In a cultural climate that often seems bleak and hopeless, here’s a story in the Guardian that speaks of change and hope for new beginnings:
At Sickside Tattoo Studio in Mississippi, reformed gang members and white supremacists such as TM Garret seek free cover-ups for ink from their pasts
Rob Shropshire, who is a member of the Holy Trinity Refugee Committee, emailed this to members of the Committee and posted it on his Facebook page, has given permission to share his mindfulness here as well:
Many of us feel shaken by the events in Toronto today. For those we have sponsored, the incident may raise anxiety for a number of reasons:
– it may be a trigger for trauma given what they experienced before coming to Canada;
– it may create fear or a sense that Canada is not as safe as hoped;
– it may spark fears of being blamed for what happened
– indeed, it may lead to incidents where newcomers find themselves accused of being at blame.
I encourage you/us to reach out to those we have sponsored. Urge them to share any feelings of insecurity them may have and please reassure them that you care for them and they are welcome here.
This is a time for us to stand in solidarity against those who would hurt or divide us, to love our neighbours as ourselves.
It’s like trying to stay upright,
scorched and breathless, in the blast
of some sneezing rot-toothed dragon.
This guided tour, God, is tough going.
As vistas go, it’s in questionable taste–hills
bare-ribbed and drought-dried to the bone;
Satan plays Lego with Rwandan skeletons,
chews over the remains of hope in Darfur
and a thousand other slums:
such pornography of desolation–
O God, can these bones live?
how have we been brought to this?
We wait on you. Do not press REWIND,
returning things to the good old days
that never were. Plant something new
in us, reassemble the strewn backbones
of our resolve, breathe prophecy into us
so that blade by blade, tuft by tuft
we may animate these Lenten slopes
with living green of Easter hopes.
Dry-Bone Valley (Ezekiel 37:1-14) by Ian Sowton from The Stink of Experience
By Susie Henderson
ROSEMARY FOR REMEMBRANCE
They say that grief is the tax on love — if you love you grieve, no getting around it. I brought rosemary today to honour the losses that we all carry and may be particularly mindful of at this time of year.
Rosemary — has a long history and there are many stories tied to this fragrant herb. Historically it has been thought to strengthen memory and that tie to remembrance and it has been included in both the wedding bouquet and the funeral garland.
Medicinally the camphor in rosemary has helped to clear congestion. In our house it mostly comes out with a little lemon to season Jennifer’s favorite roast chicken.
Today I offer it as a sign of remembrance, a scent that lingers, a way to witness that death is not the end of love. Death is not the end of love.
During this reflection, I invite you, if you’d like, to come forward and make yourself a mini wreath of remembrance that you can take home for a christmas tree or to place somewhere in your line of sight, a sign of the presence of those who have gone before us, still present, still missed, still remembered in our holiday times. You can make it during the service or just pick up the pieces to put it together when you get home. Continue reading Broken-hearted Blessings (Homily for Advent 3)
Keith Nunn, Nov 26, 2017.
In case the lectionary readings today didn’t tip you off, this Sunday is called the Reign of Christ. This is the last stop before we start the cycle over with Mary’s story and the infant Jesus.
Co-incidentally, the first sermon I delivered after entering theological education was on the reign of Christ. At that time, I felt a need and pressure to justify my position through scripture. Not so much anymore. However, I do feel a need to maintain the conversation with scripture in general and with the person of Jesus Christ in particular.
Today, in spite of my infamous reputation for jettisoning the lectionary, I have kept all the appointed readings, albeit in abridged form. The straightforward interpretation of these texts probably makes most of us somewhat uncomfortable—I know it does me. I’ll return to them shortly, however. Continue reading What do we do with the King of Kings?