Grace Cathedral

Grace Cathedral

Article | March 25, 2022

Congregation Update: Spring Unnerves Me

Blog|The Rev. Canon Mark Stanger

Some evangelical preachers have condemned Pixar’s movie Turning Red, and they even call it demonic. What does Dean Malcolm Clemens Young think? Watch this week’s #MoreGoodNews on YouTube to find out!

Dear members of the Grace Cathedral congregation,

I can’t seem to find the text but I’m remembering a favorite bit from the American poet X.J. Kennedy about the uncertainty and disorientation that may arrive with spring, or any new life season of growth:

Spring has no household
no abiding heat
pokes forth new branches
from sidewalks of concrete

the snow at least
keeps track of peoples’ feet

I confess to sometimes feeling off track even when things, when the weather, when relationships are getting better, start blossoming. Suddenly I’m challenged to keep up, stay with it, find the new rhythm, learn the new steps, figure it out in a new way. It means time to drop the cooped-up cynicism and let some things out into the sunlight. A bit nervous about how and in which way they might start growing or glowing. A control issue? I’m not sure.

Our springtime worship life lines up with Jewish Passover and its liberating, dizzying, disorienting tale of freedom. Our Holy Week, beginning this year on April 10, with Palm Sunday walks us through some life-upsetting and life-resetting rituals. The great Three Days (Triduum) of Maundy ThursdayGood Friday and the Great Vigil of Easter on Saturday night April 16, let us lose track in a good way while we surrender to the great drama of God’s action in Jesus passing through death to new life. I wouldn’t miss this chance to be together anew after a few years of going it nearly alone.

Meanwhile, we anticipate the arrival of the cathedral’s new Vice Dean, the Rev. Dr. Greg Kimura and the chance to re-dedicate, re-vision, re-commit to new and maybe unimagined pathways and growth. Easter means a fresh start, leaving the winter hothouse or the dark cold tomb for new chances and choices for the flourishing of Grace Cathedral and our testimony to freedom, growth, connection, courage and joy.

Still working on the Lenten journey but see you soon… just ahead on the Palm Sunday road!


The Rev. Canon Mark E. Stanger
Interim Executive Pastor

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