From the monthly archives:

October 2013

Re-thinking the poppy (again)

by Richard on October 31, 2013

This post from Adrian Short a couple of years ago takes the words out of my mouth. Here’s a flavour - please read the whole thing.
We need to get back to the simplicity and egalitarianism of the plain paper poppy. Donate ten pence, £1000 or nothing at all. Wear your poppy or don’t. No more [...]

{ 1 comment }

Time to re-think the poppy?

by Richard on October 30, 2013

Two years ago, Kim wrote of the red poppy
As an American ex-pat who has lived in the UK for 40-odd years, I have watched with dismay over the decades as Brits have relentlessly adopted some of the seedier and sinister elements of American character and culture. And now the stately red poppy has been infected [...]

{ 10 comments }

Divided by the Cross

by Richard on October 29, 2013

Marcus Borg considers the Cross as a payment
…familiar as it is, the payment understanding is less than a thousand years old. On historical grounds, it is not ancient Christianity, not traditional Christianity, not orthodox Christianity, even though it has over the last several centuries become dominant in Western Christianity. It has become a lens through [...]

{ 0 comments }

Halloween Bible burning

by Richard on October 29, 2013

Just when you think fundamentalism can’t get any dafter…
North Caroline Church plans Halloween Bible burning
Marc Grizzard, of Amazing Grace Baptist Church in Canton, North Carolina, says that the first King James translation of the Bible is the only true declaration of God’s word, and that all others are “satanic”.
Pastor Grizzard and 14 other members of [...]

{ 3 comments }

Jesus seriously muddied the waters between the Church and the World. Taking up a major complaint of the classical Hebrew prophets, he warned the self-styled “people of God” not to presume upon their status. Ignoring the proprietary assumptions of the would-be gatekeepers of God’s kingdom, he set about growing it in social circles [...]

{ 0 comments }

Hymn of the day

by Richard on October 27, 2013

Our US friends are celebrating ‘Reformation Sunday’, so let’s have a little Luther today.
A mighty fortress is our God, A bulwark never failing;
Our shelter He, amid the flood Of mortal ills prevailing.
For still our ancient foe Doth seek to work us woe;
His craft and pow’r are great, And, armed with cruel hate,
On earth is not [...]

{ 3 comments }

More macho nonsense
Today is a season of patience as Jesus Christ waits for people to come to repentance. Jesus is not a pansy or a pacifist; he’s patient. He has a long wick, but the anger of his wrath is burning.
Once the wick is burned up, he is saddling up on a white horse and [...]

{ 1 comment }

Doctor Who 50th anniversary trailer

by Richard on October 21, 2013

{ 2 comments }

Hymn of the day

by Richard on October 20, 2013

SPIRIT of truth, essential God,
Who didst thy ancient saints inspire,
Shed in their hearts thy love abroad,
And touch their hallowed lips with fire;
Our God from all eternity,
World without end we worship thee!
Still we believe, almighty Lord,
Whose presence fills both earth and heaven,
The meaning of the written word
Is by thy inspiration given;
Thou only dost thyself explain
The secret [...]

{ 0 comments }

Video of the day: Wesley on wealth

by Richard on October 13, 2013

{ 0 comments }

A Prayer for “Stationing”

by Richard on October 13, 2013

There’s no denying that Methodism is a peculiar beast. One of our most baffling peculiarities, to non-Methodists at least, is “stationing” — the system by which ministers are matched to their appointments. I mention this only because the annual round is just beginning. This weekend has seen the delivery of the profile books. A set [...]

{ 1 comment }

Hymn of the day

by Richard on October 13, 2013

COME, O thou Traveller unknown,
Whom still I hold, but cannot see!
My company before is gone,
And I am left alone with thee;
With thee all night I mean to stay,
And wrestle till the break of day.
I need not tell thee who I am,
My misery and sin declare;
Thyself hast called me by my name,
Look on thy hands, and [...]

{ 3 comments }

Fare well. Fare forward!

by Kim on October 6, 2013

Today, October 6th, I turned 65, preached and presided at Communion, had a wonderful communal feed (as Richard would put it) — and then retired from pastoral ministry. Here is the last “letter” I wrote to my congregation in our church magazine.
Dear Friends,
You shouldn’t be surprised if I tell you that I’ve been reflecting [...]

{ 4 comments }

Hymn of the day

by Richard on October 6, 2013

Charles Wesley, so far as I know, never wrote a retirement hymn. He did write a birthday hymn, though. Happy Birthday, Kim!
Come away to the skies, my belovèd, arise
And rejoice in the day thou wast born;
On this festival day, come exulting away,
And with singing to Zion return.
We have laid up our love and our treasure [...]

{ 4 comments }

Dashing the babies’ heads

by Richard on October 5, 2013

A sermon by Dave Faulkner

{ 0 comments }

How to look good naked: Catholic edition

by Richard on October 2, 2013

Pope invites Gok Wan to Vatican to ‘camp up’ the clergy.
It must be true. I read it on the internet. And let’s face it: if it isn’t true, it ought to be.
The Pope, who has ditched his ‘cumbersome’ ceremonial headdress and replaced it with a camouflaged beanie, is thrilled that his followers have really taken [...]

{ 0 comments }

Rewriting the Lord’s Prayer

by Richard on October 2, 2013

Sojourners: What if the Lord’s Prayer matched our living?

{ 0 comments }