Wednesday, July 29, 2009

book jitters

I'm a little nervous. The book is coming out in just over a week and I'm not feeling the relief I felt when we finally turned in a final draft or the excitement I felt when we got proofs to review. No, I'd say the feeling I've got is closer to having the jitters. It took me awhile to realize why that is. I've certainly gotten more comfortable with sharing my postmodern, doubt-ridden faith journey with folks at church and even on my blog. Thanks to my participation with IMPACT this past year where I was called upon several times to get up in front of large groups and speak, my stage terror has been downgraded into merely stage fright. Clearly, I'm not someone who naturally puts herself out there - but I've been working on it. However, now that my story is going to be out there in print - that kind of seems like a whole new, big, scary deal! What was I thinking? I guess we'll find out soon enough. In the meantime, I'll try to remember to take deep breaths and go to my happy place.

Friday, July 17, 2009

rationalizations, grassrooots organizations & totalitarian regimes, oh my!

There have been a few things I've wanted to blog about this week, but couldn't find the time or energy.

Thing one was this excellent list of rationalizations that we come up with to convince ourselves we're still good people - a fool's defense. Really not much to say after reading it except, OUCH!

Then yesterday, I got a phone message from my Albemarle County Board Supervisor, Ken Boyd, inviting me and my family to attend an Americans for Prosperity event this weekend. Seems this event it about trashing the idea that we should have universal healthcare in America. I find it ironic that Boyd, who has not been a fan of our local interfaith, social justice, grassroots organization because organized, grassroots, citizen advocacy is just not the way we do things here, is perfectly happy to be an activist for this self-proclaimed grassroots organization that is all about "educating citizens about economic policy and mobilizing those citizens as advocates in the public policy process." Maybe he'll be a fan of IMPACT now?!?!

And finally, I could not pass up blogging about this page layout in the latest National Geographic. Do you see what countries besides the US still have the death penalty? Something seems very wrong with this picture. "The practice is strong in culturally conservative areas - Japan, Saudi Arabia, Texas - and totalitarian regimes." That could be such a funny quote if it weren't so damn depressing.

But don't give up hope. Right there on the opposite page is this awesome ad! I LOVE this United Methodist Church message (What if church led more people to water?) and website (!

"What if church wasn't just a building, but thousands of doors?" Way to go UMC - you've given me a little hope in humanity and even church.

Thursday, July 09, 2009

and now for something completely different

I stumbled across this clip today - luv it. For those of you who haven't heard my creed rant yet, let's just say that I am not a fan of creeds and I think this video demonstrates my issues nicely. One argument I've heard that makes some sense to me in continuing their use, is the common language they provide across the Christian church. But mostly I just can't get over my intellectual assent problems. Even after reading from Marcus Borg in the Heart of Christianity:
But credo does not mean "I hereby agree to the literal-factual truth of the following statements." Rather, its Latin roots combine to mean "I give my heart to."

At one point, I started looking for alternate creeds that I could give my heart to. Here are a few.

Do you have a statement of faith that you can give your heart to?

extra, extra, read all about it

A couple of pretty newsworthy events have happened this week in the life of the Christian church.

The first event I heard about was the online release of the Codex Sinaiticus. This is "a manuscript of the Christian Bible written in the middle of the fourth century, contains the earliest complete copy of the Christian New Testament." Leaves and fragments of this manuscript have been held in four different locations around the world. All the available pages have now come together in the digital world - yeh technology!

I know I can't read these pages directly and they don't provide English translations for all of the pages, but I love the idea that they are there and available for all. And, I am intrigued by the books it includes that are not in our modern Bible and how it's been "heavily annotated by a series of early correctors."

The second event was the release of an Encyclical Letter "Caritas in Veritate" by Pope Benedict XVI. I'd never heard of this letter or ever really been a fan of the pope, but apparently he planned this "Charity in Truth" message to coincide with the G8 summit hoping to rattle a few cages. It's a pretty rambling document, written in a male-dominated voice, but it appears there are a few gems.

Here's what some other bloggers are saying about it:

BTW - is it weird that I learned about these things from listening to the BBC and not the US news?