Thoughts, observations, musings, encouragements, exhortations, and occasional rants from an Anglican Parish Deacon and Master Electronics Technician.
Monday, December 29, 2008
Sunday, December 28, 2008
OK, I'm done... I Promise! I'm sorry but this one truly has me pining for the Bellarine and Queenscliffe! I'm fairly convinced that our LORD created and populated Australia on the 6th day at 4:07 PM. Iva Davies's Video captures the beauty of this "Great Southern Land".
The Third rendition of "Heroes" . Alright pilgrims, Its now up to you. Who rocks "Heroes" the best; Iva Davies, David Bowie or Jacob Dylan?
Chillin' on an unseasonably warm Sunday
Alright, what we have here is a battle of the crooners... Iva Davies and David Bowie both rock in equal measure. This said, the question still must be asked; who has given the better interpretation of this classic and triumphal anthem? As a final, I want to put the winner up against Jacob Dylan if I can find the clip. Anyway, I digress.
Our World, our Towns and our cul du sacs/neighborhoods are in dire need of heroes. Not folk who can roast weenies or make s'mores with a glance, but guys or gals with the stones/ovaries to draw the line in the sand and say "no more" to the raging tempesta sterecore.
Our God is the father of EEO and will readily accept Daniel's and Deborah's who are ready to cowboy/cowgirl up to the challenge. Selah.
Friday, December 26, 2008
Friday Night at the Catbird Seat
Ya' know, She's neither Christy Lane, Twila Paris nor Sandy Patty... But I believe that this song by Chrissie Hynde speaks more to the love of our Lord than many, many other songs. We had nothing to lay before the throne but filth and failure. Yet, our LORD has reached out to us, wrapping us in the cloak of Christ and embracing us. Far from our Best, but in our ugliest, foulest moments. Consider the words of St Paul:
"As for you, you were dead in your transgressions and sins, in which you used to live when you followed the ways of this world and of the ruler of the kingdom of the air, the spirit who is now at work in those who are disobedient. All of us also lived among them at one time, gratifying the cravings of our sinful nature[a] and following its desires and thoughts. Like the rest, we were by nature objects of wrath. But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, 5made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions—it is by grace you have been saved." Ephesians 2:1-5 NIV
Be Blessed this cold December Evening.
Friday Palate Cleanser
It looks to be a big frosty sandwich today as our heartland gets hammered with a winter blast while the bookends of California's high Desert and Suburbia Majora enjoy the sunny/chilly 40's. Anyhoo, I digress...
On this "Feast of Stephen" and "Boxing Day", you might ask yourself... How could I be a Hero?
Happy Boxing Day
The Nontheist or Religious Humanist dreams for "Peace on Earth and Goodwill towards Man" from a nonor extrabiblical perspective, while the Evangelical Christian stridently states that there will be no peace on this earth until the Christ returns. The Evangelical is correct in their assertion that there will be no lasting/permanent peace until the Almighty brings about Act III and the restoration. This said, there is no reason that we should accept nor allow our world to be a seething hell until that moment.
Boxing Day has traditionally been a day when those in UK and many of her daughters (Canada, Australia, New Zealand, etc.) reached out in goodwill to the widow, orphan, downtrodden, and those on the margins with the love and bounty of the Christmastide. I've always regretted the fact that this holiday never took root in the United States. The fact that this also falls on the feast of Stephen has special meaning for me personally, as this is one of the missions and ministries of the Deacon... That is, to stand as a bridge between the the Kosmos and the Ecclessia, or the Church and its mission field.
In the Spirit of Stephen, May we all reach out to the fields with humility, winsomeness, and the grace and power of the Holy Spirit.
Thursday, December 18, 2008
Oh, for the love of Pete! Can't these uber-progressives stop for just one minute and get that perpetual bunch out of their bloomers? Ya' know, even an overtly secular Christmas is supposed to be a time of magic and wonder for our crumb crunchers. Instead someone has foisted this Al Goresque drivel on them. Please save the wild-eyed, tree-hugging claptrap for another day. Oh, and keep yer' meathooks off of Easter too.
Here endeth the Rant
This aside, this is one very talented young woman.
Thursday, December 11, 2008
Back on Home Turf
I wanted to continue my thought in Charlotte but it took me far longer than expected to get from one side of the airport to the other, but I digress...
Previously, we were considering the polar opposites of error concerning the celebration of the Eucharist. These have only served to blur and obscure not only the beauty of the sacrament, but it's blessing as well. Let me go out to the end of the branch and pose the following: Is the overwhelming body of American Christendom "sick or asleep" due to their idolization or shabby treatment of Sacrament? If we claim to the inspiration and authority of Holy Scripture, we simply can't duck this question.
Holy Communion is first and foremost, Holy. It is a sanctified moment where we partake and celebrate the "mystery" of our faith, this being that "Christ has died, Christ has risen, Christ will come again!". It is a holy moment where the Saint meets their Savior to partake in the body, broken, buried, resurrected, and returning. Our Christ's person and divinity are present in the offered elements. They're neither transformed nor mere tokens.
We need also to consider the mode of the meal. I've watched folk roll through communion like a GMC truck down an assembly line. There's neither reverie nor reverence. Too, I've witnessed the celebration occur without a shred of reverence. These call to mind St. Paul's description of the Corinthian Church.
How then should it be celebrated and by whom?
I believe that first, it must be celebrated with reverence, purpose and deliberation. The saint needs to apprehend that in partaking of the Eucharist, they are entering into the presence of the Holy. The self-examined saint should consider the cost of the sacrifice, where the very expression of the Almighty suffered the torture and death of a common street thug. A cross of judgement awaited us all, but our Christ allowed himself to be nailed to OUR cross. This is so that He might take us as his own and share in this Eucharist in the Father's Kingdom.
It goes without a whole lot of explanation that this is a meal for the saint of God. Not only for the saint, but for the saint who can apprehend even a glimpse of Christ's vicarious and atoning death. I'll not be so legalistic as to pose an "age" where one is ready for communion. I will though pose that a school-aged child who hasn't reached a point of understanding should not partake in the celebration.
Wednesday, December 10, 2008
Heading onto Home Turf
Christian-American though on the Eucharist ranges from the Transubstantiationist to the Independent Fundamentalist Baptist (IFB)/Chickensian viewpoint. While the former holds to one erroneous view, the latter believes that "observing" communion more than once in a year makes the pastor a an agent of the Vatican. The one literally worships the physical elements while the other deconstructs them to mere symbols. In this, I believe that both parties have missed the target and the historic orthodox understanding of the Eucharist.
It took the Church nearly one thousand years and vigorous debate to arrive at the doctrine of Transubstantiation. In the wake, some incredulous hagiography and legend was spun out of whole cloth as to bread physically transforming into flesh and wine/water into human blood. On the eve of the reformation and Trent, acceptance of the doctrine was a salvific issue. Calvin, Luther, and the Anglican Reformers thoroughly repudiated this teaching and the idolatry that followed.
The Anabaptists and other forerunners of today's IFB and Pentecostal/Charismatic churches took an almost iconoclastic stance towards the Eucharist, removing any hue of "Mystery" and stripping it of its Sacramental status.
I'll continue these thoughts in Charlotte...
Tuesday, December 09, 2008
On the ground in Broward
Ya know what? it's been a long two and a half days. 48 hours ago, I was bundled against the backside of an Alberta Clipper and bundled up in Northern Virginia. Tonight, I'm in a T-shirt oogling the palm trees and thinking about dinner... A Cuban Sandwich perhaps?
Palm Trees Flamingos and Broward/Dade Counties make me think of my favorite cop show from the 80's. (C'mon, you thought it was as cool as I did back then.) The boats, the cars, the threads, it was all too cool. But for all its hip vibe, it was completely out of touch with reality. Think about it, what Miami Detective in the 80's could float Crockett & Tubbs lifestyle in a Detective's salary? Anyhoo, it was a fun watch.
Monday, December 08, 2008
On the Road
I left Suburbia Majora Sunday to ferry a van to Port Everglades Florida. Tonight, I'm blogging from Palm Coast, FL at a rather comfortable Sleep Inn. While driving, I've been rolling the canons of the new Anglican Province brain and at first glance they seem to be not only sound in their orthodoxy, but just the thing a third millennium church needs.
Canon 6 & 7 in particular caught my attention on a few levels. Canon 6 provides latitude concerning the Book of Common Prayer and Canon 7 steps into the Women's ordination minefield. These are two canons that will certainly generate debate, considering the composition of the province. This is where affinity-based dioceses will be highly beneficial.
I hope to comment on these canons at a greater length once I get back to Suburbia Majora later in the week. For now, I'll enjoy Florida's warmth.
Sunday, December 07, 2008
Saturday Night at the Seat
It's colder than a grave digger's backside tonight as an Alberta Clipper descends on the Old Dominion. It's one of those nights that has me pining for the Bellarine and Queenscliffe. C'mon and co-miserate with me and enjoy Ice House as they sing about that Great Southern Land. It's just bonus points that our Anglican Brothers in this "Great Southern Land" are standing shoulder to shoulder with us in the labour of standing firm of orthodox Anglicanism.
Thursday, December 04, 2008
The Sleeper Awakes
I'm a survivor of the steel industry meltdown of the early seventies when the once proud City of Coatesville, PA died, and the ensuing Carter years which did their best to ensure Coatesville's death was indeed final. I pray that through Almighty's merciful hand, we'll survive the Neosocialism about to be foisted on us by the Obama-Pelosi-Reid triumvirate.