Monthly Archives: December 2010

Two Dozen

I was ordained to the priesthood twenty-four years ago today, at Christ Church, New Haven. At the time I was still working as chaplain at St Thomas’s Day School on Whitney Ave (Mr Acquavita is still the Head there — hey, Mr. Acquavita!), and second assistant at Christ Church New Haven (under the late Rev. Jerald G. Miner and the Rev. Donnel O’Flynn). Serving as chaplain to the Day School community, and as a colleague to Jerry and Donnel, was a tremendous gift to me in any number of ways. Stressful as that year was — I was taking a full courseload at Yale Divinity while I was working at the two jobs — my colleagues made the stress into something productive. I learned much more than a year’s worth of lessons from them.
Since then I’ve helped out with the campus ministry at Duke University (under the late Earl Brill), with the cathedral ministry at St Peter’s in St Petersburg, with miscellaneous services at DaySpring Episcopal Retreat Center, and as interim vicar at St James, Tampa. After we moved from Florida to New Jersey, I served as an assisting priest at Trinity Church, Princeton; from Princeton to Evanston, at St Luke’s Parish.
I spent the next two years in Princeton, on leave from Seabury, and in Durham, as visiting professor at Duke. I wasn’t rooted in either place, and I didn’t do much parish work (helped out a little at St Joseph’s in Durham).
A little more than a year ago, I moved here to Glasgow. I began helping out at the Cathedral of St Mary and with the Anglican chaplaincy here.
When you count in the many miscellaneous venues of ministry — at the schools at which I taught, at tech conferences, in my guild in WoW, at the places I’ve been invited to preach — my time in ordained ministry has involved many places and innumerable people. Everywhere, I found myself falling in love with the dear souls who came to church, who turned to me, in trust and hope. Sometimes good things come of our time together; sometimes bad things have followed. I wish there’d been more, greater good.
And Margaret, and our very wonderful family Nate, Si, Pippa, and Jennifer, supported me through it all.
I owe all of them so much for the patience with which they’ve borne with me, for the faith with which they’ve trusted me, for the grace we’ve seen together. Thanks, all of you. Thank you so very much. I’ll keep trying, we can keep trying together.

Heap Of Stromateis

I have a severe tab-link-backlog. This is the remedy:
• Since we actually live nearer Lochaber than ever before, this would be a possible gift idea, if only we weren’t resistant to the idea of landed nobility.
Elizabeth Drescher rightly assails the “Web makes us stupid” argument from Nicholas Carr (and, by appropriation, Len Sweet)
• The Journal of Electronic Publishing tackles the question of the future of University Presses. Speaking of which, in case I didn’t link to it before, here’s Seth Godin speaking to Indie publishers.
• Speaking of which, read this summary from Boing Boing, and for the recording-industry/music words substitute “print publishing”/“books” words. We haven’t reached that threshold yet, but we’re getting very near it, and the future will reward those who don’t waste their energies trying to hold back the technological tide.
• Speaking of publishing, and modulating to “teaching about writing,” the great Steve Himmer this year received two Pushcart Prize nominations, and he’s looking over the proofs of his forthcoming novel. We knew him way back when!
• The Chronicle presents a column on stipulating that students design their papers well, rather than giving them strict formatting guidelines
Reconfiguring Harvard’s library system — I sure hope they’re listening to their own David Weinberger on this
• I had most of these Peanuts books when I was a kid, beginning with the very first — many in French, too! It was a great way to brush up my vernacular (rather than schoolroom) French.

Behind The Scenes

Obviously, Principal Anton Muscatelli has been overlooking my active participation in teacher’s-union activities and student demonstrations, and has embraced the open-access ideology I’ve been promulgating all these years. When this announcement came across my email threshold at first, I ignored it — there had to be a catch, since at this point the University is enthralled by the idol of Full Economic Costing. Give anything away? G’wan, you’ve gotta be kidding!
But I saw it on Boing Boing, so it must be true: “One of the core missions of the University is the creation, advancement and sharing of knowledge.” I have the feeling that I’m going to be using that line in at least one grant application.