Monday, March 21, 2011

Reflections on the Atlanta SCLM Consultation

There is very much I want to share with you all about the SCLM consultation. But, alas, weariness has thwarted me. I had an automotive calamity on the drive home from Atlanta on Saturday, so that I only arrived home at 5 a.m. on Sunday, and I’ve been physically and emotionally wiped out since then. [At church Sunday, my priest gave me a “godly admonition” to go home and sleep as long as I could … but I could not.] I took today as a vacation day, but didn’t get much rest, and tomorrow I head to western Missouri for two days to lead a workshop. I have promised to share my observations and reflections, and I will do that as best I can … but it may be in dribs and drabs, and it may not be as well organized as I would wish.

I hope that you all have been able to see the TEC webcasts of all the plenary sessions. They are supposedly there, but my browser hasn’t let me access them. I hope you’ve been able to see them.

Worship

The first thing that strikes me is the way we worshipped together. The whole meeting was framed by common prayer. We began it together on Friday when we convened, and continued with Friday Evensong and compline, then Saturday morning and noontime prayer.

This was classical Anglican worship. No newfangled liturgies.

I was blown away by the quality of the singing. After Friday’s service, I asked my colleague from Missouri, “Is this how you all worship at GC”???? Yes, she said. WOW! What beautiful singing! What fervent responses. What fervent shared prayer.

I know that our “worthy opponents” like to claim that I and my ilk are heretics, apostates. But, my friends, this was heartfelt, open-to-God worship as I have seldom experienced it. The people gathered in Atlanta are as orthodox as can be. I was carried by the joy and intensity of the worship throughout the meeting.

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