Grammar of the Trinity

Given that it’s still the week after Trinity Sunday, I’ve decided to post another sermon I had preached on that feast day. Plus, given it’s sacramental emphasis, it’s also appropriate to post on this Feast of Corpus Christi.

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trinitySt. Thomas’ Episcopal Church, Washington, DC
Sermon – 5/22/16, Feast of the Holy Trinity

Believe it or not, but Trinity Sunday can be one of the trickier Sundays to preach on. It’s sometimes joked that this is the Sunday that’s often given to seminarians. Some sort of hazing, I’m sure. Personally, I love it. The Trinity is such a fundamental part of the Christian faith and of my own personal understanding of God, that I get excited learning about it and talking about it.

I know what you’re thinking, and you’re right, I am nuts. You’re also right that it’s not an easy thing to grasp. Three persons: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. But one God. On the surface, it doesn’t seem to make sense. Now some people might try to prove how this is so or explain how they all relate. If they can do that well, great. I’m not going to try. What I’m going to ask you right now is for the time being just to say yes to it and go from there while I talk with you about why it’s important.

_Patrick-the-EnlightenerFlyerFirst let me assure you this is not a math lesson: One plus one plus one equals . . . one. It’s also not a lesson in analogies. They can sometimes be helpful illustrations, but that can also get a little tricky. For those who follow my, um, occasional posts of Facebook, you might remember that I regularly share this video called “Patrick’s Bad Analogies” on St. Patrick’s Day and Trinity Sunday. I suggest looking it up on YouTube.

So again, this isn’t a lesson on math or analogies. Instead, it’s a grammar lesson. What do I meant be that? As you might remember from school, grammar is essentially the set of rules by which a language works. You’ve got parts of speech, the ways words come together to form sentences, the way thoughts are expressed. While we’re sometimes aware of them, most of time those rules are just internalized. We don’t even think about them even though they shape both how we express our thoughts but also how we understand the world. That’s sort of how the Trinity is. We don’t go around every day thinking, “So how exactly do the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit relate; and does the Holy Spirit proceed from the Father alone or from the Father and the Son?” No, it’s fundamental because this is how God reveals Godself to the world and participates in it. Father, the Source of All Being. The Son, Jesus Christ, fully God yet also fully human, God with “skin in the game” as Wayne once said several years ago in a sermon. The Holy Spirit, God’s abiding presence within and among us. All of them, One God. It’s important because it gets down to the very basics of how God relates to us and how we relate to God. My Christian faith depends on how I relate to a God who is Three-in-One and One-in-Three. At heart it’s a faith that’s firmly Trinitarian.

Now it’s not a faith that’s just me and God. God Him/Herself isn’t just a lone individual or even just a closed-in duo but rather a Trinity, a community, fundamentally relational, even overflowing with creative love. Likewise, as Christians we don’t exist alone but in a community of fellow disciples, of fellow children of God through Christ. A church whose faith is firmly trinitarian and, I believe, at its fullest is firmly sacramental.

Now just to remind you, what is a sacrament? According to the catechism towards the end of the Prayer Book, “The sacraments are outward and visible signs of inward and spiritual grace, given by Christ as sure and certain means by which we receive that grace. . . .The two great sacraments given by Christ to his Church are Holy Baptism and the Holy Eucharist.” Just as God’s divinity was present in the flesh in Jesus Christ, so we believe that God’s grace is present in and communicated to us through the physical elements of water and of bread and wine. Baptism and Eucharist are the two primary sacraments that make the Church, that unite us with Christ’s Body, and enliven us by the Spirit.

Now let’s start with Baptism. Now I’m sure most everyone here knows what a baptism looks like, especially those of us who were here on Pentecost last Sunday or at the Easter Vigil. Pouring water over the person’s head in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. But what really is the Sacrament of Baptism? Well, take out one of the red Prayer Books and turn to the Thanksgiving Over Water on page 306. This probably does a better a job explaining Baptism than I ever could and really gets to the trinitarian heart of it:

maxresdefaultWe thank you, Almighty God, for the gift of water. Over it the Holy Spirit moved in the beginning of creation. Through it you led the children of Israel out of their bondage in Egypt into the land of promise. In it your Son Jesus received the baptism of John and was anointed by the Holy Spirit as the Messiah, the Christ, to lead us, through his death and resurrection, from the bondage of sin into everlasting life. We thank you, Father, for the water of Baptism. In it we are buried with Christ in his death. By it we share in his resurrection. Through it we are reborn by the Holy Spirit. Therefore in joyful obedience to your Son, we bring into his fellowship those who come to him in faith, baptizing them in the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.

Now sanctify this water, we pray you, by the power of your Holy Spirit, that those who here are cleansed from sin and born again may continue for ever in the risen life of Jesus Christ our Savior. To him, to you, and to the Holy Spirit, be all honor and glory, now and for ever. Amen.

61233347_10157268274513119_4511431105097760768_nThen after the water is poured in the name of the Father and the Son and Holy Spirit, the newly baptized is anointed with chrism and the sign of the cross. “You are sealed by the Holy Spirit in Baptism and marked as Christ’s own for ever. Amen.”

So in Baptism, not only are we washed of our sins, but we are united in Christ’s death and resurrection, brought to new life by the Holy Spirit and anointed “to bring good news to the poor. . . to proclaim release to the captives and recovery of sight to the blind, to let the oppressed go free, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.” We are brought into the trinitarian household of God, fully initiated by water and the Holy Spirit into Christ’s Body the Church.

Now speaking of Christ’s Body, let’s turn to the other great sacrament, Eucharist. Don’t worry, I won’t read an entire Eucharistic Prayer. However, what do we find in the Eucharistic Prayer, the Great Thanksgiving for the work of God – Father, Son, and Holy Spirit – in the salvation of the world? Well, since you already have your Prayer Books out, feel free to turn to Eucharistic Prayer A on page 361 and following pages. As with a lot of current and historic eucharistic prayers, there’s a basic trinitarian structure. The prayer is addressed to God the Father, usually beginning with a thanksgiving for our creation download (1)and the sending of Jesus Christ the Son for our redemption. It then moves to the remembrance of Christ’s words at the Last Supper that the bread is his Body and the wine is his Blood, that as we celebrate this feast in remembrance of him, he will truly present with us. We later come to an invocation of the Holy Spirit to sanctify the gifts to be the Body and Blood of Christ and to sanctify us as well. Looking at Prayer A, we find, “Sanctify them by your Holy Spirit to be for your people the Body and Blood of your Son, the holy food and drink of new and unending life in him. Sanctify us also that we may faithfully receive this holy Sacrament, and serve you in unity, constancy, and peace; and at the last day bring us with all your saints into the joy of your eternal kingdom.”

In addition, as one of the prayers from Enriching Our Worship says it, “By your Holy Spirit may they be for us the Body and Blood of our Savior Jesus Christ. Grant that we who share these gifts may be filled with the Holy Spirit and live as Christ’s Body in the world.” Likewise, in another EOW prayer, “Pour out your Spirit upon these gifts that they may be the Body and Blood of Christ. Breathe your Spirit over the whole earth and make us your new creation, the Body of Christ given for the world you have made.”

Beth communion rail - Version 2The prayer then concludes in words of praise to the Father through Jesus Christ his Son in the unity of the Holy Spirit. To this we then give our assent in the great Amen, literally “So be it.” Just like when we give our assent when we reply “Amen” when we receive communion.  As St. Augustine preached, “If you, therefore, are Christ’s body and members, it is your own mystery that is placed on the Lord’s table! It is your own mystery that you are receiving! You are saying ‘Amen’ to what you are: your response is a personal signature, affirming your faith. When you hear ‘The body of Christ,’ you reply ‘Amen.’ . . . Be what you see; receive what you are.”

In Baptism we are joined to Christ’s Body in his death and resurrection and sealed by the anointing of the Holy Spirit. In the Eucharist we are fed by the sacramental mystery of Christ’s Body and Blood. Through the consecrated bread and wine, joined to Word and Holy Spirit, we are made present to his death and resurrection and united with his sacrifice of love and work of reconciliation, being made one Body to be sent out in mission “rejoicing in the power of the Spirit.” As we are washed in Baptism, it’s revealed that we’re no longer the kind of persons we were, alone, isolated. We are persons joined to one another through Christ in the Holy Spirit. My personhood is bound up with everyone else’s. As we are fed in the Eucharist, that personhood is nourished and strengthened through the presence of Christ and the fire of the Spirit.

This is why the Trinity is important. This is why it is the basic grammar that gives structure and content to our faith. We do not worship some self-contained distant God off somewhere. We worship a God intimately involved with us, whose very being is relational. A God who created and continues to create, who chooses to love us as our Father, as our Mother, who will never abandon us and always calls us by name. A God who is so fully involved so as to take on our humanity, to have “skin in the game,” being fully human while still being fully divine. A God whose mystery is ever unfolding within and among us, filling us with life and kindling a fire within us that burns away the walls that divide us from each other and from God. St. Irenaeus in the 2nd century wrote that the Son and Holy Spirit are the hands of the Father. Well, by those hands we are pulled into a motherly embrace and welcomed into the divine household. That is why I love the Trinity. That is why I get so excited talking about and want to share that good news.

Now I wish to leave you with a prayer for Trinity Sunday that I found in a translation of the Roman Missal, albeit one that was rejected but is still quite wonderful:

The Lord be with you.
And also with you.
Let us pray.

O God, your name is veiled in mystery,
yet we dare to call you Father;
your Son was begotten before all ages,
yet is born among us in time;
your Holy Spirit fills the whole creation,
yet is poured forth now into our hearts.
Because you have made us and loved us
and called us by name,
draw us more deeply into your divine life,
that we may glorify you rightly through your Son,
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
God for ever and ever.  Amen.



Friendship and the Trinity


Trinity, icon by Andrei Rublev, 15th c.

Last year I preached a sermon on Trinity Sunday, my last Sunday at St. Thomas’ Episcopal Parish in Washington, DC. Since yesterday, June 16, was the Feast of the Holy Trinity, I thought I’d share it here:

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Let me start by saying that anyone who expects me to explain the Trinity this Sunday will be sorely disappointed. Even if I had two turns of the hourglass, I could barely scratch the surface. Wrestling with theology and trying find ways of beginning to understand are important, but that’s not what I’m going to get into right now. Instead, I want to talk about why a trinitarian faith is important. So for the time being, just say yes to the premise of one God in three Persons: Father, Source of All Being; Son, the Incarnate Word; and Holy Spirit. And then let’s go from there. Likewise, just say yes to where I’m starting and follow from there.

As a lot of people know, I struggle with depression. More than just being sad, it’s a full-self experience in body, mind, and soul; and one of the worst parts is the isolation. The feeling that I’m totally and utterly alone. The feeling that I totally and utterly deserve to be alone. It’s also like a huge part of me has been taken away. It’s hard to fully describe if you haven’t been through it. However, it’s probably safe to say that a lot of people today experience some level of loneliness and separation.


The Trinity, by Feodosiy Humeniuk, Ukrainian, 1981

For me one thing that has helped has been friendship. I’m not talking about just casual acquaintances. I mean more meaningful friendships, people I enjoy spending time with, people who also enjoy spending time with me. Friends who will be there when you need them. Mind you, in the very depths, it can be hard for me to hold onto that. Even if I don’t fully believe in the moment that they’ll be there, I can at least get myself to say yes to that fact until I’m better able to see it.

But even more important than that are those friendships we have in our lives that are deeper, more soulful. They can be very rare, I admit that; and some people in this life just don’t find it. However, when you do, it’s like the two of you just fit together like puzzle pieces. They might be a spouse or might be another best friend. Fundamentally, you just find yourselves in each other and become something even greater.

It’s not, however, just a closed circle. In true friendship, people don’t monopolize each other and shut others out but rather allow each person to be more fully who they are and to foster connections with others.

That doesn’t mean it’s always easy. We’re human. We’re fallen. We mess up. Sometimes the friendship just doesn’t make sense. I sometimes I can only describe it as my weird fitting with their weird. Trust me, that’s a lot of weirdness.

So when it comes to things that don’t necessarily make sense in our limited understanding, I think the Trinity can be a good example. One God, three Persons. Of one being with each other but not a lone individual. Each Person distinct but always present with the other two. Not a closed circle but an open invitation.

When it comes to our relation to that Trinitarian God, we can continue to use the friendship metaphor. As I said, the Trinity is not a closed-in loop. Instead, God welcomes us into the divine life and desires us to be part of it. A few weeks ago we heard Jesus say in the Gospel of John, “I do not call you servants any longer . . . but I have called you friends.” Friends! Jesus Christ — the Savior, the Son of God — calls us friends! And it’s that truly deep and full friendship I talked about but even more so, ultimately true and perfect.


By Farid De La Ossa Arrieta

Genesis says that we’re made in God’s image. Well, that image is of One who is not separate from others. God’s very self is communal. Human life is communal. Not only that, but God chooses to be in communion with us, and it is in that communion that we find our truest selves. Apart from that ultimate source of our being, we’re never quite complete. As St. Augustine wrote in the late 4th century, “You have made us for yourself, and our hearts are restless till they rest in you.”  

So here is the great invitation. God wants you to be in communion with the divine life. Christ calls you to be friends with him, to be united with him and each other in the Holy Spirit, who brings new birth into eternal life in perfect connection with our Source. God invites us all to full companionship, to break bread with her and with one another, to receive Christ as our nourishment and to be received by Christ.

God invites you to that new birth in the Spirit, free from the isolation and death we so often find ourselves in, free to experience our full selves in soul, mind, and body. You are not made to be alone. You do not deserve to be alone. So say yes to that invitation. Say yes to that trinitarian life. Say yes.

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And thank you to those friends who have made my life so wonderful. Thank you to St. Thomas’ for being my church home for my decade-plus in DC. Thank you to all others to come with whom I’ll share community and friendship.


Sts. Sergius and Bacchus, Byzantine icon, 7th c.

Road to Emmaus, Highway to Mission

A homily I gave at Wednesday night Mass at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, Seattle:

Wednesday in Easter Week
Gospel reading: Luke 24:13-35 (Road to Emmaus)

Raise your hand if you’ve seen The Passion of the Christ . . . I am so, so sorry. Now, don’t get me wrong. There are some good things about the movie. Overall, though, it’s not quite my thing. When you think about the movie, what comes to mind? The violence. Granted, it’s probably the most accurate that’s been depicted on the screen, but when that’s the main thing you remember, there’s a problem. Aside from that, my biggest problem is that the resurrection at the end seems almost like an afterthought.

So, how would I have done it differently? Well, besides the extreme violence. Plotwise, I’d have used the Road to Emmaus story as a framing device. Just as we heard in the Gospel reading, we have the two disciples on the road, dealing with a whole mix of emotions — grief, fear, shock, confusion. A stranger comes along. They don’t know who he is. We never see his face. He starts talking to them about the prophets in Scripture the Messiah, and . . . we flash back to parts of Jesus’ life — his birth, his baptism, his temptation, the calling of the disciples, his teaching, his miracles. All of this interspersed with Jesus telling the two disciples about what the Messiah really was supposed to be and to do. Finally, in this part, the triumphal entry into the Jerusalem.

Cut back to the travelers. They arrive at the inn. Dinner. And then . . The Last Supper. The Garden. The arrest. The trial. Jesus crucified and laid in the tomb. . . . The Resurrection (mixing the different stories a bit). The women come to the tomb and find it empty but are told that Jesus has risen; so they rush to tell the other disciples. Mary Magdalene, in shock and maybe not quite believing it, sees a man, asks him where her beloved teacher is. . . . “Mary.” She sees his face. It’s Jesus. “Rabbouni.” . . . At the inn. The bread is broken. We see his face. It’s Jesus. As he disappears, they run out of there to find Peter and others. “The Lord is risen!”

Think about it. What do we have in this Emmaus story? The Word is proclaimed and broken open for us to understand. We gather at the table. The bread is taken, blessed, broken, and (presumably) given. And in all that, Jesus is revealed. What does that remind you of? The Eucharist. This sacrament, into which we enter through Baptism, is the church’s great encounter with Christ. As God entered into the material world through the Incarnation, so we enter into the presence of Christ through the eucharistic communion.

We enter into this holy mystery as we offer the bread and wine, the gifts of nature and the work of human hands. We offer our whole selves, our souls and bodies, as a sacrifice of praise and thanksgiving. Then through the work of the Holy Spirit, we who are the Body Christ behold the Body and Blood of Christ upon the altar. We receive this great mystery of who we truly are. We enter into the great presence of Christ — the Incarnation, the proclamation of God’s Reign, his suffering and death, his Resurrection and Ascension, AND His coming again in glory. We who have been divided by the powers of this world, the powers of sin and death, have been made one in Christ.

But we don’t just stay there. On Mt. Tabor, Peter wanted to set up three tabernacles so they could remain there for all time. But what happened? God told them this was his beloved son, listen to him. Then they go back down the mountain into the messiness of life. Jesus didn’t just stick around in the inn with the two disciples. Instead he disappeared, but they did not feel deserted. Were their hearts not burning within them? Were their hearts not “strangely warmed,” one might say? They went out to proclaim the Resurrection to the other disciples. We are dismissed from the Mass, sent out to proclaim to the whole world the Good News of the Resurrection by word and example.

So now I want to leave you with some words by Frank Weston, Bishop of Zanzibar, given at the Anglo-Catholic Congress in 1923:

[For] the truth . . . is that Christ is found in and amid matter,Spirit through matter, God in flesh, God in the Sacrament. But I say to you, you have got to . . . walk, with Christ mystically present in you, out into the streets of this country [and the world], and find the same Jesus in the people of your cities and your villages. You cannot claim to worship Jesus in the Tabernacle, if you do not pity Jesus in the slum. . . . If you are Christians then your Jesus is one and the same: Jesus on the Throne of his glory, Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament, Jesus received into your hearts in Communion, Jesus with you mystically as you pray, and Jesus enthroned in the hearts and bodies of his brothers and sisters up and down this country. And it is folly, it is madness, to suppose that you can worship Jesus in the Sacraments and Jesus on the Throne of glory, when you are sweating him in the souls and bodies of his children. . . . Now go out into the highways and hedges. . . . Go out and look for Jesus in the ragged, in the naked, in the oppressed and sweated, in those who have lost hope, in those who are struggling to make good. Look for Jesus. And when you see him, gird yourselves with his towel and try to wash their feet.

So now I say to you, let the road to Emmaus lead you to Jesus, let it lead you to the highway of mission in the world to the ultimate reign of God on earth.


Saying Goodbye

40th Birthday with My BFF Todd

I was asked if I had a superhero I wanted for a theme. I said Deadpool. No issues there. LOL

I’ll admit that this one has been hard to do. I left DC on June 4 of last year, and it still kind of chokes me up. Saying goodbye can be really hard for me, especially when leaving a place I’d lived in for a decade, a place with good friends. Well, it wasn’t so much the place as the people. A good church community, a best friend. Growing up, I tended to hold tight to my emotions and not let them show to much. Mainly it was because they were so strong that I was afraid of them. Since then I’ve become less afraid and more willing to show them. The downside is that when I grow attached, I become extremely emotional stepping away from those attachments. Even now I start tearing up when I think about the day I left. It was time for me to go, but that didn’t make it easier.

BFF and Me

Attachment Forever

Empty Apartment

Time to Leave

Journey from the mountain


Icon of the Transfiguration, by Theophanes the Greek, 15th c.

As I’m writing this post, we are roughly in the middle of Lent.  Now the one thing to understand about Lent is that it’s about journeying. On the last Sunday before Lent, we hear in church about Jesus’ Transfiguration on Mt. Tabor. Although Peter wants to stay up there in the glory of this (literal) mountaintop experience, the Father reminds them to listen to His Beloved Son. Then Jesus leads them back down the mountain to the messiness of life, healing a young boy and beginning the path to Jerusalem. At last, he enters Jerusalem in triumph only to then be crucified by the authorities at the end of the week.


As Christians we also journey (ideally at least) through this time of self-reflection and preparation toward the climactic drama of Holy Week and the Sacred Triduum culminating with Christ’s Easter Resurrection. On a more personal level, I’ve been reflecting on the journey I’m on now as well as other recent ones. I’m continuing to make a life for myself here in the Pacific Northwest. I got engaged at Christmas; so that’s a whole other level of life passage, both joyous and scary.

Of course, how can I forget about my summer-long cross-country sojourn to get here?Two months, Washington, DC, to Washington State, then up through Canada to Alaska , and settling finally in Seattle. How many people get to fulfill a dream like this? (You can follow the journey on the Facebook page I set up for it: Kevin’s Cross-Country Odyssey.) Most of my recording of the journey came in photographs instead of writing, but I think it’s time for me to do some reflecting of what I experienced and share it with others. Lent seems like a good time to journey through this recent journey.  Besides, while I might not have reached the top of a mountain, mountains definitely have played a part in both ending that journey and beginning the one I’m on now.




Mt. Rainier


Why remind me that I’m dust?

IMG_20190306_201828 “Remember that you are dust, and to dust you shall return.”
– From the liturgy for Ash Wednesday,
Book of Common Prayer, p. 265

Why do I need to be reminded that I’m dust?

One easy answer is that the ashes remind us of our mortality and the need for repentance from our sins. Many do need to remember that. But think about this: What would it be like for someone with depression to hear that?

I don’t have to imagine because I suffer from chronic depression actually spent the last couple of months suffering some major flare-ups. Luckily, my mind’s a bit clearer at the moment, but the clouds will gather again, as sure as the clouds will gather in the sky here in Seattle. Why do I need to be reminded that I’m dust when I spent (and will spend) so much time thinking that’s just what I am, nothing but dust, fearing that the least gust of wind will finally blow me away?

Why do I need to be reminded of my mortality when . . . well, when at my darkest moments it’s hovered over me like a hand about to fall? Why do I need to be reminded of my sins when I feel like the most horrible person in the world? Why do I need anything more to weigh me down when I’m already at my lowest?

A couple years ago, I wrote a post, “Ash Wednesday: The day after,”  about how the ashes of Ash Wednesday are different, freeing instead of enslaving. Even having recently been through the worst bout of depression in a number of years, I still believe what I wrote. These aren’t the ashes of oppression, the dust of humiliation.

Why do I need to be reminded that I’m dust? “Then the Lord God formed [the human] from the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and the [human] became a living being.” (Genesis 2:7, NRSV) As Genesis puts it, God formed us from the dust of the earth. He took that dust, that dirt, that mud, and formed us in his hands. He then breathed life into us. I imagine it not as a mere puff but a full blow from his mouth into ours. God chose that lowliest dust to create a being in his image, enlivened by the divine breath. I am dust, but so you are. So is she, and he, and they. It’s a dust we share in common, a dust that links me to them and they to me, that links us to the rest of creation.

Why do I need to be reminded that I’m dust? Why do I need to have those ashes on my forehead when all too often everything in my life tastes like ashes? Yet when I receive those ashes, they are in the form of a cross. As low as I’ve been, I know that my savior has been there too. “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” How often have I said those words myself? I remember the times when I’ve felt almost on the verge of death, but who was it who suffered death yet broke death’s bond? Where can I go that Christ himself has not been? “Where can I go then from your Spirit? Where can I flee from your presence? . . . if I make the grave my bed, you are there also. . . . If I say, ‘Surely the darkness will cover me, and the light around me turn to night,’ Darkness is not dark to you; the night is as bright as the day; darkness and light to you are both alike.” (Psalm 139:6-7, 10-11; BCP, p. 794)

When I feel like not just my forehead but my whole body is covered in ash, I know that I have been washed in the waters of my baptism. The cross of ash on my forehead is a reminder of my mortality, but it looks forward to the cross of oil applied to the forehead of the newly baptized. “You are sealed by the Holy Spirit in Baptism and marked
as Christ’s own for ever.” (BCP, p. 308) The ash of repentance looks ahead to the oil of gladness.

Why do I need to be reminded that I’m dust? “Remember that you are dust, and to dust you shall return.” Remember you are the dust that God chose, that God molded and blew life into. God felt that dust to be precious enough for his beloved creation. Even at the end when we return to the dust of the earth, we still are never separated from God’s loving embrace.

You only are immortal, the creator and maker of mankind; 
and we are mortal, formed of the earth, and to earth shall we 
return. For so did you ordain when you created me, saying, 
“You are dust, and to dust you shall return.” All of us go down 
to the dust; yet even at the grave we make our song: Alleluia, 
alleluia, alleluia.
(from the burial rite, BCP p. 499)



Getting the Steel Wool


Once again, I had a long hiatus from the blog. And once again, I return to it. As you might know, there have been some big changes in my life. I took a summer-long cross-country trip and moved to Seattle. Yes, I will be writing more about all that soon, but for now, just know that I am back.