(Comment by parishioners about Third Anniversary Celebration)

Tonight’s anniversary celebration was absolutely awesome and the Down by the Wayside Choir so uplifting….great inspiration in bringing them to us!!!! You should be very proud of the work you’re doing. (Janet)

Congratulations on a wonderful celebration! I’m still humming “there is enough for all” . . . . beautiful! (Dee)

Other comments made by parishioners

I wanted to tell you how wonderful last night’s mass and music was. The years you have spent developing your musical talent is something that I would think everyone can appreciate and never take your playing with such soul and spirit for granted. While I’m at it, your sermon last night was so well crafted and a message that anyone could relate to. I said to Geoff as we drove home, that it was one sermon I would love to have to read and re-read. (Sylvia)

Have I thanked you for founding Anamchara? I’m very appreciative to both you and Fran for having the steadfastness, courage and will to follow through with your calling. Last nite’s service was just beautiful…so very simple, powerful and moving. (Janet)

Our advent liturgies were the most meaningful I have ever experienced. The advent path makes sense. I learned ero cras (Tomorrow I will be there.) That’s one of things I love about this place. You always learn something new. Its never the same old thing. (Tom)

“Our Easter Vigil celebration was memorable. I could feel the presence of the Lord there among our community. It was solemn yet personal. I have attended many Easter celebrations over the years from days when I sang in the Archbishop’s choir in grade school chanting from the Liber Usualis to recent interdenominational sunrise services at Springrove Cemetery in Cincinnati. Our Vigil service this year is my favorite.” (Tom)

“I’m no stranger to fire-lighting. About 15-20 times a day, I set fire to the end of a cigar or a bowl of pipe tobacco. I’ve lit other kinds of ritual fires, as well. Men’s group ritual fires, giant fires to heat the “brother” stones for sweat lodges, small fires indoors around which to kindle or heal a friendship. Somehow, taking on the responsibility for building and maintaining the first Anamchara Easter Vigil fire affected me more than any of the others. When I first opened the doors of Crescent Hill Presbyterian Church to the Anamchara community, I did so more as an act of hospitality on behalf of the Presbyterian congregation. When I built and lit the Easter fire, I did so as a full-fledged Anamchara member. Brothers and sisters in Christ, we are all keepers of that flame of the Holy Spirit, ecumenicist, and full communion with one another.” (Lowell)

What a splendid time we had! What topped the good time was our experience with the Anamchara community. We were unprepared for the openheartedness, welcoming, and just sheer human goodness we shared in. And we were thrilled by the spiritual power incarnated in the alliance of gay and straight people. The mutual benefits in this caring were visible, unmistakable and unforgettable. Your community is fortunate to have such a potent and expressive Eucharistic liturgy. The gathering together around the piano to sing at the beginning has a distinctly sacramental character; and so does the welcoming chatting earlier as people arrive. It made me think of the psalmist’s words about “going up to the house of the Lord.” Surely there was good conversation on the road during the trip and as they arrived. Interesting to think back on all the time one arrived at church and seemed to set aside one’s daily humanity. Eugene and I were moved and felt come-home as we stood with the others, arms outstretched at the consecration of the eucharistic elements – the priesthood of the people made real. I’m enjoying sharing exactly these things with my friends here at home in Portland. Thanks to all of your helping community; thanks for the warmth; and the cake. — Love, Eric and Eugene