26 June 2011

Prayer for the Second Sunday After Pentecost

Loving God, you have built your Church upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ being the chief cornerstone: Grant us so to be joined together in unity of spirit by their teaching, that we may be made a holy temple acceptable to you; through Jesus Christ our Savior, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

19 June 2011

Prayer for Trinity Sunday

All loving and everlasting God, you have given to us your servants grace, by the confession of a true faith, to acknowledge the glory of the eternal Trinity, and in the power of your divine Majesty to worship the Unity: Keep us steadfast in this faith and worship, and bring us at last to see you in your one and eternal glory, our Father-Mother; who with the Child and the Holy Spirit live and reign, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

16 June 2011

Common English Bible Released Digitally!

The Common English Bible has been released digitally today. It's already available for Nook and Kindle, as well as iPad, iPhone, and a host of other ways. It is also available online at BibleGateway.com as well as it's own website.

According to one article:

Combining scholarly accuracy with vivid language, the Common English Bible is the work of 120 biblical scholars from 24 denominations in American, African, Asian, European, and Latino communities, representing such academic institutions as Asbury Theological Seminary, Azusa Pacific University, Bethel Seminary, Denver Seminary, Princeton Theological Seminary, Seattle Pacific University, Wheaton College, Yale University, and many others.

This is a fascinating translation that I have really enjoyed. A couple of things I like about it is first the collaborative effort used by the translators. From the same article:

“The Common English Bible is the result of collaboration between opposites: men working with women; scholars working with average readers; conservatives working with liberals, many denominations and many ethnicities coming together around the common goal of creating a translation that unites rather than divides, with the ultimate goal of mutually accomplishing God’s overall work in the world.” - Paul Franklyn, associate publisher for the Common English Bible.

The other thing that I enjoy is the changes in words and phrases. Two examples of this are ‘human’ in Genesis 1 - 2 (instead of ‘man’) and ‘Human One’ when used by Jesus (instead of ‘Son of Man’). These are important distinctions for me. I’ll address them briefly in turn.

First: human - In Genesis 1 and 2, the term that is mostly translated as ‘man’ is actual human being. Gender is not brought up until the creation of woman. The translators were correct to make this disctinction.

Second: Human One - In the Celtic Christian tradition, Jesus was seen ‘The Great Remembrance’. In other words, humanity has forgotten who they are at the deepest level and how they were to act. When the ancient Celts looked at Jesus, they remembered what they were supposed to be; what humanity was supposed to be. So, I like the new phrase.

I encourage you to check out this wonderful translation!

In the Love of the Three in One,
Jack+, LC

15 June 2011

A Gift from a Friend

I received this beautiful rosary from a friend of mine. He made it himself (well, not the cross). It's really nice and I am humbled and honored to have it.

Thank you, Brad.

14 June 2011

Lindisfarne Community Retreat, 2011

This year’s retreat was loaded with many unexpected things - a car wreck; a companion, a new friend, new faces, ordination, and a host of other things made it a trip worth remembering. So let’s jump right to it!

We were on our way to the airport at roughly 03:00 in the morning, when a person driving a big car (like a four-door Lincoln Continental) just started coming into our lane. We swerved to miss this person, lost control of the car, spun around in circles and bounced off the concrete dividing wall a couple of times. (The other driver didn’t stop.) There were four of us in the car and we all got out with only some bruises and achy muscles. (I’m so thankful for the kind woman who stopped and checked on us. She just happened to be the TSA person who was at our security check point at the airport!) We made our flight and had to deal with the car when we got back.

Our flight was fine and uneventful (thankfully) and we arrived on time in Elmira, New York. My friend John Finn picked us up and took us to Ithaca (about 45 minutes away). He and his lovely family hosted my wife and I for a couple of days before the retreat. They have such a great place by a stream that is just a little bit of heaven. From their back porch you can hear the stream as it cascades over the rocks. So peaceful.

Later that afternoon, Mahina and I did a little shopping in the Commons and met John for dinner at Moosewood Restaurant. It’s a great place and if you ever find yourself in Ithaca, I highly recommend it!

The next day, my Abbott, Andy Fitz-Gibbons, picked us up and took us all over the place! We had bagels the “best bagels in the world” at Ithaca Bakery and met Abbess Jane (his wife for some tea - yes, their English). Later that afternoon, we went to their place to meet up with some other people coming into the the retreat - Chris and James, Renee, and John were all there along with their foster children and pugs. And it was right here that Mahina made a new friend - Jack. Jack is Jane and Andy’s latest pug. He’s a fiesty little thing that Mahina just swooned over. Before we left that night, he was in her lap (again) and she said, “I think Jack wants to come home with me.”

On Friday, before the retreat, Chris and James came by and swept us off to a great restaurant and vinyard. I don’t recall the name of the place but it was great. The food, the view, the beer and, best of all, the company, made it such a great spot for lunch. Then, as we drove to the retreat center, we stopped at a little village did a little shopping. Our biggest purchase was some chocolate at a quaint little candy shop. This was so good it should worry Willy Wonka!

After settling in at Casowasco, we all met in the gathering space and started our sessions. The theme of this year’s retreat was “The New Monasticism”. We spent four sessions exploring what new monasticism is and what we, the Lindisfarne Community, bring to the table. Each session started with silent meditation. I want to explore new monasticism a little more so I’ll leave that for another post. If you would like to view the sessions, they are on the Lindisfarne Community’s Facebook page.

On Saturday afternoon we had the reception and ordination service. This year, we received two new people into the community, ordained a deacon and two priests. It was quite thrilling! Each of us gave a little declaration of our journey to Lindisfarne as well as our reflections on ordination. Then it was time for the ordination.

Everything was going well until I knelt down. A wash of emotion came over me and I wept silently, holding back sobs, and wiping tears from my eyes. I was getting really hot. Sweat was beading up on my head and I thought I may faint. And the Bishops and Priests hadn’t even laid hands on me yet. The realization of what was happening was just so powerful. I was just very humbled. Still am. And I pray that I always will be.

After the service, we took pictures outside. It was great. You can see the pictures my wife took on the LC Facebook page. I have a couple of favorites - the one where the priests are all laying their hands on me and the one with me, my wife, and my Bishops.

The next day, Pentecost Sunday, we finished off the retreat and headed for home. The drive to the airport was uneventful (thank goodness!) as were the flights. Although, we did almost miss the flight out of Detroit (that’s a story for another day), we arrived safe and sound back home. All-in-all, a great time.

I’m so thankful for my Bishops, Abbess +Jane and Abbot +Andy for all of their hard work in putting this retreat together. I’m almost certain that John and Chris helped out a lot as well, so a big “Thank you” to them, too. Lastly, I’m just so pleased to be included in a very open, warm, and loving community.

In the Love of the Three in One,

Jack+, LC

05 June 2011

Prayer for the Seventh Sunday of Easter

O God, the Savior of glory, you have exalted your only Child Jesus Christ with great triumph to your realm of heaven: Do not leave us comfortless, but send us your Holy Spirit to strengthen us, and exalt us to that place where our Savior Christ has gone before; who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, in glory everlasting. Amen.