The Holy Spirit is wild. I love that the celtic church called her “The Wild Goose.” I have seen wild gooses and I get it! I can see why their great celtic spiritual depth, born out of suffering and intimacy – femininity and earthiness- was able to show them that kind of God. It is this wild, mischievous, playful part of the Trinity which I so very much love – no matter how hard we try to domesticate and control the experience of God – God breaks out, runs over the garden and flies over the fence only to double turn around those trees, unseen and careen back on us and smash into us with giggles and shrieks – tumble with us in the pansy patch and wrestle with us in the marsh mud – dissolving into laughter at our muddy faces and splattered vestments. Laying with God in a puddle of laughter is my favorite human experience on this planet.
Tomorrow the cathedral will gather for the Dream Together Conference. The attendance is much higher than anticipated. The morning session is full and the afternoon session is close to being full. The group which has chosen to spend the entire day with us (rather than simply choosing one session) is seven times what we expected.
People are humming about what this meeting is about. No one is quite sure ad yet everyone is coming! What vulnerability! Is it a planning meeting? No. Is it a forum for grievances? No. Is it a referendum of some kind? No. Is it a fluffy 1960’s love fest? No. Is it a donor cultivation event? No. Is it a forum for unveiling some great plan or announcement? No.
What is the Dream Together Conference?
This event (and there is still time to sign up today!!!) is simply a creative, delightful, fresh way for a community to gather and converse with each other. There will be no great speeches nor any grandstanding. Wallflowers will be able to speak safely and megaphone voices will be contained in their input. We will be using small tables for four, and we will be moving you from one mix of four to another very quickly and in that fast, exciting sound-bite way, we will flex our longings muscles. We will learn new technologies for communicating which will work as well in your family and your workplace as in our church. We will be making possible a safe container for each person in our congregation to be heard and to contribute their longings. Those longings for our life will be dreams, not strategic plans. They will be wild, playful, unfettered, messy imaginings between humans; much more like a jungle than a French formal garden or even an English garden with its carefully cultivated “natural” look. It will not be ordered or controlled, but it will not be a violent mess either. It will fall in that “Charodic” in-between place where the Wild Things Are.
(For more on new forms of communication consider listening to this On Being episode which has dramatically changed my way of thinking about how we connect in these modern times.