Started with Rev. Long again…the crowd is about 300, but he’s still preaching well. He could have merged some “squinting” ideas from yesterday with some of his Matthew 25 remarks today. A good start for the day.
So, we really get sailing at 10:45 with a stage with two ladies who started life as boys (or men). Janet Mock is a beautiful young transgender lady, who is an accomplished editor and tv personality. Her interviewer was a Ms. Monica Roberts, who was an airline steward who became a stewardess in 1994 in mid-career. Ms. Roberts is 6’2″; Janet is a cute, little lady, who was 18 when she had her operation in Hawaii.
It is interesting to hear people speak about their experiences and the challenges remaining today. They are both eloquent spokespersons (Janet is far more facile with delivery). Each of them were asking each other questions and the format delivered lots of information.
We had a 12:45 date to hear, “Why the pews are emptying”. It is one of those questions which intrigues us, since we have become involved with the Chapel by the Sea in Captiva and have enjoyed our church experiences. We have also become enamored of John Shelby Spong from our Chautauqua visits. Spong is 82 year old Episcopalian Bishop and trying to create a new reformation for Christianity…one with appeal to a broader audience and a more compelling story…full of love and inclusion; rather than the multiple sects of today’s Christianity.
This meeting was strange, since it was sponsored by the Catholics and held at the Methodist House. Run by a priest named Father Jim Lawlor, he involved the crowd in the discussion and seemed much more open to change than most Catholics in our experience. Interesting. People unloaded about women in the church, the liturgy is boring, the priests should be married, etc. Catharsis for Catholics.
Nancy was giving lots of advice from the audience to “fix” the Catholics…and never once did she disclose that she was a Presbyterian.
The afternoon speaker of choice was an amazing lady named Lucy Kalinithi, whose husband died of lung cancer just over a year ago. He wrote the book called, “When Breath Becomes Air”. She is so attractive and well-spoken and excited to be spreading his message about dying with dignity and thoughtfulness. Her 2 year old daughter was here with her.
It was pouring during her presentation with actual thunder rolling through. I think her husband was in the room somewhere. She read from his book and tears were everywhere. Donna got the book on Tuesday and was finished it by this morning…she recommends that we all read it.
Tonight we’re headed to Westfield, NY (right above Lake Erie…about 20 miles away) to Brazill’s on Main…a great family restaurant. Craig Scott is going with us. Maybe we will get a group photo. We’ll see…I need Cindy Roach to take charge of the camera at times like these.