Given the events of the past ten days, this is small news but for me it’s huge. I wrote the Prayers of the Faithful for St James Roman Catholic Church for this past month of June. This would be the last time that I do so. It was the last place I still held on to at St James and just as I settled into another parish, my name came up on the rotation. So I did what I’ve done for six of the last eight years. I wrote. For the past month, as I attended my new parish, I read the lectionary readings, I prayed, and I wrote the prayers for St James that I would not hear read aloud. They were my parting gift to a community that gave me so much over the past 28 years and it was one which few will ever know that I gave. The writer’s ministry is virtually unknown. We are not publicly praised or acknowledged for the small piece we contribute to the liturgy nor would any of us want to be. We are meant to be the voices of those in the pews. Knowing it would be the last time, I wrote with all my heart. I wrote for the natural world, for Charleston, for an acknowledgement and end to racism, and called for civility in our discussions of the Supreme Court ruling no matter what our opinions may be. As of Friday afternoon, I made it official. I am no longer an active member of St James. And Sunday when I go to Mass, I will hand the usher a census card and officially join my new parish.
I will miss all of my dear friends. I tried to work things through to stay but I needed the leadership to be willing to talk, and to take a definitive stand. My pleas fell on deaf ears leaving me with no other choice but to leave.
Perhaps I can bring my ministry with me. Perhaps I will find a new one. God has great plans for me and I am not afraid to follow Him into new territory.