Monday, July 31, 2006

Cato checks in

Cato asks, Doesn't the APA recommend locking up schizophrenics for their own good?

Pewster replies, They closed the mental hospitals once medications were invented. Until somebody invents a cure for biblical schizophrenia, Cato might want to reopen the asylums.

Sunday, July 30, 2006

A Schizophrenic Episcopal Church?

In today's sermon we looked at 2 types of Episcopalians. Those who believe in the God of "power and might," the God who can heal the sick and endow power to the prophets, and those christians (I will use the lower case for the word christian to apply to us earthlings since we don't deserve the big "C" yet) who put actions over words and try to go out and do what Christ taught us to do. Charlie's idea that these different forms of worship can exist together in one Church and in individuals seems to me to be another example of what Muslims have accused christians of being (schizophrenic). This is probably more of a split personality syndrome than schizophrenia, but the point is that our religion has a tendency to present contradictions and inconsistencies that can drive some people nuts. Wouldn't it be easier if God wrote done every rule for us to live by in a concise non-controversial book unlike the Bible or the Koran? Thus far, God has not done so, and we are left with these traditions, texts, and we must work it out for ourselves. How inconvenient! Charlie's point is that we can live with opposing views, and that is consistant with the M.O.R. concept presented in previous posts (Episcopal Morons). The fact that we can come together is either to our credit, or we are being held together by that greater "power."

Thursday, July 27, 2006

Mixing Religion and Politics

Mama said, "Never mix religion and politics." Here in the safety of our Blog, we should go ahead and mix it up. So here goes nothin.........
What is a Christian response if you are attacked by rockets fired at random by people who have sworn an oath to your destruction, or how would you respond to attacks from the sky by people with total air supremacy? I think my instinct would be to shake my fists and say, "I'm going to get you for this." This type of response only results in feeding the cycle of violence. Clearly a negative response.
How then to find peace? The wife of one of the kidnapped Israeli soldiers has seen enough bloodshed. Karnit Goldwasser, a newlywed, said there has been enough violence.
"We want the killing to be stopped, both in Israel and in Lebanon."
Did anyone on either side of the Lebanese border listen?
The Buddha tells us " Better than a thousand hollow words is one word that brings peace" and "It is better to conquer yourself than to win a thousand battles." I fear the thousands shouting hollow words get all the press. The one word that brings peace does not sell newspapers.
What is the Christian response to violence? When Jesus was betrayed, one of his followers cut off the ear of the servant of the high priest (our typical response). Jesus healed the servant of the high priest, but the story points out that even Jesus' closest followers carried swords, knew how to use them, and did so in reflex response. Jesus is not seen condemning the reflex, he instead performs a miracle. This act is an equivalent to the "word that brings peace."
I don't have the answer to conflict here or in the middle east. Perhaps we should just keep picking up the broken pieces and trying to put them back together again. The only ones we see doing these acts are the rescue workers trying to save the wounded.
Let us give thanks to the workers of the various rescue teams, the Red Crescent, and the Red Cross, who go into harms way with the sole intention of performing healing miracles. These are the Saints of God. "God help me to be one too."

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

TravellingMercies Checks in

TravellingMercies comments are posted here.

There was a cold void in church this past Sunday, and while some of us thought it was a problem with the airconditioning, we now know it was caused by Pewster's absence. We are so glad to see him back that we will not even ask to see what we are sure is a stamped and notarized excuse from person or persons of great importance.Charlie preached an excellent sermon centering mainly on the theme of reconciliation, the position of our Diocese on the General Convention, and Bishop Henderson's comments and contributions. It was not unlike Pewster's "middle of the road" post; Charlie reminded us that could have differing views on various church matters and still remain supportive of and members of the Anglican community. He also reminded us of the Convention's view that we should be giving .07% of our tithings to reducing hunger in Third World countries. This seemed to me to be one of Charlie's best, delivered with eloquence and deep feeling...a time when the congregation could understand what the term "priesthood" is all about.Having said that, please add the filler that you "threatened," Pewster.....we enjoy your posts!

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Sunday Sermon

The Pewster had an excused absence and is open for comments on Sunday's Sermon. If none are forthcoming, be prepared for something as a filler.

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Eulogy for The Episcopal Church of Our Saviour Message Board

Sadly, The Episcopal Church of Our Saviour Message board will have it’s plug pulled at the end of this month. I am posting this eulogy in hopes of inspiring our readers and members.

I come today not to bury the Message Board, but to praise it. I remember the birth of the board, it was a day of hope and promise. The newborn Our Saviour Message Board was to be a place for folks to continue their Sunday discussions and increase fellowship through the use of computer communications. In the course of it’s short life, the Message Board introduced us to some delightful and some not so delightful on-line personas that we would have never been able to experience in the Lord’s house itself. Who will forget the memorable postings of TravellingMercies, C2G, Artie Anglican, Cato, CindyJT, DonJT, CampfieldL, Episcopalbychoice, JohnHolder, Mturner, Random visitor (most revealing), Sahcssof, LelGreeley, Lindsay, and (modestly) yours truly.
The Board became a House unto itself, a virtual Sunday School for those few brave souls who ventured on-line and into the web of Church life via the internet. The message the board brought was one of human relationships; how they are precious and so delicate. The Board showed us how we might be open and free in our speech and opinions. Perhaps this is the way God wants us to be with each other. Some, who believe in a strict imposing God who wants us to be quiet and follow the rules will disagree. I think the Board’s message is to pray before you type, be open and free, then pray after you type, and love the consequences. For rule benders like me, this is the way of the Board. Thank you Board, Honor and Praise to your Message!

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Episcopal Moron

I was reading a post on another Blog today which suggests there can be no middle of the road in contemporary Church issues. We in the middle are actually the strength of the Church. We play the role of peace advocates between the warring factions. We are pushed around because we do not like the strong polarizing opinion makers shouting at us, and not caring to partake in their arguments is considered either a sign of weakness or a lack of moral commitment.
Years ago there was a comedy song played on Dr. Demento's radio program that bashed "middle of the road" music. The singer used the acronym MOR for middle of the road, and when sung it was pronounced "more." The song went something like this, "I just can't bare with Zepplin or Arrowsmith, Purple and Kiss make me bored...I remember when it was all Tony Bennet, and Tennessee Ernie Ford...Please put some "mor"e on because I am a moron..."(Refrain repeats at the end).
The middle of the road is where most of us morons lie, some more to the right and some more to the left. What seems moronic to me are those who claim that there can be no middle ground. They have been watching too much T.V. (Network news and programming being skewed to the left and FOX being skewed to the right) and buying into what the networks want us to believe is the best way to look at issues and that is through polarizing arguments.
Rush Limbaugh will scoff and scorn me when I stand firmly on the line in the middle (he does not believe in "moderates") and shout " Let our weak and ineffectual arguments be heard!" We argue that we should follow Christ and focus on caring for the sick, the friendless, and the needy, love one another as we have been commanded. Vitriole and venom shall be hushed by peace. Remember the psalmist "Behold, how good and pleasant it is for breathren to dwell together in unity." Psalm 133 verse1.

Sunday, July 09, 2006

Rev. Mary Catherine Enockson at the Episcopal Church of Our Saviour

Today's sermon was delivered by Rev. Mary Catherine Enockson. She is our new "Curate" as today's bulletin described her duties. Actually, I think this is the first time an ordained woman employed by us has given the sermon. We have had other ordained women in the pulpit, but his is more special. Since this was her first opportunity to speak with us, I was hoping she would do a good job. She did. They gave her the responsibility of talking about the calling of prophesy (as today's lessons demanded). She mixed in a few personal notes, she skillfully avoided Paul's letter concerning the person who had been to the "3rd Heaven" (I guess indirectly she was true to Paul by not tooting her own horn), and kept us interested. She should get good marks on the message board. It left me thinking about my own life's work thus far. We all have our callings, let us prayerfully slow down and ask ourselves, is our calling God's will or our own?

Monday, July 03, 2006

New Clergy at the Episcopal Church of Our Saviour

Yesterday we welcomed the Rev. Mary Catherine Enockson into the fold of Our Saviour. She is bravely moving here from Minnestota in this the hottest time of the year. We pulled out all the stops (except for incense), pomp and circumstance to break her in. At least they didn't ask her to give a sermon (for more on the Rector's sermon see the link to our message board). I remember when the most controversial issue facing the Episcopal Church was the ordination of women. That was predicted to bring down the Church. Doomsayers might look back and say "I told you so," but I think the Church's current issues will be resolved as long as we agree to seek the truth together.