Imagine worshiping with 1,500+ people each day. Paul, Thom and I sit close to the front, just behind seating for the deaf where we witness that community signing the prayers and hymns with their fingers dancing the words. The altar and baptismal font are both gigantic and are also right in front of us.
Hiram Hisanori Kano was a Japanese missionary priest serving in Nebraska and was incarcerated with other Japanese immigrants after the Pearl Harbor attack. Check out his courageous story in this related article. In his honor the Kenshin Taiko Drummers brought Japanese culture into our daily Eucharist with their powerful and spirit-filled drumming. The Rev. Becca Stevens, founder of Thistle Farms, preached. Her ministry helps support survivors of trafficking, addiction and violence. Through her own courageous story she invited us to see and live into the ways that love heals.
Our House of Deputies (HOD) chaplain originates from South Africa and has us singing and moving with inclusive prayer that reminds us continually that we are all one. Our HOD sessions begin with prayer. Our July 1 deliberations regarding the two marriage equality resolutions (A054 and A036) were thoughtful and respectful of the other. Before votes were taken prayer centered us.
The day ended with the Utah Showcase when the Kenshin Taiko Drummers returned as part of an evening of music at the Salt Lake Tabernacle. That night of fun began and ended with prayer. We are indeed praying in and through all things and reminded daily that an enormous cloud of witnesses surrounds us.