Referring to Canon Elizabeth+ Kaeton as 'Sistah Liz' in an earlier blog, brought an e-mail from a fellow Anglican in the Northern U.S. The gentleman in question had been referred to me months ago for what I'll call fraternal support in a very personal question, and I'd mentioned this blog in passing.
Responding to my 'Sistah Liz' in this space he inquired about my skin pigmentation- 'black men are so-' he went on to reveal more than I needed to know about his personal fantasy life.
Needless to say he didn't get an answer to his question, though we have since both e-mailed and spoken on the phone.
For the record -though it shouldn't be an issue in this forum-my mother is Welsh born and my late father of blessed memory though English born, had Welsh origins- thus accounting for our rather unique family name. (Which should still leave unanswered the question of pigmentation if you know anything about contemporary Wales).
Likewise, for that same record, Canon Kaeton and I have never met. My affection and my deep appreciation for Elizabeth+'s articulate grace and on-line presence are purely that- on-line. My only claim to kinship with Elizabeth+, +Gene, Susan+, ++Katherine or ++Peter ( all previously cited as brothers or sisters in this space) is Christ Jesus and the seal of the baptism we share.
And if that's not enough I'd better be finding myself an editor for this space!
Which brings to mind, an earlier criticism of an earlier post in which I admitted that in our household Presiding Bishop ++Katherine Jefferts Schori is remembered as the Great ++Katherine.
My respondant suggested that perhaps as a Canadian writing from Montreal I shouldn't be commenting on events within the Church 'south of the border.' And once again, my only defense- the only one I need, is detailed above.
The Canadian/U.S. border doesn't even register on Christ's heart!
And as to the Great ++Katherine, I stand by my understanding that she and +Gene continue to be great & wondrous blessings to the Church and to the world in these dark and troubling times. One has to look no further than the report of ++Katherine's sermon at the opening Holy Eucharist in New Orleans to see God at work.
“Beloved is the word before each of our names” she reminds us before also speaking to much of the “judgmental language” and how it cuts off the chance for conversation. “None of us is wholly free of blame for we have all sought to judge those who oppose us.” She spoke of “outcasts among us who have not felt beloved,” and suggested that “we need to suspend judgment…and see God’s beloved before us.” Her closing words? “May we be peace for all who are gathered here and all those who await our actions.” (All of this reported in the Integrity U.S.A. blog 'Walking with Integrity')
Where do I see ++Katherine leading us? Towards the same radical grace Christ embodied in His earthly ministry and in His long-suffering passion for all of God's Creation.
Which brings me back to another radiant sister- Canon Elizabeth Kaeton who attached to a recent powerful post what I believe could serve as a personal standard in our individual practice:
Lord, plunge me deep into a sense of sadness
at the pain of my sisters &
inflicted by war
that I may learn to cry as a child
until my tears baptize me
into a person who touches with care
those I now touch in prayer.
Believing as I do, that among other things, what the Holy Spirit is working in the Church and humanity at this time is a call to a non-dualistic place the other side of each and every fear, where there is only 'we' and 'other' and 'difference' are only archaic artifacts of a primitive, fearful, doubting of God's love, I can only be profoundly grateful for this call to God not to give up on us. Thank-you Elizabeth+.
For God's Greatest Blessing to God's Greater Glory- Always Unconditionally !