Tuesday, October 23, 2007

California Fires

This morning I emailed a friend of mine, who works at UC Irvine, to see if she'd been evacuated (my knowledge of California geography is sketchy, at best, so I email her any time there's a fire). She replied that things are much worse in San Diego County than where she lives in Laguna Niguel, but that she's worried about the smoky air. It seems her parents live with her and her husband, and they both have cardiac issues. Not a good scene for them.

So I have been praying fervently all day for the Santa Ana winds to die down. For rain. For anything that will save lives and homes. For Wanda and D.J., and for Wanda's mom and dad.

And for everybody else. It's a big prayer, but there you go.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Left Behind ...

I've been rather chirpy on this blog lately. Moonflowers, spiders, Niagara Falls -- all part of my life, and all worth a mention. Home life, in general, is good right now, thanks be to God.

Church life, however, is not so hot right now.

The Church on the Pike has embraced the "purpose driven" principles set forth by Rick Warren, of Saddleback Church, in California. This is a "megachurch," with many thousands of members and programs galore. I've read the books; I was part of the Vestry that developed a vision statement for our church, incorporating purpose driven principles. I approve.

That is, I approve in principle. Approving in practice, even for a person who has spent many years in management and an equal number of years catching "fast balls" thrown by children, can be difficult. I try, but I'm creaky. I'm used to change, but it's hard to let go of the parish model that I was so comfortable with.

And some people have started to balk. Some people are leaving. There's no need to go into detail here. But three people I dearly love have just left. Others are thinking about leaving. New people are coming in the door, and that's good. They will be very happy in this church. But I can't escape the idea that we are also diminished by our losses. There is no one who is not important. It hurts not to see those who have left. This is a grieving process for me.

And of course, there's the unacknowledged subtext to this problem, one I haven't wanted to think too much about. If the Church on the Pike once again becomes the flagship parish of our diocese, as it was back in the middle of the last century, with a thousand people attending services every weekend, will it still feel like home? I am not so much a flagship type of person.

A tugboat. That's more like me.

Monday, October 15, 2007

Slowly I turned ...

Wow, that really dates me, doesn't it, in addition to marking me as a Three Stooges fan!

My husband and I spent four lovely days in Niagara Falls, Ontario recently. We did every touristy thing we could find, with the exception of the helicopter ride (I was too cheap for that). We stayed in a great B&B, and it was a real treat to get away from the house and family, drink some wine in the room, and have no responsibilities. Husband told me he had forgotten how I looked when I was completely relaxed.

I need to do this more often.

And now back to the salt mines.

Friday, October 05, 2007

Just back from vacation ...

and this is the best I can do for a post:

You Are a Blue Crayon

Your world is colored in calm, understated, deep colors.
You are a loyal person, and the truest friend anyone could hope to find.
On the inside, you tend to be emotional and even a bit moody.
However, you know that people depend on you. So you put on a strong front.

Your color wheel opposite is orange. Orange people may be opinionated, but you feel they lack the depth to truly understand what they're saying.