We were asked during our Camino to Santiago de Compostela, "Why are you doing this camino?"
What came up for me over and over is that we need for peace in the world, in our faith communities and in our families.
While on the Camino, I had the chance to read a biography of one of my favorite people: Bishop Mark Dyer.
Cathleen had bought me the biography, "A Man named Mark".
Bishop Mark was my favorite teacher at the Virginia Theological Seminary. He grew up a boy in Boston, served in the navy and then became a monk. He then left the Roman Catholic Church and became a theologian/teacher in Ottowa, where he was introduced to the Anglican Church. He was ordained as a priest in the Episcopal Church, married and he and his wife adopted three children. The first was Matthew, who was diagnosed with hydrocephalus/brain stem abnormality. Even though Matthew never spoke, he remained the center of the Dyer family for 29 years. Along the way, Mark and wife, enjoyed sitting with Matthew. Bishop Mark told us stories that it was like sitting with an angel.
Bishop Mark was a man of prayer and a man of peace. He would tell us that he got up each day, had breakfast and began his day by going to his den and looking at his many icons which helped him pray. There are many stories in his bibliography where others told their stories of Mark getting a cup of coffee at the office and retreating to his office in order to pray before he started his work day.
During the Camino, I thought a lot about what was needed in my life, in my family, in our church community. What I heard was the need for prayer and peace.Thus, I am calling our Transfiguration community to prayer for peace during our four weeks of Advent. Our Sunday liturgies will reflect this. We will say the prayer of St. Francis "Make me a Channel of Your Peace" as our Closing Prayer each Sunday. I ask that you take your Sunday bulletin home and cut out the Prayer of St. Francis and tape it on your mirror, so that you pray it every morning as your prepare for the day. I ask that you pray for someone you love, yourself and someone who annoys you -- for four weeks of Advent.
I would like to hear your comments along the way (camino) - what you are doing to bring peace in your life, your family and your community.