This Is Our Kingdom

San Francisco’s Grace Cathedral, from another point of view. Nob Hill, 11.3.21

I tried something new tonight: I went to church.

Now, I’m not religious, but I am curious and into finally forming an opinion all my own regarding worship. At a church. And Grace Cathedral down the street is Episcopal, and from what I learned watching the Sex and the City on the HBO, that means Grace is a Charlotte, and I can wrap my head around “going to church” like that, OK. Whatever works, right?

And that was the point of the visit, of being and staying open to the idea to explore some of the cathedral’s programming in situ. Tonight they held The Vine SF. Open to all, it was an hour of community and music for urbanites and spiritual seekers (check, check). And we shared and learned about Día de Los Muertos and All Saints’ Day. There were marigolds and good vibes. I thought about my great aunt, who died in January 2020 right before the pandemic, and of my uncle, who went during our summer of self-isolation, and of how amusing it is to me that really, the only prayer I kinda know is the one in Madonna’s “I’m a Sinner.”

It was especially meaningful to visit the cathedral for only the second time (first time was pre-COVID, for a Tuesday yoga service), and get into the groove of a what could become a new practice underneath hanging stitched panels of the AIDS Memorial Quilt. Lot of history on this hill they call Nob, in this cathedral, in this tonight. Lotta hope, too. All ‘cause I said yes.

Each new birth, it gives me hope. I’m still a restless cynic – by the 40-minute mark I had to check myself and simma for another 20 (I went to church, I didn’t go get a trephination…), but I made it through, and it’s nice to look ahead brighter-eyed and ready to branch out. 

Plus, whatever led me there tonight, there were other people right there with me, and I’m certain they all have their own questions, wants, and needs, and thoughts about the whole thing, too. It was nice to share and feel that space.

Whatever works.

This is our kingdom, after all. And I am a King.

Sometimes, you really got to turn things up on their head to get something else that’s new and all your own out of it.

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