On this day, I am beginning what for me will be a challenging quest: to blog once a day, every day, using whatever I have been engaged in up to that moment as my inspiration. Today, that means Twitter. And at this auspicious time: 11:12 a.m. on 1/1/12, UNCO11 friend, Mary Charlotte Elia was at the top of my Twitter feed with this query: “I wonder if the choir can tell me what it was that I apparently sat in and got all over the back of my alb before worship.”
While a question like this might lead me to wonder about the permanence of said stain on said garment or about implications of carelessness vis a vis a lack of professionalism, it could just as easily send me down the rabbit hole of proposing alb-safe stain removers and proffering advice regarding a search for a chair or stool which may also bear the remnants of whatever it was that besmirched the robe in question. While any of these would provide sufficient content for a blog and certainly are full of promise for coffee hour curmudgeoning, I’m more interested in considering what it is that we actually choose to pay attention to in worship.
What holds our attention? What is at the center of our consciousness? What causes us to tighten our focus? And even as I write these questions, I realize that they are insufficient – that there is something else, or rather some ONE else toward whom our worship attention ought to be oriented. for whom we gather, by whom we have been graced with the desire and the initiative to worship at all. Perhaps the more important question is this: Why are we sitting in the sanctuary at all?