Frankly, I can't make heads or tails out of the news I'm hearing from the Lambeth Conference, the bishops' meeting in England. But in yesterday's Lambeth Digest, there was a brief report that seems to be a metaphor for the whole thing:
For major ceremonial events such as worship, bishops wear robes that are the symbols of their office -- the red and white rochet and chimere, or a decorated overgarment called a cope and matching headgear, the miter. But bishops meeting on the University of Kent campus have more mundane clothing concerns, also. A Canadian bishop, carrying two bags of laundry, stopped to greet a friend and sighed that the bags were not full of clean wash, since "the line was around the block" at the washing machines.
This is one I'll need to ponder a bit. But there's something beautiful and suggestive about this image: all these fancy Bishop duds are probably still clean and wearable while the daily clothes need a good washing that will take some doing to get. I dunno. It seems...perfect. And somehow emblematic of the church.