What a week. I hope the Spiritual Practice of the Week was fruitful for you – asking What if People Are Doing the Best They can?
I’ll have a NEW Spiritual Practice of the Week starting on Monday. Be excited. It’s going to be fanTAStic.
Meantime, I’ve got some treasures for you to ponder this weekend:
To go along with my new tagline: For folks who are ready to get real and go deep with God, I’m going to split my findings into these categories. Just for fun. I’m playing around here.
Two articles and a podcast are coming at you: one facing how our complicity in White Supremacy separates us from the full life God promises. Another is about two of my favorite things: bodies and summertime. As you can imagine, when these two collide, sometimes it’s glorious and other times it’s disastrous. And finally a prayer podcast. A prayer-cast, if you will. Enjoy!
Jesus and the Nice White Lady is a short and powerful piece about how we white ladies must shed our privilege to have the full, juicy life that awaits us with God. My favorite quote:
“Truly I tell you, all those who have relinquished the false trappings of whiteness and recognized that there is no hope, ever, of being a better person than anyone else, all those who have joined their time, their formerly hoarded wealth, and their hearts with those who could never play along–the “angry Black people” and uncompromising Indigenous people and unapologetic immigrants and flaming queer and trans and non binary people–all of these will receive one hundredfold the relationships and shared resources they lost when they stopped playing by the white rules. They will give away their stolen inheritance and inherit eternal life.”Damn.
Leave it to the Brits… the way this article is written, it’s as the though the entire country goes on vacation for the month of August. While I can believe this is true for the elites and almost-elites, is this true for everyone? Princess Kate’s hairdresser too?
Anyway, Sister Gemma Simmons offers at once an idyllic and also real-life expression of a Spirituality of Summer. My favorite quote:
“But if bodies come alive in summer, they can also become problematic. One of the recurrent themes in women’s magazines, as soon as Easter is over, is the offer of radical diets to enable us to look good in swimming costumes and more revealing clothing. If summer signals the liberation from woollies, it also signals the threat of being seen with the bulk of winter still upon us. Every aspect of the female body becomes a potential fashion threat. Hair: the wrong colour, wrecked by the sun, in the wrong places. Skin: too white, too dark, too dry, at risk of cancer. Curves: too much, too little, in the wrong place, in fashion, out of fashion…
‘This is my body’ becomes an invitation to accept and honour own own embodiedness and to live more at ease within our enfleshed selves. A positive embrace of the bodily, the incarnate, frees us from negative judgment of the flesh, born of fear and self-hatred. We learn to thank God for what is, here and now, for the flowering and fruition of our own bodies and lives, whatever their stage and shape.”
Father Jim Martin, SJ (so many people’s favorite Jesuit) is producing a prayer podcast, The Examen. It includes a weekly reflection plus a guided meditation. It’s produced by America Magazine, the media arm of the Society of Jesus (aka the Jesuits). Enjoy praying with the guidance of Fr. Jim.