Sunday, May 31, 2009

489. Interesting reading on Pentecost; like taking the driving test in an unfamiliar language

You will recall yesterday's entry included the reading for the Feast of Pentecost from The Acts, Chapter 2, which I described as "very familiar." It is where everyone was gathered and they all spoke in their own tongues but each heard in their own native language.

To underscore the idea, the scripture readings this morning at the Episcopal Church of the Advent were presented not just in English, but in a variety of languages. If my linguistic ear was registering things correctly, we heard in order German, English, French, Spanish, Latin, and finally, the Gospel in English. Thus I did not hear one of my favorite passages from scripture in the familiar words I am accustomed to. Rather, it was "all Greek to me," though not entirely.

Due to an early introduction to foreign languages at Prestonia Elementary School and the use of a book called "Word Clues" I recognised just enough words here and there to be able to follow along the printed readings in English. But only just enough. And somewhere along the way I found myself thinking about the little brouhaha this week over Kentucky's driving test being offered in twenty-two languages. The Kentucky State Police declared they would only offer it in English in the future and shortly thereafter Governor Steve Beshear, who is in theory the Commander-In-Chief of the Commonwealth, put the theory into practice and reversed the police department's decision - a gutsy and good move, one for which he should be commended - something I did in an email to Adam Edelen, his Chief-Of-Staff, shortly after learning of the governor's good move.

And this morning's unexpected readings in the various foreign languages affirmed my belief that the governor did the right thing.

Las gracias estén a Dios. Or,
Dank ist zum Gott. Or,
Οι ευχαριστίες είναι στο Θεό. Or,
Thanks Be To God.

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The Archives at Milepost 606


Louisville, Kentucky, United States
Never married, liberal Democrat, born in 1960, opinionated but generally pleasant, member of the Episcopal Church. Graduate of Prestonia Elementary, Durrett High, and Spalding University; the first two now-closed Jefferson County Public Schools, the latter a very small liberal arts college in downtown Louisville affiliated with the Roman Catholic Sisters of Charity of Nazareth. My vocation and avocation is politics. My favorite pastime is driving the backroads of Kentucky and southern Indiana, visiting small towns, political hangouts, courthouses, churches, and cemeteries. You are welcome to ride with me sometime.