From the monthly archives:

May 2011

Never could resist a rainbow

by Richard on May 31, 2011

Posted via email from Richard Hall’s perfectly pointless blog

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Bailouts

by Richard on May 31, 2011

Lansbury’s Lido has a cartoon which captures the reality of the bank bailouts. As he says: “The rest of us can go to hell as long as the capitalist system is kept safe.”

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Global carbon emissions reach record

by Richard on May 30, 2011

From the BBC
Global carbon emissions reached a record level last year, according to the International Energy Agency (IEA).
The watchdog says emissions rose again after a dip caused by the financial crisis in 2009, and ended 5% up from the previous record in 2008.
China and India account for most of the rise, though emissions have also [...]

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If music be the food of love — play golf

by Richard on May 30, 2011

Dave Faulkner is vexed by an organist’s choice of music before a service of worship
My eyebrow started to get in training for next year’s Olympics when I realised the organist was playing John Lennon‘s ‘Imagine‘. That’s right, the one with the line, ‘Imagine no religion.’ … Then having settled down again to talk with the [...]

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Skeptic or Denier?

by Richard on May 30, 2011

Unleashed: Are you a genuine skeptic or a climate denier?
In the charged discussions about climate, the words skeptic and denier are often thrown around. But what do these words mean?
Consider the following definitions. Genuine skeptics consider all the evidence in their search for the truth. Deniers, on the other hand, refuse to accept any evidence [...]

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The attributes of being historical and multigenerational go together as a response to the crisis of the church’s ahistoricity. By this, I mean that the church, like the consumerist culture that pervades it, has a very limited vision of itself in time. Such limitation is natural to consumer culture, because the consumer’s being, [...]

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To fly or not to fly

by Richard on May 29, 2011

A guest post by Elizabeth, lifted from a comment on the Open Mike thread.
I’d like to take the opportunity to get some wiser brains than mine thinking on a bit of a dilemma I’m experiencing.
I regard myself as a person of faith, and I regard faith as something you should live in every aspect of [...]

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Blogging in the news

by Richard on May 29, 2011

The BBC reports that South Tyneside Council is taking Twitter to court in the US to force them to reveal the identity of blogger Mr Monkey. It isn’t clear to me why Twitter should be the one facing the action, since the blogger in question (who has had at least two ‘incarnations‘) is hosted by [...]

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Hymn of the day

by Richard on May 29, 2011

Where shall my wondering soul begin?
How shall I all to heaven aspire?
A slave redeemed from death and sin,
A brand plucked from eternal fire,
How shall I equal triumphs raise,
Or sing my great Deliverer’s praise?
O how shall I the goodness tell,
Father, which thou to me hast showed?
That I, a child of wrath and hell,
I should be called [...]

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Pastor films tornado forming over church

by Richard on May 29, 2011

Not an experience I’m in any hurry to share!

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In the ordinary way I’d have blogged this last week when I first heard about it, but I haven’t exactly been on top form recently…
Ordination services in British Methodism are held annually at venues in the vicinity of the Conference. They are often held in non-Methodist Churches because we don’t have enough buildings around that [...]

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Random thoughts

by Richard on May 28, 2011

1. A recent bout of illness had me watching more daytime tv than I’m used to. I was disturbed by the number of ads for ‘payday loans’ and similar with APRs of 2000+%. How did we get to be a nation where that sort of trade thrives?
2. When did Christians decide it was acceptable to [...]

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Palates and politics

by Richard on May 28, 2011

Allan Bevere considers the link between dietary habits and political allegiance.

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Conflagration for Christ

by Kim on May 28, 2011

With the permission of the Swansea City Fire Department, and with some pyrotechnical guidance from the experienced pastor Terry Jones (cheers, mate), I am planning to stage a public book-burning outside my church sometime this summer. I’m calling it Conflagration for Christ, and I have hopes that it will be the start of an [...]

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Thinking faith

by Richard on May 28, 2011

Angela Shier-Jones: A rational, philosophical faith
You who know how we are made, who gave to us this amazing thing we call curiosity and set in our hearts a hunger for the truth, seem to delight in communicating with us in riddles and parables. You invite our exploration, tease us with the possibilities that knowledge [...]

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Open Mike

by Richard on May 27, 2011

The blogging muse isn’t really doing her stuff for me at the minute, and it’s been a long time since I had an ‘open mike’ thread.
So here it is — the floor is yours. Same rules as before.

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Independence and mourning

by Richard on May 26, 2011

The Velveteen Rabbi on Yom ha-Atzma’ut and Yawm an-Nakba

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I’m grateful to Ray Gaston for pointing out Old Habits Die Hard: A Critique of Recent Christian Statements on Israel (pdf), a lecture given by Amy-Jill Levine of Vanderbilt University. I’ve only galloped through it, but I think it will repay close attention.

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Do you think you’re a Christian because you bang on about “back to basics” morality, and boast about being “born again”, and bore everyone with your “personal relationship with Jesus”? Do you really think that because you can parrot chapter and verse of the Bible, and presumptuously declare “God says this” and “God says [...]

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Employment and ministry

by Richard on May 25, 2011

I’m a bit behind, so I’ve only just caught up with Dave Faulkner’s very helpful The Employment status of Methodist Ministers. I very much agree with David that this is not so simple as some have tried to present it. While I can see some advantages in the changing the status of ministers from ‘office [...]

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