Monday, April 14, 2008

On getting out of the way for Mary Magdalene ... and Emma, too!

I went to Chiesa Nuova to see my good friend, Lisa Wagner of Still Point Theatre Collective, perform Deep Listening, a one woman play about death, dying and end of life care from the perspective of a doctor, health care providers, and a dying woman. It sounds depressing, but it really isn't. Lisa gave a wonderful, convincing performance. Afterwards, someone asked her secret to acting and she said that she just tries to "get out of the way and let the people speak for themselves."
Wow, I thought, that's what I was trying to get at in my last post about the mystery as to why my leading the prayer at the Women and Spirituality conference went so well. Three different elements converged so that I just got out of the way, and in that case, was able to be myself, trust myself to be myself. There's a magic that takes over in those moments; it's almost an outer body experience. I attribute it to the Holy Spirit.
It happened again last Saturday when I proclaimed the first three Glorious Mysteries for the rosary after Dennis and Victoria Mervar's wedding. For the fifth mystery, Victoria had had the idea of she and Dennis reading Mary's and Joseph's Yeses from Luke and Matthew. Juxtaposed. She often comes up with a solution to a dilemma that I never would have thought of. Brilliant. Anyway, right before the rosary started, she told me she forgot to bring the script, so I asked the wedding coordinator to find a bible and I was madly writing out the script for them, trying to make my notoriously bad handwriting as legible as possible. Anyway, I think that distraction helped me "get out of the way," because I didn't have time to think. When my cue came, I put the bible down and I was on, telling the story of Mary Magdalene at the tomb. I did the best proclamation of the story I have yet to do. So, thank you, Victoria, for forgetting the script! I was especially grateful that I was able to do such a good rendition for Victoria and Dennis on their wedding day. They're a great couple.

Oh, and about Emma . . .
Friday, April 25, 2008, 11AM - 3PM & Sunday, April 27, 1PM - 3PM
Arbor Day Celebrations
In a diversion from my typical church gigs and in an intersection with my "other life" as a marketing consultant to the Illinois Emerald Ash Borer Wood Utilization Team, I will be Emma the Emerald Ash Borer for the Arboretum's Arbor Day festivities. To impersonate the bad bug that's been destroying the ash trees in the Midwest, I will be wearing a totally great costume made by the multi-talented Edith Makra.
Morton Arboretum, Lisle, Illinois