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Posts tagged ‘Barack Obama’

Did You Cry?

loweryOkay, I’m a minister so I’ll cop to loving pageantry, and the Inauguration had plenty of it. Aretha wowed me. Yo-yo Ma and co. were stellar. Obama, of course, was bright and shining and real.


But the star of the show, for me, was Rev. Dr. Joseph Lowery, the preacher who closed the ceremony. Part of his prayer appears below:


REV. LOWERY Lord, in the memory of all the saints who from their labors rest, and in the joy of a new beginning, we ask you to help us work for that day when black will not be asked to get back, when brown can stick around — (laughter) — when yellow will be mellow — (laughter) — when the red man can get ahead, man — (laughter) — and when white will embrace what is right.

Let all those who do justice and love mercy say amen.


REV. LOWERY: Say amen –


REV. LOWERY: — and amen.

AUDIENCE: Amen! (Cheers, applause.)


Whether your politics agrees with the Right Reverend’s or not, he made a powerful point about prayer. Real prayer.





Real prayer is about real things, real needs, real desires, real feelings, real dreams, real hopes. It can be funny, like his, or painful, like his, or loving, but it is about a real relationship with the Divine, as real as if you and I were to sit down together over a cup of tea.


Beloved, when you get real with the Divine, the Divine gets real with you.

As Michelle Bernard’s five year old son said to her when she left to be a part of MSNBC’s full day of live coverage, “Barack on!”




True to the spirit of his campaign, Barack Obama’s website has a link whereby you can make suggestions: how cool is that!

(Actually, just “” will get you there.)

Then click on “Tell Us Your Story.”

Here’s what I’m worried about:

That we’ll get over the euphoria of electing Obama and that all the energy that went toward electing him will dissipate. That’s why I wrote to our President-Elect: utilize the energy that elected you! Challenge Americans to pick one issue and work on it every day for a year.

The other one I’m urging is the establishment of a cabinet-level Department of Peace.

What’s bugging you?

Tell the Obama folks. I did.

The Suspense "Was" Terrible

I first heard those words of Oscar Wilde in the mouth of Willy Wonka. The rest of the phrase is: “I hope it will last.”




We just got home from voting and the autumn leaves on the trees are crackling . . . yes, with dryness, but also with the tension in the air. There were no lines, although we ran into our neighbor who said he had tried to vote early this morning and the middle school that is our polling place was mobbed.


The suspense is heavy, pregnant, dark, brooding, alternately light, birthing, exploding. We have waited almost two years for this day and this day, as days do, finally arrived. I have every expectation that tomorrow morning there will be a new President-Elect of the United States of America.


Whew! Campaign season over. Dial down the pundits, but wait, what are you saying to me?!?! The work has just begun? Not even, dear ones.


The election is indeed over. The work has not quite begun, but we are in the enviable position of having had two years of seeds sown in our minds. Seeds of peace, seeds of hope, seeds of a renewed America. What normally happens with seeds, dear one?


Not that I am one, but I know that most seeds need gardeners or farmers or Dolly Gallagher Levi to do what needs to be done to encourage them to yield fruit. All we have is a President-Elect. Better stated, we ALL have a President-Elect.


Now that we’ve elected him, what are we going to do about it? Let me assure you of one thing. His work has just begun, and he can’t do it without us. C-A-N-N-O-T. Our President-Elect needs us—starting right now—to hold with him the vision of the America we want our America to be.


We can’t toss the responsibility onto him and the government. Nosirree, we, the people, have to start to work NOW to help our country restore itself economically and in the world.


I challenge you to pick ONE issue that you care about, just one—the environment, health care, education, political reform—it doesn’t matter which one and begin to pray and work for it to become what we need it to become.


The suspense is almost over. What are you going to do now?




(So you know, my one issue will be the establishment of a cabinet-level Department of Peace.)