Tuesday, March 02, 2010

still lent

We have waded about knee-deep into Lent, and already I sense the rising tension. "I feel exhausted." "Can we start Lent over?" "What happened to the spaciousness?" "What happened to my 'holy' Lent?!" Living counter to the culture ain't easy. But we pray for that grace during Lent, which comes this year just as winter's quiet has waned and there are more meetings, more papers, more voices calling us to come out and do more.

It's not too early to recommit to your disciplines, and it's not too late to take one up. Imagine the life you hope to live in God, and the community you hope to inhabit with God. Then, take up the practices that nourish that life. Release the habits that pull you away from that life. These are the disciplines around which we can build a new life, one that starts in Lent but doesn't have to end. And as you walk, take these beautiful words from Henri Nouwen, something of a patron saint of The Crossing:

Discipline is the other side of discipleship. Discipleship without discipline is like waiting to run in the marathon without ever practicing. Discipline without discipleship is like always practicing for the marathon without ever participating. ...

Discipline in the spiritual life is the concentrated effort to create the space and time where God can become our master and where we can respond freely to God's guidance. Thus discipline is the creation of boundaries that keep time and space open for God. Solitude requires discipline, worship requires discipline, caring for others requires discipline. They all ask us to set apart a time and a place where God's gracious presence can be acknowledged and responded to.

Where is that time and place for you? It's never too late to locate it. It's never too late to move there.

coming up @ the crossing
TODAY // Thanks to you all!
Friday night's Haiti Benefit Concert was sheer blessing, and we owe huge thanks to The Crossing's own Tracy and Seth Wispelwey, Justin Harvey; artists Aaron Strumpel and Alice Rouse Colegrove; AND our partners at
Boston Faith and Justice Network, Sojourn Collegiate Ministries, Nazarene Compassion Center (a local Haitian ministry) and the Episcopal Church of the Holy Spirit in Mattapan. Together, we gathered lots of food for local Haitian food banks and raised about $2,000 for Partners in Health and their Stand With Haiti campaign. But we also raised awareness and built new relationships. Praise God and blessings upon the people of Haiti, brothers and sisters with whom we are grateful to stand.

THURSDAYS @ 6pm // Worship and Community
Rev. Steph takes up the first reflection of the month, exploring Luke 13:1-9 (that slow-growing fig tree). Jason Long and company introduce the spiritual practice at the heart of small groups.
  • BEFORE WORSHIP: Come at 4:45pm to help with worship set-up or 5:30pm to join the prayer circle.
  • AFTER WORSHIP: Share snacks and head to Fajitas and Ritas for cheap dinner and fun.
  • BY SUBWAY: 138 Tremont St -- across from Park St T stop (Red or Green Line); near Downtown Crossing T (Orange)
  • PARKING: Boston Common Garage, Charles Street between Boston Common and Public Garden
  • FOR MORE INFO: Head to our website -- www.thecrossingboston.org

THIS WEDNESDAY @ 9pm // Night Song at the Monastery
If you're seeking that elusive silence, consider joining the brothers of the Society of St. John the Evangelist and our friends in the Life Together intern program for Night Song, a stirring Lenten evening of silence, song and prayer. INFO: www.ssje.org. LOCATION: Harvard Square, 980 Memorial Drive (next to the Kennedy School of Government).

small groups and formation
SATURDAYS and WEDNESDAYS // Covenant Groups (weekly)
Don't miss the final opportunity to join the Wednesday group, where Crossing members share stories, wisdom and the Christian journey. Meets at 6:30-8pm at the Cathedral. CONTACT Jason at

NEXT MONDAY @ 6:30-8pm // Neighborhood Action+Reflection Circles (every other week, thru 5/17)
These new small groups are dedicated to building community, sinking roots into our neighborhoods and engaging in justice and service to bless the communities where we live. Meet every other week, alternating between sharing stories and community in one gathering, and heading into action the next time. CONTACT Justin at justice@thecrossingboston.org to learn about the groups or to join one.


6pm at Episcopal Divinity School // Community Dinner + Prayer (weekly, as announced)

Join this relaxed, weekly gathering of Crossing folks and EDS students. Come if you're hungry. Come if you're curious about starting an intentional community. Come if you're in the neighborhood. Just come!

CONTACT TJ at TTetzlaff@eds.edu or Michael at michael@zahniser.net to confirm it's happening and get location.

Follow this link to learn all about our Small Groups and Formation Offerings or contact our Minister for Community Life, Jason Long, at community-life@thecrossingnboston.org.

ongoing crossing community info
InBetweenCrossings: groups.google.com/group/inbetweencrossings. Log on and view or share all kinds of random community notices: furniture, apartment sublets, concerts, lost and found, play dates. If you want to share it with our community, start here.

Giving @ The Crossing: follow the link to learn about sharing your money or your prayers with The Crossing -- it's a spiritual practice that we're grateful to invite people into. We raise a huge chunk of the money for this ministry among our own members (the rest comes from grants we apply for and from generous support from our Cathedral and Bishops). To make an ongoing pledge, fill out a card at worship or CONTACT Chris at giving@thecrossingboston.org.

Justice and Service @ The Crossing: Follow the link for info on particular volunteer opportunities and organizations that are close to our community's heart.

Meet Our Crew: The Crossing is led by a team of amazing, creative and faithful young adults. Follow the link to meet them and see who you might contact to more deeply engage our community.

Walking with you,
Rev. Steph

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