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January 22, 2006


Your line about being immersed in a totally different culture reminds me of something from my college days as an evangelical Christian. Several of my friends had gone to a missionary conference, and on Sunday there were bused (separately) to congregations around the large urban area where the conference was held. At first, my friends assumed that everyone had been split up to avoid overcrowding any one congregation...but afterward they realized that they'd been "displaced" from familiar worship environments in order to get a taste for what it feels like to be the only white worshipper in a congregation whose worship style might be drastically different from your own.

It sounds like you had a wondrously well-deserved good time.

Gospel music has been one of my great loves. I think it began with Harry Belafonte records but soon turned to classic singers like Mahalia Jackson. I still keep my turntable around so that I can occasionally play my scratchy Mahalia Jackson records.

When I was in college there was bar that featured Black Gospel Music, which someone just plain felt wrong, but was still my favorite place to take a date.

If I were ever to attend church regularly, which is highly unlikely, it would probably be a gospel church where I could really feel like I was filled with the Holy Spirit, though I'd have to skip the hell and damnation sermons that invariably seem to follow.

The gospel singing gets me too, Beth, even if I can't cope with the evangelical approach otherwise. The singing and dancing is enough for praising the Lord, why must they overdo it with all those hectoring words?

That was quite a last sentence!

I love how Gospel music brings the joy of movement and expression back into spirituality, or atleast an alternative to repression and denial! (oops a bit harsh there...but you know me well enough by now to know where I'm coming from) For me the music totally rocks and the concerts are up there with the Bach Passions (and, I'm afraid way, above Fauré!)

Nice one, Beth.

I have not heard the word bibliotheque since French class in 8th grade. No, actually a character in Sartre's Nausea says it all the time. Anyway, I'm a new comer to your blog and I love it. Peace.

Thanks for reminding me to get out my old Mahalia CDs. Every now and then the soul just needs it.

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Who was Cassandra?

  • In the Iliad, she is described as the loveliest of the daughters of Priam (King of Troy), and gifted with prophecy. The god Apollo loved her, but she spurned him. As a punishment, he decreed that no one would ever believe her. So when she told her fellow Trojans that the Greeks were hiding inside the wooden horse...well, you know what happened.