In The Moment
by Daniel Simons
Ash Wednesday always calls to consciousness an inner conflict I have with my religion: it is a day when we remember our mortality, and also our sinfulness. I don’t have a problem with either, but I do have a problem with associating the two too closely as if one were a result of the other. We do not die because we are sinful, we die because we are part of a material world where forms necessarily change; nothing is static, everything loses its form and becomesRead more
by Daniel Simons
Each year Trinity Church hosts a national conference, bringing together the sharpest minds and hearts we can find to discuss a topic of timely relevance. This year’s title: “Listen For a Change,” turned toward issues of racial justice in America. Each of the presenters had a perceptively different angle on the topic (most of the presentations can be foundRead more
Today I leave for several days in Salt Lake City at the Episcopal Church’s General Convention—it’s our version of the U.S. Congress, or other churches’ synods, with a bicameral legislature that sets the mission direction and budget for the next three years.
That near-horizon event cross-pollenates with the scriptures I am reading right now (I’m again leading a pilgrimage through the Bible using Read more
I knew this day was coming, someday, and then more recently I guessed it might come sooner than I’dRead more
This past week I attended an international conference drawing together liturgical/theological/architectural/artistic leaders and practitioners from across Europe and the Americas. The topic this year was "lightRead more
Today we leave Jerusalem for the next few days and go into the desert and then into the North—Nazareth and Capernaum. On this morning, before sunrise, we eat breakfast and travel into the Judean desert in silence as a way of tuning our ear to the desert's spare beauty, and of tuning our ear to what is being spoken within us. It's a beautiful way to be together. Stopping inRead more
AUSTIN: Knowing that I would have time to come back here if I wished, I had not written out any prayers to stick in the wall. Instead, I thought about the wall in Bethlehem yesterday and the emotional experience I had when leaning back against it, so I decided to throw my weight upon this wall and press my forehead firmly against it. For the first few moments, I tried to empty my mind of thoughts, oughts, and questions and just try to soak up the wisdom that often resides in stone. Waves ofRead more
From the warm 80-degree days when we first arrived to the cold morning of driving rain—each step of the pilgirmage is exactly what it is, and carries its own hidden treasures. We begin the day at the Western Wall—the only time in my experience when we’ve been the only ones praying!