Thursday, May 31, 2012

Church is Everyday

Yay, Steven Colbert. A Catholic.
So I started my job at a Director of Religious Education at one of my local UU churches. I am working almost every day getting up and running as a DRE, and it got me to thinking about that peculiar Judeo-Christian habit of "doing church" (or schule) once a week. After all, a lot of my weekly workload is gearing up for a big to-do on Sunday that includes others -in worship services or in class.

Most of the time when I have felt particularly spiritual or religious (see my earlier definition of religious to see why I equate them), it has been when I have a daily anchor in my life- a practice of sitting, devotion, a spell that needs tending daily, etc. And in all those activities, I am an active participant, not a passive observer. Yet the idea of church/schule is where we "participate" with attendance- perhaps singing along or call and response, but often never crafting the worship service per se. After all, in Judeo-Christian traditions, we have clergy for that.

 In my Witchcraft tradition, if you are an initiate you ARE clergy, and if you are not initiated then you have yet to become a part of the tradition. So I have a unique perspective coming to all of this, I realize. (Perhaps I sought out such a tradition because of my personal needs- in order to stay clean/kala and centered/aligned I actually need a daily anchor. Perhaps it is a weakness. But I find that if I do not have this anchor, I tend to get caught up in the mundane world and its trivia, people are their drama, and all sorts of things that aren't actually important.)

So the idea of just attending worship services weekly has never struck me as particularly religious (again, see my definition). Perhaps that is why I was drawn to UUs (and Quakers, among other religions other than my own) in the first place. While they meet weekly, it is more of a "touchstone" practice. They do the work of church throughout the week- focusing on social justice matters and building community Monday-Saturday, and then come together to celebrate and meditate together on results and work yet to be done on Sunday. Or at least the places that I have attended seem to do that.

It got me to thinking. Church really is every day. To "do church", one needs to have a commitment that extends beyond the "showing up phase" on Sundays and gets into a daily or every few days regularity. Church is a framework- a lens with which we see the world and a tool with which to bless it. Time to go to church.

1 comment:

  1. Dear Ms. Lilly:

    First time I got in months to leisurely read your blogs. THank you for this (and for the others I haven't read yet).

    Love that Colbert post -- not because it is Christian, but what it said about helping the poor. A lot of us tend to see the poor as a blot in society's beauty (whatever). We tend to forget that we (and I mean everone) created this situation. The poor are nt going away until Society gets its act in dealing with the situation that causes and maintain poverty. Those with means really have to help--not only in dole-outs (which should be short-term), but also in the "teach them to fish" kind of program, as well as creating opportunities for them to earn.

    I am writing based on what I've seen among my people, the FIlipinos. Perhaps, the situation is different in your country--like it's a matter of creating jobs for your people.


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