August 2009


It may be of no interest to anyone but me, but I started using The St. Helena Breviary last month.  I am, I guess, still an associate of the (Episcopal branch of the) Franciscans.  I have been for upwards of twenty years.  And for the last several years I have been using the pocket edition of Celebrating Common Prayer – an office book from English (Anglican) Franciscans. (more…)

I’m going to have to stop quoting Sam Portaro’s “Brightest and Best.”  But I can’t resist quoting from the last two days readings.  Yesterday was the day we commemorate Lawrence, a deacon martyred in Rome in 258 CE.  The emperor Valerian had him arrested and held for intensive questioning.  He wanted to plunder the riches of the church.

Laurence assembled the sick and poor among whom he had spent the church’s funds and presented them to the emperor saying, “These are the treasures of the church.”  For his impertinence he was roasted alive on a gridiron (and became the patron saint of cooks!). (more…)

Well, I was feeling really blessed yesterday (and still do today).  Here we are (Anne and I) at a nice place on the Oregon coast.  The day before we saw my favorite cousin and her family from Corvallis.  That morning we went to services at a local Episcopal Church.  And in the afternoon, I was listening to the waves break outside the sliding door, smelling the cool salt breeze, and sampling pieces in books I brought along on my kindle.  One of those books was about a woman who spent a year abroad (called something like “Eat, Pray, Love”) split equally between Italy (for food and pleasure), India (for the ashram of her guru) and (I believe) Indonesia where she would visit (as best I recall) a witchdoctor, who had promised to help her learn to integrate the spiritual and pleasure impulses in her life.  I was reading, still, about her enjoyment of food and life in general in Italy (which she contrasted to our need to be entertained, often at great expense, here in the United States).

It made me want to eat good Italian food.

We had tomato slices (from our garden) with fresh mozzarella cheese and a chicken pasta dish with a nice California chardonay for dinner.  Not really Italian.  But very good food non the less.  And then I got hooked on a book I’d read years before and read into the wee hours of this morning.

Nothing spectacular.  But it’s hard to imagine anything much more enjoyable.  It was life worth savoring, slowly.

I probably won’t get to Evening Prayer at the local church in an hour.  I’m committed to a walk on the beach with my wife instead.  I’m pretty sure God won’t mind.

Well, I’ve read the reflections on our General Convention from the Archbishop of Canterbury.  And I have to say it’s a thoughtful reflection.  The main problem I have with it is that he see’s sexual orientation as a lifestyle choice.  I think he’s wrong.  And I think this has grave consequences. (more…)

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