I haven't managed to get myself back into West Coast time yet. Last night I (barely) managed to stay up 'til 11. (If you don't count snoozing on the couch for an hour before that.) But still can't seem to sleep past 6 in the morning.
The nice thing about that is two or three hours of a quiet apartment, some "stolen" time to get some work done. It's a beautifully peaceful feeling.
This morning I've been doing some work in preparation for our class this Tuesday. I haven't written much (if at all) about this course I've been co-teaching. I think it's one of those professional/personal boundary things when it comes to blogging, I suppose. But my lack of writing about it here doesn't convey the extent to which teaching this class has been an excellent, wonderful, fantastic experience over these past few months.
The course is focused on Worship in the 21st Century, with a particular eye toward postmodernism. This coming week (our last week of instruction before student presentations on their final projects), we'll be looking at emergent worship. This morning I've been reading through some of the many websites dedicated to the subject. This alone is a fascinating aspect of the emergent movement(s)--how web-based it is!
To be honest, my heartbeat is quickening as I look through all this stuff. Emergent has been a woefully neglected part of my PhD education in liturgical studies. What I am learning about it, I am doing on my own. And what I am feeling, to an increasingly fervent degree, is that it's exactly where I ought to be putting my energies right now. (The parrots are flying by as I write that sentence. I'm starting to trust the parrots' arrival.) :)
On Saturday evening at the AAR I attended an "additional meeting" session that focused on the Emergent Movement. Brian McLaren, Phyllis Tickle, and Peter Rollins were on the panel. Each person spoke for about twenty minutes and each was brilliant. It was thrilling to me to hear intellectually stimulating, grounded (and yet visionary), substantive reflections from these three "movers and shakers" in the Emergent movement. For an mp3 of Peter Rollins's remarks at AAR visit here. (With thanks to pomomusings.) Whereas I went into the session fearing that Emergent is more of a flash-in-the-pan, I left feeling certain that this movement truly holds (lightly and reverently, it seems) the future of the church in its hands. (Not in the hands of those three individuals, but in the hands of all the networks and gathered emergent people across the world.) This is something that can't be ignored. And I feel excited to be on this edge of the movement with my academic career yet in front of me.
If you're interested in knowing what the heck I'm talking about (I barely know myself), take a look at these websites.
EmergingChuch.Info (interview with Peter Rollins)
Ikon, the emerging "becoming church" community founded by Rollins in Belfast, Ireland