Thursday, June 20, 2013

Out and About – Spring 2013

With tomorrow being the first day of summer I'm thinking I'd best get a move on in posting this spring installment of 'Out and About'!

This post actually covers May 2013, along with a few images from early June. My previous 'Out and About' installment covered the first part of spring.

For many people in Minnesota, May was a time of great celebration owing to the successful passage of marriage equality legislation in both the House and Senate. On May 14, Governor Mark Dayton signed into law this legislation, making civil marriage for same-sex couples legal in Minnesota beginning August 1.

There were, of course, many other highlights for me in this last month or so – including a wonderful time in Pahá Sápa, the Lakota name for the Black Hills of South Dakota.

A highlight at the very beginning of May was the annual In the Heart of the Beast Puppet and Mask Theatre's MayDay Parade in Minneapolis.

This year's parade took place on Sunday, May 5, 2013, and enacted an honest, cautionary tale inspired by the Bread and Puppet Theater's street show Hallelujah. It's message is a simple but powerful one:

See the World! When you put fire to the world and when you poison it, the world will cry and the children will die. When you sow seeds on the world, and when you water it and let the sun shine on it, it will grow! And the birds will feed on it, and the children will eat it. And the grandmas and grandpas sing Hallelujah!

As in previous years, I spent time before the parade began walking around its staging area, capturing some wonderful images of people – young and old – as they prepared to be part of what's become a world-famous event.

For my photos and commentary of this year's Mayday Parade, click here.

Above: At the May 3, 2013 Carondelet Gala at the Minneapolis Hilton. This annual event helps raise money for the St. Mary's Health Clinics.

These clinics are an ecumenical ministry of the Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet and are located throughout the Twin Cities metro area. They offer primary care, referrals to specialists, laboratory, radiology, in-patient, and prescription medications – all free to patients who otherwise would have no access to medical care.

Right: With my dear friend Rita McDonald, CSJ – one of the renowned McDonald Sisters.

Rita, along with Margeurite Corcoran, CSJ, were my “companions” during my journey to becoming a CSJ consociate.

Above and left: The Multi-Faith Rally for the Freedom to Marry – May 8, 2013. This event was held on the eve of the historic Minnesota House vote to grant the rights and responsibilities of civil marriage to same-sex couples. I was honored to be present representing Catholics supportive of marriage equality.

For more images and commentary, click here.

Above: Marriage Equality comes to Minnesota!

I spent much of Monday, May 13, 2013 at the Minnesota State Capitol, joining with others in showing support for the marriage equality legislation being debated and voted on by the Minnesota Senate. The House version of the bill was approved on Thursday, May 9. Its chief sponsor was Rep. Karen Clark. I wasn't present at the Capitol for the House vote, but I was determined not to miss the equally important Senate vote. My friend Lisa Vanderlinden (pictured with me at above right) felt the same way.

For more images and commentary on this historic day, click here.

Above: On Tuesday, May 14, 2013, before a crowd of more than 7,000 people, Governor Mark Dayton signed into law the bill that makes civil marriage for same-sex couples legal in Minnesota beginning August 1. With Gov. Dayton are the bill's two chief sponsors, Rep. Karen Clark, with her partner Jacquelyn Zita, and Sen. Scott Dibble, with his husband Richard Leyva.

Left: With my friend Lisa Clare, creator of the online forum Over the Rainbow for Marriage Equality – May 14, 2013.

For more images and commentary on this very special day, see the Wild Reed posts "Tongues and Souls on Fire" and "Rediscovering What Has Been Written on Our Hearts from the Very Beginning."

Above: Celebrating marriage equality in Minnesota with (from left) Lisa and Brent Vanderlinden, Jim Smith, Paula Ruddy, and Mary Kay Orman – May 14, 2013.

Above: With friends (from left) John, Noelle, Madeline, Curtis and Liana.

Right: With Eddie!

Above: Hello, Charlie!

Left: The noble Quinn, my little fox-faced man!

Above: A lovely photo of my friends Curtis and Liana. I'll be officiating at their wedding in July. How lucky am I!

Above: With my housemate and friend Tim and friends Angela and Meg.

Above, right and below: Views of the interior of the home that Tim and I share in south Minneapolis. And what a home of elegant simplicity it is!  I'm finding it a fitting place indeed to be currently re-reading Winston Graham's Poldark novels, set at the turn of the eighteenth century. For more about these novels, see the recent Wild Reed posts "A 'Useful Marriage' for Morwenna" and "Passion, Tide and Time."

Above: My prayer altar in the meditation room of the house Tim and I share. As I've noted previously, Tim and I have different prayer styles. As a result of his interest in and exploration of Buddhism, Tim prefers to focus on a blank wall, while I, as you can see, have my colorful little altar with all kinds of special objects – candles, rocks, icons, and feathers.

Here's something I recently read and spent time reflecting upon before my altar. It's by Julia Cameron, from her book Transitions: Prayers and Declarations for a Changing Life. As someone who senses they're at a threshold in their life, I find this reflection particularly meaningful.

The natural world teaches us the power of change. As seasons shift, I see the purpose and beauty of life cyclicality. I see the promise of spring, the ripening of summer, the bounty of harvest and the mysterious containment of winter. All seasons work for the good. So it is, too, with the changing cycles of life. As I surrender to the wisdom of a higher plan, I discover in all circumstances the opportunity for growth and expansion. There is no season in my life that is without worth. There is no season in my life that does not unfold my highest good. Challenged by difficult times, I consciously choose to affirm the goodness of life's timing. Today, I commit myself to actively seeking the benefit hidden in adversity, the wisdom inherent in all timing.

Above: My dear friend Joan, who must have one of the most beautiful and elegant living rooms in Minneapolis!

Above and left: Spring was quite late in returning this year, but it eventually did . . . and I have some great photos to prove it! See, for example, the previous Wild Reed posts "Springtime by the Creek" and "Photo of the Day – May 24, 2013."

Above and below: Spring blossoms and flowers.

Above: Tim, working on our backyard herb spiral.

Above: Taking time out in beautiful Pahá Sápa, also known as the Black Hills of South Dakota – Friday, June 7 to Thursday, June 13, 2013. More images and commentary coming soon!

See also the previous Wild Reed posts:
Out and About – Winter-Spring 2013
The End of a Very Long Winter
Spring Snow
A Winter Walk Along Minnehaha Creek
Threshold Musings
Out and About – December 2012
Out and About – Autumn 2012
Out and About – Summer 2012
Out and About - Spring 2012 (Part 1)
Out and About – Spring 2012 (Part 2)
Out and About – Spring 2012 (Part 3)
Out and About – Winter 2012

Images: Michael J. Bayly.

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