Starting off... with a few words from Reverend Robinson

So i think this part of my website should be a discussion of where my mind goes during the various phases of my various creative processes. I tend to just think, think, think, CREATE, then drop it. I'm not sure how well that works for a consistent output or vision. It's more like a constant state of shooting from the hip. Productive... but exhausting.

I'm also not very good at journaling, so as I'm learning from my friend Ben, down in Austin, might as well do it out in public.

And speaking of doing it out in public, while I can't say enough how happy I am at the arrival of our new President, a man of great heart and vision, who has spent the last ten days reminding the world that America is just as much an idea and an ideal as it is a place and a collection of interests, I have to stand up for someone who kind of got kicked to the curb during the inaugural hoo-hah... Reverend Gene Robinson. Out of the closet, in a relationship, a spiritual leader... not a movie star, not an activist, kind of the person you mght want to put on camera if you were trying to say to straight folks who are afraid of gay people "Hey, look they're not all stereotypes!".

So The Rev gets tapped by the inaugural committee to offer the opening prayer for the big pre-inaugural concert with Bono and Beyonce' and the Boss. (Apparently this may have been a tactic to throw a bone to all the folks who felt dissed when Rick Warren was chosen for the prayer on the Big Day itself.)

He composes this lovely prayer and delivers it to the 300,000 enthusiastic people braving the cold that afternoon and when he's done...

...when he's done, HBO turns the cameras ON and starts their broadcast to millions of people around the world. Who's the Genius who made that call? Good question. If you ask the network, it was the Inaugural Committee. Ask the Committee, they say it's the network!

Snub? Accident? Who knows? All I know is that people were cheated out of hearing a great message.

So here it is...

A Prayer for the Nation and Our Next President, Barack Obama By The Rt. Rev. V. Gene Robinson, Episcopal Bishop of New Hampshire

Opening Inaugural Event Lincoln Memorial, Washington, DC January 18, 2009


Welcome to Washington!

The fun is about to begin, but first, please join me in pausing for a moment, to ask God's blessing upon our nation and our next president.

O God of our many understandings, we pray that you will...

Bless us with tears - for a world in which over a billion people exist on less than a dollar a day, where young women from many lands are beaten and raped for wanting an education, and thousands die daily from malnutrition, malaria, and AIDS.

Bless us with anger - at discrimination, at home and abroad, against refugees and immigrants, women, people of color, gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people.

Bless us with discomfort - at the easy, simplistic "answers" we've preferred to hear from our politicians, instead of the truth, about ourselves and the world, which we need to face if we are going to rise to the challenges of the future.

Bless us with patience - and the knowledge that none of what ails us will be "fixed" anytime soon, and the understanding that our new president is a human being, not a messiah.

Bless us with humility - open to understanding that our own needs must always be balanced with those of the world.

Bless us with freedom from mere tolerance - replacing it with a genuine respect and warm embrace of our differences, and an understanding that in our diversity, we are stronger.

Bless us with compassion and generosity - remembering that every religion's God judges us by the way we care for the most vulnerable in the human community, whether across town or across the world.

And God, we give you thanks for your child Barack, as he assumes the office of President of the United States. Give him wisdom beyond his years, and inspire him with Lincoln's reconciling leadership style, President Kennedy's ability to enlist our best efforts, and Dr. King's dream of a nation for ALL the people. Give him a quiet heart, for our Ship of State needs a steady, calm captain in these times. Give him stirring words, for we will need to be inspired and motivated to make the personal and common sacrifices necessary to facing the challenges ahead. Make him color-blind, reminding him of his own words that under his leadership, there will be neither red nor blue states, but the United States. Help him remember his own oppression as a minority, drawing on that experience of discrimination, that he might seek to change the lives of those who are still its victims. Give him the strength to find family time and privacy, and help him remember that even though he is president, a father only gets one shot at his daughters' childhoods.

And please, God, keep him safe. We know we ask too much of our presidents, and we're asking FAR too much of this one. We know the risk he and his wife are taking for all of us, and we implore you, O good and great God, to keep him safe. Hold him in the palm of your hand - that he might do the work we have called him to do, that he might find joy in this impossible calling, and that in the end, he might lead us as a nation to a place of integrity, prosperity and peace.

AMEN.

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