.

And I may try to reserve a pew for RevGals. I think we need a thingy to put on the namebadges to recognize one another.... like a red carnation or we should all carry blue umbrellas.... What would you suggest?
(I will NOT be wearing a "Does this Pulpit make my Butt look big" tee-shirt.)

Saturday Blog Review, Part Dos

Mary Beth was up bright and early with her review of the first half of the blogroll and I'm right behind her this morning with the rest of your Saturday round-up.

There were a lot of players in the Friday Hair meme, but the other non-hair related posts clustered around several themes: Ministry, Everyday (dare I say, "quotidian"?) Life, Culture and Prayer.

Ministry-related bloggers included Jean, who explains how she became involved in a prison ministry and why it is meaningful for her. Micahgirl concludes that both physical and spiritual fitness is a commitment to faithfulness, a series of small right steps. Is Joel Osteen (pastor of Lakewood Church in Houston) really a theological liberal? Reverend Mommy discovers similarities. Sister Christer is pleased that an old friend may join her community. Both RevEm and Rainbow Pastor are struggling with boundary and stress issues. And St. Cassarole gives us her top ten reasons why she needs a spring break more than college students.

Quotidian posts described the breakup of an important friendship and the cost of change (Misspk), the dating mores of the modern 3rd grader (Amy), odd jobs (Stacey), workman's compensation claims (Peripatetic Polar Bear), and the Texas Towncar o' Justice (me). Ginger shares the obituary of her grandfather as a memorial on his birthday. And you won't want to miss the Revbaby's first in a series of reviews for the diapered set.

Culture Chatter Department: Steph links to a film clip that shows life imitating art. Every Friday is Pop Culture Roundup Day at Philosophy Over Coffee and this time he reviews the book Seeds by Thomas Merton, the movie Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, the Hasidic Jewish reggae singer Matisyahyu and the TV series Buffy--Season 6. Whew! Uh-oh, Lorna is tempted by a shipment of 3 non-theology books to neglect her studies. A girl's just gotta have SOME fun...

I'm closing this review with links to prayers from Songbird in response to the death of peace activist Tom Fox, and Beth who posts a lovely evening prayer.


Saturday A-K review (written on Saturday A-M)

Happy Spring Break! or it is for me, anyway. I'm off to visit my parents for several days. Then I'll return to lie on my back in the yard, look up at the oak tree tassels, and let the dogs climb over me. I plan a fine time.

So, what are YOU all up to? In the first half of the alphabet, anyway? Hmmm. Let's see:

Jan starts your day with some really, really excellent thought questions. Have your first cup of coffee before you start.

I'm always a bit slow on the uptake....but I was delighted this morning to see who it was, up Against the Brick Wall. Not delighted that she's in that particular place, mind! But had missed her.

Peter is saving energy, while surely adding to his already astronomical daily walking total! He is also very funny. Bonus: go back two days and read his post on Sacred Harp singing.

ARGH, Katherine finished her sermon early and it has run away from her computer. Don't you just HATE that!

If you are swapping with Mindy, and haven't sent your recipe're late! Don't feel bad; I was. Mindy is gracious and slow to anger; full of compassion and mercy. And sooooo funny!

Blanket in the Grove has a dandy new banner and some lovely poetry. And Canticles brings us Tales from the Crypt (of music-teacher-land).

Go ahead, tell Cheesehead what you think. She won't take it personally. Tripp is moving and eating sausage.

Contemplative Chaplain has had a bad scare, and I think (having had the same scare) you ought to go read about it, so that YOU will not have the same scare one day. Sally is teaching about a mind/body/soul initiative. Very cool.

ATTENTION! HeyJules is on retreat, and if you want to read her "where I came from" you better hurry. When she gets back, she's taking it down. Jo(e), also, is off on retreat, and Erin too. You are all in our prayers.

Cats is watching the world go insane...because, what else can you do? Don't miss your chance to play Leslee's caption contest.

Grace upon Grace writes beautifully about running away from church. Been there, but I couldn't have said it half so well.

Grandma Jean has been knitting prayer shawls (me too) and the recipient of her first shawl could use our prayers. Hipchickmama asks for prayers, too (as she listens to bluegrass...) Janellen has been on a formal visit/interview. PRAYING!

Emily's Lenten series is wandering in the wilderness. Tina's welcoming you to the Pharisee Olympics.

Hit the Back Button has a cool scripture meme.

Sue discusses the value of being ANGRY and expressing it.

Wishing you all a pearly day.

(Oh, and I have a question: those of you who have your blogs set so that, when I hit the back button, I can never escape them...did you do that on purpose? If so, why? And how? (There are three in this half of the alphabet.) Pls. answer in the comments. )

Friday, March 10, 2006

Ordinary Time Book

I'm compiling and editing the book and making great progress. I am awed by the range of experiences and differing voices -- and the wisdom and humor in this wonderful group of people.

However, I am missing a few entries -- I've email Jennifer at Ordinary Time and received no response. Has anyone heard from her recently?

I need these entries:

Friday 23-Jun 1 Sam. 17:(1a, 4-11, 19-23) 32-49 or Psalm 9:9-20
Thursday 6-Jul 2 Sam. 5:1-5, 9-10
Sunday 23-Jul Ephesians 2:11-22
Saturday 2-Sep Psalm 45:1-2, 6-9
Monday 9-Oct Heb. 1:1-4; 2:5-1
Wednesday 27-Sep Mark 9:30-37

Any volunteers?

RevGal Friday Five: Hair

As I spend the day wielding my trusty TermiNITor, it seems only right to ask you for stories of hair, whether it be yours or that of others.

1) Do you like your hair?

2) Have you ever colored your hair? If not, would you consider it?

3) What's the longest you've ever worn your hair? The shortest?

4) When and what was your worst. haircut. ever?

5) Tell us a favorite song or scene from a book or movie dealing with hair.

Be safe out there. And try to stay nit-free.

Let us know in the comments if you play.

Thursday, March 09, 2006

RevGalBlogPal Profile

Our first profile is Jane Ellen of Hoosier Musings on the Road to Emmaus. Jane Ellen joined the webring on the very first day -- the 4th to join the ring. She describes herself as "a wife, mother, and Episcopal deacon (the transitional sort, if you're paying attention to such things)."

Her Bio:
Briefly... I was born in North Carolina, because my father was in the service at the time. Mom & I moved back to northwest Indiana to live with my grandparents when I was only a few weeks old, because Dad was sent overseas. After he was discharged, we stayed in the area. After high school I went to college, leaving Purdue four years later with a degree in Metallurgical Engineering and a husband. Bruce and I moved to Ohio for a time, then over to Illinois, and finally back to Indiana several years ago. Along the way we added a daughter (Carolyn, now 18) and a son (Kyle, 11).

Somewhere along the way, I realized that God was calling me to something different than what I was doing. After a very long time of trying to ignore an itch I couldn't scratch, I finally gave up-- contacted my bishop and began the process toward ordination in the Episcopal Church. With the consent of my parish discernment committee and diocesan Commission on Ministry, I entered seminary in 2002, and graduated last June. I was ordained to the priesthood in October, and am serving this year as the assistant at St. Andrew's by the Lake Episcopal Church in Michigan City, Indiana. I also serve on the pastoral team at theChurch of Jesus Christ Reconciler, a small, multi-denominational congregation recently begun in the Rogers Park area of Chicago.

Why do you blog?

I learned about blogging when I was in seminary, as a few of our courses required posting to a class blog, or commenting on what others had posted there. I then discovered that people I cared about-- my favorite professor, and classmate and buddy Tripp-- had personal blogs. I started reading, and then commenting... and I was hooked. It's a fascinating way to share, and learn, and a world that reaches far beyond the world I see every day.

What has been your best blogging experience?

Through blogging I've had the opportunity to get to know some wonderful people that I never would have met otherwise. Many of these new friendships have remained in cyberspace, but a few have resulted in "in-person" encounters as well. That has been such a treat!

What would be your main advice to a novice blogger?

Go for it! There are a lot of sophisticated ways to set up a blog, but systems like Blogger or Live Journal make getting started so very easy anymore. And if you have questions, feel free to post them, or to ask other bloggers for suggestions. I have found the cyberspace community to be wonderfully eager to help.

If you only had time to read three blogs a day, what would they be (not RevGal blogs, please)?

Golly, that would be hard! I use blogs to keep in contact with friends and colleagues, as well as for intellectual and spiritual stimulation. Thank God for my RSS reader, which makes checking a pile of blogs so much easier! Today, the first three I checked were:

St. Jerome's Chapel: Reflections on the saints and martyrs in the church's calendar of feast days.
Get Religion: a blog which reviews and critiques media coverage of religion and religious issues.
Dylan's Lectionary Blog: weekly links and reflections on the upcoming Sunday's readings.

Tomorrow will undoubtedly be different.

Who are your spiritual heroes?

That's also a long list. Paul, or Augustine, or Macrina; Martin Luther King, or Fleming Rutledge, or my grandmother. In daily life, I am most inspired by quiet lives of committed, faithful souls. More and more I'm convinced that a focus on Jesus, and the effort of responding to God by godly living, accomplishes more than anything. People who make that effort, day in and day out, are spiritual heroes.

What are you reading at the moment?

I'm working through a study we're leading through Lent, on Spirituality and the Lord's Prayer. I also have the current Anglican Theological Review on my nightstand.

What is your favorite hymn and why?

Just one? No way. Can't do it! Music is so integral to the way I worship, and how I live my life. Plainsong chant, traditional hymnody, contemporary praise... there's something in all of it that gives my soul wings.

Can you name a major moral, political, or intellectual issue on which you've changed your mind?

There was a time when the issue of abortion seemed much simpler to me. A woman had the right to control her body, end of discussion. Then, years ago, I read a news article (a pro-choice piece published on the anniversary of Roe v. Wade) about a group of women who had learned to perform abortions before they were legal in this country, so that other women could have them safely, rather than resort to "back-alley" butchering. In the article, these women told of performing the procedure, and needing to keep track of the fetal body parts (identifiable even in the early stages of pregnancy) as they were removed, so later problems would not develop from tissue being left behind. The descriptions were much more vivid than I will write here. My stomach churned. I was forced to really think about the ramifications for the first time.

I am still unsure of the wisdom of making abortion wholly illegal, as there are the occasional cases where it does seem to this medical layperson to be the lesser of evils (I hate that sort of choice, but there it is). Additionally, desperate women will go to desperate lengths not to be pregnant, and the results of that are equally ugly and wrong. So you won't see me picketing providers. However, I have become morally and theologically convinced of the error of the choice of abortion, and of our need to provide alternatives (the legitimate encouragement of abstinence, and reliable, safe contraception, and adoption, and prenatal care, and concrete as well as moral and spiritual support) so that the desperate choice is a rare one. This is why I have a child by adoption as well as by birth. And why I have cried with and counseled rape victims, as well as young women who fooled around and got caught. And why I have worked with birth and adoptive parents, providing emotional support as well as baby formula and diapers.

What worldview do you think is most important to combat?

"Looking out for number one." Self-care is important, but egocentrism (as individual, church or country) gets us into more trouble...

What would be your most important piece of advice about life?

"Love the Lord, with all your heart... and love your neighbor as much as you do yourself. Everything hangs on this."

Where would you most like to live (other than where you do now)?

I'm in the process of looking for a permanent call, after my assistantship is done. The search processes in which I am involved all seem to be Out West, which is exciting and intriguing to a woman who's spent all her life in the midwest.

What do you like doing in your spare time?

I sew-- custom work (prom dresses, dance costumes, the occasional vestment) as well as do alterations. I am S-L-O-W-L-Y learning to knit. I sing, or listen to music. And I blog!

Editor's note: make sure you check out the ordination pictures on her flikr!

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Feel the Power, Part 2 - N thru Z

Can you believe it's only been a week since Ash Wednesday? It seems to me that if you are practicing new spiritual disciplines, the start of Lent seems longer in the past. Oh well ... let's wander through the RGBPs from N-Z, shall we?

First, welcome to our new friends who've recently joined us! You will be delighted and amazed at the diversity and understanding of your new cyber-community!

Jen asks for our prayers as she wants more patience. Be careful what you ask for Jen! It has been my experience that God will send you opportunities to cultivate more patience!

Rejoice and cry with Carol over at the Smallest Angel as she and her hubby register their son, Jake, for Kindergarten!

Quotidan Grace has done her civic duty and lived to report it!

Stop over at St. Cassarole's place for a cuppa and some good news from the Gulf!

Rainbow Pastor asks if anybody's out there? She misses our comments.

Rev Dr Mom is whining and it sounds like she has good reason! But then she tempers it with the good things that are happening to her.

Lorna at See Through Faith and Singing Owl have gotten some faith-inspired object lessons.

Stacey at the Almond Branch tags us with a Guilt Meme. Good theme for Lent!

Alas, Reverend Mommy teases us with a very short "Craddock Report." She says there is more to follow. Yeah!

Check out Talk with the Preacher as Pastor Amy offers some real good advice. I needed that word, Amy!

mibi 52 has much to be proud of! Congrats on your daughter! It sounds like you have raised her well!

If you - or someone you love - is getting ready to take the SATs, stop on over at Twerpette's Place. Where does he get all those BIG words?

And last, but not the least, Philosophy Over Coffee invites you to pour a cup and read what the White House Press Secretary has to say over the looming crisis with Iran. Yah think?