Monday, October 26, 2009

In Los Angeles

My wife and I came out to LA for a Friends Wedding this past Saturday, and are staying on for a few days. The wedding was very beautiful ceremony. Roman Catholic wedding and the priest an elderly man who has been priest at the church for a very long time officiated. The priest weaved a quite beautiful and quirky commentary and explanation into the liturgy. A practice he explained he took up because he knows that Weddings include people often who rarely if ever go to church and of people of a variety of religious backgrounds. One friend commented that there seemed to also be a strong proclamation of the Gospel. I pointed out that yes that was there, but because the liturgy of matrimony and the Eucharist are when fully understood are themselves proclamations of the Gospel, so if one is going to give such a running commentary one is also going to be making explicit and thus evangelizing those in attendance.

I was able to meet and hang with some friends some of home I hadn't seen in 15 years others that I hadn't seen since Kate and I moved to Chicago. So the party was great fun and a time to become reacquainted.

The city of of Los Angeles itself seems to have undergone quite a change with the its public transportation which seems to be expanding and getting even more use than when we were last here two years ago. If the song "No one walks in LA" ever was true it certainly is not rue any longer. I am noticing on this trip a emerging distinction between Los Angeles proper and its surrounding suburbs. It feels more urban than it use to I was downtown on Sunday to see the Brewery Artist Colony(that is a separate post), and downtown was quite full of life something that I think was beginning to happen when we left for Chicago but not to this degree. In all LA itself is feeling more urban and I felt a difference driving down to the coastal towns and suburbs to the south that I had not experienced before in driving around LA.

Coming to LA is always a little strange for me. I have so much history here, and know it very well, but very significant changes have occurred in the last 11 years much of it connected with being in Chicago. To some degree it is a simple as that I wasn't married except for my last six months in LA and I wasn't a pastor. But Also I hadn't expected or planned to be the leader of a small intentional community or to plant a church. In any case for whatever reason being in LA feels odd and at times a little awkward, like encountering my old self that isn't radically different but different enough.

Last Night we went to the Goth club the Malediction Society, The moment I entered the club the awkwardness and weirdness of being in LA melted away. I am not exactly sure why that is. The LA Goth scene and the Chicago Goth scene each have their quirks. So it is not that the club felt exactly like a club in Chicago. It may be that the Goth subculture I chose in the last 7 or 8 years of living in LA, and something that has definitely persisted as part of my identity. We also ended up running into a guy we know from the Chicago Goth scene. Which was cool, though at first we were like is that... No it can't be he's in Chicago. Once we established that we knew each other from Chicago we didn't ask him nor he us why we were in LA.