Emmanuel comes a-singing

I didn't grow up in denominational tradition that observed the bluesy, brooding season of Advent. I don't remember preparing for Jesus' birth so much as it simply happening.

But when I 'discovered' Advent while attending an Episcopal Church in college it opened up a whole new spiritual vocabulary for me - grief, longing, impatience, hopeful waiting, in-between spaces. These were words my closeted queer self needed to hear and it was a gift to find a season of the church year that created space to integrate my spiritual life and named the holy discomfort I felt so profoundly.

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we need beauty as well as bread

Over the past year, I have found renewed joy, nourishment, and a profound sense of place in nature. Working in both northern and southern California has put me close to some of the country’s best national parks and I have been grateful for the resources and the time to visit several of them. 

Driving and especially hiking through such varied topography – from giant redwoods to high desert, and seaside cliffs to peaks in the Sierras – has filled me with wonder. I have been humbled by the astounding variety of plants and trees, of landscapes carved from the slow movement of glaciers or the fiery power of a volcanic eruption. The expansiveness of sky and sea has inspired prayers of gratitude. The sound of an ecstatic bird chorus or the twilight gurgle of frogs has motivated me to lift my voice in praise of the Creator.

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