The Laundrylove Promise
Recently I saw a video of Pope Francis in Mexico, visiting a hospital, and stopping to listen to a young woman sing Ave Maria.
Pope Francis Listens to Ave Maria
This reminds me of something my spiritual director told me about what the psychologist Carl Rogers called 'unconditional positive regard', defined as:
The central hypothesis of this approach can be briefly stated. It is that the individual has within him or her self vast resources for self-understanding, for altering her or his self-concept, attitudes, and self-directed behavior—and that these resources can be tapped if only a definable climate of facilitative psychological attitudes can be provided.
Laundrylove promises that at some point you will have the opportunity to practice this. February Laundrylove offered another opportunity for me.
Josh always seeks me out, no matter how busy I am (and this past Laundrylove I was really busy, filling in for Christian as the outside signup person working with Shevawn as the inside navigator).
He is always anxious to tell me what new movies he has acquired in the prior month, and how many points (dollars) he has amassed in his video game (at this point $485M). I always joke with him about his dollars, to share some with me, and his parents, especially if he becomes a billionaire.
I'd guess Josh is in his mid 20s, but obviously spends alot of time on his video console and watching movies. This is SO important to him, and he is so proud and anxious to share.
I saw Pope Francis give his undivided attention to this young woman, who I guessed was in cancer treatment by the head covering. It was exactly how I imagine Jesus was present to people. Something Ram Dass wrote about in 'Be Here Now'.
This is how I am with Josh. I don't set out to tell myself "Hey, when Josh comes around make sure you practice presence with him". It just happens.
I find myself always in recollection after a Laundrylove, recalling encounters where I wasn't present. But the promise that those moments will be there is always kept.
I try to tell others that these moments are available at Laundrylove, and they are moments of the pureness of love. There are fewer precious moments in life than these.
I give thanks to Josh and Laundrylove that I can experience this presence, practice what Jesus invited his disciples to practice, and genuinely listen in on a moment in another persons life.
Thanks to Rev Gina Gore from St Wilfreds for offering ashes for Ash Wednesday. What a gift it was to our guests.
We managed to initiate a new rule to limit loads to 12, so we were able to finish much earlier than before. Thanks to Shevawn and others we were able to turn the laundromat over to the attendant Gabby on time.
Mary and Amanda, whom we met last year at the 1st annual Laundrylove convention in Pomona came up from San Diego to observe and volunteer as they discern whether to start a LL in their neighborhood. What a great joy to see them!
And Doug from Blessed Sacrament in Fullerton was also there to observe so that he can start a LL in Fullerton this month.
And finally, the folks from ICNA invited Christian and I to help out at their first LL in Anaheim on the 25th of February.
So apparently there is something to this LL stuff. And I think it is related to the promise that at some time everyone will be offered the opportunity to listen to someone who might otherwise be overlooked or forgotten. And what a blessing it is to respond in an unconditional positive regard.