Showing posts from September, 2017

Saturday (St Jerome)

Until the mid-afternoon, I processed a load of emails and tasks, refined and printed my homily for tomorrow (St Mary's, Robinson), did reconstructive surgery on a homily from 1996 to make it appropriate for use next weekend at St Stephen's in Harrisburg, and developed my synod address to the rough draft stage. Then, after an abbreviated walk, I threw the usual items into a suitcase and hit the road for Robinson, where I am about to bed down at the Best Western (alas, no Hilton property here).

St Michael & All Angels

Mostly a day of travel. Still discombobulated in my biological clock from the Alaska trip, so I slept in just a bit. One the road from Oconomowoc, WI around 9:30. Stopped a St Matthew's, Bloomington en route for a word with Fr Halt. Home around 3:00, and I've been trying pretty much to decompress since then. Processed a ton of email.


I loved getting home last night, and it was hard to leave it again this morning, but duty called. On the road toward Nashotah House at 8:30, arriving at 1:15. Heard the second half of visiting Presiding Bishop Michael Curry's Q&A with the campus community, then spend a little but of time with him and his staff as he recorded a short video for the seminary's publicity folks. A couple of hours of downtime allowed me to sit in the library atrium, process some email, and take a phone call. I also got to look at some old back issues (this time from 1978) of The Living Church, which is always a favorite sport of mine when I'm there. At 4:30 it was time to get back to Adams Hall and get vested for Evensong. At the conclusion of the office, and after the new students had taken the matriculation oath and signed the book, I presented Bishop Curry with the Archbishop Ramsey Medal, after which he mesmerized the assembly in his usual way. Drinks and a "grazing" dinner foll

Wednesday (St Vincent de Paul)

A grueling day of travel, beginning with a 1:20am departure from Fairbanks. Layovers in Seattle and Dallas. Finally pulled into our driveway in Springfield around 10:30pm. It's always wonderful to come home.

Tuesday (Lancelot Andrewes)

And that's a wrap on the Alaska House of Bishops meeting. Here's what we did today .

Monday (St Sergius)

Kind of a cipher of a day in the House of Bishops, except for a teeny bit of excitement toward the end. Read all about it here .

The Lord's Day (XVI Pentecost)

I have now eaten roast moose and moose parts I don't want to fully understand. Here are all the details.


Day 3 of the 2017 fall House of Bishops meeting , wherein we ventured boldly into the wilds of the Yukon Flats, and were duly amazed.

Friday (Philander Chase)

Check out the Day 2 action from the House of Bishops meeting here .

St Matthew

Once again, my daily reports from the meeting of the House of Bishop will appear on my "classic" blog.

Wednesday (John Coleridge Patteson et al)

A long day of travel, about 16 hours door to door--Springfield to Seattle to Fairbanks. Got checked in at the hotel where everything is happening, then enjoyed dinner with some good friends from out Class of 2011 bishops & spouses community.

Tuesday (St Theodore of Tarsus)

Usual weekday AM routine. Morning Prayer in the cathedral. Made lodging arrangements for my next visit to Nashotah House. Acceded to Dean Andy Hook's request that I pick out columbarium niches for Brenda and me, just so we have dibs when the time comes. (Chances are, though, we'll probably have ourselves planted at Nashotah.) Confirmed via phone that I indeed did remember to reserve a hotel room in Fairbanks for the House of Bishops meeting. There had been a moment of panic earlier. Responded by email to a couple of queries from diocesan clergy on disparate matters, and one from a lay leader. Attended to some dangling details pertaining to the Synod Mass. Took a fine-tooth comb to the text of a homily for Proper 21 that I used several years ago, and made several appropriate emendations to make it usable on October 1 at St Mary's, Robinson. Took a brisk walk west on Lawrence to Walnut, then north to Edwards and back over to Second.  Jumped on a couple of late-arrivi

The Lord's Day (XV Pentecost)

Sundays are always the highlight of my week. Today I got to share the Holy Mysteries and preach the Word of God with the people of St Mark's, West Frankfort. The drive back to Springfield went smoothly and I was back home right at 2:00. Light errands and a ball game to watch. Can't complain.

Sermon for Proper 19

St Mark's, West Frankfort -- Matthew 18:21-35 Brenda and I, as you may know, have three grown children, two of whom are married and have made us grandparents three times. Because they don’t live nearby, we don’t get to see the grandchildren nearly as often as we’d like. So, we look for surrogates. When we’re in a public place, like a restaurant, or a train or an airplane, we’ve gotten good at noticing young children about the age of our granddaughters. When we can, it’s fun to connect with these kids—make eye contact, smile, make a funny face, play peek-a-boo … whatever. When we were traveling last June, we walked by a couple with their infant child at a table in a restaurant. Our doting must have been obvious, and the baby girl must not have slept very well the previous night, because they said, “Would you like to take her and raise her and give her back to us when she’s 18?” As our children each went off to college, graduated, moved back home—well, two of them did—and eventua

Saturday (St Ninian)

Took it fairly easy today. Got in a good long walk in the morning. Did a bit of laundry. Watched an entire Cubs game, which doesn't happen very often. Packed and hit the road at 6:30. Camping out in Mt Vernon ahead of tomorrow's visitation to St Mark's, West Frankfort.


Usual weekday AM routine. Morning Prayer in the cathedral. Attended by email to an ongoing pastoral/administrative matter. Began developing my sermon outline for Proper 23 (October 15 at St Matthew's, Bloomington) into a full-fledged rough draft. Interrupted this work for an 11am appointment with a priest from outside the diocese who is interested in rectifying that situation and coming to work here. We had a very productive conversation. Went to lunch with said priest, along with the mutual friend from St Louis who drove him to Springfield, and Brenda, at Cooper's Hawk on the west side. Returned (on the late side--long lunch) to finish my homiletical work. Friday prayers--at the cathedral organ bench playing through material from the Hymnal 1940. Discarded relics suddenly become newly-discovered treasures, fueling good prayer. Evening Prayer in the cathedral. Left for home on the early side, around 4:30.

Holy Cross

What better way to begin the day than by offering Morning Prayer while on a treadmill?! (thank-you, technology) I didn't pray the entire time I was on it, but it did consume about the first 20 minutes.  At my desk and attacking my to-do list just a little later than the normal time, given my successful attempt at synergy.  Attended via email to an emerging administrative/pastoral concern. Worked on my homily for the synod Mass, taking it from "developed outline" to "rough draft." Hand-wrote notes of greeting to the clergy and spouses with birthdays and anniversaries in October.  Spoke by phone with one of our priests on an urgent personal pastoral matter. Attended Mass for Holy Cross day in the cathedral chapel. Lunch from HyVee, eaten at home (pulled pork). Spoke by phone, substantively but relatively briefly, with the Acting Dean of Nashotah House. Handled a handful of emails as they came (if I can do so in under two minutes, that's my policy).

Wednesday (St Cyprian)

Task planning and a good bit of internet reading at home. Morning Prayer in the cathedral. Prepped for the midday Mass. Conferred briefly with Paige about an issue pertaining to the Springfield Current. Responded by email to one of our clergy over a pastoral matter. Sent a substantive email to the Chancellor soliciting his counsel on an emerging matter. Responded at some length to a letter (fairly long) from a member of the greater Nashotah House constituency. Took a brief rapid walk in the neighborhood. Presided and preached at Mass for the lesser feast of St Cyprian of Carthage. Lunch from China 1, eaten at home. Blew a frustrating hour on some personal business. (The IRS and I have divergent opinions on a particular detail, and they apparently don't actually speak to anyone on the phone, despite the fact that they have a phone number.) Took another walk, first to clear my head, then to conceive the broad strokes of my address to synod. Got back to the office and spen

Tuesday (John Henry Hobart)

Out of the house earlyish to keep an 8:20 appointment with my primary care doctor. Morning Prayer in the cathedral, a bit on the later-than-usual side. Consulted briefly with Paige on a website issue. Edited, refined, and printed the working text of my homily for this Sunday (St Mark's, West Frankfort). Took a brisk 20-minute walk in the immediate environs. Assembled a package of various liturgical and musical items pertaining to the synod Eucharist and sent them off as email attachments to Fr Halt. Lunch from La Bamba, eaten at home. Took care of an administrative chore pertaining to last weekend's visit to my Mississippi DEPO parish last weekend. For various frustrating technical reasons, it took longer than it should have. Chaired a two-hour meeting via conference call of the Nashotah House Board of Directors. Processed the slew of emails that had arrived during the conference call. Evening Prayer in the cathedral.

The Lord's Day (XIV Pentecost)

Preached the Word of God, presided at the celebration of the Holy Mysteries, confirmed three adults, and baptized a nine-year old girl named Trinity--all at Trinity Church in Yazoo City, Mississippi, to which I provide episcopal oversight and pastoral care as a delegate of Mississippi's bishop, Brian Seage. For a bishop, it really doesn't get any more fun than that. Brenda and I hit the road right at 1pm and pulled into our driveway at 10:45, having been delayed significantly in northern Mississippi by something (we yet know not what) that tool *all* traffic off the northbound lanes of I-55. Lots of emergency vehicles, so it was certainly nothing good.

Sermon for Proper 18

Trinity, Yazoo City, MS -- Matthew 18:15-20 , Romans 13:8-14, Ezekiel 33:7-11 In these days of sophisticated practices around human resources, when someone quits a job, or sometimes even when they’re fired, they’re often asked to participate in something called an exit interview. The employer wants some feedback. What’s it like to work at that place? What do they do well? What could they do better. That sort of thing. Now, people leave church congregations all the time, I’m sorry to say. Of course, it’s pretty rare for someone to get “fired” from a church—as a parishioner, that is. But people certainly “resign” in a fairly steady stream, for all sorts of reasons, sometimes loudly and sometimes quietly. Yet, churches don’t do exit interviews, do they? Many would say that we should, but we don’t. But if we did, if churches did do exit interviews, what would we hear from those who are on their way out the back door? Well, a few would certainly mention stuff like music or preaching o

Saturday (Martyrs of Memphis)

Always aware of the horrific weather event playing out in Florida, Brenda and I enjoyed our day with clergy and laity from Trinity, Yazoo City, MS. This included a trip up the road to Cleveland, MS, home of the new Grammy Museum. Since I knew next to nothing about popular music already, I learned quite a lot, and it's very well-done. Dinner with vestry and spouses at a place a handful of miles out of town with lots of "local color." They had fried crawfish tails, who what's not to like?

Friday (Nativity of the BVM)

A day of travel ahead of my visitation to my DEPO parish of Trinity, Yazoo City in the Diocese of Mississippi. Brenda and I were on the road southbound right at 11am and we pulled into the Hampton Inn, Yazoo City at 9:20pm.


As I look back on the day, beyond starting if off with some treadmill time, it was pretty much devoted to preparing for the 140th annual synod of the Diocese of Springfield. I liaised with the rector of the host parish, developed the guts of the liturgy booklet (which included going on to Church Publishing's "Rite Song" website to purchase the graphics files of some service music in the hymnal), and brought my homily for the occasion from "developed outline" to "rough draft" stage. Outside of that, I took Brenda to a dental appointment and worked on my homily for Proper 19 (September 17 at St Mark's, West Frankfort). 


Usual AM routine. Morning Prayer in the cathedral. Prepped to preside and preach at the midday Mass. Spent more time than I would have liked chasing down some suspicious charges on my personal checking account. This involved a trip down to Illinois National Bank. It's pretty well resolved now. Attended to some details pertaining to the next meeting of the Forward Movement board. Consulted with Paige briefly on a website issue. Began work on my homily for the synod Eucharist. Once again, reported for duty in the cathedral chapel at 12:15, but nobody joined me. Lunch at home. Leftovers. Attended to a late-arriving email from the American Friends of the Anglican Centre in Rome. Got back to work on my synod homily, eventually ending up with a developed outline from which I can produce a rough draft next week. Worked on the in-process synod Eucharist, focusing on an occasion-appropriate Prayers of the People. Gathered the comments of the clergy with whom I had vetted the dra

Tuesday (Ss Boris & Gleb)

Daily and weekly task planning at home. Morning Prayer in the cathedral. Attended to one of the many balls in play in connection with the leadership transition at Nashotah House. Spent the balance of the morning meeting with Fr Mike Newago, the new Mission Strategy Developer for the northern three deaneries of the diocese. This was essentially our first working meeting, so there were several bases to touch. I'm excited about having him with us. Lunch at home. Leftovers. Tied up some personal loose ends relating to the morning meeting. Edited, refined, and printed the working text for this Sunday's homily (Trinity, Yazoo City, my DEPO parish in the Diocese of Mississippi). I'm behind in my prep work for next month's annual diocesan synod. So I got to work planning the synod Eucharist. Decided we'll do the votive Mass "Of the Reign of Christ." Selected appropriate hymns and service music to go with that theme. Made some notes on related loose ends tha

The Lord's Day (XIII Pentecost)

The beginning of the day was almost decadently merciful: We didn't have to leave the house until 9:30, arriving in Morton about an hour later ahead of the regular 11am Mass at All Saints'. Presided, preached, and confirmed two adults. Then out to a Mexican lunch with Fr Matthew Dallman. Home around 3:00. Sunday is invariably my favorite day of the week.

Sermon for Proper 17

All Saints, Morton -- Matthew 16:21-28 Unless you’ve been completely hiding under a rock for last week, you’ve seem pictures and videos of the flooding and destruction in the Houston area in the wake of Hurricane Harvey. And unless you’re totally without an empathetic bone in your body, you’ve been horrified and heartbroken by the descriptions of how this has been a catastrophe for tens of thousands of people, and a dislocating huge inconvenience for a couple of million more. Through my church connections and family connections, I know lots of people in the Houston area, so it’s been more than abstract for me. There are names and faces attached to the suffering. Of course, there’s nothing unusual or extraordinary about any of this. Suffering and pain are all around us, part of the daily fabric of our lives. We suffer personally, for ourselves, and we suffer vicariously, along with others, both those whom we know and love and those whom we only read about or hear about. We suffer in

Friday (David Pendleton Oakerhater)

Attended 8am MP & Mass in St Mary's Chapel, Nashotah House Went to breakfast in the refectory. Met with the Director of Institutional Research Mett with the Dean of Finance & Administration Ht the road southbound around 10:30. While en route, kept a phone date with someone doing fundraising feasibility research for the possible establishment of an Anglican Centre in Santiago de Compostela. Got home around 3:00. Unpacked, changed clothes, caught up on email. At Brenda's insistence, made yet another visit to the urgent care clinic. Over the past six days I have developed "angry" insect bite sites on my arms and legs that are getting worse rather than better. A couple of them look infected. So I'm on a course of oral antibiotics, and have two topical ointments (one steroidal, one not--the latter for use on broken skin). Never a dull moment.