Oh, my God, how can we fix this?

Jeanenne Fontaine was found shot in the back of the head, with her home on fire in Winnipeg, MB, last week.

Jeanenne’s mother, Lana, lost her niece Tina Fontaine to a brutal murder in 2014.  Tina was 15 years old.  Tina’s father and Lana’s brother Eugene was beaten to death in 2011.  Lana’s partner and Jeanenne’s father, Dennis Junior St. Paul, was shot dead by police in Norway House in 2005.  God help us.

I don’t have any words that could possibly comfort Lana.  All I can do is stand in solidarity with her.

Check out a GoFundMe page and consider donating a bit of money so Lana can get some household and personal items replaced after the fire destroyed her home.  I don’t know what monetary number could possibly alleviate the suffering and pain brought about by the repeated violence this family has endured.

Dreaded D Word

Yeah, I’ll say it: deconstruction.  I don’t mean with sentences either.

Over the past few years, I have been slowly deconstructing my conservative, Evangelical upbringing and life in the church, highlighted by periods of weird amounts of what I call Jesus zeal and lowlights of authoritarian ideas about God, church, and my very self.  So some days, I feel a little raw about shit.  Other days I breathe in the beautiful air, leap out of bed, ready for my day.  Shame and guilt don’t heap themselves upon me every waking moment any more.

There will be a few posts over the next while, sharing a bit of my story of deconstruction.  Mostly poorly-crafted poetry and some other random musings about the ridiculousness of ’90s church subculture. (Purity pledges, anyone?)

Here’s the first one.

She heard a story once

It was really late

He mumbled something, bravely and timidly at the same time, about maybe not believing any of it

She sat straight up in bed

He still believes THAT, though.  Right?

Sure, he mumbled exasperated, and mostly sleepy.

 

There was no sleep

There were lists of books to make so she could fix everything

The couch was her friend that night

She prayed and pleaded with God to make him believe correctly

Even though she didn’t know that’s what she was asking

She thought she was loving him

But instead it was smothering

 

Pushing things down, down, down

Until you feel better

For a while.

 

Get the prayer journals out

The special couples devotional

Send bible verse text messages

Gotta keep that anxiety under control

 

Oh, the Powerlessness of a Praying Wife

 

 

A Homemade Ash Wednesday

Ash Wednesday.  Lent for the next 40 days.  I didn’t participate in this church tradition until I was over 25 years old, partly because I wasn’t really aware of what it meant and I thought it was only a  Catholic thing.  (I know.  I’m still slightly embarrassed at my ignorance of my own church history.)

I didn’t make it to the 7:30 AM service this morning at the Cathedral because, let’s be real, I am not a morning person.

So tonight, on a brief break between my shows, David lit an old Anthropologie candle, and I grabbed my black eyeliner from the bathroom drawer.  A quick prayer, my favourite line being “Almighty and everlasting God, you hate nothing you have made and forgive the sins of all who are penitent.”  “You hate nothing you have made.”  I loved saying this out loud.  It felt like I was speaking love.  David remarked, “you don’t hear that often, hey?”  Yeah, I haven’t heard that message a lot in the church.

Back to the eyeliner.  Smudged some on my hand and then drew a cross on David’s forehead; he then did the same for me.  Some sitting still for a few minutes in contemplation.

My homemade Ash Wednesday.  That’ll do.