Saturday, August 13, 2011

Keeping Ada's vision alive

By the time I reach the church, Iris has already made a  friendship with Lily from Woodshed. Typical of her warmth and openness and curiosity. She’s here from the Halbreich Foundation to see what’s going on with West-Park. I’m excited to finally have her here and  give her   the whole tour of our building and all that’s happening, especially what Woodshed has created. The bottom line is, West-Park would not be here, not have a chance at making its vision come true, without Halbreich.
I take Iris and her husband Nathan next door for breakfast at Barney Greengrass.The quintessential New York experience.
I will spend the day with her. We’ll visit the attorney. Go to visit my friend Ray Bagnuolo at Jan Hus, our crosstown sister church.  Then to the cemetery to visit Ada’s grave. Ada’s vision is kept alive through Halbreich. She founded at Jan Hus the first “free thinkers”  AA 12 step group, called We Humanists.   And was one of those rare individuals who believed that there were enough groups funding direct needs charities. She wanted to support change. Work to make a more just and humane world. And I am honored and humbled that she trsuted me to help keep that vision aiive.
As we set out, Deacon James is sweeping the steps and sidewalk. I introduce James and Iris. 
It’s late when I return to the church. I can tell Danielle is still here becsause her computer is still hooked up. But I can’t seem to find her. Shizuru, the Japanese dancer arrives. She performed here in June with the Harmonia Opera Company and also with my neighbor Ric in his last concert. She wants to schedule some performances. And also deal with some visa issues.
Danielle has been dealing with busted pipes and drain issues. She’s explaining all this to me when RL walks in with Clifford. To follow up on bathroom issues. And what might come next. And to talk about planning a fitting memorial service for P&G. A night to honor the communitty that grew there.  For the final concerts that never happened. Nothing would make me happier. (Well, actually a lot would, but this would make me feel like we’d been there the way I want us to be there.)
I give thanks everyday for Ada’s trust in me. And pray that I might remain faithful to that trust.

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