Sunday, May 19, 2013
Saturday, May 18, 2013
Friday, May 17, 2013
Thursday, May 16, 2013
Wednesday, May 15, 2013
Tuesday, May 14, 2013
Monday, May 13, 2013
In honor of getting to my first game of the season with my wife and daughter...
If a woman has to choose between catching a fly ball and saving an infant's life, she will choose to save the infant's life without even considering if there are men on base.No, it's not supposed to make sense.
But then again, neither does this first pitch temperature make sense for May 12.
Felt more like a football game.
But it was fun for the Second Annual
Mothers' Day at Target Field for us.
Too bad the Twins lost.
Sunday, May 12, 2013
It's twelve week from today I will ride through another milestone birthday. And like with the last milestone 5 years ago, I will be doing a bike ride. This time, as I have previously announced, it will be a Century Plus Ride. Actually, around 130 miles (2 for every year of my 65!)
I will, weather permitting (I may be aging but I'm not crazy!) ride over three days from Fergus Falls to St. Joseph, MN, along the Central Lakes Trail (Fergus Falls, and ends in the city of Osakis) and the Lake Wobegon Trail (Osakis to St. Joseph). I will add a little loop of the Soo Line Trail in order to make it 130+ miles AND to cross the Mississippi River.
I am in very good biking shape at the moment. So far this year on stationary and real bikes I have ridden over 350 miles. I am riding one way or the other at least 4 and usually 5 days per week. I am beginning to get excited.
Will keep you informed.
From the great people at Playing for Change, a good Mother's Day video:
When Playing For Change Foundation provided resources to the Mother’s Society in Tintale, Nepal, they knew there was a great need. Now, several years later, we all stand in awe of the creativity and courage of this group of women - and the girls who have joined them - who are using music, dance and performances to educate area villages about the risks of human trafficking, drugs and alcohol.
The society travels on a regular basis to perform and teach communities about the tricks human traffickers use to lure young women into the slave trade. The risks they address are real—each year more than 10,000 Nepali girls are stolen or sold to work in brothels in India. As a result of their performances, false promises of work, marriage and a better life made by traffickers are now recognized as a deceitful trap that can strip young girls of their freedom and future. Equally encouraging, the men of Tintale village fully support the project and have joined with their wives and daughters to help protect them and spread the word.
PS: To the two best mother's I have known,
Saturday, May 11, 2013
Earlier this week the Minnesota House passed the bill legalizing marriage equality. Probably within a few days the Minnesota Senate will do the same making Minnesota the 12th state to do so. I have been clear of my agreement of the bill and its ideas.
But I wonder if I would have been willing to do that if I were still in the active ministry?
What brough that to mind was that my current pastor at the Episcopal Church where we are now members, was on TV (as he has been before) expressing the acceptance of the bill and advicating marriage equality. He has been clear where he stands from the start last year when Minnesota defeated the anti-equality bill . There he was on TV on Thursday, in public, giving his opinion.
I am sure that I would not have been doing so. I am sure that I would have wanted to talk about it only with people who know my opinion already. I am sure that if someone in my church would have asked me where I stood I would have said my opinion but then hemmed and hawed with some statement about accepting, etc.
Of course, I haven't been in the church in almost 10 years now. Times, on this issue, have changed in our culture. But I was aware of how few pastors might have been making public statements on the issue. You know, we have to be able to minister to everyone and not offend anyone. Even if we believe they are wrong(?) But I am sure that in my desire to be liked and to be able to minister to everyone in my church, I would very likely have been less open than some.
On the same newscast was a pastor from a more conservative church who made it clear that their church was not going to go along with this cultural shift. Since the beginning of their church, he said, they have stuck with the Bible and scriptural values. He was not afraid of his views. He was certain of them and didn't care if people disagreed. He doesn't have the desire to minister to people who disagree with him unless they are willing to be open to changing their opinion. (My interpretation.)
Why is it that when we find that we disagree with what has been a more traditional opinion of theology and scripture that we hem and haw? We bow, if ever so slightly, to the tradition and lose sight of the fact that in many instances, (most instances, perhaps) those long-held interpretations are as culturally-based as the contemporary ones.
I have a sense that what we might be witnessing is similar to what was happening in American theology in the mid-1800s and again in the mid-1900s over issues of race. We missed the fact then that the Hebrew Bible (and therefore the under-pinnings of the Christian Scriptures) are tribal, a variation of the racial arguments. We may have difficulty today seeing how in any way you can justify human slavery and the de-humanizing of whole sections of the world population can be God's will.
I pray that the move we have been seeing in the past several years will prove to be as antiquated and irrational in 50 or 100 years. I pray that these steps can lead us to a deeper and more inclusive vision of who we are as human brothers and sisters. I pray, finally, that God's love can be seen and experienced as grace instead of law.
Friday, May 10, 2013
Thursday, May 09, 2013
In your average spring I might have just passed on by as the forsythia bloomed. Sure they have those great bright colors, but, well, you know, it's just the old forsythia bush in its moment of glory.
But what a waste that would be in any year.
This year I am more attentive to every sight of spring I can find. It is coming so late and after so much snow and cold. It may be why I couldn't avoid walking across the parking lot the other day just to take a picture of the extraordinarily wonderful, ordinary old forsythia bush.
Wednesday, May 08, 2013
I then realize the author is Eve Ensler, award winning writer, activist, and speaker, author of The Vagina Monologues. She has a new book just out, In the Body of the World, which was why she was here and reading. Among other things it tells of her discovery of, surgery for, and recovery from cancer.
Wow, was it great!
She talked about her Mayo Clinic doctor (who was in the audience), and while choking up, described how he treated her as an individual, a real person.
She described how a friend gave her a whole new way to see chemotherapy as a friend- a warrior on her side- which changed her entire approach to her treatment.
She brought down the house in laughter and tears as she talked about the worker who, following another surgery, helped her to get back nto functioning.
I was impressed, and grateful that I just happened to walk in at that time. I will be getting the book.
Tuesday, May 07, 2013
I like finding inspirational and/or interesting quotes. Sometimes I just like to have fun. Found these for today at TJ's Home
- We are not anticipating any emergencies.
- It's not an optical illusion. It just looks like one.
- Act natural.
- This report is filled with omissions.
- I can't remember having a more memorable time.
- No one goes to that restaurant anymore
--it's always too crowded.
- By definition, one divided by zero is undefined.
Monday, May 06, 2013
Sunday, May 05, 2013
It appears to be the real deal. It says it was uploaded two years ago and has this comment:
This is necessary in order to prevent transmission of disease and the like. Some fear contagion through the handling involved in distributing the hosts. Hope this answers your question.So just to be safe, invent a Jesus Pez dispenser!
I fear that the more "antiseptic" we attempt to be, the more susceptible we will be to germs. The more mechanical we become about communion and church, the less Jesus' body will mean in any sense.
But on the lighter side, swallow anything you are drinking, then press play....
Saturday, May 04, 2013
|Birch Tree in our front yard, May 2, 2013|
Just the facts:
14" of heavy, wet snow
The greatest total monthly snowfall for May prior to this was 2" (again- for the whole month of May!)
This was the 4th heaviest single-day snowfall for ANY DAY in Rochester weather records.
Just for good measure, the day's high temperature of 33 F. was the coldest high temperature in May- ever.
Meanwhile, barely 60 miles north of us, in the south metro of the Twin Cities, there was NO snow. In fact, yesterday when we were in the Cities for a meeting, I clocked that within 4 miles the scenery went from snow-covered fields to absolutely NO SNOW. Unbelievable.
Now, will someone please give us our spring back. We have seen it for only 4 days!
Friday, May 03, 2013
Thursday, May 02, 2013
There's always a new way to understand who we are as human beings. Lemony Snicket gives us this one...
People aren't either wicked or noble. They're like chef's salads, with good things and bad things chopped and mixed together in a vinaigrette of confusion and conflict.
― Lemony Snicket, The Grim Grotto
Wednesday, May 01, 2013