General Convention 2006

Send out your light and your truth; let them lead me; let them bring me to your holy hill and to your dwelling. Then I will go to the altar of God, and I will praise you . . . Psalm 43:3-4

The General Convention of the Episcopal Church
met in Columbus, Ohio from June 11-21, 2006.
This blog offers a view of the convention and beyond from the perspective of Lydia Evans, a two-time lay deputy from the Diocese of South Carolina.
Visit the links found below for additional resources
as well as pre- and post-convention coverage.
Thank you for remembering the convention deputies and their families in your prayers. For further resources, visit my webpages.
For all posts from the month of June, click here.
For all posts from the month of July, click here.


Prayers and Rites of Passage

In a little more than two weeks, resolutions from The Standing Commission on Liturgy and Music will be presented which propose changes to the Church Calendar and the inclusion of additional prayers and rites for use in ECUSA parishes. Their work was accomplished over the triennium through a series of subcommittees, including the Committee on Rites of Passage (authorized by 2003-A092).

Convened in the Fall of 2004, "a group of liturgists, musicians, and writers gathered at the Cathedral Center of Saint Paul in Los Angeles for the purpose of creating a collection of rites for the pastoral transitions in people's lives, [using] as a base, the culturally specific rites already existing in our church and [finding] ways to express these liturgies for broad applications."

Here is a portion of their work. While I remember well the point at which my children transitioned from crib to bed, and I recall the challenge of learning to ride a bike, I can't say that I ever missed having a specific prayer to mark this event in my child's life. But what I find most puzzling is the prayer for godly expression of one's sexuality. What does this really mean? Where is the acknowledgement of marriage as the appropriate context for this expression?

From Prayers for the Transitions of Childhood

Moving from a Crib to a Bed
The new bed may be made up with the child’s help. Members of the household, including the child, may move in procession from the crib to the bed with pillows, blankets, stuffed animals or other objects regularly part of the nighttime ritual.

Good and loving God, your watchful care never slumbers, and you give gifts to your children even as they sleep. Thank you for bringing us all to this day into which N. has grown in your protection. Give her blessed rest wherever she lays her head. Keep her well and fill her dreams with hope. Awaken her every morning to the sureness of your love with joy and courage for the day at hand; through Jesus, our Savior and Friend. Amen.

Learning to Ride a Bike
You move through our lives, O God, like the wind, pushing and pulling us into the adventures of growing up. Our young sister, N., has learned to ride a bicycle, conquering fear, enlarging her world, and tasting new freedom and speed. May the learning of this skill teach her to risk and to trust, to hold on and to let go, as life demands from day to day, and may she be kept safe always. We pray in Jesus’ name. Amen.

From Prayers and Rites for the Transitions of Youth and Young Adulthood

Graduating from High School
In every beginning is an ending, O Lord, and in every end something new begins. Our brother, N., has graduated from high school, and is ready now for new learning and experiences. Grant that childhood’s innocence and hope may remain alive in him bringing joy as he matures. Grant that he may hear your still small voice in his heart saying, “This is the way; walk in it.” Help his preserve old friendships while creating new ones. Grant that we who love his may help him to find his own voice, his own words and his own work in Christ’s true way who knows the person he was created to be; we pray this in Jesus’ name. Amen.

For Godly Expression of One’s Sexuality
O God, you have made us in your image and called us to the joys of human love. That love, the sign and seal of your own love for each of us, is shown through companionship and caring, and, powerfully and mysteriously, through the mystery of godly sexual expression shared with each other. This young person, N., is opening his heart to learn the wideness of love. As he strives to discover who he is, whose he is, and the person he is given to love, may he be guided, protected, and encouraged by you, O Love Incarnate. Give him wisdom in choosing, courage in loving, and patience in waiting for the marvelous truth of his life to unfold in your grace, most holy and undivided Trinity, alive through all the ages. Amen.

See it all in the report of The Standing Commission of Liturgy and Music from the Blue Book.


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