It is said that Flannery O'Connor, describing her daily routine as a writer, wrote that every morning she made her way to her desk, whether or not she knew what she was going to write about. She sat down in front of her typewriter every morning, in case an idea came to her.
Routine. We need routine as something to count on, to steer us just in case. But we have been living in a time when routine is both not needed and desperately needed. Working at home, going to school at home, being in social gatherings each from our own homes – what morning rituals do we need? Who will know if we have showered, or gotten fully dressed?
Yet, routine, ritual grounds us. It helps us to focus. It helps us to be ready – in case an idea comes to us. We have gotten out of our routine of attending church as well. Isn't Sunday morning easy when we just roll over to the screen and turn on “church”? Mute the parts we are less interested in?
Our world is in the middle of changing again. As humanity finds its way out of this global pandemic, we walk on shaky, but hopeful ground. We can now imagine a day when we will again gather with others. But we are different. Our rituals have been impacted. And now we are trying to re-imagine what faith rituals we need, what of our church-going is most significant. Not only that, but how, and when, will we know what matters most? How will we know what we should leave behind, and what we must bring with us?
Our St Stephen's staff and leadership mull these things over all the time. What are the rituals we need most now? What rituals of faith do we need to count on for the near future? And what did we do before that might as well be left behind? To figure this out, we contemplate, we dialogue, we experiment. I would love to hear from you on this subject. Email me at, firstname.lastname@example.org , and be part of this dialogue. And may God's spirit and inspiration be as alive as ever in your daily life.