.comment-link {margin-left:.6em;}

Wednesday, February 23, 2005

Meaningless redecoration

As you've probably already noticed (if you're one of the three regular readers of this site), we've changed the look here at Meaningless Musings again. I may not be a regular poster, but by heck I get bored with layouts quickly. Mostly I like how little wasted space there is with this format - once you're past the top part of the page with the links the whole screen gets used for text. Obviously, a strong argument can be made that said text just turns around and wastes the space again, but at least I'm not wasting your valuable monitor resources to just create blank space.

There are also a few new links over on the right-hand side of the screen, and for your Thursday reading enjoyment I thought I'd go through 'em and give you a few details on why they're there and why you might be interested. Gripping stuff it certainly isn't, but my understanding of blogosphere etiquette is that quantity always trumps quality. So away we go, starting with the blogs -

Thus concludeth the list of blogs. Now on to the other links!

And there you have it. My little road map to some interesting byways off of the information superhighway. Turned into a longer post than I originally intended, but that's probably good; it'll help my guilt over how long it will probably take me to post again.

To steal a sign-off from my sister - love, luck, and lollipops!

Thursday, February 17, 2005

Hey there! Hi there! Ho there! She's as happy as can be! In the d-i-a-c-o-n-a-l ministry!

A couple of Sundays ago I went up to Waverly to watch the service of consecration (or maybe Service of Consecration; I'm not sure if it's a proper noun or not) for my friend Jess. What, you ask, is consecration? I'm not 100% sure myself (other than knowing that it's not the same as circumcision - talk about your embarrassing malapropisms), but I'll try to explain. The Service of Consecration (or maybe service of consecration) is the process by which one becomes a diaconal minister in the ELCA. "Diaconal minister," if I understand correctly, is sort of a new designation. Obviously it's closely tied to the word "deacon," but I think that deacons are generally thought of as being basically Ernest Frye (the guy Sherman Hemsley (of Lois & Clark: the New Adventures of Superman fame) played in Amen): the guy who sets up chairs and makes sure the candle wicks are trimmed and generally takes care of the church building. Diaconal ministers have a much more interesting and exciting role. The idea (indeed, from what I've learned, the catchphrase) is that they serve where the church meets the world. While a pastor is ordained into the ministry of word and sacrament and generally serves a congregation in a role that's theoretically primarily spiritual and theological, a diaconal minister is consecrated into the ministry of word and service and generally ends up working with an organization, dealing with social justice issues and bringing the work of the church outside of the sanctuary walls.

At least that's my understanding of it - a lot of which is lifted directly from the sermon preached at Jess's consecration. Here's Jess's explanation from her blog, and here's an explanation from the ELCA web page, both of which are far more informative and lucid. It's interesting stuff, I think, and I find it very exciting. To me, this is a formal statement by the ELCA that we understand that the church can't stay inside church buildings and still do the work we're called to do. A diaconal minister has to jump through basically every hoop an ordained pastor has to - these aren't lay volunteers who are just using the church to find projects to work on, they're men and women with the same level of theological training and formal church support the clergy has. I think that's downright nifty, and I'm proud to be able to name a good friend of mine among their ranks.

It was a delightful weekend, too - several people I hadn't seen for years were in town for the consecratin', the sermon was based on Micah 6:8 which is the foundation verse for one of the finer campfire songs to ever grace the woods of southeast Clayton county (I've had the tune in my head pretty much ever since), and Dr. Kleinhans got a chance to make fun of me for how long I was a student at Wartburg, which always seems to make her happy. I find that almost any event which triggers Wartburg memories ends up being a lot of fun (it's a shame admissions can't sell that - that's what you pay the extra $15,000 a year for).

On an unrelated note - I'm not sure I got the "Hey, Hi, Ho" in the title of this post in the right order. I was, alas, never a Mouseketeer. Anyone more familiar with the tune who wants to correct or affirm me feel free.

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?