"Take nothing for your journey"
The Rev. Stephen E. Moore
Clergy Deputy to General Convention
We got up at oh-dark-thirty this morning in order to (1) get a head start on observing Canada Day or (2) get a head start on observing the Fifth Sunday after Pentecost or (3) get Sweetness to SeaTac airport in time for her early flight. There is no point in praying at the hour when we got up because God, like any proper English gentleman, is not receiving that early; the Almighty simply collects prayers offered before dawn in His voicemail and listens to them later over tea and toast.
I returned home after preaching and celebrating the Holy Mysteries to two lists: my packing list and her "Before You Walk Out the Door" list.
Packing is rather a challenge given that the predicted high temperatures for Indianapolis for the first week of GC77 are in the nineties but the management of the Indiana Convention Center can be expected to set the air conditioning to "Arctic" as a gesture of hospitality. Comfortable walking shoes are a must. Every meeting at General Convention is conveniently located at least half mile from every other meeting, which allows one to work off excess calories consumed.
I carefully packed the following books: Michael Bond, Monsieur Pamplemousse Stands Firm, London: Headline Book Publishing, Limited, 1992; Simon Quellen Field, Culinary Reactions: The Everyday Chemistry of Cooking, Chicago, Ill.: Chicago Review Press, 2011; Mark Schweizer, The Bass Wore Scales: A Liturgical Mystery, Hopkinsville, KY: St. James Music Press, 2007; and Georgia Pellegrini, Food Heroes: 16 Culinary Artisans Preserving Tradition, New York: Stewart, Tabori & Chang, 2010. Too much theological reading constipates the mind.
If one insists on reading something ecclesiological in honour of General Convention, I highly recommend The House of Deputies Special Study Committee on Church Governance and Polity 2012, Shared Governance: The Polity of the Episcopal Church, New York: Church Publishing, 2012 (108 pp, paperback).
"Water the plants." I did better than that! Lowe's Hardware sells magic vacation house-plant watering devices which will keep the indoor garden green for the fortnight.
"Empty the fridge; take out the kitchen garbage." This says nothing about what to have for lunch ... so I had ice cream and an oatmeal-raisin cookie. From a nutritional point of view, this is a balanced breakfast: oatmeal for fibre, raisins for iron, milk for dairy, eggs for protein, it is all in there somewhere.
I will arise again tomorrow and repeat this morning's trip to SeaTac, eventually to join my sweet bride on Monday night at the J.W. Marriott Hotel in downtown Indianapolis ... assuming that thunderstorms don't close the airport there and that there is still electric power in the city. Pray, kindly, for all of those coming from all over the country (and all over the world) to General Convention.