Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Ready, Set . . .

Tomorrow is the day I have been waiting for, as we prepare to begin mid-week services at The Episcopal Church of Our Savior at Honey Creek at 6:15 p.m. As is customary in the Episcopal Church, we will celebrate the Feast Day of the saint whose name appears on the calendar for that day. In this case it is that of Mary the Virgin, Mother of Our Lord Jesus Christ.

If we were having a service today, which we are not, we would be celebrating the Feast Day of Jonathan Myrick Daniels, who never got to graduate from his seminary - the Episcopal Theological School in Cambridge, Massachusetts. He never got to do the things I am doing because he did not live long enough to get ordained Priest. Instead, here is what happened:

"He returned to seminary and asked leave to work in Selma [Alabama] where he would be sponsored by the Episcopal Society for Cultural and Racial Unity. Conviction of his calling was deepened at Evening Prayer during the singing of the Magnificat: 'He hath put down the mighty from thir seat and hath exalted the humble and meek. He hath filled the hungry with good things.' He knew he had to go to Selma. The Virgin's song was to grow more and more dear to him in the weeks ahead.

"Jailed on August 14 for joining a picket line, Jonathan and his companions were unexpectedly released. Aware that they were in danger, four of them walked to a small store. As sixteen-year-old Ruby Sales reached the top step of the entrance, a man with a gun appeared, cursing her. Jonathan pulled her to one side to shield her from the unexpected threats. As a result, he was killed by a blast from the 12-gauge gun.

"The letters and papers Jonathan left bear eloquent witness to the profound effect Selma had upon him. He writes, 'The doctrine of the creeds, the enacted faith of the sacraments, were the essential preconditions of the experience itself. The faith with which I went to Selma has not changed: it has grown. . . . I began to know in my bones and sinews that I had been truly baptized into the Lord's death and resurrection... with them, the black men and white men, with all life, in him whose Name is above all the names that the races and nations shout. ... We are indelibly and unspeakably one."
(Lesser Feasts and Fasts, page 334)

He was twenty-six years old.

In peace,


The Rev. Linda McCloud
Founding Pastor
The Episcopal Church of Our Savior at Honey Creek
(912) 267-0333

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