Friday, June 25, 2004

Letter from Last Winter

I found this letter that I wrote to my church minister last December. I emailed it, and never got a response, but my minister is a very busy lady, especially in December.

The letter was inspired by a New York Times article which is probably not available to read anymore. For some reason I feel like posting this. I write a lot of things without knowing why I’m writing them… I just sometimes can’t help it. It’s not that I want someone else to hear it… I just need to think on paper, maybe? Then, sometimes, I want feedback, or support… well, I guess that’s why everyone writes letters, emails, journals, blogs.

So, here’s a polaroid of a moment in my mind from last December.

I haven't made it to services in awhile. I miss everyone, but I've been sleeping a lot. November was a somewhat dark month for me and December is feeling grey... just a lot of inner turmoil going on. Trying to figure out how much control I should try and exert over different aspects of my life. Should I build, or let things grow naturally? Balancing my drive to make things happen with my feelings that often I push too hard and should learn to let go and let God... Well, that's a hard balance to strike. Just within the past week I'm learning to articulate things well. Maybe all the self-analysis and spiritual exploration I've been doing is showing some fruit?

And isn't it so typical of me to put out fruit in December! My internal calendar has always been out-of-sync with nature! (Maybe I'm an alien. What planet was I supposed to live on?) Again: Is this something unhealthy that I should address, or something that’s simply part of what makes me uniquely me?

>sigh< The story goes on.

I read an article in the New York Times today, about the memorial that has recently been erected in Duluth, MN, to honor three black men who were lynched there in 1920, by an angry white mob who didn't want justice. It was a fascinating article to me, who grew up in a horribly racist, sexist, "Christian" town. The idea expressed in the article is that since there are virtually all white people in Duluth, there's no racism. Then they quote a woman in a bar who resents having to pay for the memorial (Exactly how did she pay? Taxes? It's not clear.), and says "Those men wouldn't have been killed if they hadn't done nothing."

Ignorance. Lack of Education. Arrogance. Complacency. I grew up surrounded by it. I was sickened by it. Just last weekend, visiting friends in Illinois, I was confronted with it again. I was sickened again. I know it's in New York too, but in Illinois, I had no 4th U to provide solace and shelter from it. I thank the Goddess for my church community every day.

You have preached some brilliant sermons on race relations. The ideas put forth in this article reminded me of them. There is even a photo of the bronzed statues of the murdered men. (I've attached it). I think the memorial looks beautiful - but I'd like to see it in person and read the plaques.

I'm not sure how all these thoughts are related... or even if they are. But I wanted to share them. I haven't had much opportunity to just talk with you, and I regret that. I know your door is always open. You have lovingly reminded me of that several times, and I have always been grateful. I don't know why it is so hard for me to be present... but, I seem to be able to write.

Ah, heck, I could always write. Something we have in common. :)

Anyway, I hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving, and I look forward to attending the Christmas services.

In Peace,
Mz Ouiser

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