"I'm what the world considers to be a phenomenally successful man. And I've failed much more than I've succeeded. And each time I fail, I get my people together, and I say, "Where are we going?" And it starts to get better." - Calvin Trager
Sunday, June 20, 2004 Hello again ... I've posted 15 or so photos -- so many that you might have to click on the bottom archive link on the left column (http://revmikek.blogspot.com/2004_06_01_revmikek_archive.html) to get them all on your browser. I've got them in order from longest ago (last Sunday) to most recent (yesterday).
So today, Emmanuel and I concelebrated at Christ Church, Mallam. Instead of the sermon, they had their annual meeting. Amazing how similar annual meetings are no matter where you go -- bickering over membership numbers and the budget. But a lot of the youth were speaking up and taking part very enthusiastically, which was cool.
I feel like I have a grasp on the Ghanian Eucharistic liturgy now ... which is more Church of England than Rite I. I also have a grasp on how forgiving the people were last week!
The big event of the day was after the service. Emmanuel was enlisted at the last minute as a pinch-hitter for the preacher at a wedding at a Pentecostal church (the groom was an Anglican former parishioner of his). So, he told me that I'd be coming along -- which I thought was great.
I also thought that I'd just be sitting in the congregation (first clue this wasn't the case should have been when he told me to keep my alb on). When we get there, they escort us both to the platform where we are seated with 4 other clergy of various denominations, including the pastor of the church. I then get introduced as one of the officiants of the service (very nice .. they welcomed me both in English and in Twi).
Emmanuel leaned over to me as the wedding went on and told me that when it came time for the blessing, I'd be going down with the other clergy and taking part in it. SOunded like a group thing ... kind of the way all clergy come forward at an ordination. Sounds cool. So we all get down there and the PC pastor is singing this wild blessing and everyone is shouting lots of Amens and Alleluias (remember, this is a Pentecostal Church). As he was wrapping up, one of the church elders leans over to me and says "Now you give the blessing."
About 5 seconds later, as the words were still ringing in my ears, the room is now silent and there is a microphone being held in my face and everyone's hands are extended over the couple. I felt like I was in the middle of a Ben Stiller movie. Thank God the Episcopal marriage blessing was pretty close in my mental filing cabinet (I spruced it up some to fit the pentecostal style ... don't think it would have flown well at SMSG).
Later, they gave me about 2 minutes notice that I would be doing the benediction ... so that was easy.
Then, they had us all pose with the couple in the official wedding pictures. I still haven't actually met this couple yet and I have blessed their wedding and now am standing next to the bride in the wedding pictures. I wonder what "goofy white Anglican priest" translates to in Twi.
Well, enough blabber. Hope you like the pictures. The resolution isn't the best, but hopefully you get the idea of what you're looking at. No more posts from me until next Sunday, I imagine ... hopefully I'll have some great pictures of the Western Region then.
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"Christ's example is being
demeaned by the church if they ignore the new leprosy,
which is AIDS. The church is the sleeping giant here.
If it wakes up to what's really going on in the rest
of the world, it has a real role to play. If it doesn't,
it will be irrelevant."