There were many blessings from the various observances of the Transgender Day of Remembrance held at LPTS yesterday (November 20, 2007).
There was the blessing of starting out the day in the company of committed friends with prayer and song, even though the wind tried to blow out candles, and some of the friends showed up late. There was the blessing of Courtney’s prayer, and the moment of reluctance to let go of the fragile lights represented by candles — yes, precisely because they are symbolic.
There was the blessing of prayer throughout the day, the discovery of new texts with their power to make us think and take notice, the sharing of attention paid to the human significance of transgender lives.
There was the blessing of a rich educational repast prepared by Beth Harrison-Prado on key concepts for being informed about transgender realities, terminology, and advice on what people can do to follow through on the desire for full inclusiveness. Thanks to support from the Cultural Diversity and Gender and Ministry Committees, there was even the blessing of a delicious light lunch (Ted, we love the tomato-artichoke soup). Handouts from Beth’s talk will be available in the Women’s Center. If attendees, or “I wish I’d been there” attendee-would-a-been’s, have questions, Beth has encouraged us to stay in contact and feel free to ask them. Another blessing — this time, of ongoing dialogue and learning!
There was the blessing of a rollicking supper time in the Women’s Center, complete with soup and drama. It isn’t every day we get to be there for the first time ever to use the never-before-did-we-have-one stove in the Women’s Center. In fact, that was it. It really is a blessing to have a kitchen and all the possibilities that allows. We thank LPTS for making it possible!
There were the blessings of memory, reverence, prayer, Scripture, music, and the special meeting of person and person, and person and God, that worship makes possible. We were blessed to have members of the local transgender community with us for the memorial service, in the congregation and as participants in the service. For those interested, we’ve added the Order of Service and the text of One of the Meditations to our site. Many, many thanks to everyone who helped decorate the chapel (aaron and Courtney), play music for the service (Steffanie), conduct portions of the service with grace (Dean David Hester, Cindy, Heather, Tina, Dawn, Mary Sue, Lynn, Tracy), and to all who joined in to make this time of remembrance something to remember.
And then there was the blessing of fellowship afterwards in the fellowship hall (thank you, Sandra!!) — although we have been told that some people laughed way more than was good for them. Joy really is relentless. That’s a blessing.