Many WRPC members have been reading Cole Arthur Riley’s This Here Flesh: Spirituality, Liberation, and the Stories That Make Us.

This eloquent NY Times bestseller is both personal and communal with intimate stories and spiritual insight, speaking “potently to anyone who suspects that our stories might have something to say to us.”  

In her chapter entitled Belonging Cole poetically creates an image of affirmation that seems fitting for the Church engaging and reengaging welcome and inclusion, especially as we celebrate Pride and Juneteenth.  It is good to BE faith community together!


Long, long ago, when all the earth was still as silence, the moon got all choked up on the beauty of the stars. She coughed and then wind was born. The wind rushed out with such a force she didn’t even know where she came from at all. She started roaming and searching, darting through trees and trying to wrap herself around anything she could find. No matter what she did, it was as if she was invisible. She wanted to rest in something, but no place would have her. Whenever she became really desperate, she would rend herself into cold and hot air and collide with herself. This, of course, made a tornado of her. So she would thrash through places with an ugliness, picking everything up and forcing it to be held by her, even if just for a little while.

Until one day, God was in the garden making something like their own image, and they saw her, and their heart went out to her. And so God inhaled a little bit of her and blew it right into the breast of the image. The wind went on searching and remains very lonely to this day – only every once in a while, when she passes by a human or caresses a cheek on a summer day, the wind God put in you and me will stir and recognize herself for a moment. And those tiny moments of being seen, of being felt, collect like a hope in her, carrying her through her loneliness to this day.

We were made for belonging. I don’t need a verse in Genesis to tell me that it is not good for one to be alone. Not always.

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