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On the Way   The Rt. Rev. Audrey Scanlan
filling the pockets of your soul


Five hours of Zoom today. It was all good. All important. All holy, even.

The first two of them I took in my running clothes with my hair standing on end, yet unshowered.

So it goes.

In some ways, this Holy Week has afforded me more time for reflection each day than in years past.  The lack of driving to meetings and commuting instead to my kitchen table in my socks has given a sense of room- space- to my days.  The mild temperatures have allowed me to work with the big doors open, screens in place.  Looking for the silver lining.

I miss seeing clergy and our congregants.  I miss the formality of visitations on Sundays-  sometimes those biennial visits are the only times that I see some of our laity, and I love their wisdom and our mutual affection.  I love laying my hands on the heads of confirmands and taking the hands of those to be received in mine, welcoming them to our big and wonderful church. That’s not zoom-friendly, zoom-possible.  It’s zoom-impossible.  

Many people that I talk with these days are saying “oh, it’s not going to be the same when we go back…” and I wonder what that means.  How will it be different?  I want all the good bits, still.

I have been hearing about a greater participation in on-line services.  Do people love church in their pjs, or are they craving community? Or both?  What are the lessons that we are learning that we don’t want to lose?  The lessons that are not just about how we value community, how much we need each other, and the importance of the Sacrament of Holy Communion in our lives… but the other things that we are learning-  like how to use technology for evangelism, how to empower laity and youth and other staff members in the church to lead, and how to feel good about  different types of worship under our big Episcopal tent.  Tonight I watched Evening Prayer, Rite I from St. John’s in Huntingdon, and in a few minutes I’ll be tuning into “Fireside Prayers” with the Rev. Canon Kate Harrigan of St. Paul’s, Harrisburg.  Both will pour some spiritual nectar into some pockets of my soul that need refreshment.    St. John’s gave me the structured dignified beauty of our formal liturgy.  I’m guessing that St. Paul’s will deliver some loving as well that will get me in touch with the Holy and assist in my efforts to worship God, confess my sins, pray for those who are struggling and restore me in order to move on, in Life with a Pandemic.

The evening psalm promised that God was caring for us- God our steadfast rock- and that we would be delivered.

It’s a prayer that comes easy these days.  #whenthepsalmhitsthenailonthehead.

Praying peaceful blessings upon you this night.

1 thought on “filling the pockets of your soul”

  1. Rob Ashton says:

    Sometimes worship is about memory. All those moments when you felt close to God and your fellow parishioners. I was blessed today to participate in a morning prayer service with my former church in Long Beach Ca. Lots of memories there. Some were not good. All were blessed with the presence of the Holy Spirit.

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