Some of My Favourite People

Ascension Sunday was beautiful in so many ways.  Bishop Emeritus Frederick Henry was with us for the celebration of the Mass.  As much as being a part of this family has, at times, been a struggle, it feels as though I am home with my community when I share in the Mass with so many friends.  Sometimes in today’s world, we can be very MEcentric and I find that I am able to quiet that and really focus on ‘the other’ when I am in community. I sometimes wonder how the human family will look back on the world that we are creating and what our part in history will be.  I lifted prayers and offered up this Mass, in particular, for people in my life who have medical struggles and for my children.  From Mass, I stepped out into a gorgeous-weather day and decided to make my circle of the pond, with Max before anything else.

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I booked up the afternoon with a create! workshop at Wendy’s…a session co-delivered with Ruth Purves Smith, needle felting and wet felting, forgetting that I was also committed to attending Indigenous dance led by Jess McMann.  Sigh… I opted to head out to Lakeview, as I knew I planned to visit my YaYa at the Foothills Hospital afterwards.

The afternoon was glorious, back yard crafting with beautiful and engaged creatives. The birds were chirping and singing and bathing, all the while.  Ginger snaps and ice cold lemonade were served as we went about learning to make dryer balls, wet felting and creating lovely artworks.  A great way to spend the afternoon!  Thank you, Wendy and Ruth.

Not only is Ruth a huge advocate for the Custom Woolen Mills, she is a heart-filled musician and huge song writer and story teller!  I hang out with amazing people!

In conclusion, kits were put together and I was eager to get over to the hospital and my friend, to see if she would be able to try felting.

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It was a joy to watch my YaYa, sit outdoors in the shade of Foothills Hospital and manage some felting.  I will bring the project that she began along with me on my next visit and bit by bit, she can construct something beautiful.  Best she not poke her finger with one of those needles!  The day was so much brighter because I was able to hang out with her and to see the progress she has made in her healing.  Four months later, she is a strong and inspiring fighter!  Her husband is equally inspiring because he has been selfless and supportive through this very unique journey.  They are, together, an inspiring couple.

I spent the evening on my own…a little putzing in the garden…some more walking with Max…some texting with my daughter who had entered a song-writers competition.  She got to chat it up with one of my favourite Alberta song writers, Joe Nolan, and so I will aptly conclude this post with one of his tunes.

The day was a ‘Ballad of Some Sort”.  (Changed my mind…but, YouTube it!) Instead, River Ends. Both Ruth and Joe deliver music in wool socks.  I think song-writers who perform in sock feet are generally good people.

Thanks, Wendy Lees, for being a beautiful person!  Thanks to you, Ruth…for sharing the joy of creation with me, again.  Such warmth and generosity!

Love Art in Calgary Tours

Wendy Lees

Ruth Purves Smith

 

 

This morning, I lit a candle.

The day has been filled with Christmas light.

DSC_1791I got up early this morning…Max and I did a before-the-sun-came-up walk.  On the circle, Christmas lights on houses and in trees still dazzled the snow-sprinkled morning.  A cold bite to the air, I pulled my hood up and we made our way into day, leaving our footprints behind, the first in fresh snow.

The magic continued.  As is usual, it was possible to hear one good classical tune on CKUA on my drive to the church, where upon my entrance, I was greeted by the familiar voices and smiles of old friends.  After a short morning prayer, I decided to light a candle.  It is the feast day of the Holy Family and I couldn’t stop thinking about my family…Dad, Mom…my brothers and sister and my children.  Mom would have me light that candle and say a prayer and acknowledge, with gratitude, the blessings of this season and my life, and so I did.

Social media enjoys its fair share of cynicism about God, Jesus and ‘religion’.  While somewhat accepting of ‘spirituality’ and spewing a constant blast of Rumi quotes, many people generally dismiss the power of belief and embrace the power of ‘I’, ‘me’, ‘now’, ‘manifestation’, ‘selfie’, and ‘self-gratification’ instead.  I’m not here to knock all of that and all of them, but I’m here to proclaim just how powerful faith is for me.  I felt as though when I lit that candle, a tidal wave of love spilled over me.  I experienced ‘God-be-with-you’ in the truest sense.  I am grateful for the grace and power of the divine within me.

I’m a big one for family history, studying my maternal and paternal lineages intensely for the past five years. The Liturgy of the Word was filled with family history today…stories of hope and amazement.

The Mass was filled with blessings of every kind. Deacon Greg shared a heartfelt homily that touched me deeply.  Sometimes personal narratives just have a way of reaching into the soul and healing something.  Greg’s stories of faith, family, struggle and joy were so meaningful and so relevant.  I cherish my family deeply and I’m so grateful for their love and support always.  Each member of my family, whether they be in Lethbridge, Raymond, Magrath, Ottawa, Halifax, Comox or Calgary, is light to me.

During Offertory, we sang the Little Drummer Boy.  Today’s version, with some percussion, sent chills up my spine because I felt as though Mom was sitting right beside me.  This carol was always her favourite and my spirit lit up at the first tap of the drum.

Three baptisms…Isaac, Ethan and Noelle.  What’s not to absolutely love about baptisms?  The children from the congregation gathered, wearing their new Christmas outfits, excited to celebrate in the welcoming of three new infants into our community.  Ethan and Noelle appeared to be twins, looking so fragile and sleeping so soundly.  Father Cristino gently blessed their small round heads with water and there was barely a peep from either of the wee angels.  Isaac was fully immersed and his back stiffened at contact with the water, when all at the same time, he let out a cry.  Wrapped up in a cozy blanket, Daddy held him close and he was quickly consoled.  The congregation was invited to applaud our welcome and our excitement for this beautiful event.  That small candle continued to light up my heart.

The Consecration at the celebration of the Holy Eucharist left me gobsmacked.  My readers might have to look up the term in their urban dictionaries.  I just could not find a term that would suit this moment better.  Gobsmacked, it is!

This day has been a very special day for me because of its beginning.  The snow continues to flutter gently to the ground.  My daughter came by and shared a meal of beef barley soup.  We snuggled.  Max played whizzo outside and flew through the snow…again.  The light has long since left the sky.  The Christmas tree lights are once again plugged in.  While the sky is very dark, it feels as though I am lit up.  I am grateful.  I am happy.

 

Exploring John Street

Mrs. Mary Eleanor Moors nee Haddow, my great grandmother, passed away at her home on 139 1/2 John Street South in February, 1944.  She had lived in Hamilton for most of her life, living first at 42 Jones Street where my grandfather, John Moors, was born and she was known for her kind and generous nature.  This kind heart won her a wide circle of friends.  She attended Centenary United Church and from the time that her husband, John, died in Etaples, France in service of our country, she lived with her sister Margaret.  I felt strongly about visiting her apartment in the city and the church that she attended.

P1110475 P1110476 P1110478 P1110480 P1110482The history of Centenary United Church may be read here.  The history of the Organs of Centenary may be read here.

Centenary Church Rev. Sparling Hamilton Public Library and Centenary Centenary Church Jubilee 1868 to 1918 Centenery United Hamilton Mary Eleanor Moors attendedThe previous photographs were ‘in the day’.  Here are images of present-day Centenary.

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© Photo Credit: Kathleen Moors

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© Photo Credit: Kathleen Moors

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© Photo Credit: Kathleen Moors

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Photo Credit: Kathleen Moors ©

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© Photo Credit: Kathleen Moors

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© Photo Credit: Kathleen Moors

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© Photo Credit: Kathleen Moors

Light the Advent Candle One

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Prepare Ye the Way!

It is a very sentimental thing to step into the church and see the beautiful decorations each Advent season.  I moved into my place in the sixth row, next to Joanne, and felt so at home…surrounded by love and good people.

This year, I have set up my own nativity figures at home, carved by Al Gerritsen.  I had dreamed to own a set hand carved by this humble and gifted artist for so many years and because of interesting circumstances, this is the year it happened.  It was awesome to spend time with Al in his studio.  He was busy, at the time, staining another project and the entire shop was filled with that magical aroma of wood.  Before placing the creche figures, I pulled a piece of violet satin and netting over the book shelf.  The wreath is set out on the feast table and now it is time to wrap the fruit cakes for the post!

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Wood Fillin’

I’m excited to have a couple of cribbed panels parked up in the church balcony and this afternoon I got busy filling nail holes and getting their surfaces prepared.  I am repainting two pieces for our church, St. Albert the Great Parish.  They will become some sort of legacy for my friend and priest, Father Kevin Tumback.  This is one way that I can demonstrate appreciation for the support he has given me artistically through the last many years as we’ve built our community.  I painted these pieces first as banners, but with the up and down of them, the surface became damaged and I decided to create something more permanent.

Thanks to another parishioner, Yves, for having built these two panels, 10′ x 6′ in size.  There is no way that I had the financial resources to have these constructed, so in this, I am also truly blessed!  I hope to capture these images in process as they reveal themselves to me and I give gratitude and honour to our Lord who inspires all art within me.  It is for his glory that I paint.

Luke 22:19

19  And he took bread, and when he had given thanks, he broke it and gave it to them, saying, “This is my body, which is given for you. Do this in remembrance of me.”

 

Matthew 4

The Temptation of Jesus

4 Then Jesus was led by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted there by the devil. For forty days and forty nights he fasted and became very hungry.

During that time the devil[a] came and said to him, “If you are the Son of God, tell these stones to become loaves of bread.”

But Jesus told him, “No! The Scriptures say,

‘People do not live by bread alone,
but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.’[b]

Then the devil took him to the holy city, Jerusalem, to the highest point of the Temple, and said, “If you are the Son of God, jump off! For the Scriptures say,

‘He will order his angels to protect you.
And they will hold you up with their hands
so you won’t even hurt your foot on a stone.’[c]

Jesus responded, “The Scriptures also say, ‘You must not test the Lord your God.’[d]

Next the devil took him to the peak of a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their glory. “I will give it all to you,” he said, “if you will kneel down and worship me.”

10 “Get out of here, Satan,” Jesus told him. “For the Scriptures say,

‘You must worship the Lord your God
and serve only him.’[e]

11 Then the devil went away, and angels came and took care of Jesus.

Church Street Evening: St. Thomas Anglican Church

A beautiful restored church of Norman style, Max and I enjoyed the gardens and the way the light of evening exaggerated the angles of the building.  St. Thomas Anglican Church history can be read here.

St. Thomas Anglican Church: Belleville, Ontario July 31, 2011

 

Side View

Vineyards

My daughter joined me in the Chapel this morning.  She worked on the vineyards as I continued with the crowds outside of the two windows.  Father came to visit with us for a short time and a mother stopped by to tell us that just before our arrival, there were no fewer than thirty grade two youngsters in the space…looking at the wall…as they were taught about the symbols of the wine and the bread in preparation for their first Holy Eucharist.
 
From there, they were seated in the church itself, rehearsing and learning about this huge opportunity. The two of us were happy to be listening to the teaching voices and the voices and laughs of children while we worked.  We quietly spoke to one another and wondered about The Last Supper as we painted.  It was a treasured time for me…it meant so much for her to be sharing this space with me…and for her to be painting.

Night Painting: Spirit

Meditation

I painted for four hours this evening in the Chapel and feel as though there is real progress being made.  I met two women after Mass, one who spent about an hour with me in prayer and the other who simply affirmed the project, the ideas and expressed warm gratitude.  I was very happy about the contact.
 
The choir was practising in the church while I painted.  I loved hearing the music and sang along for the most part, all the while reaching hard-to-reach-places on the high ladder.  A group of young and interested children visited again and again, watching the progress and entering in wonderful conversations.  This gave me the opportunity to share some of what I was doing.  Small Maria added her name in gold, while the others signed the handwritten journal I have been keeping.

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Advent

We move toward the lighting of the final Advent candle and I reflect on the spiritual journey I’ve made this year.  I am astounded by God’s love for us and that I have such blessings in my life!  In a world where so many strong individuals confront devastation…whether that be through a battle to recover from a hurricane…to fight the result of an AIDS Pandemic…or to struggle, along with family members, when one of the family is in the midst of suffering stroke or cancer or the pain of arthritis…in THIS world, I presently enjoy health, peace, love and well-being.
 
As I repeat again and again to my students…spirituality (as opposed to religious practice) is to live out the concept of ‘faith in action’, always giving Glory to God who created us.  I ask God to use me as an instrument…to give and be DIVINE magic in the world.  Through shared DIVINITY, this Advent has given me a sense of being rooted in a huge tree!  Although there is no evidence in terms of my finances or my position in the world, I am one of a ROYAL lineage.
 
To those who plunk themselves down on this blog….if even for a ‘passing through sort of experience’, please know that you are special and that this little lady wishes you a joyful and comfortable Christmas season.  I’m hoping that you have someone to love…for it is in loving, that you will enjoy the sense of also being loveable.