Continuing Home

The ongoing saga of a Continuing Anglican church home, as seen by a member of the laity.

Friday, April 30, 2010

One uninteresting photo

I last wrote: "My Internet connectivity is very poor here so pictures will have to wait." Now back in my hotel with its free WiFi access.

There weren't many photo opportunities with everything else I had going, including a visit from our daughter whose birthday it is today, but even so there wasn't much among them I could post. The best (setting a low standard) was this one of the Lay Delegates section prior to the afternoon meeting. Most everything else was unusable because it would embarrass somebody or another.

Today's voting was done differently from anything I recall. First the clergy delegates were asked for aye votes, then nay notes; then the lay delegates were asked the same. This was a pleasantly uncontentious session; the folks who had prepared matters beforehand (budget, candidates/slates, resolutions) had done their work well and nobody found fault with any of it, though there were the usual sort of questions during the Treasurer's report. (It seems I will be one of the diocesan delegates to the Provincial Synod this fall and nobody found fault with that? Hmmmm...)

The trip is a little rough but I am very glad I came! Meeting old friends as well as the good folks from the Oregon churches. I hope we'll see the latter at the Diocese of the West's Family Camp just announced today -- in Oregon.

Diocesan Synod

Somehow, with the crush of other things, I forgot to mention we were headed off to our Diocesan Synod as delegates from St. Bartholomew's. A short trip this time -- up at 4 AM this morning to head out (we finally arrived at the meeting hotel at 11:30 AM). We missed some reportedly great sessions but at least made it for the afternoon's business meeting and all that follows, through tomorrow's Mass and luncheon.

Then a run to the airport for the flight home. And 12 hours after we arrive... my flight back East will be pushing back from the gate.

My Internet connectivity is very poor here so pictures will have to wait.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Back to the altar

Oh my. Somewhere along the way Fr. Davis has updated his blog, with more material and photos about the search for an altar, its arrival, assembly and more. Take a look!

Sunday, April 25, 2010


This cellphone-camera picture does poor justice, but the church's gardens yesterday afternoon were full of color, thanks to Nancy and the rest of the Garden Guild. What a delight!

Saturday, April 24, 2010

The Avondale grows quiet

This afternoon on the way home from a movie we stopped by the church to help with post-sale cleanup. There didn't seem to be much to do (or I just managed to be at the right place at the right time) but we had plenty of time to chat and catch up, since I missed both of the last two Sundays thanks to my travel and Eyjafjallajökul (however one pronounces that, it's the volcano in Iceland). And doubly more important for me because after tomorrow I will miss two more Sundays due to travel (one week in Greensboro NC and the following in Germantown MD).

Even better, I finally got to meet one of our newer members, a sweet Lithuanian lady who arrived in Seattle the same day as the altar, two days later she learned about its arrival and so she was present on our first service with it Palm Sunday. And I think every Sunday since; she felt that sense of "parish family" among us and she fits right in! She offered Kathy some plants from her garden so we got to spend an hour and more visiting with her at her delightful new house here in the Pacific Northwest.

(And I was reminded more than once that I need to open up shop again on the "portrait studio": we have a number of "new" members who've not had photos taken for the members' board I still have not prepared -- just a wee dispute here over the size of photos needed and how big the bulletin board would need to be. I need to prepare samples for evaluation.)

But in the midst of it all, somebody noted how much quieter Avondale Road had become. When we first built the church in 1986, Avondale was still a somewhat rural road without much traffic. Since then the area has become suburbia and there is a fair amount of traffic even on Sunday mornings. Due to Seattle's very mild climate, we don't have or need air-conditioning so we like to open the windows from late spring to early autumn -- but this lets in road noise, particularly from the side nearest Avondale. And that has become a problem over the past decade or more.

A year or two ago we learned that the county was planning some kind of trial to make Avondale quieter and they wanted input from nearby residents. We're not residents but are affected by the noise, so we submitted comments too. I never heard more, but there was some (needed) repaving done a few months ago. Apparently while I was gone they came and cut narrow stripes in the newpavement (the final step in quieting the roadway?) and yes, it seems quieter.

We'll know in a few weeks.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Garden Sale on Saturday

I certainly managed to become disconnected during my unplanned European vacation. I'd forgotten about the Women's Craft Social and the Men's Breakfast -- thinking I might b e able to attend the latter but no... it was last Saturday. So even if I had returned as planned I would have missed it.

I learned this week during a call home to the States that the Garden Sale is this Saturday. But I do not have details and a check of my e-mail finds no notice of it. So I guess this constitutes notice.

(I have somewhat larger concerns anyway because my home computer is kaput and I don't know why. Backups are recent so I should be okay, and Xubuntu Linux is installs very easily, but even with its simple applications install it will take time. Oh well.)

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Visit to St. Bartholomew's

Stuck indefinitely in Frankfurt (I've had several trips home booked and subsequently canceled, and the news on the volcano makes it evident that Tuesday's flights will meet a similar fate), I decided to go tour and when I saw "St. Bartholomew's" on a tour map I had to go see. It's really St. Bartholomäus, also known as the KaiserDom or merely "Dom" (or even Frankfurt Cathedral though technically it is not a cathedral) and you can read a little bit of its history here:

A very impressive building.

I will be back out touring today. I have nearly everything I need for work, so it will be back to the grind on Monday.

Friday, April 16, 2010

LowER Sunday

I had hoped to be back at St. Bartholomew's on Sunday but alas, it was not to be. The volcano in Iceland resulted in my flights back home from Europe tomorrow being canceled, though I did get rebooked into flights Sunday. So I will be present at church next Sunday (the 25th) and then gone again for the next two Sundays.

Monday, April 12, 2010

A bit of Cleveland history moves to W'ville

Checking up on my e-mail after another long day in Frankfurt I saw a note from Fr. Davis pointing out that the St. George altar had made the local news. A bit of Cleveland history moves to Woodinville.

The story's analogy is not incorrect:

This is a bit like the family and friends of an organ donor, who can find comfort in the fact that even though their loved one is no longer with them, his or her heart, liver, and kidneys help give life to others in need.
We weren't "in need," except for a new altar, but I somehow feel we received something like a heart transplant along with the St. George altar.

Thursday, April 08, 2010

Low Sunday

I was hoping to have more to report, but little has been happening at St. Bartholomew's whilst Fr. Davis takes a well-deserved rest after the frenetic activity up through Easter, and for my part I become disconnected for coming week when I fly out tomorrow for a week in Germany to speak at Yet Another Conference, and serve some booth duty for both my employer and my European committee.

I've been through Frankfurt airport more times than I can count, but this will be my first time IN Frankfurt. (I don't count a visit quite some years ago to the then-new Allianz HQ building as a visit -- I saw way more of Darmstadt than I did Frankfurt back then.)

But many thanks to fellow parishioner Matt, who tipped me off on where I can find an excellent restaurant in Frankfurt's old town! If my colleagues (corporate and committee) don't have other plans.

The Sunday after Easter is known as "Low Sunday", referring no doubt to the reduced attendance following the festivities. It's not my wish but I will be among those absent this coming Low Sunday.

Sunday, April 04, 2010

The longest procession

Today's procession was, I believe, the longest train in St. Bartholomew's history. With a Thurifer, Crucifer, two Lucifers, a Banner-Bearer, an acolyte or three, the Master of Ceremonies, the Lay Reader, Deacon Miller and Fr. Davis in procession, the beginning was in the Sanctuary before the end left the Narthex. I didn't get a picture, but perhaps Cynthia got one of the recessional. (She was the one who took the photo of my birthday blessing last week.)

On a different matter, Fr. Davis is good at picking the hymns. The Gradual Hymn, 97 Victimae Paschali was one I had never heard before, but beautiful. Then he followed up with one of my all-time favorites for the Post-Communion Hymn, 197 Picardy. How I wish I could find a recording of those!

Easter Sunday's saints

Fr. Davis added prayers for St. Bartholomew, St. George and St. Casimir today (and with a former member of St. George's present; he lives nearby in Redmond now). I think we may have a new tradition starting.

The Lithuainian-Michigan Connection

We had some visitors last evening at the "Blessing of the New Fire (etc.)" service. One pair, I am told, was a visitor from the Lithuanian community (I hope they like having this altar here in the Northwest -- a few of our parishioners who saw it for the first time last night were in complete awe) who had just picked up a friend at SeaTac airport, he'd just arrived from Michigan. I don't know whether he was introduced to our small St. Bartholomew's community of Michiganders, though.

We have at least four Michiganders at St. Bartholomew's: three "Trolls" (those who lived "below the bridge", i.e. Lower Peninsula) and one "Yooper" (Upper Peninsula) -- but it seems we had at least six for last evening's service.

Saturday, April 03, 2010

Easter Even: The New Fire

Tonight, in the middle of the rainiest Easter weekend I can recall (yes, we're in Seattle but still...) we conducted the Easter Even service, titled "The Blessing of the New Fire, Lighting of the Paschal Candle & Litany of the Saints." (Whew, that's a lot!) As I have come to expect from Fr. Davis, things are not always as they have been before.

Given the service before us in which we had to read (if we didn't know) our responses, by necessity we started with the lights on. Then at a certain point they went off. Followed by the ignition of the New Fire. This time it involved flint & steel, though in the past we generally used what used to be known as "lucifer matches" (friction matches), but this was expressive enough that everyone turned around to see what was happening.

The order of things was different too. Usually when the Flame proceeds through the Nave, the parishioners' hand-held candles are lit on the way so that when the Flame reaches the Sanctuary, the rest of the Nave is lit. Not this time: it was a time before the Paschal Candle was lit and THEN the Fire was passed back to the congregation. Okay, I can see the reasoning for each process.

Though I saw an interesting point: before the Nave was lit, the altar candles were lit... but in somewhat reverse order; outwards to inwards. The return of the Flame. Interesting. (I might quibble about the subsequent extinguishing order I observed, but that's an adiaphoric matter.)

Oddly, the lengthy "Litany of the Saints" didn't include St. Bartholomew. Maybe he was forgotten in what had to be quite extensive preparations for a lengthy new service. Or there may be other good reasons for that (if we included all the saints we'd be there all night and longer, I think, and way too tired to celebrate Easter). I just don't know.

Friday, April 02, 2010

Winter in April

In a bit of a reversal from the usual weather patterns this winter, our exceptionally warm and mild winter roared back with a bitter bone-chilling wet wind today -- most unseasonal for April and more like November. Not too many trees were blown down and though my rural locale retained power without a glitch, another Washington state county lost electric power completely.

In any event, we made it to church (parking lot full of debris from our 150'+ windblown tall pine and cedar trees) for the Good Friday service.

The service itself, comprising the the first of the 3 hour vigil -- ran for almost the first hour, to my surprise. But I am still learning Fr. Davis' handling of our liturgies, and without going into details was well done.

Thursday, April 01, 2010

Maundy Thursday

I was all set for the Maundy Thursday evening Communion service and the Stripping of the Altar, but it was not to be. Early afternoon Kathy called and suggested we should drive over the mountains to Eastern Washington where a friend of ours needed some help, support, prayers -- and a simple website for his business. The last meant I needed information and pictures.

I was being singularly ineffective and unproductive at work today, and besides, an opportunity for the camera should never be passed up. So we went. But we didn't get back into the area until well after the service was over. Having missed the noon ante-Communion services Monday through Wednesday due to teleconferences, my batting average this week is quite low. Tomorrow is a company holiday so that should change.

In the meantime, Fr. Davis sent the Parish an e-mail which in part explained Maundy Thursday:

The first part of the Triduum, which in Latin means "Three Days," begins with Maundy Thursday, recalling the events of the evening that Jesus was betrayed. The word "Maundy" derives from the Latin phrase mandatum novum, meaning "new commandment" and refers to the words of our Lord as recorded in St. John 13:34-35:

A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another. By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.

It has become increasingly popular in recent years to re-enact the foot-washing ritual on this evening, but more than anything, Maundy Thursday is about the celebration of Holy Communion; it is, in fact, the very anniversary of the very first Supper of our Lord.