The whole thing was a thin place – words and images from the Service of Installation

Sean Call to Worship.pngA few months ago I preached a sermon on “thin places,” that idea of a place where the holy is more accessible and where you feel in touch with beauty and mystery.

In those places, transformation and healing are more possible – you have a sense of what Buddhism might call “equanimity.”  Before we started the installation service this past Sunday, one of you said to me, “I realized that this whole service is going to be a ‘thin place.'” It seemed ambitious to imagine…even if we had a glimpse of such transcendence I’d feel like we’d done well.  But, after it was all done, I realized it was just right.  The whole thing was a thin place.

As I said in that sermon, thin places are often less about the place, than they are about our readiness and willingness to see them as such.  And so I think most of all, the experience revealed our community’s willingness and readiness to be present to that much beauty, that much joy, that much love.  Members Gary Stricklin and Rick Well will be sharing their official photos and friend Marc Leverette his official video soon, but in the meantime, here are a few candid shots & quotes from the service.  What part of the service will you carry with you as a thin place?

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In the coming days we’ll post the full text from each of the elements, as well as the video of the choral piece Ryan and the choir created.  In the meantime, I hope you’ll share with me about what was moving for you, and your moments of “thin places,’ even if that’s the whole thing.  Especially if it’s the whole thing….

Thank you to all those who made this incredible experience possible.  Especially those behind the scenes, those who brought food, who set up and cleaned up, to all the amazing musicians, for all of you who folded programs, and helped with childcare, and who stepped in at the last minute, and who pre-planned. Thank you.  We had a vision of this being an event where we had lots and lots of people participating – it went with the message! – thank you for making that vision a reality.

With love and gratitude,

Gretchen

 

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