In my life, I’ve noticed there are three reunions underway: personal, professional, and spiritual. Or is it actually one reunion? I tend to organize things separately “in piles” in my brain in order to feel as though “I have it together.” For me, this tendency can lead to a missed opportunity for integration if I don’t take the next steps to explore connections between those piles.
My sister was visiting from Seattle recently; it was her first trip back to New England since the pandemic started. It was wonderful to be with her again. I’m grateful to all of you who welcomed her warmly at church that Sunday – and the family reunion party that we had at my brother’s house later that day was filled with joy and laughter. I recalled to Brett during the car ride home, “That was the best family party; it was perfect.”
Last week, I participated in a day long, in-person “offsite meeting” at work. This meeting involved colleagues I have not seen in person since the pandemic, including my manager. I was struck by the genuine happiness in the room as we worked together to determine some future priorities. From my perspective, being together for those hours restored a camaraderie and momentum that had been missing over this last period; honestly that felt more valuable than the content of what was discussed.
Last month, the vestry met for an in-person retreat, where a similar scenario played out – we spent time together over a few meals, re-connecting and laughing. On the first evening, we spent a few minutes sharing a core value about ourselves, providing a window into our lives. The next day, we agreed that one of our immediate priorities should be to continue to explore ways for the parish to be together, and you’ll be seeing more about that in the coming weeks.
The Danish comedian and musician Victor Borge said “Laughter is the shortest distance between two people.” The joy and laughter that I experienced during these brief reunions were a great way to bridge the distance that appeared due to being apart. For me, it’s a terrific reminder of my need to be in community with you. I look forward to continuing our reunion.
With blessings to you and your loved ones.