Sunday, August 30, 2015

Blessing of the Gries Center at Berkeley Preparatory School

Blessing of the Gries Center
Berkeley Preparatory School
25 August 2015
The Rev. Peter M. Carey, School Chaplain

God, you show us evidence of your creation through logic and mathematics.  Be with our students and their teachers as they strive to become diligent problem solvers.  Be a source of strength and comfort to those who struggle to solve ever more complicated problems.  May these math classrooms be places of great struggles and great successes.

God gives us the gift of beauty and art in our lives. Be ever-present with our students and teachers who seek through music and visual and performing arts to create and display this gift.  May these art spaces inspire our students engage their creativity in new and incredible ways.

God created the heavens and the earth, the sky, vegetation, and every living creature that moves.  Help our students engage fully in the pursuit of scientific inquiry.  May these science spaces be wonderful laboratories of discovery. 

Visit, O blessed Lord, this place of learning with the gladness of your presence, that this may a be a lively center for sound learning, new discovery, and the pursuit of wisdom; and grant that those who teach and those who learn here may find you to be the source of all truth; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Saturday, August 29, 2015

"When did parents get so scared?" - Boston Globe

When did parents get so scared?

When you were a kid, you probably spent hours outside and unsupervised. It’s not that way anymore.

By Melissa Schorr in the Boston Globe   
In the 1977 Newbery award-winning classic I read as a child, Jesse, a lonely boy heading to fifth grade, befriends new girl Leslie, and together they fabricate a fantastic imaginary kingdom in the woods near their homes. Then tragedy descends (spoiler alert): Swinging across a gulley, Leslie slips from a rope, bonks her head, and abruptly dies.
My take-aways from this tale — the woods are dangerous! life is fragile! — must have burrowed deep into my psyche. Thirty years later, the thought of letting my own two daughters, now 6 and 10, wander unsupervised in the woods behind our suburban South Shore home fills me with dread. Perhaps worse, I’ve imbued them with my fears about the dangers lurking there: ticks, poison ivy, the occasional coyote (to say nothing of the darker ones I don’t voice aloud: heroin addicts, vagrants, child molesters). Now I’ve quashed their natural impulse to explore. They hardly ask anymore.
Despite the eye-rolling of our elders and psychologists bemoaning that we are raising “a nation of wimps,” I belong to a cohort of parents ruled by fear. Every mother I ask can recall with pinpoint accuracy a moment of stomach-churning panic when her child went momentarily missing — at a mall, in a hotel lobby, up an elevator, in the Children’s Museum.
Rather than abating with time, the checklist of parental worries has only lengthened as our children have aged, like pencil marks ticking up their growth chart: from SIDS to chemicals in sippy cups, arsenic in apple juice to hormone-laden milk, Lyme disease and meningitis and measles outbreaks, vaccinating, not vaccinating, concussions and trampolines, whole grapes and popcorn, school shootings and cancer-causing sunscreen, overheated cars and negligent nannies, boogeymen kidnappers and friendly neighborhood molesters, and always, above all, the judgment of our fellow parents for failing to be as hypervigilant as they are.
(Of course, it must be noted that all this hand-wringing falls under the hashtag #middleclassproblems. In Ta-Nehisi Coates’s new book, Between the World and Me, he describes a West Baltimore upbringing where “everyone had lost a child, somehow, to the streets, to jail, to drugs, to guns.” Many don’t have the luxury of obsessing whether their children’s bug repellent is DEET-free.)
Anyone who has spent the last decade of bedtimes revisiting classics in children’s literature can’t help but be struck by this evolution in parental oversight. In the Little House on the Prairie series, Laura and Mary trek miles to reach their one-room schoolhouse. In 1968’s Ramona the Pest, Ramona and her friend Howie walk themselves to kindergarten alone. A sequel, Ramona the Brave, begins with Ramona and her older sister Beezus, now 6 and 11, returning from a solo trip to the park — an act that earlier this year practically caused a national panic attack and got Maryland parents Danielle and Alexander Meitiv slapped with charges of neglect.
As Hanna Rosen wrote in her 2014 Atlantic story, “The Overprotected Kid”: “It’s hard to absorb how much childhood norms have shifted in just one generation. Actions that would have been considered paranoid in the ’70s — walking third-graders to school, forbidding your kid to play ball in the street, going down the slide with your child in your lap — are now routine. In fact, they are the markers of good, responsible parenting.”

So what, I want to know, has caused this change? Has all our hovering made things any safer? And what is it doing to our kids?
Read it all at The Boston Globe

Saturday, August 22, 2015

Garrison Keillor on Episcopalians

Garrison Keillor on Episcopalians … 

An essay:
We make fun of Episcopalians for their blandness, their excessive calm, their fear of giving offense, their lack of speed and also for their secret fondness for macaroni and cheese. But nobody sings like them. 
If you were to ask an audience in Des Moines, a relatively Episcopalianless place, to sing along on the chorus of “Michael Row the Boat Ashore,” they will look daggers at you as if you had asked them to strip to their underwear. But if you do this among Episcopalians, they’d smile and row that boat ashore and up on the beach! ….And down the road!

Many Episcopalians are bred from childhood to sing in four-part harmony, a talent that comes from sitting on the lap of someone singing alto or tenor or bass and hearing the harmonic intervals by putting your little head
against that person’s rib cage. It’s natural for Episcopalians to sing in harmony. We are too modest to be soloists, too worldly to sing in unison.

When you’re singing in the key of C and you slide into the A7th and D7th
chords, all two hundred of you, it’s an emotionally fulfilling moment. By
our joining in harmony, we somehow promise that we will not forsake each

I do believe this, people: Episcopalians, who love to sing in four-part
harmony are the sort of people you could call up when you’re in deep
distress. If you are dying, they will comfort you. If you are lonely,
they’ll talk to you. And if you are hungry, they’ll give you tuna salad!
Episcopalians believe in prayer, but would practically die if asked to pray
out loud. Episcopalians like to sing, except when confronted with a new hymn
or a hymn with more than four stanzas.

Episcopalians believe their Rectors will visit them in the hospital, even if
they don’t notify them that they are there. Episcopalians usually follow the
official liturgy and will feel it is their way of suffering for their sins.
Episcopalians believe in miracles and even expect miracles, especially
during their stewardship visitation programs or when passing the plate.
Episcopalians feel that applauding for their children’s choirs will not make
the kids too proud and conceited.

Episcopalians think that the Bible forbids them from crossing the aisle
while passing the peace.

Episcopalians drink coffee as if it were the Third Sacrament.

Episcopalians feel guilty for not staying to clean up after their own
wedding reception in the Fellowship Hall.
Episcopalians are willing to pay up to one dollar for a meal at church.
Episcopalians still serve Jell-O in the proper liturgical color of the
season and Episcopalians believe that it is OK to poke fun at themselves and
never take themselves too seriously.

And finally, you know you are a Episcopalian when:

-It’s 100 degrees, with 90% humidity, and you still have coffee after the
-You hear something really funny during the sermon and smile as loudly as
you can.
-Donuts are a line item in the church budget, just like coffee.
- When you watch a Star Wars movie and they say, “May the Force be with
you,” and you respond, “and also with you.”
- And lastly, it takes ten minutes to say good-bye . . . .

(NOTE: Garrison Keillor attends St. John the Evangelist Episcopal Church in St. Paul, Minnesota)

Tuesday, July 28, 2015


He who is not courageous enough to take risks will accomplish nothing in life. – Muhammad Ali

Monday, July 27, 2015

On Spiritual Capital - posted at Episcopal Cafe

Much food for thought here!


On Spiritual Capital

In a recent op-ed, David Brooks highlights the work of Lisa Miller, a professor of psychology and education at Teachers College, Columbia University concerning our innate spiritual capacities and the importance of cultivating our spirituality
Miller’s core argument is that spiritual awareness is innate and that it is an important component in human development. An implication of her work is that if you care about social mobility, graduation rates, resilience, achievement and family formation, you can’t ignore the spiritual resources of the people you are trying to help.
Miller defines spirituality as “an inner sense of relationship to a higher power that is loving and guiding.” Different people can conceive of this higher power as God, nature, spirit, the universe or just a general oneness of being. She distinguishes spirituality, which has a provable genetic component, from religious affiliation, which is entirely influenced by environment.
Miller’s work finds a link between depression and spirituality, that is especially prevalent in adolescents
Spiritual awareness, she continues, surges in adolescence, at about the same time as depression and other threats to well-being. Some level of teenage depression, she says, should be seen as a normal part of the growth process, as young people ask fundamental questions of themselves. The spiritual surge in adolescence is nature’s way of responding to this normal crisis.
“Taken together,” Miller writes, “research supports the idea of a common physiology underlying depression and spirituality.” In other words, teenagers commonly suffer a loss of meaning, confidence and identity. Some of them try to fill the void with drugs, alcohol, gang activity and even pregnancy. But others are surrounded by people who have cultivated their spiritual instincts.
If Millers hypothesis is correct, it suggests that an important effort needs to be made by the church to reach out to young people and their care-givers if we are to nurture spiritual health.  Does it also suggest that the laissez-faire attitude that many parents have to the church participation of their teen children might need to be re-thought?

Great CBLacrosse Camp in CVille Last Week!

Sunday, July 26, 2015

Our real journey in life is interior

Our real journey in life is interior;
it is a matter of growth, deepening,
and of an ever greater surrender to
the creative action of love and
grace in our hearts.
~Thomas Merton

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

We are already dignified ... !

"Perhaps we just need little reminders from time to time that we are already dignified, deserving, worthy." - Jon Kabat-Zinn

Monday, July 20, 2015

One small step for *a* man...

From "Purple Clover"

It was the day the Earth stood still, all eyes on the moon. On July 20, 1969—exactly 46 years ago today—a half billion people around the globe watched on television as astronaut Neil Armstrong slowly descended a short ladder from the Eagle lunar module and planted the first human footstep on the natural satellite orbiting our planet.
"That was one small step for a man," said Armstrong, though "a" somehow got lost in transmission, "one giant leap for mankind."
If anything, those famous first words were an understatement. Armstrong's moonwalk was the stunning culmination of a challenge issued just eight years earlier by a young president who dared Americans to dream big, come together and ask what they could do to make their country and the world a better place.

Suite Judy Blue Eyes

"This does not mean I don't love you; I do, and that's forever!"

Sunday, July 19, 2015

Psalm 22

Psalm 122

I rejoiced when I heard them announce,
“The time of warfare is past.
No more will brother hate brother
or violence have its way.
No more will they drown out God’s silence
and shut their hearts to his song.”
Pray for peace in the cities
and harmony among the races.
May peace come to live on our streets
and justice within our walls.
With all my heart I will pray
that peace comes to live among us.
For the sake of all earth’s people,
I will do my utmost for peace.

What we fail to see...

As the master grew old and infirm, the disciples begged him not to die. Said the master, “If I did not go, how would you ever see?”

“What is it we fail to see when you are with us?” they asked. But the master would not say. When the moment of his death was near, they said, “What is it we will see when you are gone?”
With a twinkle in his eye, the master said, “All I did was sit on the riverbank handing out river water. After I’m gone, I trust you will notice the river.”

Saturday, July 18, 2015

Because it has always been this way

I think Seth Godin pretty much nailed it in today's reflection!

- - -

"Because it has always been this way"
That's a pretty bad answer to a series of common questions.Why is the format of the board meeting like this? Why do we always structure our annual conference like this? Why is this our policy? Why do we let him decide these issues? Why is this the price?The real answer is, "Because if someone changes it, that someone will be responsible for what happens."Are you okay with that being the reason things are the way they are?~Seth Godin

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

The world is our cloister

"The incarnation was not just about Jesus but is manifested everywhere once you learn how to see spiritually. As Francis said, 'The whole world is our cloister'!” —Richard Rohr, Eager to Love

A prayer attributed to St. Francis

A Prayer Attributed to St. Francis
Lord, make us instruments of your peace. Where there is hatred, let us sow love; where there is injury, pardon; where there is discord, union; where there is doubt, faith; where there is despair, hope; where there is darkness, light; where there is sadness, joy. Grant that we may not so much seek to be consoled as to console; to be understood as to understand; to be loved as to love. For it is in giving that we receive; it is in pardoning that we are pardoned; and it is in dying that we are born to eternal life. Amen.

Friday, May 29, 2015

From LaxMagazine: Thompson, Cummings Earn Second-Straight Tewaaraton Awards

Thompson, Cummings Earn Second-Straight Tewaaraton Awards
from press release
WASHINGTON, May 28, 2015 – The Tewaaraton Foundation has announced University at Albany attackman Lyle Thompson and University of Maryland midfielder Taylor Cummings as the winners of the 15th annual Tewaaraton Award, presented by Under Armour. The Tewaaraton Award annually honors the top male and top female college lacrosse players in the United States.
A finalist for the third consecutive year, Albany's Lyle Thompson is the first men's repeat winner in the history of the Tewaaraton Award. The senior attackman from Onondaga Nation, N.Y., who last year shared the Tewaaraton with brother Miles in 2014, led Albany's top-ranked offense to the America East regular season and Tournament titles, earning his third consecutive conference Player of the Year award and Most Outstanding Player of the America East Tournament. Thompson led NCAA Division I with 6.37 points per game, 121 points and 69 assists.
Thompson's 121 points were second best in NCAA history, trailing only his own mark of 128 points set in 2014. He was named to the USILA All-America first team for the third time and earned the USILA's Lt. Raymond J. Enners Award as the nation's most outstanding player for a second consecutive season. On April 14, he passed 2013 Tewaaraton winner Rob Pannell (354 points) as the all-time leading scorer in NCAA Division I men's lacrosse, and he ended his career with exactly 400 points. Lyle is the third winner from the America East Conference, also including Doug Shanahan (Hofstra, 2001).
The five men's finalists were University of Denver attackman Wesley Berg, Duke University midfielder Myles Jones, University of Notre Dame attackman Matt Kavanagh, Syracuse University attackman Kevin Rice, and Thompson.

Lyle Thompson's acrobatic plays and preternatural feeding ability made him a three-time finalist for the award, and its first two-time winner. His 400 points and 225 assists are career NCAA marks for DI men's lacrosse, and his final two seasons stand as the two top point performances in single-season history. (Rich Barnes)

Reigning Tewaaraton winner and NCAA Tournament Most Outstanding Player Taylor Cummings helped Maryland capture a second consecutive national championship, leading the Terrapins with 100 points, 37 assists, 41 ground balls, 143 draw controls and 35 caused turnovers. The junior from Ellicott City, Md., earned the Big Ten Midfielder of the Year award and was named all-conference for a third time as the Terrapins earned the top seed in the NCAA tournament. She also was named to the IWLCA All-America first team for the third time. Cummings' per game averages for points, ground balls, draw controls and caused turnovers were tops in the Big Ten, and she ranked first in the nation in points and fifth in draw controls.

A do-everything midfielder for Maryland, Taylor Cummings is the fourth player to win back-to-back Tewaaraton Awards, and is the fifth Maryland winner in the past six seasons. (John Strohsacker)

Cummings is one of four players to win the Tewaaraton Award in consecutive seasons, joining Kristen Kjellman (2006, 2007), Hannah Nielsen (2008, 2009) and Katie Schwarzmann (2012, 2013). She is Maryland's sixth Tewaaraton winner, joining Jen Adams (2001), Caitlyn McFadden (2010), Schwarzmann (2012, 2013), and is the first winner from the Big Ten Conference. Maryland players have won five of the last six women's Tewaaraton Awards.

Read the rest HERE at LaxMagazine