Friday, October 15, 2010

Thought for the day

Everyone in the past -- EVERYONE -- who consumed Dihydrogen Oxide is now dead.

Saturday, October 09, 2010

Ministry as Knowledge Work

Knowledge workers in today's workforce are individuals who are valued for their ability to interpret information within a specific subject area. For the minister, these include such as church administration, biblical exegesis and theology. They will often advance the overall understanding of that subject through focused analysis (biblical exegesis, sermon writing, theology), design and/or development (bible studies, mission statements, visioning). They use research skills to define problems and to identify alternatives. Fueled by their expertise and insight, they work to solve those problems, in an effort to influence decisions, priorities and strategies.

From Wikipedia, adapted to ministry.

Pastoral Integrity

In order, in other words, as I
heard him, to be a person in Harlem, in order that my life and
work there should have integrity, I had to be and to remain
whoever I had become as a person before coming there. To be
accepted by others, I must first of all know myself and accept
myself and be myself wherever I happen to be. In that way,
others are also freed to be themselves.
- William Stringfellow, My People Is the Enemy, 1964

(Found at

Saturday, October 02, 2010

New Planet -- New Theologies?

This last week, astronomers found a planet that could be seen as within the habitable zone. Close enough for liquid water and plenty of energy from it's sun. Also within the last couple of weeks was an announcement from the Pope's astronomer about the baptism of alien souls.

What interesting sychronicity! To find a planet a week or so after this announcement by the Pope's astronomer. Of course, I have watched Science Fiction TV programs all my life and I've read all sorts of speculative hard Science Fiction. I watched "Stargate Universe" just last night and they (yet again) gated to a habitable planet, complete with caves and a huge thunderstorm. I've also watched how many Science Fiction programs deal with faith and religion -- from the character Book on "Firefly" to the Ferangi Rules of Aquisition. I've also read "The Sparrow" and "Children of God" by Mary Doria Russell where the concepts of alien culture and religion crash together head on.

I suppose there are several areas for discussion: What makes a race sentient? What are their creation stories? How do they know of God? Is theirs a "fallen race" like humanity? Or (like the People in Zenna Henderson's works) have they always stayed close to the heart of God? If they are not a fallen race, what would baptism into covenant with Jesus Christ mean? Would a non-fallen race be capable of sin? Would we be able even to communicate with them?

It is interesting that so much of our pathos and ethos for new technology is approached in our Science Fiction long before the tech is actualized. Can we explore these concepts within our Sci Fi and get a grasp on them?