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December 3rd, 2007


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05:43 pm - Two months? Really?
Last night, I made a resolution to write to the inmate I work with, and to do so once per week. I realized recently that I was already writing something for the Grove once per week, so I might as well package that and send it off. If nothing else, it will help someone feel like they're a part of something.

Today, I also sent my old Yule Ritual, which was written so that it could be done without offerings. I have recently been thinking about writing a full cycle of 8 solitary rites. Hell, I already write them for me; it wouldn't be hard to actually type them up.

It's been almost two months since I've written to the prison, though. I feel terrible about that: it's not like I'm not thinking about it, because it consumes a high portion of my thoughts. But, like all things, I have trouble actually managing to do it sometimes. I hope that I can manage to send things more often. I recently told my best friend that I spend so much time thinking about people, and enjoying the thoughts and the knowledge that I love them deeply, but I don't ever remember to say it. I don't call people up to tell them I was thinking about them. I don't send them letters, or I half-write them and don't send them because I get side-tracked.

Two months. Geez. What the hell, ya know? What the hell was I doing that was more important?

But then, I ask that question so often about so many things, it seems.
Current Location: Southeast of Disorder
Current Mood: busy
Current Music: "Waiting for the Next Explosion", -JB

(15 comments Leave a comment)

Comments:


[User Picture]
From:3starsinmyeyes
Date:December 3rd, 2007 11:14 pm (UTC)
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So what were you doing?
[User Picture]
From:chronarchy
Date:December 4th, 2007 01:42 pm (UTC)
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tesinth appears to have the answer :)
[User Picture]
From:3starsinmyeyes
Date:December 5th, 2007 02:36 am (UTC)
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I could be wrong, but I don't really see you being a slave to college football..

lol
[User Picture]
From:chronarchy
Date:December 5th, 2007 05:50 pm (UTC)
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What, you don't see me tied up with a football gag, and Doug Flutie hitting me with a riding crop?
[User Picture]
From:3starsinmyeyes
Date:December 6th, 2007 01:20 am (UTC)
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haha not without someone... say... YOU suggesting it first
[User Picture]
From:tesinth
Date:December 4th, 2007 04:28 am (UTC)
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Two months. Geez. What the hell, ya know? What the hell was I doing that was more important?

Dude, college football, dude. :P
[User Picture]
From:chronarchy
Date:December 4th, 2007 01:44 pm (UTC)
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nah, that'd be all three months, really. And I was more active before just these last two months.
[User Picture]
From:lirodendron
Date:December 4th, 2007 06:30 am (UTC)
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Can I ask about your prison ministry? I've known Christians that did that, but never a Pagan (if you don't mind being so-called). Is it any different?
[User Picture]
From:chronarchy
Date:December 4th, 2007 01:35 pm (UTC)
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Sure. I don't talk a lot about it on LJ, but I don't mind discussing it in general. There have been about three posts on the topic (see the tag) and I've been doing it for just about a year now.

I don't really like the term "prison ministry" because it has a set of assumptions with it that just aren't reflective of the reality for me, but I use it because there isn't really another word for it (other than maybe "prison clergying," but that's just ridiculous).

Generally, rather than a focus on conversion or atonement, I just listen. And make sacrifices for a person who can't do it for themselves (prison ≠ fire). I also give creative solutions to the central realities of prison life, including things like disposal of offerings, replacement of fire, and a decided lack of books on any subject remotely Pagan.

I also spend time with the prison chaplain (though I haven't done this in the new prison yet, I did it in the old one) to help lend some credibility to the inmate's religion.

Most of what I do is done over the mail at this point, though: it's a three hour round trip to the prison I'm working in right now, and last time I went down there I was turned away completely. There are rules involved with prisons that you just don't know until you either try and fail, or accidentally break them. Fortunately, I haven't accidentally broken any. But I recently spoke with a clergyperson from another faith who did. He got barred from the prison for leaving a book for the inmate without it going through the administration.

In my letters, I tend to send prayers, seasonal poems or writings, and rituals that the inmate can do. But sometimes I figure it wouldn't actually matter what I send: it's the contact with the outside world that really counts.
[User Picture]
From:lirodendron
Date:December 5th, 2007 04:21 am (UTC)
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Thanks for explaining. My uncle spent some time in prison, and I know how much he appreciated contact. Plus, yay for positive inter-faith communication.
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From:chronarchy
Date:December 5th, 2007 05:48 pm (UTC)
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Np. I really love doing it: it's the most rewarding thing I've ever done as clergy. It's not the kind of thing that makes you popular or aids the Org, really, but it's one of the most important things you can do for another human being, really, and that makes it worth it.
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From:romandruid
Date:December 4th, 2007 01:13 pm (UTC)
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I don't call people up to tell them I was thinking about them.

That's okay, we still know when you are. Besides, I'd be calling you every time I'm driving to work past Crane Taxidermy, which (oddly enough) makes me think of you and the gang.

Or would that be "gaggle"...? *googling* Ah. Did y'all know that the collective noun for a group of cranes is "sedge" or "siege"? Now there's a sobering image: A Siege of Cranes. *eep*

And er, um... good luck on the prison ministry. Please let me know how things are when you find out next?
[User Picture]
From:chronarchy
Date:December 4th, 2007 01:41 pm (UTC)
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I know. But sometimes I wish I were calling, writing, etc. I know I like to hear from people.

I just need more time, really. :) Add three more hours to the day and I'm golden.

Nifty about the Cranes. I think we should make use of that :)

I'll let you know once I know more.
[User Picture]
From:astra_dedicant
Date:December 5th, 2007 04:44 am (UTC)
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I'll still volunteer to write letters if you ever need it!

Are you the only one doing prison ministry? Is there a group?
[User Picture]
From:chronarchy
Date:December 5th, 2007 05:46 pm (UTC)
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There's a group of clergy, but it's really, really loosely organized. I don't even have an idea what's going on with it, organizationally speaking.

I can send you an address, if you drop me a line (I don't know where I put your email addy).

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