Holy Spirit Panagram | The Rev. Dr. Anna S. Pearson, Rector

05.7.21 | Community, Pulpit Posts, World

            Every once in a while, when I am waiting on a line or have a break that’s long enough to allow for focus but too short to really accomplish anything, I go to the Games section of the New York Times and play Spelling Bee. The object of Spelling Bee is to take seven assigned letters and make as many words of four letters or more as possible. Six of the letters are arranged, honey-comb style around a center letter, which has to be used in every word. See image included below.

            At first, the game is easy. Nine achievement categories start with “beginner” and move up to “genius.” Most players can tear through the obvious possibilities, racking up early points and advancing in the process. But there comes a time in every game where progress slows, and then stops entirely. It’s very difficult to attain “genius” status! One can stare and stare at the letters on the page, and even though it’s clear that new words can be found, the mind can’t see its way to constructing them.

            This frustration leads to the aspect of the puzzle that is also most satisfying. Because sometimes, suddenly, an answer becomes obvious. The surprise of seeing what couldn’t be seen, even moments before discovery, is a mini joy every time. And each puzzle contains a panagram: one word that uses all of the letters in the comb. Players gets extra points if they find the answer that is all-inclusive.

            As we continue to live through a time of change, and as change in our congregational life now includes conversation about how to return to worshipping together, we hope and pray for guidance. Some of our next steps are obvious. Some are more difficult to discern. And some challenges seem insurmountable. But we trust that God always offers ways forward, even when we have difficulty seeing them in the moment. Sometimes, all it takes is a different view, or a new voice, and an opening reveals itself.

            And, of course, discerning our next steps together is always more satisfying if all voices are incorporated in the process. To that end, I thank everyone who filled in our online survey about Sunday gathering. I also invite you to an online Adult Forum after worship on Sunday, May 23rd, where I will present the results of the survey, answer questions asked on the survey and in real time and offer some plans for moving forward in community. We may or may not enact all of our hopes and dreams for the future right away, but the Spirit continues to inspire creative possibilities in our common life.

NY TIMES Spelling Bee

Rev. Dr. Anna S. Pearson

Rev. Dr. Anna S. Pearson

THE LATEST

Stay current on activity at the Soup Kitchen, guest stories, thoughts from Clergy, news and events.

Subscribe to receive the latest news, events, volunteer opportunities, and more — right to your inbox.

Church of the Holy Apostles

We are an open, inclusive Christian Church celebrating the Episcopal tradition.

LEARN MORE
For Newcomers

Learn about our faith community and explore ways to connect with our work and worship.

Sermons

Reflections on Holy Scripture from our Clergy.

History

Founded in 1844, with a focus on social activism and the desire for social justice.

Clergy, Staff & Vestry

The Vestry is the governing body of the Church of the Holy Apostles.

MUSIC

Music commands a strong presence at the Church of the Holy Apostles.

Space Rental

Host your next meeting or event in our landmark building.

Soup Kitchen & Pantry

Nourishing hungry New Yorkers since 1982 in an atmosphere of respect and hospitality.

LEARN MORE
Daily meal service

Serving a free, nutritious meal every weekday from 10:30 am to 12:30 pm.

Meal outreach

Distributing bagged breakfasts and lunches throughout Chelsea and Hell’s Kitchen.

About the soup kitchen

Learn more about our mission, our history, our performance, who we are, and what we do.

Pantry Program

Providing fresh and nutritious groceries to food-insecure New Yorkers.

Sunday Supper

Bridging generations and building community over a monthly family style meal.

Social Support

Meeting basic needs, stabilizing lives, and supporting individuals and families to achieve their goals.

LEARN MORE
SOCIAL SERVICES

Addressing the needs of the whole person through basic needs, counseling, and referrals.

Classes

Offering learning and skill-building opportunities.

Community Partnership

Partnering with others to expand the services offered to our guests.

Get Involved

Holy Apostles is a great place to channel your time, talents and generosity for good.

LEARN MORE
Volunteer

Make a difference in the lives of New Yorkers experiencing homelessness and hunger.

Partner

Join our efforts to serve others and provide for people who are vulnerable.

Donate

Your gift provides food, community, and hope to New Yorkers in need.

The Latest

Stay up-to-date on all happenings at Holy Apostles.

VIEW ALL
Food For The Soul

The official blog of Holy Apostles Soup Kitchen.

Voices of Our Community

Guest stories, poetry, and more.

EVENTS

See our calendar of events.

Church Pulpit Posts

Read weekly meditations written by our clergy.

Newsroom

Holy Apostles in the news.