Saturday, January 20, 2007

Orthodox* Writers' Week 2007

Coming up April 23-29, 2007, the second annual Orthodox* Writers' Week at the Beach.

  • NO program
  • NO speakers
  • NO required activities
  • Time to work on the project of your choice
  • Miles of beach to walk
  • Fellowship of others engaged in the same effort
  • Morning prayer (readers’ matins)

Full week: $60 plus $35 annual membership in Oregon Writers Colony
Less than a week: $20 per night plus $35 annual membership in Oregon Writers Colony
Family-style dinners prepared cooperatively by participants (there are grocery stores nearby); on your own for breakfast and lunch, whether at a nearby diner or in the house kitchen.


At the beautiful and quirky Oregon Writers Colony Colonyhouse in Rockaway Beach, Oregon (between Cannon Beach and Tillamook).

Download a flyer (in PDF format).

* You don't have to be Orthodox. You just have to be able to put up with us for a week.

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

A curious thank-you

The TV was blaring something about a school shooting when I walked into the waiting room at the car repair shop this morning. The two men already sitting there weren't watching -- one was reading the newspaper, and the other was doing something that involved a legal pad and a pen -- and I was approaching the thrilling conclusion of a Wilkie Collins novel.

The remote lay on a table beside the chair where I sat, so I held it up, asked a quick permission and turned the TV off.

Time passed. The man with the legal pad paid for his oil change and headed for the door. "Thanks for turning off Fox," he said pleasantly, as he closed the door behind him, leaving me wondering if he would have been quite so friendly about my turning off The View.

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Just say No

Words of wisdom from Tracey: "If you're ever at your prayers and you're suddenly struck with an idea for a brand new icon, just wait for it to go away."

Here's an illustration of what happens when someone ignores that advice.

It's an "icon" of all the special people riding in the big boat.

On the ground are bad people sniping and shooting and pointing spears and generally exercising hostility at all the special people riding in the big boat.

That's supposed to be Martin Luther looking like an Old West stagecoach robber. And proving that this iconographer has read his Hal Lindsey, we have the anti-Christ hanging out with a "king" of Israel and the Harlot of Babylon. Over there is the pope, not any specific pope, but a generic Pope. Oh, and the "prophet" who must not be named. And on the far right is Patriarch Athenagoras, who committed the sin of talking to a pope, which makes him the "father of ecumenism" -- which is pretty remarkable, considering that the ecumenical movement is rooted in the 19th century.

The marketers of this illustration are very good at pointing out the dangers of ecumenism, but not so good at noticing the dangers of hopping from boat to increasingly smaller boat in search of the one so small that it will hold only the people sufficiently holy to be part of their world.

But what do I know? By their definition, I'm not Orthodox either.

This is part of the reason why, when someone says, "I don't like organized religion," I'm inclined to say, "Have I got a Church for you."