The Dreamers and Me

Sherlock Holmes and Dr. John Watson went on a camping trip. After sharing a good meal and a bottle of wine, they retire to their tent for the night. At about 3 AM, Holmes nudges Watson and asks, "Watson, look up into the sky and tell me what you see?"  Watson said, "I see millions of stars." Holmes asks, "And, what does that tell you?" Watson replies, "Astronomically, it tells me there are millions of galaxies and potentially billions of planets. Astrologically, it tells me that Saturn is in Leo. Theologically, it tells me that God is great and we are small and insignificant. Horologically, it tells me that it's about 3am. Meteorologically, it tells me that we will have a beautiful day tomorrow. What does it tell you, Holmes?" Holmes retorts, "That someone stole our tent."

I heard a version of this story on the radio a few weeks ago and thought it quite cute. As I drove to work that morning, the story popped into my head again and it was then I realized what a good team they made. Watson - the dreamer, the big picture, glass is half-full guy; Sherlock - the practical, nuts and bolts, just the facts, Jack, kind of guy. They balanced each other. I suppose that's the way any good team should work.

Hopefully, you have had the chance to participate in, or at least preview, Pathways to a Lenten Journey, our first venture into the online world of adult formation. This project was dreamed up by Pastor Heath who had seen it done at other parishes. Originally, her desire was to do it for Advent, but we didn't have enough time to figure out how to do it. Since then, she, Father Hardman, Sarah Crawford (our Vestry Education Coordinator), and I have been working together to present to you the best possible online program that we felt capable of doing.

This project truly was a collaboration of talents: Pastor Heath saw the big picture, the final product, but didn't know where to go with it. So she brought in the big gun, Father Hardman, and together they studied theologians, bible passages, and various authors to develop a general theme: virtues of the Spirit. That was good, but then they got stuck again. So they asked me to join the conversation. They brought their spirituality, theological backgrounds, and contemplative thinking; I brought my computer, organizational, and writing skills. But we still needed a creativity edge - so enter Sarah Crawford. From there, things just flowed: Father Hardman became our spiritual advisor; Pastor Heath the author of mails and the weekly "Reflect" pieces; Sarah and Pastor Heath the creators of the weekly "Relate" activities for families with young children; and I, the researcher of  music and films for the "Respond" section. Although we each had our focus, we made sure that the theme - the virtues of Simplicity, Justice, Gratitude, Hope and Wholeness - was a common thread in each weekly offering.

Lastly, we needed to get the program to you - on your computers, your phones, your tablets - so that you could access it throughout the Season of Lent no matter where you are - at home, on the train, on the beach! So we brought in Jeff, our business manager and technology guru, to complete this final step.

And, voilà! Pathways to A Lenten Journey arrived in your inbox on Ash Wednesday, and will continue to arrive every Sunday during Lent.

Which brings me back to the beginning. Much like Sherlock Holmes and his sidekick Dr. Watson, this project could not have been completed if any one of us tried to do it alone. We have the dreamers, the big picture, glass is half-full guys (aka the clergy), and then there are the practical, nuts and bolts, just the facts, Jack, kind of guys (Jeff and me). Each of us brought different visions, ideas, and points of view; together we created a unique (at least for us) Lenten study series which we prayerfully and proudly have presented to you.

And so, from the lovers, the dreamers and me (as Kermit once said), we wish you a holy and blessed Season of Lent.