Friday, January 31, 2014

Chim, chimney Chim, chimney Chim, chim, cher-ee…


It’s been a long, cold, slow week. The continued frigid weather slows things down. Keeps us inside. Hunkered down, so to speak. Desiring hibernation. My own fatigue and virus doesn’t help as I just want to stay under the covers.

Tuesday there’s little time spent in the office on the way  to the Presbytery meeting in Harlem. Good to go to a meeting for once where West-Park is not at risk. Our business this time involves presenting an overture to our national General Assembly this summer on a study of  current US drug policy and how it impacts people of color and those of low income.  We also have an action on Marriage Equality. A lot of congregations have endorsed the right of a clergy person to perform marriages as their conscience allows in states where the law permits it. West-Park wanted to go further, and strike those words, where the law permits …Civil law should not determine our ecclesiastical law. It’s either right or not. My colleagues should not remain vulnerable to charges while I can perform any marriage I feel called to perform.

The ensuing debate was a bit odd. Many speakers began by saying of course they agreed, but…. Our version attracted some conservatives who liked it’s either/or and separation of church/state character. One African-American pastor reminded us of how marriage had been stolen from their historic community. Finally liberal gradualism and political expedience won out and our offering was defeated. The qualified motion passed by a large margin. (Like West-Park’s last victory…)

RL and I spend a frustrating hour trying to figure out why the boiler isn’t working. It keeps looking  like something simple.

Noche is hard at work when the boiler clearly is no longer working. Danielle puts out the call for help and boiler people soon arrive. Pat O has come by to continue work on developing a critical analysis of current options and an alternative plan. Excel spreadsheets, color coded and all.

A long and frustrating boiler day.  It’s on and off three times. Danielle reports a scary early morning flaming blow back. When it’s  working, it’s like a mechanical system on crack. Manic and hyper. Ready to do harm. New radiator leaks. Steaming pipes. The boiler people seem befuddled and each further complicated effort seems to take us further from solution. The want us to invest in a new radiator. Bring in a chimney sweep. I tell Danielle to google Chim, chimney Chim, chimney Chim, chim, cher-ee…

Session is working in seriously evaluating  options while I’m running around with boiler people. It’s like on Apple care when you start with a simple enough problem and 45 minutes later they want you uninstall everything on your computer…Something wrong here….all of this taking me back to the winter of no heat, back when we first began...the 

Meanwhile in the sanctuary, the voices of Mario’s singers conjure fields and late night gatherings down south….even as I notice so many different global accents… I notice some Dzieci have joined in. I see this emerging community and wonder again how we can interrelate, collaborate…plant something that can grow…

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