Street Stories

Weblog of Seattle minister to the homeless Rick Reynolds, Operation Nightwatch

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Location: Seattle, Washington, United States

Caring for human beings seems like the best use of my time, homeless or not.

Friday, October 14, 2011

Several people were occupied

Occupy Seattle? What does it mean? In my ten minutes of occupying, I had a conversation with a homeless friend, listened to people pounding on empty buckets with drumsticks, and had a bottle of wine pushed at me by a very persistent activist. 

"Have some. C'mon, Father, have a slug. I insist!  Come on. You should have some."

I demurred.

As I was leaving, a pair of young people, oblivious to anything else, were standing on the edge of the plaza, limbs and lips locked tight. They were feeling the moment like no one else; the spray from the fountain, the pounding of the drums, the police chatting quietly across the street, the activist-sot, downtown Seattle, at night, in October, sans rain.  Heady stuff. 

Friday, October 07, 2011

The Intoxicated Evangelist

Michelangelo's "Noah Drunk" Sistene Chapel
We stopped at a shelter - guys are watching TV. Suddenly a very drunk man sees me and shouts "Read something from my Bible" and then lurches around the room, grabs a Bible sitting on the table. We take turns reading, me choosing something from Isaiah which included a promise of fine aged wine in the coming good times.  Probably not the best choice.  He goes straight to Romans.
After several selections - back and forth, he says to me, in a not-so-loud drunken whisper, "I graduated Catholic. I went to war. This is all I have left," patting his Book.

And that is a sermon.  Cue the organ.