Sunday, September 19, 2010

Rich

Och has beaten me to the punch on this, the 13th anniversary of the death of Rich Mullins. I remember someone coming up to me before Sunday school and telling me the news of his death. I don't keep silent much--anyone who knows me, knows me as a talker--but I distinctly remember speaking very, very little in the days following his death. One of the aspects to my loquaciousness, unfortunately, is that the ideas behind them are not always fully-formed when I (attempt to) give voice to them; as such, they often come out as half-baked ramblings with a "gut feeling" behind them that tends to get fleshed out pretty well...once I've taken time to think them through and hear from voices deeper than my own.

Rich's was one of those voices. Audra has said that Rich is the reason that I became Orthodox (this only after reading Chesterton and Eckhart and toying with the idea of becoming a lay Franciscan). As Och has said, there's no doubt he was a matter of days, weeks at the most, from being formally confirmed a Roman Catholic. His voice was the first to put into concrete phrases the discord I was feeling within both Evangelicalism and charismaticism, and in a way it "gave me permission" to speak what I had been hesitant to say.

There's an irony to the way he went; of all the songs he ever wrote, he said "Elijah" was his favorite. May his memory be eternal.

And I thought of his article "Attics and Temples" (one of many he contributed to Release Magazine), when hearing Fr. Alex's homily on being shaped by the Cross this morning. All the more ironic, since the fact that September 19th as "the date" had slipped my mind this year. Thanks, Och.

(See HERE for Rich's other Release articles on Brian Williams treasure trove of a site.)

8 comments:

elizabeth said...

Memory Eternal. I remember his death too; at the time I was at a Bible college, I still remember how suprising and saddening his passing was. May God always remember him in His kingdom.

C Squared said...

There were several other devastating deaths at this time I believe, like Mother Teresa's.

The whole thing was shocking. I may also still have your copies of the Jesus records if you ever want them. I'll be in NYC in two weekends...

Josh said...

I'm so thankful for Rich. His words and music have continued to help me time and time again. May his memory be eternal!

David B said...

Carolyn--

No, I have my own copy; anything you may have, keep. But...we shall have to email re: your impending visit.

Juliana said...

I remember his passing well--I was a DJ at a Christian radio station at the time and it was sudden and sad and I too felt the need for quiet in the days that followed. I hadn't known about Rich's spiritual journey to Catholicism--makes me like him all the more.

Memory Eternal.

Darlene said...

I've only come to know about Rich Mullins since his death. I also have a deep love for the music of Keith Green. More than anything it was Keith's passion for Christ, his uncompromising loyalty that drew me to his music.

And then there is Michael Card. What a Christian bard in the truest sense.

Even though I am Orthodox now, there are non-Orthodox Christian musicians that will always have a special place in my heart.

Darlene said...

BTW, I like the new look of your blog.

Anonymous said...

...i was a huge rich mullins fan at the time of his death..to this day i still grieve on occasion..i loved him in the Lord...i remember a "christian" telling me at the time that rich must have had sin in his life and thats why he died..i've never gotten over that either......