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Tuesday, November 03, 2009

Six degrees of separation?

There's an old joke about lesbians which tickles a place of truth about the relational nature of women who love other women.

Lesbian New Math

Question: Mary and Jane are lovers. Mary has had two previous lovers and Jane has had one. How many best friends do Mary and Jane have?

Answer: The answer, of course, is "three".

If you are a lesbian and you got the right answer, you can move to the head of the class and pick up your pair of Birkenstock sandals.

If you are a gay man and you got the right answer, you get a pinky ring, a macrame plant hanger and a warm, appreciative hug.

If you are a straight man and you got the right answer, you get a copy of the book, "Lesbian Nation," which you will receive when you show evidence of the cancellation of your subscription to "PlayBoy" magazine.

If you are a straight woman and you got the right answer, please proceed to the Recruitment Center to pick up your complimentary electric blanket and free pass to "Rumors," "Lilith's Garden," "Adam's Rib," the "Lickity-Split" or any other Lesbian Bar, Saloon, and/or Eatery of your choice.

You've seen the movie or read the book "Six Degrees of Separation," right? I think communication in cyberspace cuts that in half. Cut that in half again for religious people who communicate in cyberspace.

So, I have this friend who used to live in Morristown who retired to Vermont with her husband. We still stay in touch. Her dear friend still lives in Morristown and we communicate from time to time. Both of them read my blog.

So, Fr. Ed dies. The friend in Morristown calls the friend who has moved to VT. They both know "Fr. P," who is a 'soul friend' of the friend in Moristown and a dear friend of Fr. Ed and Msgr. Lasch, Fr. Ed's spiritual director.

She sends Fr. P a copy of my blog post on Fr. Ed's murder.

He, in turn, sends it to Msgr. Lasch, who delivered the eulogy/homily at Fr. Ed's funeral and used my story / tribute to Fr. Ed in his homily.

You can read the whole homily on Msgr. Lash's blog.

He concluded my story by saying, "Ed did not break any rules. He knew the heart of Christ."

When he said that, I think all eyes went directly to the Bishop's face to see if there was any reaction. There wasn't. I'm thinking the old chap just wasn't paying attention.

However, there is a note on Msgr.'s bulletin board that reads: "Beginning on Monday, November 2nd, I will be on an extended sabbatical leave/retreat during the month of November. I will not be sending or receiving email messages nor posting any reflections during this period. I ask you to keep me in your thoughts and prayers as I will keep you in mine. I look forward to activating my website on my return in December."

I'm trying not to say, "Uh-oh". I hope these dots do not connect.

Anyway, go visit Msgr.'s blog. You can find his homily here.

Everybody sing, "It's a small world, after all. It's a small world, after all. It's a small world, after all. It's a small, small world."


Lauren said...

Lordy, Elizabeth, do you really think Msgr.'s in trouble for quoting YOUR beautiful story and the ending YOU wrote? Surely that can't be related to his sabbatical ... surely ...

Kay & Sarah said...

I do hope everything is okay with Msgr. Lash.

Sometimes I wonder if there is even six degrees of separation. We were in Atlanta this week and heard Walter Brueggeman speak and really enjoyed him.

People were still talking about your visit the week before and how much they enjoyed you. I hope we eventually meet you.

motheramelia said...

The sermon he gave was wonderful and a tribute to not only your friend, who died a horrible death, and to you, but to the abiding love of God who nourishes us in our greatest need. I'm sure many people were nourished by those words.

Magdalene6127 said...

We live in a sad and sorry state if sharing a story of how someone was fed with the Body of Christ can get someone in trouble.

But. We knew we lived in a sad and sorry state anyway, didn't we?

Jane Priest said...

Oh, here's hoping and praying those dots are not connected. I related the story to the parents of a groom. They are all devout Catholics who don't like so many things about the Catholic church including the communion issue. As I told them your story I wept and so did they.

Elizabeth Kaeton said...

What I'm thinking that MAY have gotten him in trouble is his saying, "Fr. Ed did not break a rule." Then again, what do I know? This sabbatical/LOA/Retreat may have been planned for weeks or months before Fr. Ed's murder. Or, he may simply need time away to grieve.

I just hope it's not what I fear.

Anonymous said...

Fr. Ed obviously lived by the law of love. If only more people lived this way the world would be a far better place. Let's hope that the Msgr.'s sabbatical was on his schedule before this tragic murder.

Prayers for all at this difficult time.

Brother David said...

Madre, were you baptized and confirmed in the RC? So you would just be lapsed, right?

Or did you self-excomunicate when you received ordination? Even thought according to the RC your orders are null & void?

Elizabeth Kaeton said...

"Self-excommunicate". What a great term Dahveed!

Yes, I think I 'self-excommunicated' although, I'd bet dollars to donuts that my name was never taken off the membership rolls when I left Rome.

Kirkepiscatoid said...

I hope and pray that isn't the case Elizabeth. But even if it is, what do you want to bet the Msgr. would do it again if he had it to do over?

Interesting, my secret word is "hompents." Is that what happens when one repents over a homily? Scary!

Erp said...

I suspect the retreat is for other reasons since the eulogy is still posted. If that goes then worry.