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Showing posts from May, 2011

Waiting...

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In church we're just coming to the end of a series of studies on Paul's Letter to the Philippians. Philippi, at the time Paul was writing, was a small city which had been refounded as a Roman military colony little more than 60 years before... As such its citizens prized their citizenship of Rome and one of the greatest honours they could receive was a visit from a Roman Emperor, who was known (among many other similarly humble titles) as the “Saviour of Mankind”. We have no records confirming that Philippi ever did receive such a visit, but while he was in prison in Rome awaiting trial before the Emperor, Paul wrote to his friends in Philippi, saying:
"our citizenship is in heaven. And we eagerly await a Saviour from there, the
Lord Jesus Christ..."

Philippians 3:20 (ANIV)

Last week, while the news focussed on the visit of Queen Elizabeth II to Britain's erstwhile colony of Dublin, a substantial number of people in that other former British colony, also known as t…

My Son...

A few weeks ago I went to see the new movie “Thor” based on Marvel Comics’ take on the old Norse myths… I went with my ten year old son, who is, like me at his age a complete nut about Marvel Superheroes and ancient myths and we were both keen to see this latest big screen interpretation… Here's the trailer for those of you who missed it...




Just incase you couldn't make head nor tail of this, and here I flag up a slight spoiler alert, the key element of the plot is that Thor, son of the King of the Norse god’s Odin, is banished from Asgard to earth as a form of punishment by his father and has to prove himself worthy in order to restore himself to his father’s favour… You can guess for yourself how it all works out…
I won't give a detailed critique of the film, as I'll post my thoughts on that front elsewhere, although, to be truthful, while I enjoyed it, it probably doesn't really stand up under close scrutiny.
However, I did find myself thinking that the story portr…

Read On...

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As this post goes online I'll probably be in the midst of an Annual Circuit Meeting... which like all business meetings, fills me with precious little joy... But this is a day when Methodists remember that amazing things can happen even when we go "very unwillingly" to meetings, because on the 24th May 1738, the man regarded as the founder of Methodism, John Wesley, famously wrote in his journal:
“In the evening I went very unwillingly to a society in Aldersgate Street, where one was reading Luther’s preface to the Epistle to the Romans. About a quarter before nine, while he was describing the change which God works in the heart through faith in Christ, I felt my heart strangely warmed. I felt I did trust in Christ, Christ alone, for salvation; and an assurance was given me that He had taken away my sins, even mine, and saved me from the law of sin and death."


Out of an inauspicious start an amazing outcome...

What we Methodists generally overlook however, is what com…

There's No-One as Irish...

Dublin has a reputation as a venue for short city-breaks, but that usually involves couples getting away for a weekend… or groups of people going there for a stag or hen party… But this past week has seen two of the most prestigious flying visits to Dublin in a long, long time… First the momentous visit of the Queen last week, not only seeking to acknowledge a painful past but also endeavouring to point to a more positive partnership in the future… And then yesterday the President of the United States of America jetted in on Airforce One… And unlike the Queen or Prince Philip, when offered a pint of the black stuff he knocked it back (doubtless causing ecstacy among the advertising boys at St. James' Gate).



During the run up to his election the above song doing the rounds affirming that there’s no-one as Irish as Barack O’Bama, and I heard it yet again over the past few days. But I don’t think many people realised at the time that he does have significant roots in Moneygall, County…

Loyal Yokefellow

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I was doing a live Thought for the Day for Radio Ulster this morning at 6.55 and 7.55am, and one of the great fears when preparing something like this is that you go to sleep well-prepared but wake up the next morning to find that something major has happened which completely derails what you were going to say... Such as yesterday morning when I lurched into consciousness to the news of the death of former Taoiseach Dr. Garrett Fitzgerald.
This put a whole different perspective on recent events in Dublin, because there is no doubt that the signing the Anglo-Irish Agreement by him and Margaret Thatcher in 1985, set in train a process which eventually culminated in the momentous visit of the Queen to Ireland this week… Many said a very loud “No” to that Agreement at that time… But in the wake of the later Good Friday Agreement, the majority of people on this island have emphatically and repeatedly said “Yes” to the attempt to put the past behind us and find a way of working together to o…

I'm VM... Fly Me...

I have long realised that VM has not been doing enough to improve people's knowledge of European geography... Well, here, at last is the way to address that... A completely addictive game by Lufthansa giving us all the chance to be pilots for a minute or two...




The widget doesn't actually work in the blog but it will take you where you need to go, unlike most Ryanair flights... Enjoy...

Happy (Belated) Birthday KJV

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Monday week ago the 2nd of May was the 400th Birthday of that venerable old lady, the King James, or Authorised, version of the Bible. I've been a bit snowed under with one thing and another recently (hence the lack of any posts) and the wider world was a bit distracted by other things like elections, marathons, the aftermath of a big royal shindig and the assassination/bringing to justice of a certain terrorist leader, so there wasn't much coverage in the media on the actual day of the anniversary, although there have been a number of interesting programmes and articles in the run up to it.
On a local level we threw a bit of a low key party last Sunday evening as members of the three churches on our local Methodist Circuit shared their favourite readings from the KJV, juxtaposed with some more modern worship songs... It was a good night, if truth be told, and those who absented themselves either because they didn't like the KJV, or modern worship songs, well it was their l…