Sunday at Cass
May 24, 2015
What exactly is “Sundays in the Park with Our Friends and Forgotten Workers?” How did it come about?
Sundays in the Park with Our Friends and Forgotten Workers began in the summer of 2011. The Wobbly Kitchen of the Industrial Workers of the World (IWW) participated with the Detroit Underground Initiative with this event in solidarity of the Food Not Bombs group that had been arrested for giving food to the hungry in Orlando, FL. Other social groups began participating in the semi-monthly gathering.
In 2013, a committee of volunteers coordinated a fund-raiser in which all the money raised would be spent on food and supplies donated at the park. The first was held on November 14, 2013, with subsequent fundraisers held on October 16, 2014 and October 1, 2015.
If you are interested in participating, just come down to Cass Park in Detroit on the 2nd or 4th Sunday of the month. The table and food set-up begins at 11AM and lasts a couple hours. Don’t feel you have to bring something. Just show up, and soon you’ll discover how you can help.
Sunday at Cass
May 10, 2015
The evening before was the first home match of the season for Detroit City FC at Cass Tech High School stadium. They hosted a friendly (an exhibition) match against the Muskegon Risers. The rain fell hard before the game, which caused my camera to shutdown before the match started. I dropped it in a bag of rice, hoping for it to dry out quickly. It emerged in the morning from its Lazarus Pit ready for another trip down to Cass.
Mother’s Day. Single roses were distributed to the mothers this lovely morning.
This was the first Sunday that I went to Cass Park without going to Still Point first. I brought with me eighteen pairs of socks that I had purchased at Costco. From my hands they disappeared as quickly as I pulled them apart from their packaging. I observed and I photographed. In reviewing the photos and reflecting on the couple hours at Cass this morning, I composed these words which have been the headliner to every Facebook photo album I’ve created since.
I walk amongst saints
as they administer to
others whose hunger is so deep
I cannot fathom.
I am no saint. I’m merely a guy with a camera who shares these images of saints doing what saints do; performing miracles through their acts of compassion.
Sunday at Cass
April 26, 2015
A brief history of the Cass Corridor.
Detroit’s Cass Corridor is a strip of the city which is bordered on the east by Woodward Avenue, on the west by the M-10/Lodge Freeway, on the north by Warren Avenue, and on the south by I-75. Lewis Cass, Michigan’s Territory Governor from 1813 to 1831 and the Democratic Party presidential candidate in 1848, purchased the strip of land. In the late 1800’s, the industrial revolution transformed the area into a neighborhood for the wealthy, until the turn of the 20th Century when the automobile industry grew, drawing more people to the city. The upper class began building homes further from the heart of the bustling downtown. With the increase in population, the expansive homes in the Corridor became apartments for new Detroiters to rent. The area became more urban, and with Wayne State University at the northern section of the Corridor, the area transformed into the home of both poverty and art. The revolutionary period of the 1960’s made Cass Corridor the Greenwich Village of Detroit, where artists, musicians, and writers created and protests took place while urban decay spread.
Sunday at Cass
March 8, 2015
There are three events in the Buddha’s life that are recognized with special services at Still Point Zen Buddhist Temple. There is the day of his birth (recognized with a Sunday service in May); his enlightenment (recognized with a Friday evening through Saturday morning sitting in January); and Parinirvana, or the day he died (recognized with a Sunday service in March). On the day of the Parinirvana service in 2015 was another Sunday at Cass.
After having been given the honor to read the Four Brahma-viharas during the service – the four divine states of dwelling cultivated through meditation; The Way of Love; The Way of Compassion; The Way of Sympathetic Joy; The Way of Equanimity – and reminded and refreshed by the final words spoken by Buddha – Be diligent in your efforts to attain liberation – I made my way down to Cass Park after the service.
It was another chilly day where hearts were warm and hungry bellies filled. No matter the person’s individual spiritual practice, the common religion of compassion and community is powerful to witness.