This weekend our diocese is holding its annual convention. Clergy and laymen from each parish gather to hear reports about the past year and vote on decisions coming up in the new year. It’s “another meeting” but I always looked forward to it, attending first as a layman from my parish vestry and later as a deacon. It was a chance to greet friends and my brother and sister deacons from across the state.
This is the second year now I am unable to attend.
In the months before last year’s convention I was excited at an invitation given to me to be the voice-over narrator of a special video being produced to celebrate the history of the Episcopal Church here in Florida. I would record the script onto my computer while the project producer, Fr. Rob Goodridge, listened to me on the phone from his office in Titusville. Then I would upload the audio files to him over the internet so he could mix them onto the soundtrack. It was a very 21st century way for the project to come together!
Before we could finish I had the stroke and, among other things, lost my ability to speak clearly. Fortunately, Fr. Rob found another voice talent to re-do and complete the project in time for it to be played at the convention. God had decisively set me on another path.
So today, still working on recovering but, at least, at home, I have been working on my next book. It is slow going because, in addition to crippling my throat and voice, the stroke has introduced a shakiness to my fingers that makes typing a hit and miss thing. But I have time. Little else demands my attention except rounds and rounds of exercise.
There is also time each day to read several devotional books. We’re reading the one Melanie wrote and published three years ago. (I read it out loud, hoping to recover and strengthen my voice.) And this month I’ve been reading material just published that I wrote two years ago for The Journey. It’s a commentary on the Gospel of Mark. The last few days have been about the parables Jesus taught.
Oddly enough, I had decided to make my next book about the parables. I’m finding some of what I wrote two years ago is pretty good.
I may have to steal some of it for my book.