Friday, September 06, 2019

Diocesan Dodger Night 2019 #edladodgernight #GoBlue

And it's once again time for Episcopal Night at Dodger Stadium.

Introduced by Bishop Fred Borsch of blessed memory during his tenure as our Bishop Diocesan, for this cradle-Episcopalian/second-generation-Dodger Fan it has for decades now been one of my favorite of all mashups ... getting to root for my team surrounded by Episcopeeps from all around this Big Fat Episcopal Church Family of ours.

I remember bringing my boys when they were kids ... the year Brian caught a foul ball during batting practice and we had Bishop Borsch autograph it for him. (There's a picture of that somewhere in the Episcopal News archives.) I remember schlepping down from Ventura in my St. Paul's days and in from Claremont during seminary and then up from San Pedro.

I remember years when we had huge turnouts and years when it was a faithful remnant. I remember wins and loses and seventh inning stretches and the fun of running into familiar faces in line for Dodger Dogs. And I remember the year I got to be the catcher for Bishop Glasspool's ceremonial first pitch. For this life-long Dodger fan being down on the field was totally a #BucketList item!

And once again tonight is the night.

We'll be taking on the San Francisco Giants (historic rivals!) as we close in on this year's pennant race. Our magic number is 4 (any combination of Dodger wins and Arizona losses will wrap up the National League West race), Kershaw is on the mound and Bishop Taylor will be throwing out the first ceremonial pitch so we are primed for another "best ever" Dio Dodger Night.

I understand there will be about 1200 of us in attendance and am proud that 260 will be from All Saints Church in Pasadena: 160 parish members and 100 scholarship tickets from generous donors for youth in foster care. I've got my jersey on already ... and my Dodger earrings ... and can't wait for game time.

And I was also thinking driving into Echo Park this morning on my way to the office that in some ways what we do when we gather each year for Dio Dodger Night is a tiny icon of the work we're imagining as we build our Engagement Across Difference initiative: One in the Spirit.

Tonight we will be coming together from different congregations, communities, and contexts -- representing different cultures, ethnicities, identities, and orientations -- across economic, political and theological differences -- bound together by our common love of Jesus and baseball.

And if you're a Giant fan ... hey: come on down. There's a Dodger Dog (or equally attractive vegan alternative) with your name on it and may the best team win. Because maybe -- just maybe -- what we need most at this moment in our polarized and divided nation and world is to hold on tight to those moments and opportunities to come together across differences for common goals ... even if it is "just" a baseball game.

So tick-tock game time. See you at the stadium! #edladodgernight #GoBlue

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