I am ignoring the sound advice of this ASBO Jesus cartoon:
For me coming out of the closet starts with advertising something:
KEY NOTE SPEAKER
Why blessing same-sex relationships is vital for the mission of the Church.
RUBY BEECH – VICE PRESIDENT OF CONFERENCE
WORKSHOPS AND WORSHIP
A public meeting for members, friends, supporters and the curious.
May 31 2008 at Chelsea Methodist Church
(Kings Road, Chelsea, London – nearest tube Sloane Square)
from 12 noon to 5 pm
Price £10 per person (including lunch).
Please book using this booking form by May 20th
I will be there as a supporter.
This event is being organised by Outcome:
I hope to see you in Chelsea, after all £10 for Ruby and lunch is a pretty good deal!
PS "Coming out" in the sense of coming out in support.
In Living in the Kingdom: The Hope of the Poor and the Hope of the Rich Wes asks "Where are the prophetic voices today?"
The answer is in the whole post. This is a prophetic post challenging the Church, Christians and Society in America (but so much is true for other countries as well).
This is an essential read.
A much loved member of our Church is close to the end of a fight with cancer. Almost exactly a year ago, at Easter, he gave an incredibly powerful testimony which had most of the congregation in tears.
On Sunday I am preaching. The texts are Acts 7:55-60 (death of Stephen) and John 14:1-14 (Jesus preparing his disciples for his death).
I cannot ignore the connections, this is too current and raw to be ignored.
Tonight I watched Shadowlands on DVD, the film about CS Lewis and Joy, who became his wife and who died of cancer. I am re-reading "A grief observed" by CS Lewis which chronicles his own grief at Joy’s death.
So here I am struggling with preparing a service that must be worship, must proclaim good news and yet which must reflect honestly where we are and where we are called to go.
Struggling too with my role as minister, a role where I need to be able to hold things for others while also finding ways to be real about the ways I am broken by this and what it brings back from the still too recent loss of Mum and Dad, both to cancer, just four years ago (Dad’s anniversary on 14th May, Mum’s was on 24th January).
Struggling with balance that avoids on the one side pretence that all is well and we should always be happy and glad, while at the same time living in the light of the empty tomb with the cross standing empty behind.
Oh Lord hear my prayer.
The Methodist Church and CoE have announced a special card and website today for people who have suffered from the trauma of abuse.
That is good news (and about time too). The website is www.methodist.org.uk/lightindarkness and while it is not "officially open" yet (whatever that means) the booklet is already available as a pdf.
I think the prayers are good, they highlight some of the common problems in Churches for people who have been abused (eg demanding that survivors of abuse forgive their abuser, denying possibility of abuse within the Church community).
As Churches we have many challenges facing us and many are caused by our denial of our own failings. So I welcome this attempt to minister to people in pain and at the same time challenge us all on the need to love and value all people..
Link: The Methodist Church of Great Britain | 15 April 2008.
In the Christian scriptures, the highest word, the most virtual form of love, is not agape, but koinonia, the mutual, the reciprocal, the committed, and celebrative love of intimate relationship, authentic community, and responsive fellowship.
More from: Tale Spin: Some quotes from David W. Augsburger.
Sounds good to me, lets get on with it!
From the all round excellent blog Make Wealth History comes Carbon footprints – what makes the biggest difference? I found the conclusion simple, helpful and very challenging:
So, there are three things that will make a big difference to your carbon footprint. Yes, stop flying. By all means take up cycling, change your lightbulbs and wear a sweater. But first, cut down your meat eating, insulate your home, and just all round buy less stuff.
We are trying some of these, albeit without making amazing progress.
The first is helped by attempting to buy more ethical meat (organic and local) which is not easily available around here.
Living in a house provided with your job makes the middle one tricky (we did radically improve the insulation of our own home before we started to rent it out, maybe next tenant change will be an opportunity to do more).
Buying less stuff (or at least buying more virtually). I confess I have not switched to on-line versions of magazines yet – probably would be a good step to take.
Back from holiday (a week on a motor cruiser on the Norfolk Broads) but by no means back to normal.
Yes the holiday was fantastic, yes pictures may follow, yes we did have hail (twice) and thunderstorms (thrice), no they did not spoil the holiday.