In the Meantime,
First things first:
As of October 17th we can welcome all people in the sanctuary on Sunday, including children. You have been very good so far in observing the provisos that still remain in place and allow us to be together.
Wear a mask and a wristband
Keep your distance
But do come. We can be safe together.
Now, my thoughts for this week.
We are on the verge of… “The Holidays.” Leaving aside the commerce of it all, which is impossible but for the sake of argument I will, the whole idea of holidays is intriguing. Why do we have them at all?
“Markings” is how Auden chose to title his translation of Dag Hammerskjold’s personal journal. The actual Swedish word means something more like milepost. That’s what holidays are, mileposts. It is their reliable presence over years. They not only have their own meaning but show up at expected times. In older times, holidays were how people marked time. Oxford University still refers to its three terms as Michaelmas, Hilary and Trinity.
We all know that it is the memory of past holidays that give them meaning as adults. Eating the same dishes at Thanksgiving or Easter or Passover, putting the same decorations on the tree at Christmas, gathering with family and friends for Memorial Day or July 4th, these all give meaning to our days and years.
As I write this it is our 45th wedding anniversary, a startling but incontrovertible fact, that reminds me of how I have spent my life and that it has given meaning to my life. Looking back, I feel grateful, which is of the primary spiritual colors.
Holidays, official or personal, are like worship, which word means to shape worth. They do it through repetition, recollection, remembrance and rejoicing. And remind us that every day is worth celebrating. Even when we don’t.
– FW –