Sunday, April 01, 2007

Me and Julio and Palm Sunday

Molly and I had been meeting in my office after the Water's Edge service today, wrestling with both pesky details and big vision for our Easter Vigil Prayer Pilgramage. Outside, the band was rehearsing next week's Easter songs. Molly left and I kept working, scarcely noticing the background music of the band.

And then, the unmistakable sound of Paul Simon's "Me and Julio" got my attention. I ran from my office onto the stage and joined our music leader, two vocalists and our bass player in almost an hour of singing. Mostly we sang John Denver, I could only get two Peter Paul and Mary songs out of them. The first was Leavin' on a Jet Plane, which, come to think of it, is also a John Denver song. I have never heard those lyrics quite the way that I did today. When I first heard that song as a child -- and this dates me, I know -- it was often associated with Vietnam. I don't think that was Denver's association, but several of my friends with older brothers said they associated that song with their loved ones leaving for that monstrous war. Even learning to sing and play it on my guitar several years later, it still had that lonesome longing sound of a war lament. I don't think I truly heard it as a love song until today. "So kiss me and smile for me, Tell me that you'll wait for me, Hold me like you'll never let me go..." How could I have missed that? Of course, at 17, I only had a theoretical sense of that longing! But I digress. We sang and sang and sang. In between the old folkies we sang three beautiful worship songs by Chris Durrand, our music team leader.

It was a nice bridge between our Palm Sunday service and the hospital calls that were to come.

Palm Sunday holds special significance for me because it was on Palm Sunday three years ago that I felt a renewed call to ministry -- the call I acted on, the call too strong to ignore.

And as wonderful and life-giving as our Palm Sunday service was today, it was that hour of impromptu singing for singing's sake that blessed my day and touched my heart and revived my soul.


Orangeblossoms said...

Yeah. That music is great. The fact that I love it sort of dates me-- but not really in years. I'm more Erika's age and era, but I have always loved the boomer standards.

Thanks for this fun post. I totally would have been running for the mic, too.

Orangeblossoms said...

I just reread this comment to see if I'd actually called you OLD! I so didn't! I said that this music dates me--my sensibility and taste-- not that it made me (or you) old or young! I'm just saying I'm a genXer who likes Boomer music.... not that either is old or young! Plus, they *are* boomer standards. I am sorry if I offended. . . Thankfully, this is a great season to forgive lowly blogstalkers! :)

karen said...

It's the "Boomer" word that makes me feel like I'm being called old.

I so don't identify with the Boomers! (And I just barely qualify demographically as one.)

Lowly blogstalker forgiven, not that forgiveness was really needed but it is freely given. ;)