Sunday, June 28, 2009

Meditation: Pentecost IV

Today is the Fourth Sunday after Pentecost.

Today's Readings

The Collect
Almighty God, you have built your Church upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief cornerstone: Grant us so to be joined together in unity of spirit by their teaching, that we may be made a holy temple acceptable to you; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
A thought for today from Louie Crew:
I don’t know who wrote the collect for today, but I like to think it was Cranmer, author of so much of our Prayer Book, setting those in the pew to pray for unity even as he is supporting Henry VIII in his demands that all accept the king as the supreme head of the Church of England or else risk Cheney-like tortures, which have to their credit mainly their ability to get confessions whether or not there is anything to confess.

The Church of England in Diaspora faces much division right now, and well might we pray “to be joined together in unity of spirit.” Heaven help us if the price of unity is that we must sacrifice lgbts as scapegoats to those whose knowledge of lgbt committed relationships no more resembles them than does the heterosexual pornography that, uninvited, floods my spam-detector resemble heterosexual Christian marraige.

2 Samuel 1:1, 17-27
I am distressed for you, my brother Jonathan;
greatly beloved were you to me;
your love to me was wonderful,
passing the love of women.
What is the Straight Eye for this text?

Even in a closet with the tightest isolation, many a gay Christian has experienced “Aha!” when reading it.

Are black parents pernicious or at least wrong headed when they give their children pictures of a black Jesus?

Are Europeans pernicious or at least wrong headed when they give their children pictures of a Jesus who looks Aryan with blue eyes?

A corollary “Aha!” for lesbian Christians, is Ruth’s pledge:
Entreat me not to leave thee, nor forsake from following after thee. For wither thou goest I shall go, and where thou lodgest, I shall lodge. Thy God shall be my God, and thy people, my people. Where thou diest shall I die, and there I shall be buried. Let naught but death separate thee from me. May God do so to me and more also if I keep not this promise.
Many couples choose to have this read at their weddings. Are they violating the context in which Ruth made her pledge to another woman? Are they wrong to see in this text a full commitment appropriate to marriage?

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