Sunday, May 27, 2007

Pentecost!

Yes, I had to work all weekend, and yes, that meant I wasn't going to be able to go to Pentecost mass at my new congregation. Well, I decided this morning that church was more important and my boss could deal, and went anyway. Late to work by an hour, but we've brought in enough sales today that I doubt the boss will mind.

The Lutheran congregation which goes before us went late today, which doesn't surprise me -- it's Pentecost, after all, and they just confirmed a whole raft of kids and had a lovely band playing and it was grand. I sat in the narthex and enjoyed the music, and then slipped in when they were done to help change things over for our mass.

Wound up untangling a whole lot of bright screaming red balloons which we then used to decorate the sanctuary with. Odd to think that part of my ministry is untangling but I'm by far the best of those who were working on it -- all the sewing helps! I wore red and so did a lot of other people, so it was pretty festive. We didn't manage a whole band but we did have a violin player and a guy on bongos and various small percussion-ey things in addition to the usual guy playing guitar; it was nice.

Instead of a normal sermon we had a 'people's homily'; people took turns standing up and saying something about the congregation and (generally) how they'd been made to feel welcome there. It was kind of cool though I'd hoped for something with a bit more meat in it. But then I didn't have the nerve to stand up myself, and if I had I wouldn't have said anything more substantive than anyone else, so I suppose I oughtn't to complain. I guess I was hoping for more of a feel for how the congregation sees itself, if naught else.

They feel themselves to be welcoming (which I already knew) and they also feel themselves to be more open to the Holy Spirit than the RC church in general (which doesn't surprise me). I was tempted to stand up and say something in the direction of finding out how welcoming they are -- they don't yet know that I'm bisexual et al. I guess I kinda wussed out on that, though.

I wonder if part of my calling isn't to stand up and make exactly that point. If I do have a ministry (apart from balloon-untangling) I feel that LGBT rights and acceptance is part of it. I'm already doing that work, if quietly, here in this blog. (And here the reminder to myself to do the great Story of my Life post I've been failing to get around to.)

I mean, yeah, I'm bi. And poly(amorous/androus/something). And that's a part of who I am, but so is the fact that I'm Christian and love cats and like to cook and eat popcorn and swim and garden. And I'm out of shape and have asthma and crappy eyesight, and grumble about traffic and don't have enough money and sometimes forget to scoop the litterbox. Really, I'm about like everyone else. And when the concept of who I sleep with is considered no more important than what colour my hair is, then I think I'll have gotten somewhere.

But until I have the native balls to stand up in my own (very accepting) congregation and say something about it, I'm not getting very far on that one, am I?

--

And then there's my other congregation, the new one; Sophia Catholic Community which I think has all of three or maybe four of us, invented out of whole cloth within the last week, and intended to be a home for people like me who perhaps wouldn't find one much of anywhere else. More about this over at Mother Laura's and I'm sure I'll have more to say about it as well. Things have been complicated in my part of the world, I tell you what.

But it's Pentecost, and what better season to sit back, listen to what the Spirit has to say to us...and then go and follow Her words?

7 comments:

HilbertAstronaut said...

Hey, glad you were able to make it to Mass after all! :-D

Don't worry, it's not always necessary to "speak out" -- sometimes it is, and I pray that you and I will each have the courage to do so at the right time. But sometimes it's OK just to sit back and listen and take it all in. I think any kind of ministry or vocation involves a good balance of speaking and listening :)

Mother Laura said...

Yeah, it's so good you did get to mass yesterday and that the music and balloons and the red garments were appropriately festive.

But oh how I long for you to feel safe and speak your truth, and hopefully be truly welcomed in all your radiance by your new community. And oh how I honor your caution and self protection and desire not to risk such a new and lifegiving connection to people's ignorance and judgements.

Many prayers as you listen to the Spirit's voice, and speak the truth as and when She is calling you to....

(((you)))

seeking chivalry said...

Thank you both. :)

Hilbert, thanks for the reminder about listening; I do need that at times. And I plan to spend a lot more time listening before I go opening my big mouth, to be sure. If only because I'm paranoid...

Mother Laura, as always your prayers give me courage. Eventually, yes, there will be speaking up.

Cecilia said...

Thank you, Kate, for showing up at my blog, and for sharing your witness here.

I look forward to the massive "story of my life" post!

Pax, C.

seeking chivalry said...

Hey Cecilia -- your blog fascinates me, because I can see how I could have been there, had things gone differently. My choices have been different from yours, but then so are my circumstances...

I'd love to hear, sometime, the story of your calling, and of you meeting your Beloved, and how you reconciled the two (and if you felt you had to), and basically how you got where you are...

Lorna said...

loved the image of untangling. I think that's a picture of what God does in our lives. We get ourselves in knots - then - finally go to Him - and REST - He unties the knots, slowly, lovingly and gently ...until we are freed.

blessings

Kate said...

Wow Lorna -- I hadn't thought of untangling balloons as a metaphor in that way -- thank you! That's brilliant!