Tuesday, July 23, 2013

In the end what matters most is how well did you love, how well did you live, how well did you learn to let go.

As I walked into a shop in Canterbury, this piece of wisdom looked right out at me. It seems to me it may be the theme of this pilgrim journey. Remember, it is a sabbatical in three movements, reclaiming roots, renewing relationship, refreshing the spirit. It seems to me that in renewing roots, spending time with children and family, I am reminded about love, unconditional, messy, hard, exhilarating, painful, joyous. It seems to me that in renewing relationship, spending time with Rick, seeing amazing sites, just being together in places that are older than our imaginations, living together, loving one another and others, has new meaning. And this part of refreshment is really about letting go. As I have let go of what I think I should be doing, and let the journey unfold and make it's own way, I have been awestruck. 
Canterbury and Canterbury cathedral fed my spirit. I went to Holy Communion in the morning, Evensong, amazing Evensong in the evening, and in between I walked, and read, and relaxed. 




A "full" English breakfast. It's all I need to eat for the whole day!

I have been taking photos of doors, hmm, 

A little crooked


very old


not sure where they all lead or what it's all about. 

This afternoon in Durham, I will see the Lindisfarne Gospels, an illuminated gospel written in the community of St. Cuthbert on the Holy Island. As I was reading about that, a question asked itself of me,

Pilgrim, what are you looking for?


And just so you know it's me behind the camera, here's one of me in front of the camera, kind of....


and just for fun...


who knew, Krispy Kreme in Durham!







Monday, July 15, 2013

It's been a whirlwind

We've been seeing so much I haven't been able to do much posting, and no Internet connections as well. But here's some pictures now!


Venice!


Venice gondola adventure.



Rome


At St. Peter's waiting for the Pope.


Paris



On the Eiffel Tower!

We have concluded our tour of Europe, and are spending a little more time in Paris relaxing. Yesterday we attended church at the American Cathedral in Paris, that was amazing. It was also Bastille Day, lots of people and celebration. 

Rick leaves on Wednesday and I head back to the UK. It's been amazing, and I look forward to some quieter time in England and Scotland.





Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Of windmills and cows

It's been over a week since the kids left and Rick and I have been on our own. A few things about that. I have at times been very lonely for them. Turning to one of them to make an observation, or a joke, or to share a thought. Not having them here is much like not having them in Rapid City. So many important, exciting, fun things happening, life happening all the while we are not together. Each of us is in this new and different place in our lives. And here am I, mom, wife, priest, trying to make sense of it (knowing there is not much sense to be made of it) but also knowing the most important parts are in the moments, the present, not the future or the past. It's hard. That is all. 

Rick and I saw a lot of London. Eucharist and Evensong at Westminster are the highlights for me, followed closely by Spamalot at the theater. We wandered around quite a bit, wandered into the Pride Parade near Picadilly Circus! With more than a week in London, we had the luxury of relaxing, imagine that. It was hard for me, imagine that! 




You're not supposed to take pictures inside Westminster, so this is a clandestine photo just before Evensong began.



And then there is meeting friends in London!
This is Christina O'Hara, a priest in Sioux Falls, and her husband.


In front of Wippell's, a vestment maker, just to say I was there.

So, people are pretty much the same all over, you treat them with respect and dignity and mercy and compassion, and they smile.