Last night I ditched what I had on my calendar to schlep arcross town for a 5 minute news segment for Channel 4 on marriage equality in general and the Maine election results in specific.
You can see the spot on YouTube : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WfiCtdnsrn4
Sometimes you wonder if it was worth it ... getting behind on paperwork, missing a meeting and still not having your sermon for Sunday night Evensong written -- all for a few minutes of "air time" with no way to quantify its impact. And then you come into work the next morning and find an email like this in your inbox.
Sent: Thursday, November 05, 2009 8:31 AM
To: Susan Russell
Subject: Thank you! Re: interview on gay marriage..
You don't know me but I saw the interview yesterday that channel 4 did with you and another pastor discussing the ban on gay marriage. I just wanted to say a big Thank You for expressing your views and feelings on this topic in such an articulate and eloquent manner. I get so frustrated with the injustices of this ban, my emotions take over sometimes and it's difficult for me to communicate my own hopes and desires for our nation to choose love and tolerance over fear and hate. Usually my feelings get expressed through song instead.
I'm sure you're probably receiving some of those other letters, the ones chastising you for your beliefs and lifestyle, I just wanted to be one of those that praised your work and passion and courage to speak up for us, speak up for what is morally right.
If we can be that beacon of hope to the hopeless -- if we can offer that message of inclusion to the excluded -- if we can put a face on "the issue" and "the lifestyle" that shifts even ONE of the "moveable middle" to the right side of history on marriage equality then we ARE doing our job ... whether it's in the pulpit on Sunday or in line at Starbucks on Monday or on the Channel 4 News on Wednesday night at 5.
It's why we do what we do. And it's why I'm still humming in my head this verse from Sunday's "For all the saints ..."
And when the strife is fierce, the warfare long
Steals on the ear the distant triumph song.
And hearts are brave again and arms are strong.
We CAN do this. The arc of history is on our side. Believe it. Claim it. DO it!