The Feast of Saint John, the Baptist

A Homily

John came, and john bore witness to the light
John, born in darkness as all of us are
John saw the light, shing in the deep night
Comforted by its warmth, John felt it first
Feeling it while he was still in the womb
Kicking in the waters, as the light dawned

John was not a man prone to vanity
You would not have seen him chasing the wind
Like a servant, John harvested honey
Faithful to the way, not puffed up with pride
John was a friend and brother to Jesus
The elder cousin of the messiah

Herald and prophet, man of the desert
John turned to us, saying reflect, repent
He came like an angel, with a pure heart
A divine messenger, pointing the way
The way is not in stillness or silence
The way is a path of service and love

He took on the burden and paid the price
John showed us how to stand against power
He came into the world ahead of Christ
Drawing breath while he listened in the womb
The breath he drew was ruha, the spirit
Holy Sophia filled John with wisdom
.
John lived and breathed, washed in the divine flame
Dipping his cup in the fountain of life
Walking with him, by whom all things were made
John’s path was the way of humility
Obedient, unphased by paradox
Born first, and the first to be sacrificed

He lived by the Jordan, serving the light
Not perplexed, or tempted to turn away
He saw in his cousin the end of night
He made a place for him in the desert
He prepared the way as God’s own herald
Ministering to the sick and grieving

Jesus and John. the Son and the herald
Working together in the name of God
Baptizing all into the way of peace
Bathing their flock in the way, in the light
Keeping to their mission even to death
John showed us the way, turn and be blessed!

John the Baptist

 
From the Gospel According to Mark – 2018.06.22

Observation – June 5th, 2020, Friday

The city is green

It is summer and it is quiet—right now, at 4:00 pm

If I think about it

I can recall the sounds of gunfire

That woke me up in the middle of the night

The quiet lays on Minneapolis like a green veil

The city is restive

The demand for justice is simmering, now

Seven days ago, we were at a roiling-boil

I can smell the ashes lingering—still

The chemical scent of unnatural fire

Scratching in my throat

Witness

Taken by my dreams
Transported to the heavens
Like the Apostle

Filled with promises
Chaos, blowing in the wind
All my work, refuse

We can have justice
We are entitled to it
We are called to it

Make it if you can
In the shadow of heaven
Parched prayers, hanging limp

Visions of flowers
Sterile seeds falling. withered
Promises, broken

The divine embrace
Amid the ashes, thirsting
Immanuel comes

Mystery II

Washed in the darkness
With the thick night pushing me
Clouds of unknowing

‘Cross the starry field
Mirrored in the deep blue sea
Disturbed by passion

Buffeted by winds
The ocean swells and threatens
Down, I will not go

Reaching for the truth
A life-line of certitude
A raft of reason

Watch beauty ascend
Her halo burning brightly
Slip the solar disk

Seeking out the good
Journey into mystery
Take the cup of fire

The world falls away
And I fall with it, bonded
Sleeping with the dead

Separate from God
These elusive mysteries
I have no answers

Meaningless riddles
Static, in the flow of time
Self dissolution