For George Floyd – by Anna Soberanis

Church member and friend, Anna Soberanis wrote this piece.  I read it at our Sunday Service.  Anna gave me permission to share her wisdom here.  

My neck is sore. I can’t turn it fully to the right or to the left–years of tension locked into bone and cartilage that have stiffened like my perspectives. I don’t know if George Floyd’s neck was stiff before a Minneapolis’ officer kneeled on it. I wonder if the officer heard a crunch and a tear, or if he just relished in the terror of a black man prone on the street.

There must have been little pebbles in the asphalt–little pieces of rock that made their way into Mr. Floyd’s left cheek. But rips in the skin are not as painful as being denied your breath, your worth, your life force. I chanted “Akaal”–the sacred sound that escorts the soul unencumbered to the light of the cosmos.

I have to believe Mr. Floyd will be treated with divine blessings and respect in the ethereal realms that have awaited him–a kind of karmic “payback” for being treated as less than human on earth.

And the white officer who has a name, a family, a community… His life will never be the same. Two lives are always lost at the crossroads of violence. I wonder if the officer was a Christian. Does his house adorn a crucifix on the wall as a reminder that “Jesus died for our sins.” Jesus died again today.

And I recognize that Jesus may die tomorrow for mine if I don’t stay conscious of every mean bone in my body. Let’s mind our interiors; it’s the least we can do for Mr. Floyd.

 

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ZOOM Wedding

I’ve done over 100 weddings in my career as a minister. Some stand out more than others – marrying my beloved nephews to their chosen spouses; Greg and Jen’s wedding where I dropped the rings and blurted an impure word during the holy exchange. One of the most memorable ceremonies was a ZOOM wedding during the pandemic.

Prior to the event, Emma and James, did what most couples do – they booked the venues, selected the cake, the meal, and the music. They met with me to discuss the ceremony.

Then the pandemic happened, and all plans eroded. It was a slow, uncertain crumbling, probably painful for them. With each new quarantine rule, wedding plans dwindled from a large event, to a small gathering, to possible cancelation. Continue reading

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Happy Mother’s Day

When I was a little girl, my mother had one of those fur pieces that still had the animal’s head attached. I think it was an ermine, maybe a mink? It was dark brown, with glassy black eyes, and a mouth that opened and closed. It could bite its own tail.

I don’t know what people were thinking, but back then, it was quite the fashion statement. Plus, my three big sisters and I were fascinated by it.   We watched my mother put on her stockings, her pearls and white gloves, pick up her pocketbook, then throw the mink-head around her neck. Then she went off to church, where I’m sure the hapless animal glared at Reverend Rapp and the choir. Continue reading

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