Wednesday, October 26, 2005


My bird feeder ministry is growing in wings and beaks these days.

Outcast and runaway fledglings who frequent my office window/ safe haven-for- aerial types have started to spread the word around town that the church lady's soup kitchen now offers daily lunch specials.

The variety of visitors has picked up. In an effort to economically accomodate the growing fly- through traffic I've added multi-grain cheerios to the feeder mix, as well as a delectable three seed combo selection for my birdfriends to snack on.

Delicate brown and tan wrens, puffy black chested birds and cardinals are the regulars. Nameless breeds of other small bodied chirpers coast through daily. There's also a wicked witch of the west Hawk who parks his talons in a nearby balcony tree. I think he's too big to land and stand on the sill. There's a frightful whisper inside me that says he prefers smaller winged creatures and four legged scampering sorts to seeds anyway.

Today, we stretched our welcoming arms to a new feathered friend. Gulliver in stature and donning flourescent neckware, our new friend is a very overpuffed pigeon. I call him Pepe. He reminds me of Pepe le Pew, a mischievious romantic rascal of a cartoon skunk from TV. The burley pigeon releases a continuing string of charismatic coos that echo off the brick walls in the alley outside my window.Pepe has a lovely array of irredescent colors mixed into his neck feathers, and his facial features are distinct as well. I would say he is NOT a candidate for a Birdland last resort makeover show.

Pepe sought me out during a recent staff meeting by sitting- one floor up from my office bird oasis -upon the windowsill beside our meeting room. He sat like a sad puppy for the longest time just looking in at the lot of us as we worked our way through the weekly chaos of staff meeting.

Patiently, he sat/ she sat in wait. When our meeting dissolved into talk of a lunch break, she flew down to the birdfeeder and parked in the flower pot-turned-secondary feeder. She was so big, that the pot was lost underneath her. She could not figure out how to stand along the side and nibble at the seeds. The pot tilted when she tried to perch and peck. I could tell she was discouraged. Such a big kid in the midst of so many lilliputian flyers has to feel awkward.

I decided it was time to expand the chow lounge. I wanted to offer our new friend a comfortable place to snack, one more fitting with her luxurious size so I sprinkled a few grains along the brick sill on either side of the feeder.

It seemed like Pepe was in need of friends, and a place to hang out. I didn't want her size to deter the smaller patrons from coming. Freeing up the feeding trough brought back the daily customers; we'll see if Pepe settles in. If and when he/she does,we'll see about what we can do to keep building a nurturing mini-community around him/her at the Church Lady Cafeteria.

Meeting Pepe reminds me that community is important for all creatures. I'm lucky to have a very safe haven at my home church and a cozy place within my work church.I'd like to see that happen all around. Consider looking for subtle signs of connection in your world the "nest" time you're out and about. Clusters of birds in the trees, conversations among interested office mates who have come to gather around the office at "feeding time", trees that sway in unison , their leaves waving at a small line of cumulus billowing by overhead, a feathered flock of mystery birds floating by in the autumn wind. It's all community in different shapes and places. and it's all important for helping us to grow together.


Leslee said...

Wow, it seems like all of God's creatures are attracted to you. As your blog fan-fare grows so does your bird-fare in the Church Lady Cafeteria. I find myself wanting to put a flower pot and/or bird feeder outside my office window. I might bring this up at staff next week. I'm sure God will show me some lessons with the birds too!

HeyJules said...

I LOVE the bird stories!!! This one was great. : )

Lorna said...

:) great story

though I had problems finding you as the link from Rev Gals didnt' work ...

Anonymous said...

what a huge pigeon!!

when will the squirrells begin to come, I wonder?

Anonymous said...

Excellent, love it! » »

Anonymous said...

Best regards from NY! » »