Written by Gradye Parsons
Each month the Stated Clerk of the General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) and the Moderator or Vice Moderator of the 220th General Assembly write a column of general interest for the church-at-large.
It seems only appropriate to begin the July 2011 column with a quote from the new Form of Government. The very first paragraph begins with a statement that lifts up the mission of the congregation where it is planted:
The congregation is the church engaged in the mission of God in its particular context. The triune God gives to the congregation all the gifts of the gospel necessary to being the Church. (Book of Order, G-1.0101)
I rarely see a really meaningful moment on a television medical drama. But I will have to confess that the writers for Grey’s Anatomy captured just such a moment.
An airplane had crashed into the harbor. The hospital was to be the trauma center where all of the survivors would be brought and families could gather for information. Then comes the sobering news: no survivors. So the doctors who had prepared to do lifesaving surgeries become grief counselors instead. One by one, the families are notified and most leave the hospital.
Frederick Law Olmsted was the American creator of the craft of landscape architecture. He had no college degree or much experience beyond a little farming when he was awarded the contract to oversee the construction of Central Park in New York City. He later went on to design college campuses, the Chicago World’s Fair, and the beautiful city parks that grace Louisville, Ky.
Miss Kingree, Mrs. Barnes, and Mrs. Wesson were already teaching legends at my high school when I was a freshman. Barnes and Wesson taught algebra; Kingree, first-year English.
All three were farmers and all three were tough. At some point, they each walked the halls with pretty serious farm injuries. But they never missed a day of class – as I said, they were tough. Forty-plus years later, I can look at their photos in my high school yearbook and still get that feeling in my stomach that they might call on me in class. But they were also good, very good. They had honed their teaching skills to the point that, despite all of our collective efforts, we left their classes smarter than we arrived. I thank them now when I appreciate a great book or analyze a basketball bracket.
It looks like spring might finally come after a winter filled with snowstorms, ice, bitter winds, and new records for low temperatures. Winter may have a last gasp or two, but in most places things are starting to warm up. On one hand, my irises are, as usual, trying to rush the growing season. On the other hand, my roses are wisely laying low until evidence of several sunny days in a row.
Each month the Stated Clerk of the General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) and the Moderator or Vice Moderator of the 219th General Assembly write a column of general interest for the church-at-large.
This month, Stated Clerk Gradye Parsons writes about "The Pearl-handled Pistol."