Wednesday, May 16, 2007
By a curious mixture of planning and happenstance, I am without work this month. I finished up my stint at Big Ivy U the last Sunday in April.
I loved that job.
I loved the students. I loved the experience of preaching in worship in that beautiful chapel. I loved the experience of preaching to that community. They are so utterly open. They are intelligent, of course, and analytical, and challenging; they by no means accept uncritically my view of scripture or of anything else. But they are open to the conversation. I had some of the best theological discussions of my life there-- ranking up with those from seminary days. I also had the experience of mentioning a local issue or struggle at joys and concerns-- and having a student approach me during coffee hour to say, "What can we do? Can we help?" Wow.
One of the things that struck me the most strongly about the students was the fact that they are not yet hardened into their roles or positions in the church. I am not preaching to (or chatting with) the Buildings and Grounds guy, or the Flower lady, or the Worship maven. How they will see themselves as part of a Christian community is still very fluid and unfixed... which I believe leads to things like the open-hearted inquiry, "How can we help?" What an absolute joy it is to work and worship with people who are not yet stuck in their own little territories and fiefdoms ('cause, I'm just sayin'. It happens. Ya know?).
So... I ended with sadness but real delight in the experience of being their interim chaplain. And now I am waiting.
I am waiting to begin a (very) short term interim in July.
I am waiting for rehearsals to begin for the production of The Mikado in which Petra, Larry-O and I will be performing this summer.
I am waiting for an interview with a nearby church for a permanent position.
But do you know what I am waiting for with the excitement of a lover anticipating a tryst?
I am waiting for July 21.
Yes. I am waiting. For Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows.
On my very last day at B.I.U. I had brunch with a group of about a dozen students. A grad student and I began chatting about the release in July of the next Harry Potter book, and for an hour or so we swapped theories, reminisced about our favorite scenes and characters, and generally whipped one another into a minor frenzy of anticipation.
Word is, two people will die in this book. A lot of folks think those two will be Harry and Voldemort, because they are clearly connected to one another, and the likelihood is that Harry will have to die in order for Voldemort to die as well.
Neville might replace Harry in this scenario, though. Neville is clearly also connected with Harry, at least, in some way.
A friend wondered if the two would be Fred and George Weasley, who have shown a propensity for going out with fireworks. But that would leave Voldemort alive... if indeed there are "only" going to be two deaths.
But the issue that concerns me almost more than who dies is the issue of Snape. I am clinging irrationally to the hope that he will be revealed to be good after all, at the last. I so want this tortured character to find redemption... and of course, that might be accomplished by his death in service of saving Harry and killing V.
So I'm wondering... any theories out there? And any suggestions for someone who's... waiting?