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Weekly e-Gram for members and friends of Dublin Community Church

February 18, 2011


I am a Protestant boy. I never got the opportunity to light all those candles that one sees in the Cathedrals. But I am making up for that now.

Along the way we have been in huge cathedrals and modest chapels. Some cathedrals even have multiple opportunities to light candles for a certain saint, patron or perhaps the Blessed Virgin and I hope that we have not caused any distress because of our pilgrimages to these places.

The Mosques in Istanbul were magnificent, but lighting candles does not seem to be a focus. We were very impressed with how accessible those mosques were. It was awe inspiring to behold the majestic places of worship. We were treated with respect and we hope we offered the same.

We lit many candles in the Greek Orthodox churches of Greece. Fire and light have been our calling cards across three countries and three expressions of faith. We even lit a candle in the little Greek Orthodox grotto beneath the fish restaurant in Istanbul. Not many can make that claim. (ďIíll take the poached Sea Bass and one candle for Saint Anselm.Ē)

I do have one question. There were no candles to be lit in St. Peterís. With all due respect, the Basilica could make a fortune on the faithful making a pilgrimage to the epicenter of the Holy Roman Church and then wishing to light a candle. But perhaps they realize THAT is NOT the point of lighting the candle...

As a boy, my only experience with candle lighting came on Christmas Eve when we had the Candlelight Christmas Eve Service. That was it, once a year, light a candle, sing Silent Night. We didnít even have kids do the Acolyte thing, so candle lighting is rather novel to me.

I think the Catholics and Orthodox got this thing right. There is a sense of tranquility when a candle is lit and a prayer is offered and you walk away, and yet your light remains, for perhaps a few hours. I would like to think my presence lingers longer than that.

But that is not really up to me.

Peace, Rev. Bob Tussing

To follow Bob's journey via his blog, check in daily at:   www.revbobsjourney.blogspot.com

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