I spent the week starting July 13 at full throttle at the Liturgical Arts Camp at Grace Church. I have developed this camp over the past ten years, thinking it would be fun to work with kids on art projects that have been part of church practice for centuries. This year they drew inside and outside the church, worked with clay (gargoyles or angels, their pick), sang, did some calligraphy, and made stained glass mozaics. We prepared a handbell piece and an anthem for the Sunday service, and wrote the Prayers of the People. The Altar Guild showed all their wares and each kid gets to grind some incense and swing the thurible. The rector had them plan and act out the 23rd Psalm for the Sunday sermon.
We climbed the bell tower, passing many solitary spiders along the way and admiring the beautiful tower clockworks a parishioner and his daughter restored a few years ago on the way to see the five foot tall bell up at the top.
Oh, and we drink gallons of juice, hundreds of grapes and goldfish, and played a few running games outside to let off steam.
The week is energetic and joyous. I am struck by how, one moment, a seven year could say how he couldn't draw anything "good," and the next moment, bring me a gorgeous outline drawing of the church - in orange marker with no erasings!
Here are just a few of their phrases that went into the Prayers of the People this time around:
We pray that people in different countries will learn to get along, and that all will be able to live a happy life.
We are thankful for colors.
We wish all people could have a cat or a dog, and we pray for people who don’t.
We thank you for making us who we are.
Dover goes for the third one.
So now, the week after, it is back to life as usual, so to speak. Dover and I strolled almost three miles this morning, and he has spent a good deal of his time searching me out at me with those haunting, inviting eyes. Nifty.