I'm looking forward to a good summer...my husband feels well, I am taking on some new challenges, I have a new church home, and overall I feel like I am moving in some new directions. When I saw this picture, I felt a kinship with this woman (though I cannot to a lotus pose like that...not yet, anyway).
Sculpture is called "Expansion" by Paige Bradley.
You can read more about it and its creation here.
For today's Friday Five, share five occasions or events in your life that have been turning points...when you have felt like a new thing was being born. You can refer to the birth of children, career, your kitchen garden, or whatever moves you.
1. First of all, transformation is an every day occurrence for me. Some days are more transforming than others... but all in all, it is being aware that life is constantly changing no matter how much I want it to stay the same. That said, I have been remembering the events that brought me to conversion the past few days simply because the person who brought me to the place of prayer was in town. It was so good to see her after almost 25 years apart The conversation picked up where we left off. Conversion--or transformation-- is the work of God working through humans. Incarnation at its finest. Then it was all about ideas. Now it is all about being present to the humans.
2. The transformation into a priest: I have been trying to verbalize lately what it means to be a priest without it sounding like I am in a different plain than others. I am well aware that priesthood is just the Church's Good Housekeeping seal of approval that I can celebrate and absolve in the name of the
3. Transformation into a celibate LTGB person: For most of my life I tried to ignore my sexual identity by just saying I was celibate, as if there was a third alternative to sexual identity. I have always been fairly masculine in the way I present myself. Since the convent I couldn't be bothered with make up and the like. But finally when +Gene Robinson, the first gay bishop in our tradition was consecrated, I finally realized I could be 'out' and honest for the first time in my life. I came out and of course, lost my parish and had to experience the reality of all my fears. I went through a very angry time. I have never been part of the 'l-g' world. I have been in the Church all that time, for God's sake! So I neither fit in the lgbt community nor the Church for a while. Then I found in another denomination a bishop who would work with me. It was a personal transformation of easing out of the anger and back into loving a little ELCA congregation to remind me who and Whose I was. Painful, but good.
4.Transformation into a retired person: The idea of retirement always looms rosy when you are up to your a** in alligators. And I don't know what cleric is NOT up to their a** in alligators while in full-time ministry. But to just quit being in that terribly quixotic environment of parish ministry is not really easy. And this transformation is still going on. When one stops doing parish ministry full-time, one's whole life is thrown into confusion. Where does one go for worship? How does one who has grown into priesthood find a way to celebrate that priesthood without an altar? etc. I am not sure that I have completed this transformation. I am still in the middle of the river. I do enjoy having the time to gather all the ideas that I have had to put on a shelf because I was too busy to think about them. But no one wants to hear them now. How do I speak of the experience of faith with integrity to a people who do not value thought-over experience? And of course, the problem of anyone who is growing older: Was there anything of value that I did in my life-time that is not being thrown over or ignored by the next generation?
5. Transformation into a mellower person: This is also an 'in the process'