SEC Retreat: Unprecedented Inside Peek!

13532819_10209530209402863_6644557316526171939_nLate last week the Supreme Executive Committee met for their annual retreat at a secure, undisclosed coffee shop. Over 24 hours, Scott and Tim drank coffee, discussed saints, argued in a Biblical fashion over which one of them was “the greatest,” and then drank more coffee. As befitting any church conference there was worship, plenary sessions, break-0ut groups, and easels with newsprint. Unlike your average church gathering, the coffee was outstanding. Because the SEC is composed of insufferable coffee snobs.

The major focus of this annual event is the discernment of the following year’s bracket. This year was no exception and the SEC is pleased to announce that, while it was touch and go for awhile, there will indeed be a Lent Madness 2017. Scott and Tim sifted through 456 separate saintly nominations submitted by 637 people in order to whittle the field down to 32 saints. How did it go? All we can report for now is that Scott and Tim came to blows several times and that the official bracket will be released on All Brackets’ Day, November 3.

There was also, apparently, a mole as photo documentation has been released highlighting some of what took place during this secretive session. This security breach means that the Lent Madness faithful have been given a unique glimpse into the inner workings of the SEC. Scott and Tim, naturally, blame each other for this dangerous situation.


The SEC Retreat began with worship. Unfortunately Tim and Scott couldn’t agree on who would officiate at Morning Prayer. Thus a liturgical stand-off ensued, meaning the retreat actually began with a “silent meditation.”

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In order to keep the prying eyes of the global Lent Madness public away from the highly confidential proceedings, Scott and Tim decided to dig a moat around one of their meeting places.


At one point, Tim’s dog, Delilah, decided to stage a sit in and/or filibuster. We’re not entirely sure what she was protesting.



Most people aren’t aware of this, but the actual brackets are created by ritually burning the previous year’s brackets. Pancakes are not, unfortunately, involved.


The retreat ended with the closing eucharist. Unfortunately, the SEC could not decide which way to face — east or west. And more liturgical awkwardness ensued.

Anyway, mark your calendars for All Brackets’ Day, November 3, when the Lent Madness 2017 bracket will be released. Until then, we encourage you to pass your time over in the Lentorium.

55 Comments to "SEC Retreat: Unprecedented Inside Peek!"

  1. C. Brent Hoy-Bianchi's Gravatar C. Brent Hoy-Bianchi
    June 27, 2016 - 4:20 pm | Permalink

    Will the next inside peak be precedented?

  2. Judith's Gravatar Judith
    June 27, 2016 - 4:22 pm | Permalink

    Hail thee, All Brackets Day!
    Blest day that are hallowed a-new-ly;
    Day on which posts arise,
    Breaking the hopes of some saints.

    (hey, it rhymes as well as any other text for Salve festa dies)

    • Peg S.'s Gravatar Peg S.
      June 27, 2016 - 5:50 pm | Permalink

      [applause, wild cheering, sports-event type whistling]

      • Lea's Gravatar Lea
        June 29, 2016 - 11:44 am | Permalink

        What Peg said, thrice illuminated!

    • RoseAnn Evans's Gravatar RoseAnn Evans
      June 27, 2016 - 6:43 pm | Permalink

      As a church musician, I applaud this addition to the oeuvre!

    • Laura's Gravatar Laura
      June 27, 2016 - 10:16 pm | Permalink

      Well done!

  3. debbie hunter's Gravatar debbie hunter
    June 27, 2016 - 4:24 pm | Permalink

    Thank you so much for this update as I am having a wonderful laugh out loud moment………much needed after a long rough day…thank you again. Looking forward to Nov 3 and the new list as I missed putting my two nominees in by one day.

  4. Becky Chapman's Gravatar Becky Chapman
    June 27, 2016 - 4:25 pm | Permalink

    I’m more excited about All Brackets Day than I am about Christmas!! Let the countdown begin!!

  5. Judy's Gravatar Judy
    June 27, 2016 - 4:27 pm | Permalink

    Well, at least the SEC does seem to agree on the appropriate laptop. Maybe that will extend to other areas.

  6. Margaret Moran's Gravatar Margaret Moran
    June 27, 2016 - 4:29 pm | Permalink

    No costumes?

  7. NJ's Gravatar NJ
    June 27, 2016 - 4:30 pm | Permalink

    Indeed the SEC must have been drinking too much coffee today and forgot to run spellcheck, hence the erstwhile sneak peak!?!

  8. Erin's Gravatar Erin
    June 27, 2016 - 4:34 pm | Permalink

    I think you meant inside “peek” 😉

  9. Bob Nelson's Gravatar Bob Nelson
    June 27, 2016 - 4:38 pm | Permalink

    I thought “peak” was used into ally to note the high point of theSEC’s achievements this year..

    • Jill Liberty's Gravatar Jill Liberty
      June 27, 2016 - 5:33 pm | Permalink

      Given the schisms inherent in the SEC, perhaps we should refer to this breaking news as a “sneak pique.”

      • Lora C.'s Gravatar Lora C.
        June 27, 2016 - 9:35 pm | Permalink

        Good one!

      • Laurie Atwater's Gravatar Laurie Atwater
        June 28, 2016 - 6:24 am | Permalink

        Well played!

  10. Linda's Gravatar Linda
    June 27, 2016 - 4:39 pm | Permalink

    This mole you speak of; will he/she be banished from LM ?!

    • Ellie Tupper's Gravatar Ellie Tupper
      June 28, 2016 - 8:32 am | Permalink

      It was probably Delilah.

  11. June 27, 2016 - 4:44 pm | Permalink

    I understand the liturgical standoffs completely… as a via media man myself, I would’ve had to stand obstreperously “middle” in all these situations, to oppose these two radical position takers.

  12. June 27, 2016 - 4:48 pm | Permalink

    Thanks for the laughs!

  13. Jan Hubbell's Gravatar Jan Hubbell
    June 27, 2016 - 4:54 pm | Permalink

    Clearly, Delilah didn’t think you were paying enough attention to her nominations. Just don’t let her talk to St. Francis about it!

  14. June 27, 2016 - 5:01 pm | Permalink

    Oh, how I’ve missed you! Even my atheist husband listens and laughs.

  15. June 27, 2016 - 5:02 pm | Permalink

    In the Eucharistic standoff, Scott is surrendering to Jesus rather than demoing orans. Y’all musta been exhausted.

  16. Ann Cooper's Gravatar Ann Cooper
    June 27, 2016 - 5:02 pm | Permalink

    An inside mountain? Wow! That is special.

  17. Margaret Johnson's Gravatar Margaret Johnson
    June 27, 2016 - 5:05 pm | Permalink

    No pancakes? I was fine until then, but . . .
    I’m beside myself (an image that has always amused me).

  18. Susan Negrotto's Gravatar Susan Negrotto
    June 27, 2016 - 5:15 pm | Permalink

    I needed some light humor today. Thanks!

  19. Nancy Sassaman's Gravatar Nancy Sassaman
    June 27, 2016 - 5:19 pm | Permalink

    Glad to know that there are other coffee snobs in the church. I have been known to “bring my own” to fellowship hour.

  20. Neva Rae Fox's Gravatar Neva Rae Fox
    June 27, 2016 - 5:23 pm | Permalink

    Was that Guy Fawkes I saw in the background in the coffee shop?!!??

  21. Diane R's Gravatar Diane R
    June 27, 2016 - 5:40 pm | Permalink

    Thank you for the update! Too bad Delilah wasn’t a yellow lab or a saint. She would definitely have my vote!

  22. Judith Chumlea-Cohan's Gravatar Judith Chumlea-Cohan
    June 27, 2016 - 5:51 pm | Permalink

    Since my 81st birthday in Nov.5, Guy Fawkes Day, I hope you will save some fireworks for then after your explosive announcements on All Brackets Day.

  23. Carol Amadio's Gravatar Carol Amadio
    June 27, 2016 - 6:46 pm | Permalink

    So glad the saintly scenario is in the bag. Perhaps you could slowly reveal the pious panoply throughout the day one envelope at a time.

  24. James N. Lodwick's Gravatar James N. Lodwick
    June 27, 2016 - 6:47 pm | Permalink

    Thanks for doing this. I love your humor!

  25. June 27, 2016 - 6:54 pm | Permalink

    Your post was like a long drink of cool water on a dry hot summer day.

  26. aleathia (dolores) nicholson's Gravatar aleathia (dolores) nicholson
    June 27, 2016 - 6:57 pm | Permalink

    Well….You Padres have truly outdone yourselves, Rank heresy playing around on that altar won’t do and just because you weren’t vested does not count one jot nor two tittles. As for Delilah, she is neither staging a sit-in nor filibustering and I need not be more specific. Your only hope of salvation is the fact that the atheistic husband of Cindy S. is paying you any attention which portends hope of salvation for him if he approves of you two. Thank God for y’all in my life ’cause it’s getting really “out there” here at the “Home” for the Aged and Otherwise. Be of good cheer as November is near.

  27. Kathleen Puffer's Gravatar Kathleen Puffer
    June 27, 2016 - 7:01 pm | Permalink

    Obviously the heavy equipment gave you an opportunity build a moat AND a peak.

  28. Rosemary C. Barnes's Gravatar Rosemary C. Barnes
    June 27, 2016 - 7:07 pm | Permalink

    What a relief to know that you’ve met and inspire of the liturgical stand-off, there will be a Lent Madness bracket coming this fall, right on the heels of All Saints and All Souls’ Day…which is the appropriate stole for this day?

    • Harlie Youngblood's Gravatar Harlie Youngblood
      June 27, 2016 - 9:01 pm | Permalink

      Purple, but of course!

  29. Rosemary C. Barnes's Gravatar Rosemary C. Barnes
    June 27, 2016 - 7:08 pm | Permalink

    Oh dear…spell check did it again…I meant “inspite” not “inspire”….mea culpa.

  30. Ronnie Warren's Gravatar Ronnie Warren
    June 27, 2016 - 7:40 pm | Permalink

    How about an All Bracelets Day for the new saints in the Brackets? You may have seen the bracelets made up of dime-sized saints all around…a fashion first.
    Glad to hear from the SEC.

  31. Jan Curtis's Gravatar Jan Curtis
    June 27, 2016 - 7:41 pm | Permalink

    Bless you, all…several tough things happening in our family just now. So nice to find this cheery selection regarding the Lenten Brackets. Thank you very much indeed.

  32. AnchorageABC's Gravatar AnchorageABC
    June 27, 2016 - 9:28 pm | Permalink

    Love the sneak pique! Religion is a serious business–it is our immortal souls we have on the line. You remind us that humor and laughter are good medicine for our souls. The laughs lighten the burden of some of the sobering events in our lifes.

  33. Barbara S.'s Gravatar Barbara S.
    June 27, 2016 - 9:35 pm | Permalink

    One of the best pre-season LM posts ever. Love the “burning of the brackets”!

  34. Grace Cangialosi's Gravatar Grace Cangialosi
    June 27, 2016 - 9:39 pm | Permalink

    “Inside PEAK”…seriously?? “PEAK”?? Even when you rhyme it with another word, as in “sneak peek,” you still spell it P-E-E-K!!

    Unless, of course, you’re in a secret hideaway on a mountain somewhere…

  35. Kim Rossi's Gravatar Kim Rossi
    June 27, 2016 - 10:01 pm | Permalink

    A warm summer day, a cool fan, an iced coffee and a post from the SEC with visions of LM 2017 – it doesn’t get any better than this!

  36. Celia Metz's Gravatar Celia Metz
    June 27, 2016 - 11:13 pm | Permalink

    Too funny!

  37. Fiona's Gravatar Fiona
    June 28, 2016 - 3:52 am | Permalink

    Thank you for diverting my thoughts from the implosion in the UK with supreme Lenten levity. Perhaps marshmallows could be introduced to the Burning of the Brackets – something should be toasted in the flames of disappointment left behind from all those busted brackets. 🙂

    • sue's Gravatar sue
      June 28, 2016 - 7:03 am | Permalink

      Oh what a perfect idea!!!

  38. Lucia's Gravatar Lucia
    June 28, 2016 - 6:31 am | Permalink

    I, too, am an insufferable coffee snob! Thanks, guys! Great post!

  39. Jan's Gravatar Jan
    June 28, 2016 - 7:02 am | Permalink

    Perfect timing as I am designing and making a combination Advent / Lent / Holy Week “wreath” in ceramics. Now all I have to do is wait for All Bracket’s Day as we do in these waiting seasons.

  40. sue's Gravatar sue
    June 28, 2016 - 7:06 am | Permalink

    I too have been overwhelmed with life lately and so appreciate the lightness and humor of LM. Thank You for raising me up!

  41. Dorothee's Gravatar Dorothee
    June 28, 2016 - 9:05 am | Permalink

    Thank you for the giggles and smiles!

  42. June 28, 2016 - 10:55 am | Permalink

    Nice that you could get together with your nemesis/arch-rival. I guess the lion really can lie down with the lamb. LOL! No really, great to see you guys working so well on this Lent Madness. Looking forward to Nov. 3rd.

  43. June 28, 2016 - 11:16 am | Permalink

    Thank you, SEC, for giving us eager followers of Lent Madness an update of how the “saint selection” was going. I imagine you two took many breaks, oops, break out sessions due to the amount of coffee you drank. Also to guard the privacy of the decision making process you proceeded to build a moat and Delilah guarded the process. May I ask if some of the choices made were influenced by a rousing game of rock, paper, scissors??? Looking forward, gentlemen, to November 3!

  44. Sue Legnani's Gravatar Sue Legnani
    June 28, 2016 - 2:07 pm | Permalink

    God bless you all. You can really make me smile.

  45. Marcia's Gravatar Marcia
    June 29, 2016 - 2:49 pm | Permalink

    I have always said that Anglicans are a joyous bunch, and the SEC proves it. Keep the irreverence coming!

Comments are closed.