Hawaii legislators recently passed a bill supporting marriage equality for same sex couples. The Governor signed the measure almost immediately after it was passed. I was supporting from the outskirts, I watched hours and hours of testimony and dragged my son down to the Capitol the evening that the final vote took place on the floor of the House of Representatives. It was tense. It was confrontational. It was celebratory. It was fabulous and it was history.
When I saw that there was going to be an interfaith service at the chapel at St. Andrews Priory focused on gratitude and healing around the same sex marriage issue I was intrigued. I was raised Catholic because that was my dad. Once my parents got divorced all religion was off. And there’s been none since. Honestly during testimony on the bill, after listening to hours and hours of church folk saying awful things about gay people, well, I felt that I had made the right choice about religion. It helps that despite all of the Catholic schooling I had as a kid (I remember going weekly to religion class) that the whole believing thing never actually sank in. I went and did all the stuff. Stood. Sat. Got confirmed. But I never believed. Maybe I just never understood that that was the purpose of the entire thing. That I was supposed to believe. Speaks volumes about me really.
As a bit of a disclaimer, I forgot to take my hormone pill to iron me out today until too late in the day so I may have had some excessive emotional stuff going on (and now is the time that I need ironing). But when I thought about the interfaith service, I just got kind of choked up. I knew that I needed to go. I’m going to have to admit that I didn’t realize that St. Andrews was more accepting of all lifestyles. It was a nice discovery. The service was church-like and not. The women’s choir sang “Going to the Chapel” to laughs and clapping. I found myself comforted by the singing of the hymns. The gentleman in the pew beside us had one of those strong, I am a believer, singing voices. The kind that drag you along into singing despite yourself.
I loved the affirmations. And the sense of community. Of raising our voices together, even if we sounded awful. The entire experience made me feel like this was something that was missing. Something that could help me put more into the life I was living. Again, it could have just been a low hormonal day but I don’t feel like that was it. I felt like I was supposed to be there. To see and understand that there are places of worship, whatever the definition of that is, that could be OK for me. Tonight to be in one place and listen to Buddhist, Episcopalian, Jewish and Native Hawaiian worship touched me. Lately I’ve been feeling the tug. The tug that made me quit my job and move to New York for six months. And while I’m not planning anything that drastic, I feel a change in the air and in my bones. And as much as it makes me tear up (hormones?) it gives me strength to recognize and walk towards it, the change. Whatever that may be. And it may start off as being something as small as attending some sort of service somewhere on a regular basis. Or maybe it is at various somewheres. And I feel good about that.