Yesterday I attended the Bike Blessing ceremony at Lafayette Presbyterian Church here in Buffalo. It was the first time this event was held in Western New York and I hope it becomes a tradition. I'm assuming it is modeled after the bike blessing that has taken place at the Cathedral Church of St. John the Divine on 112th Street in NYC where they've been doing this for a dozen years or so (visit the blessing of the bikes). The event, I believe, was also co-sponsored by Green Options Buffalo.

The service itself was brief and informal, but there was also something very moving about it....all of these bike riders in the sanctuary of a church sitting or standing in silence with their bikes as the Pastor walked the aisles, said prayers for the people and splashed water from the church's Baptismal Font on the bikes. Even more moving was when two women symbolically walked a white bike down the center aisle in silence in remembrance of a loved one who was killed while riding his bike. I don't believe it was a Ghost Bike, but it may as well have been (click here).

But it wasn't all somber and remembrances, the Reverend Drew Ludwig spoke light of the event and cracked jokes ("Bike church is like people church...most the bikes sit in the back pews).

As I sat there in the pew I thought how this is mostly (but not entirely) metaphor, and that it has taken me many years (decades!) to realize how truly blessed my life has been and continues to be. While I don't have every thing I want, I surly have everything I need. Everyday, I truly believe, is a blessing in itself (I just wish  could remember this everyday). And now my bike is blessed as well.

During the service the pastor also mentioned that we were in no way obligated, but if we would like to make a donation to either the Church or Green Options Buffalo you could do so as you left the sanctuary. And as I wheeled my bike out to the sound of bicycle bells clanging I couldn't help but notice two was a church collection plate and the other was an upturned bicycle helmet; both held donations. This made me smile.

To see more about this event at Buffalo Rising (where you can also see the back of my bald head as I sat in a pew), click here. To see a short video of the event at the WIVB website, click here.

Urban Simplicity.