Church


We had another clergy write yesterday.  Our third write was on the phrase (from “O Little Town of Bethlehem”) “Be Born In Me Today.”  I think I may have at least a start for Sunday’s sermon:

At bible study yesterday we were talking about Joseph, who was going to put Mary aside quietly (rather than have her stoned or publicly humiliated) when he had a dream.  And a dream is certainly not an automatically authoritative event.  We have lots of dreams, and they don’t all come from God — though therapists tell us we can all benefit from paying attention to our dreams.

Anyway, Joseph clearly didn’t want Mary as his wife when he had this dream. (more…)

My wife sent me a link to a new blog that I’ve now linked (see my blogroll):  The Hardest Question.  There is a list of (heavy hitting) contributors, but the first article I read all the way through did not seem to be on that list:  Danielle Shroyer.  She wrote a piece on this Sunday’s gospel called Prophets are Terrible Dinner Guests.  If the title grabs your interest, please do follow the link!

I came across the following in Robert Raines A Time to Live:

E. B. White watched his wife Katharine planning the planting of bulbs in her garden in the last autumn of her life and later wrote about it:  ‘There was something comical yet touching in her bedraggled appearance …  The small hunched-over figure, her studied absorption in the implausible notion that there would be yet another spring, oblivious to the ending of her own days, which she knew perfectly well was near at hand, sitting there with her detailed chart under those dark skies in dying October, calmly plotting the resurrection.’  There is room for all of us in the resurrection conspiracy, the company of those who plant seeds of hope in dark times of grief or oppression, going about the living of these years until, no one knows quite how, the tender Easter shoots appear.

 

Do I believe in angels?

I found myself asking this question this morning as I prepared to read Matins in the church office.  And I wasn’t sure I could answer the question.

Certainly I believe in angels in the root sense of the word, the idea that there are messengers from God. (more…)

Ok. Nobody asked me. But I almost cannot help myself.

When I worship at a church, I always seem to critique the service in my head.

This morning, Anne and I worshiped at St. James’ in Lincoln City (Oregon). We’ve been there before (and liked it). But this year they have an interim. So it was a somewhat different experience. (more…)

One of the things I take very seriously is baptism.  It is the normative practice for how we are incorporated into the Body of Christ and become Christians.  This doesn’t mean there is no other way to become a Christian.  The early Church felt that those who died for their faith before they could be baptized received a kind of baptism by blood.  Certainly there are babies who die before they are baptized (and we don’t consign them to limbo, somewhere outside of the community of faith).  Friends Meetings (Quaker Meetings) do not practice any outward and visible signs.  They are generally accepted as members of the Christian community.  (Massy Shepherd made a specific point of this back when I was in seminary.)  Still, it’s the normative practice.  It’s foundational for us. (more…)

Well, today we remember Irenaeus of Lyons (c.125-202).  And while I was looking that up in Kathleen Jones’ “The Saints of the Anglican Calendar,” I noticed I’d underlined a lot about Cyril of Alexandria (376-444).  I checked, and Cyril (unlike Irenaeus) is not in the calendar of the Episcopal Church – not even in the expansion (by about 100 names) that came out of our last General Convention.  In my mind, this may well be a good thing.

About the only good thing in the book about Cyril is that he was “a champion of orthodoxy.”  But he also refused to consider any doctrine not found in the early church fathers.  And that denies God’s continuing revelation.  I have a problem with that. (more…)

James Richardson brought this piece (op ed in the New York Times) to my attention.  Can you understand why something was done and still feel total outrage that it was done.  I think that’s how I’m feeling.  Here it is:

NICHOLAS D. KRISTOF Published: May 26, 2010
Fred R. Conrad/The New York TimesTimes

We finally have a case where the Roman Catholic Church hierarchy is responding forcefully and speedily to allegations of wrongdoing.  But the target isn’t a pedophile priest. Rather, it’s a nun who helped save a woman’s life. Doctors describe her as saintly. (more…)

Well, today we commemorate Augustine of Canterbury.  And I have to admit, I don’t normally think of him when I think of the Anglican via media.  But, at Gregory’s direction, rather than adhering strictly to the Roman rite, he made at least some allowance for Celtic practices that were ongoing when he arrived.  And, as our first Archbishop of Canterbury, that had to help set a tone. (more…)

For those of you interested in the emerging church and Ian Mobsby comments here on his blog.

« Previous PageNext Page »