News from Ken Gray/Letter from Indigenous Scholar re Climate Change

Happy Monday St. Stephen’s friends.

So much fun to share with you yesterday around the theme of Lent and Gardens. Many folks did their homework and arrived with garden stories, impressions and connections to share with the community. We only had time for a few; in future I may set up a blog for sharing in a more organized way. Part of my sermon included the following letter from an Indigenous Scholar to her children and grandchildren. Here is her text:

“To my precious children and grandchildren: I long to leave you a world of beauty and goodness, of laughter and love. And indeed, these will never die. Yet I will also leave you a world of disaster at a scale unknown to any of the humans who preceded us.

               I would give my life to reverse the runaway climate crisis that we bequeath unwittingly to you and your friends. You will face a reality that seems to defy the human capacity for survival and flourishing: the climate catastrophe into which previous generations—including my own—have hurled you.

However, I do believe with the core of my being that the great Mystery whom Christian traditions call God will redeem this good Creation and bring it into fullness of life for all, despite the raging fury of climate change. God will use human beings and other creatures and elements of the Earth community in that saving work.”

(I hope you will always be able to see) the astounding goodness, sensual beauty, and infinite meaning of life here in Garden Earth . . . Earth is meant to be a paradise for its creatures to relish with all of our senses. Do remember, even in bleak times, to savor the goodness and sensual beauty that surrounds us!”

I also shared an idea for the creative use of the grounds that surround St. Stephen’s. Such use would meet several objectives: To engage helpfully and creatively with our community; to create an informational and experiential space for the discovery of the beauty of creation; to work with local partners in a literacy project; to share with others our experience of the glory of God discovered in Creation; and finally to create opportunities for social interaction with a generation younger than most of us. I must add that Parish Council has not yet given assent to the project—my political process in this instance is poor. To view what I recently discovered in Delta go here.

This coming week the sermon time will be replaced with Lectio Divina. LD is a prayerful way to engage with and reflect upon the scripture of the day, in this case the third chapter of the Gospel according to John. Nicodemus meets with Jesus under the cover of darkness—the meeting has the air of mystery about it. This Sunday, the preacher is God. This Sunday, we the congregation enter into the conversation, not unlike the way Nicodemus discovers and delights in Jesus who is  the light which shines in every darkness. Come and see what you think about God, about Jesus, about the text, and the style of encounter.

Also this week I am pleased to welcome Al Crossley on piano. A retired band teacher at Summerland Secondary. Following retirement Al has entered into the wonderful world of Jazz piano study and performance, de rigeur. Some pictures of Al at a recent performance with Larry Crawford and Friends can be viewed here. Use the slideshow feature ➤ and enjoy.

Justice and compassion to all, Ken