Children, Church Life

Turn and face the strange ch-ch-changes

Things can change so quickly. Children grow up too quickly. #1 Son returned to school to discover that his computer had a busted hard drive, and that his new girlfriend is not over her ex. Something else busted. His dad, grandfather and brother head out tomorrow morning to visit him for Parents’ Weekend.

I’ve worked a lot this week, including officiating at a funeral for a woman 101 years old. Miss E. A. had lived for many years in Washington, D.C., where she was named the “Volunteer of the Century” by the Central Union Mission. Her closest relatives were astonished at the number of great-nieces and nephews who showed up at the funeral, bringing along great-grand nieces and nephews, some so young they sat in their carseats during the service. We drove out to the cemetery on a beautiful autumn afternoon to bid her Godspeed on the journey.

That night, I sat down for Bible Study with a small group, looking at the story of the Pharisee and the Tax Collector. I was amazed to hear a new attender articulate a view of God that was decidedly post-theistic. My little church is becoming a hotbed of progressive theology!!

This morning I had coffee with an old friend, a 50-year-old former Baptist/Zen meditator/potter/self-described Shaker wannabe who wonders if the persistent tug on his heart might not be a call to ministry. Where might there be a place for someone who feels connected to the personal Jesus of his childhood, but experienced that Jesus within an institution that judged and rejected? Thinking back to Wednesday night, I told him, “Yes.”