Friday, August 5, 2011

CONNECT: SoulFest Day 3

Some people take a break as the weekend rolls around. Not up here; we're just getting started. And not even the occasional flash-downpour will stop us . . .
Rock, Paper, Scissors, Uke!
Sometimes the street team grows weary of simply giving these goodies away. Especially when we’ve got prime loot—like a ukulele (the real thing, not one of those cheap-o kid’s toys). Gordon’s green and blue SoulFest ambassadors decided there was a more fair way to decide who got our little Hawaiian treasure: They held a rock, paper, scissors tournament right here on the festival grounds. Here’s a shot of the championship match.

Something Was Missing until Today . . .
In many ways SoulFest is like a carnival. There’s music, food, games, rides (if you count the ski lift); there’s sun and spectacle and throngs of people. But what’s a good carnival without an old-fashioned photo booth? So Gordon stepped up and provided this vital service today, free of charge. Just look at how grateful the street team is.


Down in the River
Folk music is my kind of thing. There’s just something viscerally satisfying about music that doesn’t need to be amplified to sound good. Now, that being said, Maeve still sounds great coming through giant columns of speakers blasting out over a mountainside; it's just that I find it even more appealing to know they would have sounded just as good if they had been performing without microphones in a broom closet. With folk, good music somewhere is good music anywhere.

Maeve’s presence on the North Shore is almost palpable—partly because one of the band’s singers/multi-instrumentalists, Courtney Reid ’96, is a Gordon grad. You may have heard of her . . . just last month she won the Folger’s Coffee Jingle Contest. True to the hype, these women can
sing. If you were looking for some three-part harmonies, you came to the right place. Reid and her band mates,
Rachel Taylor and Rollyn Zoubek, sound perfect together. The band closed their performance with a hauntingly hopeful version of “Down in the River” (a la “O Brother, Where Art Thou”) just before the heavens opened up and the river came down to us.
Loving Your Neighbor in a Warming World
I took Dorothy Boorse’s environmental science class in my first semester at Gordon, and since then I’ve been impressed with her energy, her passion, and her commitment to Christian stewardship. And in no topic are all three of these attributes more present than in her discussions of global climate change. Dr. Boorse’s lecture today, called “Loving Your Neighbor in a Warming World: Christians and Climate Change,” encapsulated quite a bit of why I’m proud of my Gordon education. Her discussion was as rooted in faith as it was in science, with a pronounced focus on the global impact of our decisions. The implications of climate change, she argued, reach beyond the physical effects we observe—rising temperatures, receding glaciers, higher-intensity storms—they touch the lives of real people, often the poor and the least able to help themselves. She showed that climate change is linked to everything from water and food shortages to flooding and droughts, often in a way that compounds existing problems.

But, Boorse insisted, we are never called to despair in light of these circumstances. “We are the people of hope, and we are called to be the voice of hope and change.” Caring about climate change—being informed and proactive Christian leaders willing to take on the challenges of our age—is an extension of Christ’s command to love our neighbors, and to care for those whose need is greatest.

Giveaway Winner
Tonight’s Prize? An iPad! The third Gordon giveaway goes to Nicholas Sullivan of Groton, Massachusetts.

John Mirisola ’11 is a Gordon alum and writer for the College. He will be blogging at SoulFest all this week, keeping you in the loop on all things Gordon College around the festival.

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