matters of faith · The Walk

Midwives and churches and stuff (an update)

I’ve meant to start blogging more regularly in the new year, but life often gets in the way of plans and that’s definitely the case here.  Sometimes, I have to choose between getting some extra sleep or blogging and, well, there’s not really a choice to make!

Anyway, I have spent the last few days falling in love with Call the Midwife. I’ve seen it there on Netflix for a while, just waiting for me to hit “play”, and I knew I’d probably like it because I love period dramas, but I finally decided to give it a try last week.

OH MY GOODNESS!!!!!! The show is so beautifully done and really shows the gritty, rough life of London’s poorest neighborhoods in the late 1950s. If you’re unfamiliar with it, the basic premise follows nurse/midwives and the Anglican nuns they live and work with while they deliver babies in squalid conditions and medically treat the elderly. Each episode highlights a few of these deliveries while we learn more about the lives of the midwives and/or nuns, and nearly every episode made me cry. It’s emotionally moving and raw in some cases, and the narration by Vanessa Redgrave wraps it all up in a pretty little package.  Plus, this show introduced me to Miranda Hart, who is currently one of my favorite people.  I’ve seen her on Tumblr before, but her character Chummy is my favorite.  She’s awkward and goofy and basically just like a soul sister to me.

I can’t say enough about this show.  It’s what Downton Abbey used to be (but that show quickly lost it’s luster and now it’s just too soapy and I don’t watch.) You have to watch Call the Midwife.  It’s simply tickety-boo!

When I haven’t been sleeping or watching the show, I’ve been reading.  I just finished a really fascinating book and started another one.  I’ll probably post about both of them once I’ve read them both, considering they’re both about specific faiths (one about LDS and one about the Amish.)

This weekend, we’re intending to attend a Disciples of Christ church across town.  This is one of the many Protestant denominations I’ve been studying lately, and I’m most drawn to them and to the Mennonites (specifically Mennonite Church USA) due to their beliefs in adult baptism, salvation, and their social justice stances.

The particular Disciples of Christ church that we’re attending is special because the head pastor is the woman that was instrumental in bringing me back to Christ 13 years ago. At the time that I met her, she was one of many pastors at a United Methodist Church down the street. (The UMC and the DoC have a lot in common.)  I went to her 6pm Sunday evening service on a whim, not long after 9/11 and during a point where I felt lost and alone and had a lot of problems accepting my actions in certain areas.  That first night, her sermon was about learning to forgive ourselves because God has already forgiven us for what we’ve done. Because I was in my early 20s and, seeking acceptance in the wrong ways, I had a very active sex life.  I wasn’t proud of what I was doing, but didn’t know how to stop (and that’s a post for another day because it’ll be a long one.)  The night that she gave that sermon, I sat in the pew and cried because it was a moment of absolute divine intervention.  I had to be there that night to hear that sermon.  It started me on a path to healing.  I still made mistakes, but I had found a church home, and that helped a lot. I attended that church for the next 18 months until I left the city and moved back home.  After I left, she received her doctorate and left the UMC because she was actually an ordained DoC pastor and she had gotten appointed to a church within that denomination.  Over the years, I’ve watched her sermons online, but I haven’t seen her in 11 years, so I’m really excited about hearing her preach this weekend. Next weekend, we might attend the Mennonite church.

My husband has often asked me why we don’t just go back to the UMC church we belong to (the same one I mentioned above, and the one we joined as a couple 3 years ago), and I don’t have a solid answer.  The church is fantastic and the head pastor is among the best I’ve ever heard.  I guess my hesitation is that I want to move away soon, and I’ve attended other UMC churches in other areas and left unimpressed.  I also find that my particular beliefs line up more with DoC and Mennonites than with the UMC, and as I’ve posted about many times, I’m looking for a faith home.  It’s really hard to explain all of this, other than to say that I’ve  felt like I was on a spiritual scavenger hunt for a very long tome, and I’m just now starting to find some of the pieces I need to complete the trek.

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