Thursday, February 11, 2016

Three Beautiful Things 02/10/16: Ash Wednesday and Compline, Noodle Success, Beer Success

1. As I worshiped during the 12 o'clock noon Ash Wednesday service at St. Andrew's Espiscopal Church in College Park, I thought back to Ash Wednesday of 1977 and my role as the leader of the Wednesday night Compline service held at Whitworth Presbyterian Church. I was a Chaplain's Assistant that year at Whitworth College and the Compline service was a liturgical, meditative, service, offered as a way to worship different than the weekly Sunday Campus Worship with its acoustic guitars, Young Life songs, and sermon. I thought about Herb Stocker, a Presbyterian minister who worked in Whitworth's administration, and how he was supportive of Compline and how he agreed to impose ashes on worshiper's foreheads that Wednesday, and, if I'm not mistaken, he asked me to help him mark worshiper's foreheads. I loved writing and leading that service every week. And, today, thirty-nine years later, I miss it.

Note:  I just discovered via the World Wide Web that Herb Stocker died on December 9, 2014. I will continue to remember him with deep gratitude for the many ways he generously helped me in my work with Compline, including serving Communion whenever asked and, as mentioned, imposing the ashes on Ash Wednesday.

2. Tuesday, I went to Target and bought one of those aquatic foam rubber noodles. In the water aerobics class, we exercise with a noodle, and I wanted to work with it outside of class.  Today, I successfully put the noodle to work on my own, making what would have been a good workout in the pool even better.

3. The Deke wanted to drink some good beer at the Old Line Bistro right after school because her day ended with a meeting with the vice principal who had observed her at work in the classroom. The Deke listened to the most negative comments she's ever heard about her work. We hit it lucky at the Old Line Bistro.  A new brewery, 7 Locks of Rockville, MD, had taken over four of the taps and we really enjoyed their IPA -- I also enjoyed their rye IPA -- and the atmosphere at the Old Line was fun and positive and, as a bonus, when we went into the Old Line beer store, they had bombers of Stone's Black IPA, a beer the Deke has been wanting to find for over a year now and Stone just released it as part of their "Best Enjoyed By" series -- so this black IPA is best enjoyed by Valentine's Day, we bought a couple bombers, and enjoyed one when we got back home and we'll definitely enjoy the other before Sunday.

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