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Vulnerability/Fragility – Jeff Blake

May 3, 2018

I have been thinking about my dear Brother Jeff Blake a lot these past few weeks. He left this earthly journey to travel further on a new section of Grace Street on April 23rd while Denise and I were in Alabama on our mini-Sabbatical/Sabbath Rest. This picture was taken on our trip to the Gulf Coast. The family of Canada Geese stopped traffic and I couldn’t help but think of my dear brother and his travels on Grace Street.

I miss him dearly. While we never met face-to-face, we shared treasured moments via Facebook messages, photos, and his writings. He was able to make the pilgrimage to Santa Fe a few weeks after we had been there. Knowing that he walked the Stations we had walked at the Cathedral means so much to me. I have been catching up on his book, A Year on Grace Street: Daily Signposts.

In April he was reflecting on the journey with Cancer and our Sister, Bodily Death as St Francis of Assisi said. This portion of the entry from April 20th touches my soul: Vulnerability/fragility means staying awake for as long as our bodies and our minds will permit us to do so. It means getting into the flow of the spiritual dimensions by which we may choose to live. Call these dimensions what you will. There is something more to the journey than the celebration of the self.

Last Saturday I officiated at the Celebration of Life for a parishioner and dear friend. Tomorrow I will officiate at the Graveside Service of another parishioner. In the midst of this death and dying, I also received good news about the health another parishioner and friend.

Life is fragile as you knew all too well, dear brother. Yet even in the midst of the darkest moments, you saw Grace and you shared it with us.

Embrace life each day… as the Psalmist says: This is the day the Lord has made. Let us rejoice and be glad in it. (Psalm 118:24)

This is my hope, this is my assurance, this is my prayer… as I remember Jeff, I offer to you, dear reader, this prayer from the New Zealand Prayer Book (Night Prayer):

Eternal Spirit, living God, in whom we live and move and have our being, all that we are, have been, and shall be is known to you, to the very secrets of our hearts and all that rises to trouble is. Living flame, burn into us, cleansing wind, blow through us, fountain of water, we’ll up within us, that we may love and praise in deed and in truth.

Dona Nobis Pacem

Grant Us Peace

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