Friday, September 30, 2022

Out and About – Spring 2022

With the spring equinox recently been and gone, it’s long overdue that I share the Spring 2022 installment of The Wild Reed’s “Out and About” series.

I think a large part of my delay in staying up-to-date with this series is to do with the trying time I’ve had for most of this year with sciatic nerve pain in my left leg, a pain which at times has been quite debilitating and exhausting.

My work, too, as chaplain with the Palliative Care team at Mercy Hospital in Coon Rapids, MN, also takes a lot of me, even as I continue to find such work deeply meaningful and thus rewarding.

And so on that more positive note, here is a look back at the people, places, and experiences that were most meaningful to me earlier this year in the spring of 2022.

Above: Standing at right with fellow members of Mercy Hospital’s Palliative Care team – May 3, 2022. Back row from left: Kate, Amy, Jenna, and me. Front row from left: Maddie, Steph, and Nikki.

Mercy’s Palliative Care team is comprised of incredibly competent and caring health care professionals, and I’m honored to be the interfaith spiritual care provider (or chaplain) on this team.

For words of gratitude and hope that our team received at around the time of the second anniversary of the coronavirus pandemic (March 11, 2022), click here.

In the northern hemishpere this year, the spring equinox occurred on Sunday, March 20. To celebrate the occasion my friends Joan and Matt hosted a “Welcoming Spring” party at their home in Mendota Heights, MN.

Above (from left): Zach, Joan, Cree, Geoge, Ian, Matt, and John.

Above: Lisa, Brent, Kathleen, and Joan – March 20, 2022.

Above: Out with my dear friend Joan at The Market at Malcolm Yards – Tuesday, March 29, 2022.

Above and Left: On the evening of Tuesday, April 12, my friend John and I enjoyed dinner at Pizza Lucé followed by an evening out at the Orpheum Theatre in downtown Minneapolis where we saw the musical, The Prom.

Above: That’s Phil and Dee in front while clockwise from left it’s Liana, Fred, Madeline, Alicia, Scott, Noelle, and John – Easter Sunday, April 17, 2022.

Above: “FeLINE FUN” with Amelia! 😸

Above: More friendship and fine food at the always welcoming home of John and Noelle, also known as The French Quarter. That’s Scott and Alicia in front while clockwise from left it’s Madeline, Fred, Dee, Phil, me, Noelle, and John – Sunday, April 24, 2022. . . . Oh, and Eddie the Wonder Dog is also pictured!

Above and right: Lunch with friends John and Jane at Owamni, “a modern Indigenous full service establishment” – April 24, 2022.

Above: My friend Mike, looking very distinguished! – Thursday, April 21, 2022. Mike and I were at the North East Social in northeast Minneapolis after seeing the musical play, Jelly’s Last Jam at the nearby Ritz Theater.

Above: A springtime walk with my dear friend Carol – May 30, 2022.

Above and below: Portraits of my “best mate in the States,” Deandre – Saturday, April 30, 2022

Above: Deandre at Famous Dave’s Bar-B-Que Restaurant, Roseville, MN – Friday, May 13, 2022

Above: Deandre at Tracy’s Saloon, Minneapolis – Thursday, May 26, 2022.

Above and below: My attic abode (and sanctuary) in south Minneapolis. For more images, click here.)

Above: After a pandemic-induced hiatus, Queer Movie Night returned on Saturday, May 7 at the home of my friend Ed. Pictured from left: Rico, Mike, Omar, Alex, me, and Ed.

We gathered at 6:00 p.m. for a potluck meal and comradery, and then watched the 2021 Estonian romantic war drama Firebird.

Directed, co-written, and co-produced by Peeter Rebane (in his feature directorial debut) and based on Sergey Fetisov’s memoir The Story of Roman, Firebird stars Tom Prior (who also co-wrote and co-produced), Oleg Zagorodnii, and Diana Pozharskaya. Set in the Soviet Air Force during the Cold War, the film tells the true story of forbidden love between a private and a fighter pilot.

Firebird had its world premiere at the 35th BFI Flare: London LGBTIQ+ Film Festival on March 17, 2021. The film also screened at the 45th Frameline: San Francisco International LGBTQ+ Film Festival on June 27, 2021, where it won an honorable mention for Best First Feature. Firebird was released in cinemas internationally by Roadside Attractions on April 29, 2022.

in his review of the film for the San Jose Mercury News, Randy Myers writes that Firebird is “a glossy and classy melodrama that soars with passion and is elevated by strong production values, heartfelt performances, and a story arc that journeys to unexpected destinations.”

Above: Ed, Omar, and Mike – Queer Movie Night, May 7, 2022. Host Ed has a wonderful collection of artwork from around the world, including the delightful statuette of Pan, pictured center.

Above: Taking advantage of the warm spring sun for a work-related meeting outside at the French Meadow Bakery, Minneapolis – Tuesday, May 10, 2022.

Above: Friends Calvin, Seth, Joseph, and Kathleen – Wednesday, May 18, 2022.

Above and left: On the evening of Friday, May 20, my friend Joan and I enjoyed dinner at Crave followed by a wonderful concert by Chastity Brown, who’s been described as “a banjo-playing soul-singer” and “a rocking, rolling encyclopedia of roots music.”

Above: On the evening of Friday, June 3, 2022, I shared a meal with my friends Jeffrey and Pete in their new home in the North Loop area of Minneapolis. Later they introduced me to a TV series that I’d long heard good things about yet had never actually seen: Ted Lasso.

Above: With friends at Bryant Lake Bowl and Theater in Minneapolis – May 14, 2022.

Above: With my dear friend Joan at Revival Smoked Meats – Wednesday, June 15, 2022

Above: On Sunday, June 12, my buddy Raul and I visited the Minneapolis Institute of Art In particular, we wanted to experience the museum’s 2022 Pride Self-Guided Tour.

This tour seeks to “highlight queer artists and themes through a small selection of artworks spanning centuries and social epochs. Some pieces include the multicultural perspectives of ritual and religion; others are more explicit in their portrayal of life through a queer lens.”

Right: “The Two Sailors” (1937) by Pavel Tchelitchew.

Above:: Contemplating one of my favorite works at the Minneapolis Institute of Art, Kehinde Wiley’s “Santos Dumont – The Father of Aviation II” (2009).

About this painting the Pride Self-Guilded Tour aide notes the following.

Kehinde Wiley is best known for his large-scale portraits of Black men depicted in poses that cast them as kings, prophets, and saints in the tradition of “old master” canvases, reminiscent especially of Renaissance and Baroque painting.

Wiley met the two young men featured in this painting in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. The subjects chose to position themselves as the two “fallen heroes” in a well-known public monument [left] dedicated to one of Brazil’s pioneer aviators, Alberto Santos-Dumont.

On Saturday, June 18 I had the honor of delivering remarks at my young friend Amanda’s high school graduation party, held at her grandmother’s farm in rural Minnesota.

Amanda’s mother is my good friend Angie, whom I’ve known since my earliest days in the U.S.

In the picture above, Amanda is pictured with Angie and her dad Bryan.

Above: Pelican Lake, Glenwood, MN – Saturday, June 18, 2022.

Above: A spring 2022 self portrait.

NEXT: Summer 2022

Spring 2022 Wild Reed posts of note:
Imbolc: Festival of Light
Spring Hiatus
Beltane: A Time of Hope and Renewal
Yahia Lababidi: “Poetry Is How We Pray Now”
Celebrating Tuesday’s Progressive Wins in the Midst of the Ongoing “War for the Future of the Democratic Party”
Returning to the Mind of God
“We’re Standing in the Place Where a Black Man Was Lynched in Public”
“For the Love of Our Children, Let’s Not Shut Up”
Spring . . . Within and Beyond
Cassandra Snow on Reclaiming the Word “Queer”
From the Palliative/Spiritual Care Bookshelf
The Kate Bush Renaissance of 2022
Remembering Julee Cruise and Her Signature Song
Bernie Sanders: “Now Is the Time to Make Democracy Work”
“A Kind of Elemental Force”
Tian Richards’ Message to Queer Youth: “Every Part of Your Identity Is a Superpower”

See also the previous Wild Reed posts:
Out and About – Autumn 2021
Out and About – Summer 2021
Out and About – Spring 2021
Out and About – Winter 2020-2021
Out and About – Autumn 2020

For previous Out and About series, see: 2007 | 2008 | 2009 | 2010 | 2011 | 2012 | 2013 | 2014 | 2015 | 2016 | 2017 | 2018 | 2019 | 2020 | 2021

Images: Michael J. Bayly.

Thursday, September 29, 2022

Becoming Miracle Workers

In the following 25-minute video Marianne Williamson outlines the basic tenets of the collection of spiritual writings known as A Course in Miracles. In doing so, she lifts up what can be called the “spiritual basics” of humanity.

I share this video and its wisdom today on Michaelmas – the Feast of the Archangel Michael. Years ago I came across a (now defunct) website dedicated to illuminating the deeper, esoteric truths of “traditional,” exoteric religion. (For an exploration of the esoteric and exoteric models of religion, click here.) This website noted that “Michael is entrusted with all events pertaining to the Earth’s Light grid and visionary geography. He supervises its major upgrades, in progress since the mid-1980s [not that long after the publication of A Course in Miracles], in which additional geometric features are being ‘grown’ out of the original grid to accommodate ever-increasing celestial light and consciousness.”

In short, humanity is spiritually-evolving and we’re all called to be miracle workers; that is, people who see beyond the limitations of this world and of egocentric thinking to the ultimately Real world of boundless Love, a love we traditionally call “God.” I welcome voices like Marianne Williamson and others who offer insights and guidance on this evolutionary journey.

A Course in Miracles teaches that “Nothing real can be threatened. Nothing unreal exists. Herein lies the peace of God.” What that means is this: Love is real. It’s an eternal creation and nothing can destroy it. Anything that isn’t love is an illusion. Remember this, and you’ll be at peace.

Marianne Williamson

For more on A Course in Miracles at The Wild Reed, see:
Be in My Mind, Beloved One
Your Peace Is With Me, Beloved One
You Are My Goal, Beloved One
The Beauty and Challenge of Being Present in the Moment
I Need Do Nothing . . . I Am Open to the Living Light
Returning the Mind to God
Being the Light
Pollyanna, “Miracle Worker”

For more of Marianne Williamson at The Wild Reed, see:
“Two of the Most Dedicated and Enlightened Heroes of Present Day America”
Now Here’s a Voice I’d Like to Hear Regularly on the Sunday Morning Talk Shows
A Deeper Perspective on What’s Really Attacking American Democracy
“For the Love of Our Children, Let’s Not Shut Up”
Marianne Williamson on the Tenth Anniversary of Occupy Wall Street
Cultivating Stillness
Cultivating Peace
Inauguration Eve Musings
We Cannot Allow a Biden Win to Mean a Return to “Brunch Liberalism”
“As Much the Sounding of An Alarm As a Time for Self-Congratulations”
Marianne Williamson on the Movement for a People’s Party
Eight Leading Progressive Voices on Why They’re Voting for Biden
“We Have an Emergency On Our Hands”: Marianne Williamson On the “Freefall” of American Democracy
Marianne Williamson: Quote of the Day – November 11, 2021
Marianne Williamson: Quote of the Day – June 2, 2020
Deep Gratitude
“A Beautiful Message, So Full of Greatness”
Marianne Williamson: “Anything That Will Help People Thrive, I’m Interested In”
Caitlin Johnstone: “Status Quo Politicians Are Infinitely ‘Weirder’ Than Marianne Williamson”
Presidential Candidate Marianne Williamson: “We’re Living at a Critical Moment in Our Democracy”
Why Marianne Williamson Is a Serious and Credible Presidential Candidate
In the Garden of Spirituality – Marianne Williamson
Easter for Mystics
Christmas for Mystics