Of course, regular readers of The Wild Reed will be familiar with my "Out and About" series, one that I began in April 2007 as a way of documenting my life as an “out” gay Catholic man, seeking to be all “about” the Spirit-inspired work of embodying God’s justice and compassion in the Church and the world. I've continued the series in one form or another every year since – in 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, and now into 2015.
So let's get started with this latest installment . . .
Above: My good friend Raul, standing beside a part of Minnehaha Creek that's walking distance from my home in south Minneapolis – Sunday, May 31, 2015. Raul took the opening image of me by Minnehaha Creek that same afternoon.
Above and right: On the afternoon of Wednesday, April 29, I joined with approximately 1500 other people in a solidarity rally and march for the people of Baltimore and in memory of Freddie Gray, who died of spinal injuries while in police custody in Baltimore. The rally was held at Minneapolis' Gold Medal Park and was organized by Black Lives Matter Minneapolis.
For more commentary and images, along with updates on the investigation into Freddie Gray's death, click here.
Above: Minnehaha Creek – May 2015. I was definitely in the right place at the right time when I snapped this picture!
above are my friends (from left) Joan, Steve, Carla and Raul. Pictured at right, friends Carol, Ken, Kathleen, Sue Ann and Brigit. Pictured seated around the table below are (from left) Tim, Noelle, Val, Phil, Brittany, John, Jenny and Jacob.
Above: On Sunday, May 3, my friends Tim and Raul and I attended the 41st annual In the Heart of the Beast Theatre's MayDay parade in south Minneapolis. This year's theme was "And Still We Rise." It was inspired by Maya Angelou's poem, "Still I Rise," and by the local and national work of the Black Lives Matter movement.
Section One of MayDay 2015's parade story was entitled "Ecstatic Origins" and celebrated the diverse "fruits" of the Tree of Life – animal and plant life in all its wondrous and beautiful diversity – including the kangaroo, energetically embodied by the young man at right.
For more images and commentary on this year's MayDay parade, click here and here.
Above: A group of young spectators at this year's MayDay parade – May 3, 2015.
Phil (right), who lives in Augusta. As well as spending time in "the Garden City" (as Augusta is known), we also visited Savannah and Atlanta (above).
For more images and commentary on my visit to Georgia, click here.
above) from his apartment in Uptown.
Raul lives right on the shores of Lake Calhoun, and on the evening of Tuesday, June 9 (left) I visited him and took some amazing photographs at sunset. To view these images and to learn why that day was special in Twin Cities meteorological history, click here.
Above and below: Early, mid and late spring in Minnesota.
Right: With my good friends Kathleen and Cheryl. We're pictured at the season premiere concert of the Minnesota Philharmonic Orchestra (MPO) – May 17, 2015.
The occasion was also the first MPO concert with new Music Director and Conductor, Alexander Platt (pictured below).
right) is the MPO's Principal Second Violinist.
The Minnesota Philharmonic Orchestra was founded in 1993 by Kevin Ford, a gay man who had a vision of a gay and lesbian orchestra that would build community and fellowship through the performance of classical music. Notes the MPO website:
Although Kevin succumbed to complications from HIV-AIDS in 1995, the organization he created continues to grow and diversify today. The MPO includes players from a variety of backgrounds and orientations who share a commitment to inclusivity, non-discrimination, and to the performance of works by under-represented composers.
Above: Spring time fun!
Above: Darling little Amelia – May 2015.
Above: Breakfast with my good friend Pete. It's a regular Thursday morning tradition, you know!
Above: The big news for Minnesota Catholics this spring was the June 15 resignation of Archbishop John C. Nienstedt.
Nienstedt, along with Auxiliary Bishop Lee Piché, resigned in the wake of clergy sex abuse coverup charges filed against the archdiocese.
For the Catholic Coalition for Church Reform's response to the archbishop's resignation, click here.
For the latest updates (as of June 19) on the investigation into Archbishop Nienstedt's alleged "sexual improprieties" with priests and seminaries, click here.
Above: On June 19 my housemate Tim and I hosted a "Welcome Back to Minnesota" party for our friend Phil (pictured with me at left).
For the past two years Phil has been living and working in Georgia, where as I noted previously, I visited him at the beginning of May.
Above: Phil's mum Noelle and my friend Pete – June 19, 2015.
Right: Phil and his girlfriend Brittany.
Above: Phil and his childhood friend Jacob.
Above: Phil, Brent, Tim, Pete, Lisa and Phil's dad John – June 19, 2015.
Above: Tim and Colleen – June 2015.
Above and below: The last day of spring in Minneapolis' Loring Park – June 20, 2015.
Spring 2015 Wild Reed posts of note:
• Remembering and Reclaiming a Wise, Spacious, and Holy Understanding of Homosexuality
• Happy Birthday, Dad!
• Earth Day 2015
• Poldark: Unfurling in Perfect Form
• In Minneapolis, Rallying in Solidarity with Black Lives in Baltimore
• Buffy Sainte-Marie and That "Human-Being Magic"
• Buffy Sainte-Marie's Lesson from the Cutting Edge: "Go Where You Must to Grow"
• Buffy Sainte-Marie: "Sometimes You Have to Be Content to Plant Good Seeds and Be Patient"
• Buffy Sainte-Marie's Power in the Blood
• "And Still We Rise!" – MayDay 2015 (Part I)
• "And Still We Rise!" – MayDay 2015 (Part II)
• Long-Weekend in Georgia
• An Afternoon at Taylors Falls and the Franconia Sculpture Park
• LGBTQ+ Catholic Youth Summit to Proceed Despite Chancery's Misstep
• Singing Their Own Song in Ireland
• Progressive Thoughts on Recent Developments in Ireland, El Salvador and the U.S.
• More Progressive Catholic Perspectives on Ireland's Historic Gay Marriage Vote
• Thoughts on the Australian Catholic Bishops' Latest Ploy in Their "Struggle for the Very Soul of Marriage"
• Season of the Witch
• CCCR Responds to Archbishop Nienstedt's Resignation
• And What of the Investigation into Archbishop Nienstedt's Alleged "Sexual Improprieties"?
• Laudato Si' and the Question That Needs to Be Asked
• Dance and Photography: Two Entwined Histories
• Reclaiming and Re-Queering Pride
• Thoughts on the PBS Premiere of Poldark
See also the previous Wild Reed posts:
• Out and About – Spring 2015 (Part I)
• Australian Sojourn – March 2015
• Out and About – Winter 2014-2015
• Out and About – Autumn 2014
• Out and About – Summer 2014
• Out and About – Spring 2014