Friday, February 1, 2008
Sally at RevGals asked us to either discuss the SuperBowl or Second Candlemas/ Imbloc/ Groundhog day/ St Brigid's day- all of these fall on either the 1st or 2nd February, and answer the following:
1. Do you celebrate one or more of these?
3. Is this a bit of fun or deeply significant?
4. Are festivals/ Saints days important to you?
5.Name your favourite Saints day/ celebration.
When I was growing up I remember the SuperBowl was a big deal.It was new. It was the reason we got our first color TV ( I remember us borrowing the neighbor's station wagon to get it, and my friend and I sat in the back keeping the TV from sliding around. Needless to say, the back seat was folded down and we were NOT wearing seat belts). When I was in in junior high and high school I lived in Pittsburgh when the Steelers were winning championships. It pretty much consumed the city, and our high school marching band got to play the halftime show at a Steelers game. But I am not a football fan, so I picked the second option.
1. As I mentioned I lived in Pittsburgh for many years, and not far away was the town of Punxatawney, home of the infamous Punxatawney Phil. The Phil "cult" is perhaps best immortalized in the movie with Bill Murray, "Groundhog Day." The movie is actually not far from the truth, and the hoopla has grown immeasurably since the movie. What was once a humorous regional intrigue is now much more on the radar. There is an official website, and you can buy regalia. The public access channel for Pennsylvania carries the festivities. And even though we know this is just shenanigans, I admit my kids ask if the groundhog saw his shadow. We skip the all night partying that apparently happens on Gobblers Knob in Punxatawney. Here in Lancaster County PA, we have a rival groundhog, Octorora Orphie, whose prognostication is issued by the Master of the Slumbering Groundhog Lodge, who stands atop a manure speader here is farm country to do it. You are probably wondering how I managed to move from one part of Groundhog Country to the other in the same state- I honestly have no idea. But just to make it complete, our state lottery ads feature a groundhog encouraging people to "keep on scratching" those tickets. So there you have it.
2. See above and enjoy this clip:
3. Let's go with fun..
4.Changing direction totally, I do find Saints Days to be important to me. My daily prayer book is a series entitled "For All the Saints." In the Lutheran tradition we are all saints, but pondering the lives of significant figures in the life and witness of the church is powerful, and need not involve "worship" of them.
5. There are two actually. Saint Michael and all Angels, both because it is my husband's saint's day, and also the day upon which our older daughter was baptized.
And All Saints day. This is the day upon which my younger daughter was baptized. But also, I particularly enjoy a practice of our church of reading the names of all of those of our community who have entered life eternal within the past year. Each name is read, and the bell is tolled, in a slow and deliberate part of the Prayers of the Church. This has been a treasured practice of our congregation, and brings to fullness our prayers for joining the saints when we ourselves enter eternity. I can picture each person in my mind as his or her name is read, conjuring up a memory.
Happy Birthday, Sally, what a great idea to donate to a worthy cause and thanks for a great F5!