Archive for the ‘Christmas’ Tag

Christmas Eve 2016

As always, Around the Grid upholds its Christmas Eve tradition — here is Bing Crosby and David Bowie from 1977, performing their famous duet, “The Little Drummer Boy / Peace on Earth.”  This was the last Christmas special Bing did before his death.

Almost every time I write an article in these pages, I use my “signature” graphic, which bids you all peace.  It has several meanings for me:  the earthly dream, sung of by two wonderful musicians above, and the more lasting, eternal peace we greet each other with in the Episcopal Church (as well as other liturgical churches).  Peace on earth has been a dream for my generation — those of us who still remember our dreams of that time — since our youth in the Sixties and Seventies, and sought by people of goodwill around the world for hundreds of generations.

Nearly forty years after these singers, now both sadly dead, performed this song — which has become a holiday classic in its own right — the world still reels on through conflict and hatred, and the dream of peace among all peoples seems elusive, more of a pipe dream than a reality.  But I have to believe that there is still hope for peace — both the kind we think of, between each other, and the sharing of the true peace of God, “which passes all understanding,” no matter how each of us perceives God in our minds and faiths.  Perhaps, on the day we achieve earthly peace, the peace of the Earthly Paradise will be made at last apparent to us all, and that other serenity become the true inheritance of us all….

Every child must be made aware
Every child must be made to care
Care enough for his fellow man
To give all the love that he can

May you and yours have a merry, meaningful and — most of all — hopeful Christmas season.

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Merry Christmas 2015

Christmas Card 2015 jpg

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Berry’s Monday Meme — Then and Now

Writing from Orlando, Florida:

Meme Time again — fear and tremble, all ye mortals!

No, not really; Berry Singh actually comes up with some interesting things, and each one gives us blog fodder to keep these voracious pages filled.  This week’s Monday Meme gives us a chance to look back for a time, something we should do every once in a while to remember where we came from.  Simply take two pictures from your blog — one from the earliest articles you’ve written, and one from recently, and let’s see how much times have changed for you.  Preferably the first and most recent photo of you, it should be noted, but, as you’ll see below, I had to be a little more flexible.

Nadirra, by Ginny Talamasca

Milena by Ginny Talamasca

For me, finding a few early photos wasn’t difficult — it was choosing one I’d like to show you!  Lord, I was rough back then, still learning the craft (of which I am by no means a perfect mistress yet).  And also getting a decent face shot!  So I’m including two from the early days, both of me in Ginny Talamasca gowns that were favorites for a time.  I wasn’t taking closeups very often back then, until my first Hair Fair.  Knowing how far we’ve come since those early days of system shirts and flexi prims and “photo-realistic” skins, well, (shudder, grin).

My Oscar Gown 5

And so here we are today (from my OFPC “final update” gown).  It looked pretty good back then; but oh, how it looks today!  So many changes and improvements have come along, some of which everyone said Predicted the Imminent Death of Second Life.  And yet here we are, more than ten years down the road for the Grid and approaching eight for me personally.  Where’s it gonna go from here?

(Note to Berry and others:  I’ll do a proper side-by-side once I get home and get a few minutes.  Right now, I’m without all my tools, or the ability to use them well if I added them to this laptop.)

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Christmas Day 2014

Christmas card 2014

A German Machinima with a Christmas Theme

An excellent and seasonal piece to go with the season — I encourage you to read the whole article and watch the machinima’s first episode. As Jo says at the end of her piece, “Frohe Weihnachten!”

Jo Yardley's Second Life

Well known artist Ole Etzel, who was the subject of an excellent ‘Drax Files’ episode, moved in to a small dirty damp apartment in our 1920s Berlin sim and created a wonderful machinima in the dark streets and alleyways.

‘A German Tale’ tells us the story of an old man looking back at his childhood in Berlin.

I’m extremely excited with the end result and proud that Ole picked the city I build for this production.

In RL I’ve been to Filmschool, owned a tv/movie production company and have been a writer and director and I’m very impressed with this video, it makes me wish I had the time to start making machinima myself.

I started the 1920s Berlin Project because of my passion for history and saw in Second Life a way to share and even contaminate people from all over the world with this love for the past…

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Posted December 24, 2014 by Harper Ganesvoort in Reblog

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Las Posadas at Cayo

Posadas 2014

My turn came up this year last Friday for the Anglican Cathedral’s Posadas, and I played host again to the Holy Family at my island.  Several people visited, and I took one on a tour of the space station while he was there.  (He enjoyed it a lot, despite it being several hundred years ahead of his preferred time period, 1928 Berlin.)  The statues have technically moved on for the year, but I’ve hung on to copies for my own use.  Any who would like to visit through December 24 are welcome.  However, I’d also encourage you to follow the travels of the “actual” Holy Family by joining the Anglicans of Second Life group.  Notices are posted most days on where the Posadas statues will be bound to, and all are welcome to participate in the rites, as well as share fellowship.

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Christmas Card 2013

Christmas card 2013

The best of Christmas wishes to you and yours, and may the peace of God be with you always, both in this season and in the coming year.

Harper Ganesvoort, December 2013

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Second Life Churches — First United Church of Christ

First United Church of Christ and Conference Center, First UCC Island 125,199,25_001

Second in this year’s Advent visits is to the First United Church of Christ in Second Life.  First UCC is run by a RL UCC pastor, who is called Jerome Newstart in world.  This church is a formal “experimental ministry,” set up by the UCC’s Southern California Nevada Conference back in September 2013.

The United Church of Christ is an inclusive ministry, dating back formally to 1957, but having roots among many different denominations.  Their belief is that God still speaks to us in our daily lives, and that none are refused the opportunity to come to His table and partake in His grace.  LGBT people are welcome, as are other denominations, and the members of the church practice what they refer to as “extravagant welcome.”  (More information may be found at the sim, or in their websites [national, regional].)  You can also visit First UCC’s own site.

More pictures after the break.

Second Life Churches — Kirkkosaari Ortodoksi kirkko

Kirkkosaari Ortodoksi kirkko, Kirkkosaari_001_001

A new year is upon us again — a new year according to the Liturgical Calendar, that is, which starts four weeks before Christmas, with the beginning of Advent.  As usual, at this time of year, I like to visit a few churches around Second Life, and show more of the religious aspect of the Grid.

Today’s is a return to a previous region, but a different church in that same sim.  Kirkkosaari is a place of churches, run by a Finnish group.  I visited the Ristikiven kirkko a few years ago at this time, and here is its sister church on the same island, the Kirkkosaari Ortodoksi kirkko, or Kirkkosaari Orthodox Church.  The onion-bulb domes topped by Byzantine crosses would be a dead giveaway to the orientation of this particular church, which does not appear to have a regular congregation.  However, it is open for prayer and meditation, and the interior is lovely.

Kirkkosaari Ortodoksi kirkko, Kirkkosaari_001_002

The iconostasis, or wall of icons, is also typical of Eastern Orthodox churches, and this one is quite nice, with depictions of many saints and other notable works of religious art.  Behind the gate in the center is the main altar; the room there also appears to be a sacristy of some kind.  There is no seating in the nave, or main body of the church, but you will find non-animated benches to either side in the transept, the “cross arm” of the building.

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Posadas are Here Again

Posada 12-5-13

With Advent comes the annual tradition of the Anglican Cathedral in Second Life — the Posadas pilgrimage to houses and other venues, as members of the Cathedral host the Holy Family, a different place each day, on their way to the Cathedral on Christmas Eve.  I’m not hosting this year, but I will probably follow the statues from time to time.  (This photo is at Helene’s house in the Linden estates, taken early this morning.)

If you’re curious, contact Helene Milena in world, or join the Cathedral group, which is free.  You will be most welcome.

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Posted December 5, 2013 by Harper Ganesvoort in Religion

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