"It was imprudent of us, in the first place, to become authors. We could have become something regular, but we managed not to.
We were lucky, but we were also determined." Roy Blount Jr

"I don’t change the facts to enhance the drama. I think of it the other way round, the drama has got to fit the facts,
and it’s your job as a writer to find the shape in real life."
Hilary Mantel

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Things Seen & Done

It's a busy time and place. I'm contributing to various other blogs related to this event so have been remiss in keeping up my personal blog. So, here's some catch-up material!

We welcome visitors from distant places, who share their experience and wisdom.

After consenting to the election of any new bishop, we call that person to the front of the House for recognition.

We track the fashion choices made by our fellow deputies.

We play with our food.

During short breaks, we sing favourite hymns.

We celebrate achievements.

We conduct intense post-vote analysis.

We greet certain distinguished friends from the other House who might drop by.

We send each other notes and share news updates.

Most of all, we belong to a vibrant, prayerful community--with its own protocols and procedures. Our moments of great seriousness are lightened by our moments of levity.

At the conclusion of yesterday's morning legislative session, a large group of ecumenical leaders from the LA area joined us in the Hall of Deputies. A vast representation of many faiths.

Three members of this group--a Jewish cantor, a Muslim, and an Episcopal priest-- shared their traditions with us through their voices. They sang separately and in unison, and the blend of their intercessions was sublime. One of the most moving and memorable moments in the entire Convention.

I accompanied 2 friends to a place I'd never seent, the 2nd floor of the Convention Center. Office space for committees is there, there's a press room, hospitality areas for Bishop's spouses, exhibition space, and a chapel.

We stopped first in Program, Budget & Finance room. It's enormous! This committee has worked so very hard, and tomorrow they will make their budget presentation to a Joint Session (Deputies and Bishops together.)

One member of PB&F is relieved the budget is at the printer!

The Liturgical Art Exhibition was a feast for the eyes and the spirit.

These panels tell the story of Ruth in needlework.

A small selection of the art on display.

The Three Kings.

Two of the Three.

The Chapel.

During our afternoon session, the Committee on World Mission presented its report on the amended version of D025 sent back to us by the House of Bishops.

"It's time to 'git 'er done'" said a deputy from Virginia as we debated a resolution that had already passed our House and the Bishops' by surprisingly large margins. As before, we did a vote by orders. We first record our votes by writing our names and checking a box.

Another happy, historic vote!

Our deputation's chair and senior member, pictured above, then uses an electronic voting device to report the outcome in the lay order and the clerical order.

Once again D025 passed overwhelmingly.

New t-shirt!

My seatmate went up to the podium today, as Secretary of the Communications Committee.

We had a very brief Province 1 (New England dioceses) Caucus. Then some of us walked all the way to Disneyland Village for our Province 1 Dinner at Naples restaurant. The Bishop arrived in time to eat with us. However, he had to leave for a meeting before the balloon girl could finish making a special bishop's mitre for him.

In our Bishop's absence, a priest from NH had possession of it. She also had responsiblity for getting it back to the hotel.

The House of Bishops meets on Level 3 of the Convention Center. Maybe I'll make it way up there on Thursday or Friday. I hear it's a different universe from ours.

I've relied on the Chap for updates from home. But now that he's at an out-of-state conference himself, I've no source of news. Our girls are at the kennel, but when they come out they'll be 2-parent doggies again!

I'm working on a photo essay called "Dog of the Day"--every time I see a canine, more often than you might think, I take a picture. Lots more photos to come!

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