I'm posting the homily early, so nobody read this until tomorrow!
If you'll remember, a couple weeks ago I posted about our new purchase, for the purpose of being church on the road. We got the wagon that goes with it, too, so I just wanted to discuss a little bit about what it's like to be out here and ministering to the people of the world. (I'd upload a picture, but I can't seem to get blogger to work, sorry!)
Not surprisingly, we got a lot of stares, but because they could smell food wafting, and we are selling organic smoothies, organic tannin-free wine, organic beer, and other organic vegan things, well, people came to us to learn about SOV2. And they helped "further" our cause by helping to peddal down the road while discussing their own faith journeys.
What's especially cool about this new form of ministry is not only the health we can serve up with our ecumenism, but the exercise to boot!
The other day, we met a man who had been a 20 year alcoholic, and he climbed on board for a smoothie and to talk to us about his 12-step program and the higher power he chooses to call...well, I can't remember the term, but it worked for him, in any case. He had a smoothie, but unfortunately we learned that he was lactose-intolerant, and his smoothie had some milk-based product, and he passed out and fell off the wagon. That was so unfortunate, but no hurt feelings. And in fact, he had such a good time with us, in spite of his incident, that he's going to invite his entire AA group to join us next time! We did have to promise to put the organic wine away and not make it available for anyone during that time, so we agreed. I hadn't considered our ability to assist those who are chemically-dependent, but there it is! As it turned out, their group was really sick of drinking coffee and smoking and meeting in one place, and after meeting with us, they both want to come visit SOV2 proper, and they are going to start their own ministry by peddaling smoothies along with 12-step!
They aren't going to get the wagon like we did, though, because they don't like the symbolism of falling off. So if this group from Dry Creek comes by, give them a big ol' SOV2 welcome, and be careful what you offer for hospitality; we have to be sure not to offend.
We met other people, too, some of them just curious, some gave us tracts that were written by a bird named "Jack Chick". He had a lot of things to say about the Catholic Church, and while I agreed with a lot of it, he had a lot of hostility in him, so he wasn't very church. And I think he got some of the details wrong about the history and belief. Amazingly, I found myself defending the Catholic church from the Chick's followers.
What amazes me, though, is that Jack Chick, being just a bird, is real talented, and so he'd be a great mascot for SOV2, at least if we could maybe redirect our feathered friend's talent into more positive work. After the bird's followers left, we, the road ministry team, met to discuss groups like that; they tend to be really angry and they are completely intolerant about what other people believe. And their focus wasn't inclusiveness, but of exclusion because their entire reason for grouping together was to discuss how wrong everyone else was. So in the end, we're not going to go track down the miraculous bird. It must have been really hard to train him to begin with, and I think Che' had a parrot once, didn't you Che'? And he was really hard to train out of bad habits. Che' finally had to get rid of him because Turk taught the bird bad words, which caused quite a scandal when he was sick so Che' couldn't leave him home. That bird swore during the liturgy at the most inopportune moments! So he ended up giving him away to someone. Who was that, Che'? Have you kept tabs on that foul-mouthed fowl?
In any case, it seems birds, unlike people with bad habits, can't be trained to change their lives or attitudes, so our ministry will continue to be to reach out to people on the fringes. Not the feathered ones, though.
Many of you may not know that I lost a family member to alcoholism, so really, when this AA group comes to visit SOV2, treat them as you would my family. Our outreach shouldn't just be on the road, but, as long as we own property, right or wrong, we should use it for the good of the people who come our way and we should be church with them. And try not to kill them in any way.
Anyway, about the readings for today; we're not going to use them because they don't go along with my homily. So we're going to read Robert Frost's "The Road not Taken", and a passage from "Atlas Shrugged" by Ayn Rand, and a passage from "The Handmaid's Tale".
Dym Tim might take a shift on the road while I come back to SOV2 for awhile, but we'll see how that works out. He's been itchin' to get out on the road for a bit.