Well, Texas sure was fun! Good food, great company, and a chance to experience a different Episcopal liturgy. How wonderful to be in a downtown city church where they announce that the "Gay, Lesbian and Everyone Else... or GLEE Club... will have a potluck dinner!" St. David's was rather large (three levels, and a parking garage to boot!). And yet the atmosphere wasn't stuffy or unfriendly. Such a nice backdrop to a Sunday with lessons from the Letter of James about how one treats the poor person vs. the one in all the finery... and one of my all-time favs from Mark with the Syrophoenician woman ("'Xcuse me, Messiah boy; who you callin' a dog here?!?!") Such a great set of lessons on a Sunday when I'm the stranger in the crowd. Oddly, the same thing happened last year when I was in Durham, NC, and was present for the service when the reading was the parallel story from Matthew's gospel. I don't plan these things! Really, I don't.
I also took some time to explore favorite haunts in Austin... namely Sweetish Hill Bakery, BookPeople, and Anderson's Coffee. And we had a wonderful time celebrating my friend Terry's mother's 85th birthday. The family rented out a room at a Middle Eastern restaurant called Phara's, and we were spellbound by the belly dancer who balanced a sword on her head... her hips... and her chest. It was fantastic!
I also took a walk around the campus of the Episcopal Seminary of the Southwest. It wasn't open due to the holiday weekend, which was too bad. But it was small, and the neighborhood seemed fairly quiet. I was really sorry not to have had a chance to go in and look at the Episcopal Church Archives. Perhaps another time.
Overall, it was an active and fun 48-hours in Texas. And a really nice and badly needed get-away.
More theological thinking to come: stay tuned!