Pastoral Response to Desolation and Despair

Pastoral Response to Desolation and Despair

 On this home by Horror haunted – tell me truly, I implore —

“Is there – is there balm in Gilead? – tell me – tell me, I implore!”

Quoth the Raven “Nevermore.”

The Raven, Edgar Allen Poe

Go up to Gilead, and take balm,

O virgin daughter Egypt!

In vain you have used many medicines;

there is no healing for you.

The nations have heard of your shame,

and the earth is full of your cry;

for warrior has stumbled against warrior;

both have fallen together.

Jeremiah 46:11 Continue reading “Pastoral Response to Desolation and Despair”

Ad Orientem: Uniting Words With Action

Ad Orientem: Uniting Words With Action

When I fall on my knees with my face to the rising sun,  O Lord, have mercy if you please

The irony of this wonderfully composed Eucharistic hymn is that the pastor leading it has no intention of doing either (falling on their knees or facing liturgical east). An equally great irony is that it was introduced into our hymnal the same year that our Book of Worship instructed us to stop doing these things. Perhaps, if the words were changed to fit our actions, “As I stand on my feet to praise the ones with whom I eat,” then it would add more import to the next clause: “O Lord, have mercy…” Continue reading “Ad Orientem: Uniting Words With Action”