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Showing posts from April, 2009

Giving the Government the Finger

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This is not a story to read immediately after your breakfast, but apparently a Serbian union official has cut off his little finger and eaten it, in protest at unpaid wages. Zoran Bulatovic used a hacksaw to cut his finger off and said "it hurt like hell". Surprising that!
The prophets in the Old Testament realised that words were not enough at times, and did some dramatic things to make a point... Isaiah walked around naked for 3 years while Ezekiel lay on his left side for over a year before turning over onto the other side for a further 40 days, and Ahijah tore his coat into twelve pieces, giving 10 to Jeroboam. But this is something that may even have given the most fervent Old Testament prophet pause before doing it.
Apparently some workers at the Raska Holding textile factory in Novi Pazar haven't been paid for years, and currently have nothing to eat, so he ate his finger to make an example.
His colleagues threatened to follow suit, one at a time, but further auto-ca…

Star Performers PS

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As a brief postscript to my previous posting, I've just been pointed towards this appropriate post by Brian McLaren. And before you McLaren-sceptics dismiss it out of hand, he says a lot of important things here, especially when it comes to what is missing from our contemporary worship diet.


Shalom

Star Performers

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Now I'm not very cool... I know that will come as a shock to many, but, I must break it to you. I'm a sad middle aged man who only keeps vaguely up to date with modern beat combos in order to embarass his teenage son. And because of this I managed to miss out on Nickelback's "Rock Star", which is a relatively good rock track which manages to satirise the excesses of modern rock culture...
Here it is in its video-based glory.

Rockstar Video

I actually only came across this track because I was trying to find the "inspiration" behind the "Shekelback" version below which has been doing the rounds among friends over on Facebook... You can judge for yourself which is best...
I suppose the Nickelback song is a bit superfluous as part of the whole idea of rock, particularly in its modern American form, is to be narcissistic, hedonistic and amoral... So why should we be surprised?
The Shekelback version however, points up an appaling trend in modern Christi…

You’ll Never Believe who we Met…

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Another dialogue that I wrote a few years ago now... But appropriate any Easter.
Both: You’ll never believe who we met…
Cleopas: Really…
Persis: You’ll never believe it… It was amazing…
Cleopas: Astounding…
Persis: We didn’t recognise him ourselves at first…
Cleopas: Now I had a wee inkling from the time he started talking to us…
Persis: Actually Cleopas was really cheeky when he asked what we were talking about…Asked him what planet he was on over the past few days that he hadn’t heard what had happened in Jerusalem…
Cleopas: I told him all that had happened over the previous few days…
Persis: I’m really embarrassed… There’s us telling him what had happened… As if he didn’t know!!!
Cleopas: He genuinely didn’t seem to know what had been going on…
Persis: It was dreadful to really think what had gone on… We were really devastated… All our hopes seemed to have been nailed to that cross with him… Then to add insult to injury… some of the women said that they had just come from the tomb and they co…

Yeshua Saves...

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We've had a good, if busy, week at church. But after all the activities of Holy Week and particularly the intensity of the various Good Friday services and events, we, along with most of the Christian world, take a liturgical breather, on what is variously called Holy, Low, Black, White, Silent, Still or Great Saturday.
My professional activities this week have meant that I have not had much time to devote to much else, including this blog, or watching football, which, in the case of the midweek debacle between Liverpool and Chelski was a mercy. But today, even as I type the football commentary in on the radio in the background... (And Torres has just scored for the second time)...
But there was a strange juxtaposition between 2 football stories I read this morning. One focusing on the ire of Aston Churches Working Together towards the Premier league, because of the scheduling of the Aston Villa v Everton fixture tomorrow, at a time which may disrupt local church services, and harki…

The Man Must Die

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I've been a little busy lately. But then as my friends who think that I only work one day a week say, the shock of being "on duty" throughout Holy Week is fairly extreme. But anyway, what follows is one of the pieces we used in our Walk of Witness around Ballybeen today at lunchtime, with the other churches. I wrote it a few years ago based upon John 11:47-53 & 18:12-14... I removed the "b" word for the public performance, but this is the original post watershed version.

The man must die. He is worse than that madman in the desert that Herod disposed of a few years ago. John the Baptizer... We breathed a sigh of relief when he “disappeared”... Then this Galilean started stirring up trouble, I almost believed that the Baptizer had risen from the dead... Apparently they are cousins...
Well, that explains it... We all know that madness runs in families. But if we do not act quickly the whole nation may run mad.
He may not seem mad... He talks of loving God and lo…

A Cracking Good Weekend Gromit!

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Well, after a week's silence, I'm back... Did you miss me?

Towards the end of last week I was insanely busy trying to clear stuff up to allow Sally & myself to get away to London without the kids for the weekend. Then I managed to stay off t'internet all weekend (almost harder than coming off heroin I would think!) and things were a tad busy on my return... More of that anon.

But it was all worth it... We had a great time... Not restful, but certainly relaxing. One friend at church asked why on earth we were going to London instead of going off to chill at a hotel in Donegal? But the truth is, that I have been so busy & stressed recently that if I had gone somewhere where there was nothing to do, I would have ended up churning stuff over and over in my head in a totally unproductive manner.

Instead we enjoyed a weekend in the comfortable surroundings of the Rembrandt Hotel, which I would heartily recommend. We were practically able to fall out of bed into the Victoria…