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The autumn flower of sun flare.Psalm 96 greets me this morning, encouraging me to sing, a prodding that will not be difficult to follow as I wake both to memories of yesterday and events of the day to come.

The women I met and interacted with yesterday were so kind, so respectful that I found myself immediately comfortable in their presence and awed by their faith in the power of prayer and the love of Mary, the mother of Jesus, whose intercession with God was a consistent strength in their lives. We had five hours together sharing information and experiences, both serious and lighthearted, and one of the best by-products for me was introducing my own mother to them and feeling her spirit fit in such a wonderful community. And then there was the bonus of driving home along a highway where the trees were brilliantly colored, singing their own song of praise. What a surprise! We are so accustomed to the peak weekend of autumn’s glory being earlier now in October that finding this brilliance just a little north of here was an unexpected delight at this late date. I just had to sing in accompaniment!

Today there will be occasion for our spirits to sing again as we welcome our newest candidate to our religious community for a conversation about what is closest to our hearts. This evening I will join in a prayer service in the style of Taizé with chant and Scripture and shared silence, a fitting conclusion to this Sabbath. What could be better, I ask myself, as I return to the words that prompted this reflection on Psalm 96.

Singing is a form of honoring someone. It is also a form of awakening. In this case both humanity at large and creation as a whole are being brought to wakefulness…Beauty attracts us and God is the ultimate Beauty of the universe. We are invited into that beauty, attracted close and closer, being touched and changed by it. What is there of beauty, reflecting the divine glory, that attracts you? (Ancient Songs Sung Anew, p. 244)