a little something extra

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Sabbath 27

And, we're back, all from our various early summer travels. Tripp and Cristopher have both posted about this chapter already. It begins a new section of the book, entitled "Consecration."

Since I'm posting this from work, I'm going to confine myself to two quick points -- one thing in the chapter that resonated well with me, and one thing that didn't. (Cristopher, I'll give you one guess as to what the second item will be.)

What Worked: Something Muller mentioned in a story about a woman preparing to scatter her late mother's ashes. He referred to her "making the day a sacred vessel" for this purpose. While "sacred" has many meanings to many people, and is therefore a particularly potent and dangerous word, even standing back from it I appreciated the deliberate commitment of the day to a particular purpose. I find that calming and strengthening, and it's an approach I may incorporate into my life more frequently, even concerning events that are nowhere near as important as the scattering of someone's ashes.

What Didn't: The exercise. (Yes, Cristopher, you were right.) Muller, who apparently was never Catholic, advocates for a more or less formal act of confession.


After Cristopher read this chapter, we had an interesting email exchange about a key difference between the RCC sacrament of reconciliation and the Episcopal approach to the idea of confession. The RCC posits that only a priest can deliver the absolution of sin. (I say again, FEH!) Cristopher articulated the Episcopal approach as considerably looser, with the clergyperson as reminder and articulator of God's love, not as gatekeeper to absolution.

As many of my small group of readers know, I have little use for clergy. It's a neverending challenge to me that two of my dear friends have chosen ordination. And I certainly have little use for clergy inserting themselves into the fundamental relationship between the individual and the divine, as is done in the practice of confession.

Needless to say, I won't be pursing Muller's exercise for this week, avec ou sans clergy. Next!!


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