Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Art, worship, and action

The image you see above is entitled "O War-Torn Town of Bethlehem", and it can be found at the Episcopal Church and Visual Arts Exhibition online. Click here for the entry page of the "Unto us a Child is Born" section. As I was paging through the gallery, I had a hard time deciding which picture I wanted to post. Different images can "speak" to different people. But I think art can touch us on a level that words can't.

And music can certainly be powerful, inspiring, and motivating. Long story short, I found myself irritated with The Daily Show's segment on the U2Charist. Yes, I get that it's a funny name. But having attended such a service this past summer, I know that these services are designed to help get people feeling inspired and empowered about going forth and helping to right some of the wrongs in the world. At the service I attended, there was a lot of emphasis on the Millennium Development Goals. That's something I take very seriously, and getting more people to care about things like "eradicating extreme poverty and hunger" is a *very* good thing. So I was a tad annoyed when the segment *only* portrayed it as something silly and laughable.

Anyway, I realize the job of the folks at the Daily Show is to make people laugh. But now I feel like it's *my* job to make sure people know what the U2Charist is really about.

Here's a page on the Episcopalians for Global Reconciliation web site that tells a bit about how the U2Charist might be used...

A U2charist is an Episcopal Eucharist service that features the music of the rock band U2 and a message about God's call to rally around the Millennium Development Goals. The U2charist is a great opportunity to reach out to the people in your congregation and larger community, especially young people. This service the music and message of U2 about global reconciliation, justice for the poor and oppressed, and the importance of caring for your neighbor. Led by the global MDG ambassador, Bono, U2 is calling people worldwide to a deeper faith and engagement with God's mission. The U2charist seeks to be an extension of this ministry.

Who knows...maybe Jon can make up for this by having Bono, or, better yet, Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori, on the program to talk about the Millennium Development Goals. (Why not--he had Bishop Desmond Tutu on the program!)

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