The Chicago winter is murder on my fingers, in particular my fingertips, which crack and split and require constant coating with creams and lotions. It’s mostly manageable, but leading worship is a minor challenge, since I can’t exactly keep a tube of Working Hands in the chancel, and the hour is sometimes just long enough for a crack to get aggravated. I don’t always notice. So when the Liturgist shared the Peace of Christ with a more-vigorous-than-most handshake, I felt the pinch in my pinky and winced slightly but soldiered on.
It was only moments later, as the Liturgist led the Psalm, that I looked down at my white stole and saw an unmistakable smear of blood on it.
That’s going to be an interesting stain to explain to a dry cleaner.