Monday, April 30, 2012

The Triangle Sequence

"Although the Triangle sequence is not easy to do perfectly, it is one which will give great benefit to those who give it an honest effort. The emphasis is on lengthening the spine , as the hamstrings are stretched, and strengthening the knees while the hips are loosened." Kate Potter

And may the peace of the Lord be always with you.

Monday, April 23, 2012

The Heart Opening Sequence

"This posture sequence stimulates flow of energy from the core to the limbs, and moves through classic standing postures in an easy, gentle manner. Bring comfort and steadiness to your whole body with even breath while exploring the ideas of openness and balance." Kate Potter

And may the peace of the Lord be always with you.

Monday, April 16, 2012

In the Bodies We Have

The following sermon was written by the Reverend Kate Alexander of Christ Episcopal Church and is published here with her permission.

Easter last Sunday was wonderful. The church was packed. The music was glorious. The liturgy – beautiful. The roses on the altar – spectacular. Of course the food at coffee hour was a feast. This is not an exhaustive list of all that was great last Sunday, but I will add that I’m sure that a new record was set by the number of children hunting competitively and sometimes aggressively for eggs in the garden. What a glorious celebration all around.

Not to boast about Easter at Christ Church or anything, but at the 10:30 service we had over 450 people here. Which leads me to an issue I want to address. If you do the math, that’s about 225 people, give or take, drinking wine out of each of the two chalices. Which brings up a question that silently plagues Episcopalians far and near. It’s the question of germs. Be honest, we’ve all thought about it. Other denominations bypass the issue by serving wine or grape juice in individual glasses or even in hermetically sealed “to go” cups. But we profess to be one body because we all share one bread and one cup. Which leads us to worry about germs as we drink or dip from the same cup.

For those who have wondered, studies have actually been done about this. You’ll be relieved to know that the combination of heavily fortified wine, like the port we use here, and the sterling silver of the chalice kills just about every little organism. Plus, we have conscientious Eucharistic ministers who carefully wipe and turn the cup after each use. So all in all, there’s basically no chance of catching something communicable from the cup of wine.

The Sunbird Sequence

"The Sunbird Sequence wakes up the spine, and energizes the limbs. Have faith in your own abilities as you rise through this practice. Sunbird provides a moment to open the heart with no further expectation than to expand our own capacities." Kate Potter

And may the peace of the Lord be always with you.

Monday, April 9, 2012

Resurrection: The Unprepared Dream

The following sermon was written by the Reverend Scott Walters of  Christ Episcopal Church and is published here with his permission.

What’s your dream about being unprepared or ill equipped? When you were in grade school, maybe you had that dream in which your teacher is handing out a test on material you’ve never seen before. Or the one in which you’ve shown up for the same class, but for some reason, you’re not wearing pants. Either dream is pretty effective at producing a feeling of inadequacy, helplessness, unpreparedness.

Of course, Freud said that we have those embarrassing naked dreams because we’re all born exhibitionists. And it’s true that pants aren’t strictly necessary to the task of writing an essay on the Louisiana Purchase or reciting the multiples of seven. But I still say the dreams are really about the fear of being unprepared.

When I was a carpenter I dreamt of working frantically to finish a job. But when I tried to make a cut, I was suddenly holding my five year old son’s plastic Fisher-Price saw. It made a nice growling noise when you pulled the trigger, but it wasn’t much good on a 2X4.

Anxious priests have an archetypal “I can’t find my place in the prayer book and the whole congregation is looking at me” dream. An added complication in mine one time was that the chancel had become a huge set of organ pedals that I was trying nonchalantly to make my way across, honking all the while.

And that’s another curious element in these dreams: our nonchalance. We try to play it cool. We’re slightly relieved that somehow no one has noticed our predicament. And the future that we dread—be it a failed test, horrified stares at our uncovered nether parts, irate clients, or glaring congregants—the future that we dread has never quite arrived in these dreams. So we hold on to a little hope that nobody will notice how sadly ill equipped we are to face whatever it is that’s coming. Maybe the world will return to normal before they do. Maybe we’ll somehow be prepared for the future when it actually arrives.

What’s your dream about being unprepared?

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Waiting Expectantly

The following sermon was delivered by The Rt. Rev. Larry Benfield of Little Rock, AR at Christ Episcopal Church.

“Waiting expectantly for the kingdom of God.” It is a small phrase. It is taken from today’s gospel. But it may be the phrase that lives on long after our loud and rather brassy “hosannas” of this day have echoed into silence.

Waiting is what we all spend so much of our lives doing, sometimes with expectation, sometimes with expectation that something holy will come out of the messes in which we find ourselves. Waiting in line at the grocery story. Waiting for the economy to turn around. Waiting for a return to health or a better relationship. Waiting for the child to return home. Sometimes simply waiting to die.

There are always those among us who wait. Period. The gospel story of the Passion of Christ is filled with waiting, primarily people waiting for death. Pilate is waiting for Jesus to die. The story tells us that he starts making inquiries as to whether or not this convicted criminal is dead. Something must be done with anyone who would challenge the power structures of the day.

The religious officials are waiting for Jesus to die, no doubt. Those of us in the official religious world are never quite comfortable when someone comes along and questions how we have always done things. Today’s gospel should be sobering for members of the clergy.

And I bet Peter is waiting for Jesus to die. Each of us knows only too well how painful it is to face someone whom we have let down, as exemplified when Peter denies his friendship with Jesus. We simply want the injured party to go away so we will not feel shame any longer.

Waiting. Period.

Monday, April 2, 2012

Riding the Wind Sequence

And may the peace of the Lord be always with you.