Sunday, January 25, 2009

Thanks Andy!

Anybody in my classes with me will find this as no surprise. Here is my personality test result in terms of the Church Fathers:

"You do nothing by half-measures. If you’re going to read the Bible, you want to read it in the original languages. If you’re going to teach, you’re going to reach as many souls as possible, through a proliferation of lectures and books. If you’re a guy and you’re going to fight for purity … well, you’d better hide the kitchen shears." OUCH! Well, this was fun, but I do hold Origen's view of apokatastasis: the redemption of all things in Christ.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Presidential religious: Bishop Robinson

Bishop Robinson is funny:

Here's his too-long, but good prayer, which wasn't aired on HBO...

Finally, here's Rachel Maddow explaining why Bishop Robinson's prayer wasn't aired:

Presidential religious:Joseph Lowery's Benediction

This is worth a second look. This prayer rides the line of polemic several times. I just happen to agree, the rhyming, however, is trite.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Saint John's Bible

I first read about this project about 10 years ago and was blown away: A new, hand-written Bible, fully illuminated. The work is simply striking. Check it out:

The St. John's Bible - "In the Beginning..." from Speaking of Faith on Vimeo.

Here is the stem of Jesse, can you find Jesus, note the DNA double helix.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Presidential religious: thoughts

I think that Pres. Obama is a consummate politician. Here's what I think he is saying in his choices of religious leaders taking roles in his inauguration:
Rick Warren: Obama will talk with people he doesn't agree with, he will allow democracy to take place, however ugly it seems. Obama is also open to contrary views, unlike the White House of the past 8 years, where no dissenting thought entered discourse. Also, I think Obama is sending a clear message to his liberal base, y'all aren't getting a free ride, this is a new kind of president.

Joseph Lowery: a bit of the old school, touching the MLK hem, but with Lowery, who is still active in progressive causes, we have socially engaged gospel.

Sharon Watkins: A taste of things to come...I can't think of a better way to put it, this is very exciting...

Right Rev'd Gen Robinson: while pre-inauguration, I think Obama is really just sealing the deal on how is Christianity is big-tent Christianity.

Finally, I find it interesting that all these choices are protestant Christians, no Islamic or Jewish leaders, no Buddhists, Secular Humanists, etc. Clearly, I think, this is a message that says, I'm a Christian, o.k.? Listen here fore more.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Presidential Religious: Joseph Lowery

Presidential religious: Rick Warren

I'm a little impressed with Rick Warren, he's decided to remain silent, to the press, unitl the inauguration, saying his "prayer will speak for itself." Here's a quick interview with Warren. He's gets it wrong at 2:11, Warren says that the model of marriage that we have is between a man and a woman, and that model is 5,000 years old. Too bad the OT is full of polygamy. Also, the church has only recently been involved in marriages, even in the middle ages, when marriage was still a land agreement between familes; the only time a priest was sought, was as witness. Anyway, Warren does ok here, even though he's "had dinner in gay homes."

Monday, January 12, 2009

Presidential religious

Part One: Start with the closer.

Sharon Watkins, president of the Disciples of Christ, will deliver the closing prayer at Barack Obama's inauguration. Who is she? What is Disciples of Christ? What is her theology? What does her pick say about Obama's theology? What does her pick say about Obama's politics? I'll pull together some links and thoughts later today, now, I'm off to morning prayer and the first day of the Easter Semester.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

I'm all for these ads, but I think they get it wrong in one fundamental way. If these were my signs I would have them say: THERE PROBABLY IS A GOD, SO STOP WORRYING. Feeling the presence of God, the creator of the universe (and the universe), and knowing that she or he (but not it, too impersonal) is not only with us as a general creation, but me as individual is scandalous! How could you stay the same after experiencing this? My discernment helped with this, but mostly having children: my life is not mine, everything I have is a gift from God. So I find it easy not to attach myself to the people and things around me, before I recognized God in my life, I was struggling to make this happen on my own, now, it's easy. Enough evangelizing! Incidently, evagelize comes from the greek: euangelion, good news, the good news that God and creation are reconciled! There I go again! Soon I'll be thumping the Bible outside: THUS SAYS THE LORD, JESUS CHRIST: I HAVE COME THAT THEY MAY HAVE LIFE AND HAVE IT MORE ABUNDANTLY (John 10:10). That's good news. I'll stop now. I'm off to Saint Mary's for a mini-retreat, and to get out of my wife's hair while she has her "Girl's Weekend".
Finally, you may have noticed the color changes on this blog in the past several weeks, I'm going liturgical with the color choices, epiphany=gold and white.


Friday, January 9, 2009


I've been steeped in Advent and Christmas for over a month now, but it is Epiphany, how do I proceed? Epiphany is about the showing-forth of God in Jesus. In the Episcopal Church, this is first celebrated by the visitation of the three kings. Here, with the wise men we have the recognition of Jesus by Gentiles. It's funny how epiphany has entered our vocabulary as an event that gives great clarity. This is also the theological meaning, and one that I think has brought me to seminary, Jesus, in some way is God in the flesh. I've experienced this and now I'm searching for meaning of that experience. So I guess I strongly identify with those three wise men, the three kings...

Friday, January 2, 2009

Happy New Year!

Here's a viddy of my hero Rowan Williams. His statements remind me of an epiphany I had once that changed my life. It was simple: I once looked at a person that was inconviencing me, and I saw them as a problem, not a person. Seeing someone as a problem objectifies them and releases us from all charity and responsibility and opens the door for all manner of evil...