Yes, I watched a re-run of the royal wedding. Few weddings justify rising at 5 a.m. But the British are deep into pomp and circumstance and they received plenty of it during the union of Meghan and Prince Harry.
I was surprised, amused and entertained by American Episcopal Bishop Michael Curry's performance. His sermon sounded much like the foothills preaching I grew up on.
From time to time, the expression on Queen Elizabeth's face looked as if someone had licked the red off her candy.
I'd give the Rev. Curry an "A" on his performance. He is no cornfield preacher.
That term originated from the Foothills anecdote about a farmer who looked up one day and saw the letters "GPC" written in the clouds. So he left the farm and took up the pulpit, because he thought God was telling him to Go Preach Christ. It soon became evident to his congregations that the GPC in the sky only meant "Go Plow Corn."
Bishop Curry has deep North Carolina ties. He was a priest in Winston-Salem for several years in the 1970s and early '80s and returned to the state as head of the N.C. Episcopal Church between 2000 and 2015. His Southern warmth showed in his sermon at the wedding. Warmth is something the British are not accustomed to in many aspects of life, certainly not in church.
The Rev. James P. Adams referenced the royal wedding in his sermon at Christ Episcopal Church in downtown Raleigh the next day.
"Here's the historic part," Adams told the congregation. "For the first time since the construction of Windsor Castle in the year 1070, the word 'y'all' was spoken in that place."
Indeed, during the end of his praised but long sermon, Curry finally said: "We need to get y'all married."
Speaking of preaching, June is church-changing month for Methodists. The Conference meets, the Bishop reads the list of appointments to various churches and off they go.
In the Baptist churches I attended, the deacons of individual churches and other prominent donors made that decision. Or, as was often the case, the minister alone decided when to move on, usually because of a better financial offer.
I like the anecdote about a minister who announced to his congregation one Sunday morning that he had had a "call" to another church.
Vowing his great affection for his current congregation, he promised that he would go home and pray for guidance from God on whether he should stay.
Later in the day, one of his parishioners knocked on the minister's door. His young son answered.
When the visitor asked to speak to his father, the lad said, "He can't come to the door. He's in the den on his knees asking God if we should move to the new church."
When the caller then asked to speak to the boy's mother, the youngster said, "She can't come either. She's upstairs packing."
It's human nature for us to look around for someone to blame — besides the killer — in the aftermath of tragedies such as the Santa Fe, Texas, school shooting that claimed the lives of a teacher and nine students.
In so many news reports, the alleged shooter, 17-year-old Dimitrios Pagourtzis, was described as an outwardly normal-seeming individual.
Pardon me, but in the culture in which I was raised, a withdrawn, loner teenager, no matter how unassuming, wearing a T-shirt reading "Born to Kill" would never have been regarded by parents, school officials or the general public as a typical teen.
It's true that as we accommodate individual choices and eccentricities, no matter how bizarre or unorthodox, "normal" no longer has a standard definition.
In the future, I would hope that anyone, regardless of age, who wears a shirt advertising an intent to murder would be challenged by the person's family members or the authorities.
How tragic, how horrible it is, that mass murder has almost become a fad in our country. How infuriating it is that our elected officials bow down to the NRA and do nothing to curtail the deadly threat to all segments of our society.