Oddwalk Ministries

oddwalkia

That’s Extraordinary!

Share

In case you forgot…

You know what ordinal numbers are, right? Well, you probably do even if you don’t know that’s what they’re called. Ordinal numbers are the ones we put st, nd, and rd behind: 1st, 2nd, 3rd, etc. They’re the ones that describe the position of something, usually in a list.

Ordinal numbers are the reason that the upcoming 6 month stretch of the Church year is called Ordinary Time — you know, 18th Sunday in Ordinary Time and all that. Now, Ordinary Time following Pentecost does start with the celebrations of the Holy Trinity and the Most Holy Body and Blood, but it’s still Ordinary Time.

The point is, it’s not Ordinary Time, as in something commonplace or normal; it’s not Ordinary Time because it’s not Advent, Christmas, Lent, or Easter; it *is* Ordinary Time because the Sundays and weeks are counted. That’s all.

Yet, I knew one priest years ago who insisted on calling it “Extraordinary Time.” He didn’t get into all the mumbo-jumbo about ordinal numbers, he simply referenced what is indeed true about all these coming Sundays, particularly the Gospel passages we will hear at those Masses. The Gospels are always about what Jesus said and did in this world; these upcoming Ordinary Time Gospels are all about Jesus teaching us to be disciples. That’s why this particular priest liked the expression “Extraordinary Time.” It’s a 6 month length of time where, if we pay attention and are open, Jesus teaches us still today what it means to be his follower and his witness in a modern world.

I don’t know that I personally like the expression, but I appreciate the motivation behind it. How will this summer be extraordinary for you, as a person of faith, as we count our way through many weeks of Ordinary Time? I suggest by really focusing on what Jesus teaches his faithful Sunday after Sunday, and living it each week to the best of our abilities. Happy Summer everyone!

—Orin

Apostle to the Apostles

Share

Icon of Mary Magdalene and the Apostles

Easter greetings everyone. While pondering recently what to write about today, I noticed several pieces on social media, as we celebrate these early days of Eastertide, raising Mary Magdalene up as an important part of our faith owing to her role in life of Christ.

The first rightly observes that, without her preaching the risen Lord to the Apostles, Easter Day would have been, and would be, very different. She is often called “The First Apostle” or “Apostle to the Apostles” with good reason.

 

 

 

 

Seen retweeted a few times…

The second suggests at least a darker possibility: that because such an important role in the resurrection story fell to a woman, some unnamed unknown men of the Church attempted to devalue her worth by conflating her with adulterous women found elsewhere in the Gospels – a practice that lately has been found without merit.

So today, as our weekly articles turn their attention to Justice, let us turn our attention to women of the Church. I don’t wish to enter the fray at this moment as to the roles of women in the Church – liturgically or otherwise. I do wish to point out that, as such discussions occur, we should all be mindful to not devalue someone – anyone – by seeing them in such a limited capacity: that one’s worth is defined only by something amazing they did on their best day or by something horrible done on their worst day; that one’s worth is defined only by their capacity to give birth or their inability to; that one’s worth is defined merely by things we discern with our human senses.

Our value, our Christian dignity, comes from our creation by God in God’s image and likeness, and that God comes to dwell in us: “Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God?” (1 Cor. 6:19) Notably, the scripture doesn’t delineate here based on gender or any other divisions.

This worth comes with two other important attributes. First, it can’t be taken away from us unless we so permit that to happen. As long as we remember who we are in God’s eyes, the opinions, the labels, the divisions that humanity creates matter far less, if they matter at all. Second, once we train ourselves to know this worth both in ourselves and in one other, the world becomes a very different place – a place of justice, love, and peace.

Continued Easter blessings, Oddwalkia. Celebrate the risen lord with joy and gladness in your hearts!

–Orin

Almost There!

Share

We’re sure all of you will be excited to learn that our website is nearing the 60,000 visitor threshold.  We’ll wait for you to stop shouting for joy…

…seriously, you’re embarrassing yourself…

…better? Good.

To celebrate this milestone, we are planning to write a song about the 60,000th visitor.  We will then post a video of that song for the world to see.  In writing the song, we’ll take a few facts about the visitor-in-question and then make up the rest.  If you need this in your life, be sure to pay attention to the stat counter towards the bottom of the left-hand column on our website, http://oddwalkministries.com/oddblog

It looks like this:

 

Once we determine the winner, we will try and contact that person about their…um…prize.

Happy clicking!

Don’t let the word get out, but…

Share

I’ve always been uncomfortable with – and also not so good at – self-promotion.  Whether it’s the various ministries Oddwalk offers, or perhaps a piece of music I’ve written for the Church, or most anything else, it’s difficult for me to be too forthcoming about it.  For me, it’s a number of factors that come…

Are you a recognizable Christian?

Share

As we here at Oddwalk continue along our journey of more intentional blogging, it’s my (Orin’s) turn to share a bit about the second word of our tagline, “Justice.” Though that tag line has only accompanied us for some 16 or so months now, justice has always been an important piece of who we are…

NCCYM 2016 Videos

Share

This past weekend, Oddwalk was invited to take on several roles that exemplify the things we find important in our ministries, at the National Conference on Catholic Youth Ministry in San Jose, California.  We are grateful for these opportunities, whether it’s leading prayer, encouraging audience participation, making people laugh, or commenting on our retreat ministry.  Here are a few videos of those moments.

 

First, here we are, with Shannon’s wife Erin, singing a prelude before the Saturday morning mass, a piece by Orin titled “To Know Darkness,” published by GIA Publications and on our “Walk Away Different” CD.

 

Next, here we are talking a bit about our retreat ministry at a “Great Ideas” session later that day.

 

But a highlight for us of these NCCYM weekends is the “Youth Ministry Extravaganza” — a chance for folks like us, who “do what we do,” to thank the youth ministers (and others) in attendance and hopefully feed their souls through, among other things, humor.  We relish the chance to create original “set pieces” for this night (previously “May God Bless and Keep You,” “Songs We Should Never Record” and others); this year, thanks to an idea from our friend Erin Brennan, we created a segment where we pretend to be covering the Games of the XXIII Liturginerd Olympiad.

 

For a couple extra “goodies” related to the Liturginerd Olympics, click here! Thanks San Jose and the NFCYM for a great conference, see you next year at NCYC!

Oddwalk at NCCYM 2016

Share

img_0394Where will you find us at NCCYM? Just check our handy guide:

— 12/1 3:15pm – Netsourcing session, music & liturgy N09
— 12/1 7:00pm – National Youth Ministry Award introduction
— 12/2 8:00pm – Youth Ministry Extravaganza
— 12/3 8:00am – Music Ministry for Daily Mass
— 12/3 2:15pm – Part of Great Ideas workshop

And of course in the exhibit hall when it’s open. Check your program books for more details. Hope to say hi to many friends old and new!

Oddwalk and Our New CD Feature Article

Share

On March 4, we and our new CD Mercy at Work were featured in a news article in the Catholic Missourian, the newspaper of the Diocese of Jefferson City, MO. The story talked at length about the music on the new CD, and how it shows a side of us that some people aren’t aware of, at least as much as they might be aware of our silly and fun side. Thanks to editor Jay Nies for the write-up. A few ways to check it out:

To visit the webpage of the article (at least for now), click here!

To see a pdf of the article as it appeared in the papers, click the photo or click here

A Few NCYC 2015 Videos

Share

Hello Everyone! We had a marvelous time at NCYC, both making music and hanging out at the booth. Here are a few NCYC-related videos for you to enjoy.

First, an “at home” video of a new song we premiered at the NCYC comedy club, “Helping Verbs.”

Next, our super-cut video of all the “Oddwalk This Way” vine videos from the booth!

And last, a video of a song we prayed with at the Friday daily mass, “Have Faith.”

Introducing… Us – Again!

Share

newstickerSome of our more observant friends may have noticed an important change happening in the world of Oddwalk lately. In addition to putting the finishing touches on our forthcoming CD, “Mercy at Work”, we are also changing our logo. logotestFor the past almost eleven years (and a few years before that with Shannon’s solo ministry), that goofy face with the crazy hair, big ears, and bucked teeth, has been a familiar sight to those who have followed us. As this ministry has continued to develop, though, it has become increasingly important to us that our logo and marketing materials truly reflect who we are and what we are about. Those who know us know that it isn’t likely we’ll ever lose our joking, fun-loving side. We believe it to be our “foot in the door” as we give presentations, especially when we present for young people. That being said, Oddwalk has become much more than a couple of guys who do fun stuff and can make people laugh. We believe strongly that when we as people of faith surround ourselves with a strong Christian community, participate actively in the life of the Church, and make the mission of Jesus OUR mission, we will no doubt develop a close relationship with Jesus, an ongoing sense of justice for the world around us, and a life filled with joy. We further believe that we, as Oddwalkers, are called to invite young and old alike into such a life, into such a relationship with Jesus and His Church. This is our aim at every retreat, concert, or keynote we give. Everything we are and everything we do is meant to achieve that goal. We believe that this new logo does a better job of reflecting that mission, particularly where the arrow is concerned. In the Gospel of Luke, in the story of the disciples’ walk to Emmaus (a founding scripture passage for us), it was their encounter with Jesus that ultimately compelled them to turn around 180 degrees, back towards Jerusalem (note the blurry road as the backdrop to the logo) and to be witnesses to the Risen Christ. This reality is reflected in the curved arrow, a symbol which will be a central part of how we present ourselves from here on out.

oddlogo2015round

“With that their eyes were opened and they recognized him, but he vanished from their sight. Then they said to each other, “Were not our hearts burning [within us] while he spoke to us on the way and opened the scriptures to us?” So they set out at once and returned to Jerusalem where they found gathered together the eleven and those with them who were saying, “The Lord has truly been raised and has appeared to Simon!” Then the two recounted what had taken place on the way and how he was made known to them in the breaking of the bread.” —Luke 24:31-35

PreOrder Our New CD!

Share

CDcoverart2015Friends! We’re coming out with a new CD later this fall, and are very excited to bring you 10 new tracks of music (and a couple bonus tracks of music) very soon!

We’d like to ask you to consider preordering the CD — You’ll save some money off the eventual retail price, and be first in line to get your copy.  We’ve set up a couple other perks, such as getting your new CD defaced with our signatures, buying bulk quantities, and even a couple ways to hire us for significantly less than our normal rates to support the CD.

For information on how to order or hire us, please visit our preorder page: oddwalkministries.com/mercyatwork — and please share this link!  Preorders must be in by November 15 – act now!

To see lyrics and hear sample clips of all tracks, click here!
 
 
 
 
 

Another “Any Given Sunday” Reflection

Share

Orin’s thoughts this year on the Ascension are up at Any Given Sunday. Check it out!

“If you’re a regular church-goer, you surely know that the pews are at their fullest on Christmas and Easter. No surprise there. Take a moment and see if you have a guess what the next two most attended Church celebrations might be. Do you have one or two in mind?”

Playing Catchup

Share

Hey folks – just a few updates for you, exciting things have been happening!

Any Given Sunday – Shannon had a reflection there recently for Divine Mercy Sunday, and Orin will in a couple weeks. Check out Shannon’s here.

Another Publication! – Orin has another piece in print at WLP, “The Lord Is My Shepherd” – a choral setting of Psalm 23 he wrote for his last Shrine mass about 3 years ago. Check out the sample score and listen to a bit of audio here.

Week of the Young Child Concert – For the 10th anniversary of this celebration, Orin joined Shannon and Chris & Isaiah Korte for a program in Kirksville MO, and we all were featured on the local news! Watch below.