For whatever reason, Petula Clark singing “Downtown” is one of the first songs I remember. Listening to it today, I remember that even as a little boy, I found the song bittersweet. As an adult I realize that it is a reflection on loneliness and the things that we do to have a fleeting moment of communion.
All that said, I still like the song and I still like Petula Clark’s singing.
(If you the lyrics, click the link under the video.)
The challenge of missionary work in America is not primarily theological. It is rather opening my heart to those aspects of American culture that already bear witness to the Gospel. As Fr Alexander Schmemann writes somewhere, a missionary is not someone who goes where Christ isn’t but rather someone who goes somewhere and finds Christ waiting for him.