17 December 2014

You know what's pretty damn beautiful

Every Christmas when I fly home from the Far East 
I fly over the northern rim of the Pacific Ocean 
Carefully over the curve of the Japanese islands 
Above the Emperor Seamounts into the grasp of the Aleutian Trench
And in those few hours before I begin my descent into Seattle
I am above these pure, white ice floes

Sometimes it's still night when I fly in
And I can see sparse patches of lights
They're either Alaskan villages or lighthouses 

Sometimes the dawn has arrived early and
The beautiful white ice floes stand in contrast to the
Deep blue hue of the cold Pacific

But either way, I find peace in these ice floes
Because down there is silence and a pure innocent cold and
I know there isn't any life for miles and miles
Except for my airplane, flying over, taking me home

01 December 2014

Ferguson liturgy

"The same God who hung as Jesus on the cross is the God who lay beside Michael Brown on Canfield Drive."  
— Broderick Greer, who while I endorse much of what he is saying, happened to block me on Twitter, probably because I called him out on his un-Christian over-sensitivity

28 October 2014

Home was a dream, one I'd never seen, till you came along

     I just want to go home. At least I think that's what I want. Sometimes I wish I could just keep moving, forever wandering so that I never experience the withdrawal symptoms of leaving and returning home.

     Home is such a subjective concept. What is home? No longer is it a house with mother and father and brother. Home is just safety and stability. I find now that one could be in the remotest tropical village or in the middle of downtown, and one could feel altogether home and lost. Wandering and safe at the same time. 

27 July 2014

We need saints

We need saints without cassocks, without veils - we need saints with jeans and tennis shoes. We need saints that go to the movies that listen to music, that hang out with their friends. We need saints that place God in first place ahead of succeeding in any career. We need saints that look for time to pray every day and who know how to be in love with purity, chastity and all good things. We need saints - saints for the 21st century with a spirituality appropriate to our new time. We need saints that have a commitment to helping the poor and to make the needed social change. We need saints to live in the world, to sanctify the world and to not be afraid of living in the world by their presence in it. We need saints that drink Coca-Cola, that eat hot dogs, that surf the internet and that listen to their iPods. We need saints that love the Eucharist, that are not afraid or embarrassed to eat a pizza or drink a beer with their friends. We need saints who love the movies, dance, sports, theater. We need saints that are open sociable normal happy companions. We need saints who are in this world and who know how to enjoy the best in this world without being callous or mundane. We need saints.

07 February 2014

Deconstruction is a new birth

I suggest in fact, that if postmodernism functions as the death of modernist culture, many of us will find ourselves like the disciples on the road to Emmaus. We as Western Christians mostly bought a bit too heavily into modernism, and we are shocked to discover that it has been dying for a while and is no more or less completely dead. We need to learn how to listen for the stranger on the road who will explain to us how it was that these things had to happen, and how there is a new world out there waiting to be born, for which we are called to be the midwives.
The answer to the challenge of postmodernism is not to run back tearfully into the arms of modernism. It is to hear in postmodernity God’s judgment on the follies and failing, the sheer selfish arrogance of modernity and to look and pray and work for the resurrection into God’s new world out beyond.
We live at a great cultural turning point; the Christian mission in the post-modern world must be the means of the church grasping the initiative and enabling our world to turn the corner in the right direction.

What we must not do, I believe, is to pretend that it has not really happened, to cling to modernity in some shape or form because to admit that postmodernity has made its point is to connive with the forces of destruction. That would be like the two disciples trying to pretend that Jesus had not really been crucified…It might be nice for them to hold on to their earlier dreams, but they would have been living a lie, not the truth.

But nor can we construct a Christian worldview from within post-modernity itself. Our task is to discover, in practice what the equivalent of the resurrection might be within our culture and for our times.

Was it not necessary that modernist versions of Christianity should die in order that truth might be freshly glimpsed, not as a set of doctrines or theories, but as a person and as persons indwelt by that Person?

This is Christian mission in a postmodern world. 
— N.T. Wright, "The Challenge of Jesus", chapter “Walking to Emmaus in a Postmodern World”