Come By the Hills

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I happened upon the singing group Celtic Thunder which played on PBS, and I was struck by the sentimentality of the song, “Come By The Hills” and more importantly, the fine interpretation by a young 15 year old singer, Damian McGinty. The melding of this young fresh voice with the teaching found within the lyric struck me as an interpretation taken from the Sermon on the Mount, asking us to stop the worry, taken the moment and relish it as a gift from God:

Come by the hills to the land
where fancy is free
And stand where the peaks meet the sky
and the rocks reach the sea
Where the rivers run clear and the bracken
is gold in the sun
And cares of tomorrow must wait
till this day is done.

Or

Do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will bring worries of its own. Today’s trouble is enough for today. (Matthew 6:34)

Chris & Don : A Review

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Movie Poster: Chris & DonMuch like a rich deeply flavored stew, a good work of art as it simmers brings up to the surface flavors, and bits of ingredients which may have remained in the bottom of the stock pot. The documentary, Chris & Don, is a fine rich stew which works on many different levels. It is a story of two individuals, and how these two individuals met on a beach in Southern California during a summer in the 1950’s. It is a story of a complex writer (Isherwood) who by this stage in his life was comfortable with his own formed psyche, and a very young man of 18 (Don Bachardy) who was not yet fully formed, and like most people of this age today, seeking to find out who he was in his public life, as well as the emerging person from the inside.

Through the use of home movies, the documentary speaks on a particular sociological level, a microcosm of life in Hollywood, it speaks of two men out of the closet in a point in the entertainment industry when homophobia was clearly a byproduct of well paid public figures living dual lives. This duality was a way of life (Pre-Stonewall), yet here was Isherwood taking his 19 year old lover on location of Dr. John Ford, known as a director of films which spewed heterosexual testosterone. Don & Chris exposes their intimacy of a couple who’s 33 year relationship was not without its ups and downs yet were able to remain committed to one another by the use of their pet name persona; the younger man as a cat, and Isherwood being the old horse. What they would not share as humans, they were able to communicate as their favorite pet – their alter egos. Read More

Yard[D]og Strikes Again

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This is a first in an on-going series of what I will call

Yard[D]og Pictorum aumentar seios non sequiuntur *

A Touch Tone Phone

* Non Sequiuntur is the Latin plural for more than one non sequitur. I say plural because I have been getting these out of the blue cell phone pictures from Yard[D]og for some time; the first being a picture of a half eaten pizza. I thought it was time to share them….why…..who the hell knows.

Chris and Don

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Movie Poster: Chris & DonI recently attended a lecture by Ishwerwood and literary scholar, James Berg who shared insights into the formation of his current book, Christopher Ishwerwood on Writing. The book is a reconstruction of notes taken from lectures Isherwood had given at various institutions of higher learning in Santa Barbara, Los Angeles, and UCLA.

I enjoyed listening to someone discuss Isherwood as I went through my Isherwood period during my mid twenties slowly making my way through almost everything I could find in print. One my my pleasant memories was meeting Isherwood, in the early 80’s, at the now gone A Different Light bookstore in Silverlake in which I was able to have him sign his masterpiece, A Single Man, and his current book, “October”, a series of diary excerpts from the month of October interspersed with drawings by his long time life partner, Don Bachardy.

What sparked my interest, outside of basic information Dr. Berg offered; a sketch of the famed creator of the Berlin Stories (which eventually became the musical Cabaret) was that a new documentary had been created to share the love story of Chris & Don. Read More

Time for a new window?

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Don’t you think its time for a new stained glass window?

Innocent....yet.....?

The Lord Will Provide

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Sermon given June 29, 2008 at St. Wilfrid of York Episcopal Church, Huntington Beach, CA

The Binding of Isaac

Based on the readings found in the Revised Common Lectionary

For the audio of the sermon, click here

Shadow Walk

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Each evening with my nano I listen to meditative music as I walk a path.

I brought my camera.

I call this picture:

Shadow Walk

Shadow Walk

A representation of our journey

Down there on a visit

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The Binding of IsaacLast Sunday I was asked to preach three services at my sponsoring parish, St. Wilfrid of York Episcopal Church in Huntington Beach, CA. I had never preached three services before, and I can honestly say, that by the end of the day, especially after getting out of bed at 4:30 am to get there, was quite challenging. Of the three readings offered from the Revised Common Lectionary I choose to preach about the famous story from Genesis of the Binding of Isaac. Once the website posts the audio version of my sermon I’ll link it here, but I wanted to share something which was one of those God Moments which ran parallel with my experience of sharing with the people of St. Wilfrids.

As I prepared the sermon, as stated in my spiritual direction moment, I pondered the text in which Abraham calls the top of the mountain, “The Lord will provide.” I had mentioned in my sermon that Karl Barth said that the Latin root for provide means “before.” I was able to point out that the fascinating thing about that passage was that God provides before we know it, or can see it; as best displayed in the story by the ram caught in the thicket which Abraham does not see until after the angel stops him from sacrificing his son, Isaac. Read More


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