Deb Bergen sent this reflection to us at [email protected]. (If you have a story, reflection, or creative writing to share with the Pink Menno community, please don’t hold back! We would love to publish it here!) Deb was not at the Pittsburgh convention, but sent two prayer shawls for us to have available in the Hospitality Room. (I understood them to be prayer shawls; please correct me if I’m wrong, Deb). Annabeth texted me as she was beginning to set up for this communion service on Thursday asking me to bring Pink Menno bandanas to brighten up the communion tables. I grabbed Deb’s beautiful pink/orange piece and brought it along (pictured below).
Please enjoy Deb’s beautiful description of her work, her vision, and her pink perspective. [PK]
a reflection by Deb Bergen
We are knit together. Sharing a geography, a passion, a skill set, a history or any other circle of connection pulls us in; members of MCUSA are knit in multiple ways. For the last year, my prayers for Pink Mennos have been channeled through yarns gathered from our local MCC store. God speaks to me through my hands, reminding me of the wonder of textures yielding or firm, flowing smooth or gathering in bunches. None of us come to church fresh out of the package; we are mysterious fibers brought out of our pasts. We ache to be relaxed together, but often enough it seems our interlocking strands will tear in the tension.
Two particular prayers emerged: soft rose and blues in waves to wrap around someone feeling the chill, and a dance of hot pink and orange in silk and cotton to celebrate gay Pentecost flames (and when what’s there for the main work can’t last till the end, others pick up, ending and beginning this prayer in the dark from which we come and into which we commit our own ends). These and some little pink roses were the only presence I could offer in the crucible where love would be offered and tested. They went with a friend, and with a prayer that good use would find them.
My daughter returned from conference last night with a story of passing the person carrying my prayer of/for celebration (a story knitting her and me closer to this Spirit-led movement). I could not have dreamed it would lift up the elements of our communion. The levels of my gratitude are beyond counting. As I read Stephanie Krehbiel’s observations, I felt like I was gulping down the knowledge that the community knows what sustains us at the meeting of deep pain and deep joy.
This may be some of the meaning: releasing beyond self-conscious, self-imposed limits what we are making of ourselves can hold, sustain, reflect the glory of Christ amidst moist eyes and hearts, sign of kingdom come and kingdom coming.
a beautiful reflection!
thank you for this reflection, deb, and certainly for your prayer shawls. your daughter – forgive me i forget her name – and i had a serendipitous “passing” on the escalators — i had your rose/blue shawl draped over my arms and a load of pink gear to use for the worship. as i was ascending, i heard a descending voice say “my mom made those!” i had just wondered aloud who made these, and if it would be alright to take them from the hospitality room. in that moment i knew they were headed to the right place, and that you were with us in spirit. (your daughter got to the bottom of the escalators and immediately hopped on the “up” to follow me to the pink worship circle…). soon pink and orange and rose covered our “tables of sustenance;” we gathered and were fed.
Deb, I got to wear one of your roses most of the week before passing it on to someone who said she liked it. Your work was a blessing to us all in Pink in Pittsburgh. Thank you.