I think it depends on who (or what organization) is doing the blogging and the function the blog seeks to fulfill. For instance, we’ve just retired our blog at Church. When we began, we did not have an easily updatable website, FB, or many folks who regularly read their email. Now, pretty much everyone reads email (except for a few older 80+ members) and many check our FB page fairly regularly. Our blog did not ever achieve a lot of church readership although the stats showed others were visiting. What is different about T19 is that it stands on its own and it seems to have a regular group willing to engage in conversation. If it were just one way, I’d wonder. Have the stats shown a drop off? It’s still on my go to daily check in list and I hope it will be for a good long time. Would it do as well as a e-newsletter or magazine? Don’t think so because it’s responsive. I also like that I can visit it and it doesn’t have to be in my inbox. Good question. If the medium is the message - what is the unique messaging capability of the web log and is there any thing else that can replace that at this point? Be interested in what others think.
I am not with Facebook, and don’t intend ever to be.
Right now, I look at T1, 9 regularly; it has provided me with a serious amount of information about the Anglican Communion and its struggles, along with the occasional tidbit I find of interest in other ways.
I dropped out of another completely different blog where I used to be a steady poster, very often attempting to get other members, some of whom I knew personally, to think more about “the way, the truth, and the light.” Eventually, I shook off the dust from my rejecting fellow bloggers, and do not post there to them anymore.
Blogs who appeal to their visitors will stay in existence, I believe. Those that do not, will die off.
I hope T 1, 9 lasts a very long time.
Thanks to Canon Harmon, the Elves, and the participants.
I’m with Jim the Puritan.
I have found this blog and several other Anglican/Episcopalian blogs such as Stand Firm in Faith and the Midwest Conservative Journal to be important and valuable sources of information in following the spiritual wars in the Anglican churches. Although I left the Episcopal Church in 1997 because the differences were already too great for me to be able in good conscience to remain, I remained interested in knowing what was going on, partly because I knew that sooner or later the same forces would be at the door of my new Presbyterian church. And in fact they have—our church left the PCUSA last year in response to the same theologies that tore the Episcopal Church apart and are now having the same result in PCUSA. Having been able to observe the progress of “revisionism” and its arguments in the Episcopal church through blogs such as this one made it much easier to recognize and identify when it replicated itself in the PCUSA and to take appropriate action. You would be surprised how many Presbyterian elders have been reading this and similar blogs over the years.
For some reason, similar blogs never got started for the Presbyterians, although there were several folks who tried for a while (David Fischler, who posts at Stand Firm, being one; Mark Roberts, former pastor of Irvine Presbyterian Church, being another). So I find this site has been invaluable to me over the years.
The Psalms. When I’ve been struggling the most spiritually I find that the Psalms speak to me the most. Reading a Psalm every day gives me “anchors” to hold onto from God’s Word, continual reminders of His love, faithfulness, mercy, mighty deeds throughout history, correction, His personal care for me. They remind me I can pour out my heart honestly to God, that I don’t have to hide (can’t hide!) from Him. Often I try to pick a verse of the day and make a point to call it to mind repeatedly throughout the day.
Prayer with other believers I’m blessed to be part of a team that prays together 4 out of the 5 days of the workweek. Times when I’m spiritually dry those times of worship, devotions/Bible study and prayer with my team help me stay connected with God in spite of myself, when the Word seems dry & dead to me and I can’t feed myself. So often another teammate will share from a Scripture passage that I need to hear and which helps me turn my face again towards God.
Spiritual Accountability: Honestly admitting my struggles to another trusted mentor / pastor / spiritual counselor has usually been important in spiritual renewal. They can ask helpful questions, speak truth into my life that I might not face up to on my own (i.e. need for confession & repentance). They provide an outside perspective that I might not be able to see if my emotions are clouding my view & thoughts. But it can be hard to take this step and be this vulnerable when you’re in a bad place. Obviously it helps if there is already a good accountability relationship and trust in place during times of spiritual growth so as to make confession & self examination and openness to correction easier in times of struggle.
The print edition of The Tablet adds something (p 29) not given here:
‘Fr Gilbert added he felt increasingly at odds with the Catholic Church on matters such as the role of women - including female ordination - and same-sex marriage.’
I remember as a young adult being baffled that God seemed to have gone away. I shared this with a couple who were friends - he had been a Dominican, she had been a Carmelite - and their words stayed with me ever after. What they said, in effect, was that times of spiritual aridity were often times of spiritual growth. We all carry around with us images of God. These are good and useful. But they are also limiting, because no image of God can ever match the reality - no metaphor, no music, no art - so sometimes we have to let go of our limited understanding and continue in faith, that God will meet us on the other side of the dry patch and our understanding will be richer and deeper.
As for reading: it’s probably a bit cosmically mystical for readers of this site, but I get drawn back to Teilhard de Chardin Le Milieu Divin - the English edition kept the French title, in the U.S. it’s The Divine Milieu - with its vision of God to be found in all things and yet above all things.
I do believe blogging is important. With a lot of the U.S. issues of Anglicanism (reassessers vs. reasserters) now settled, for better or worse, blogs may not be as valuable as an information source in this particular regard.
Certainly associating with orthodox people is extremely valuable, regardless of the issues. The focus might well shift to orthodox ministry support. Facebook theology with its cheapshots and Shellfish arguments doesn’t cut it.
[Disclaimer: I have been blogging since 2001. I used to have a semi-popular Anglican blog, wyclif.net, which I will be bringing back soon after a long layoff.]
Are blogs over? I don’t think so.
This question is in my wheelhouse. I embraced both blogging and social media early on. Blogging in 2001. Twitter and Facebook in 2006. Now we’ve got Periscope.
While some of the urgency of blogs has been taken away by Twitter and Facebook, blogs still rule when it comes to long-form writing and commentary. You can’t do those things very effectively on social media. What social media does is point to blogs, where the long content lives. Blogs have grown up, but I don’t think they’re going away.
Someday, someone will write a book about how blogging by conservative Anglicans was crucial to the origin of the ACNA and the GAFCON movement. Lambeth ‘98 was the breaking point, and it’s interesting that ‘98 was also the year the Internet came into its own. A few years later, we had the tools to make an end-run around the mainstream media gatekeepers who were running interference for the Episcopal Church over at the NYT and WaPo: Blogger, Moveable Type, and WordPress.
That book is going to be a fascinating one.
I suppose the other thing which does have to be considered is that unacknowledged and unconfessed sin can create distance from God. He is holy and good. In the psalms evil is described as a stench in His nostrils and he does not abide it or with those who indulge it even as He never stops loving them.
If there is distance, it is worth considering if there is something which is getting in the way which has not been dealt with. That can include the sins of anger with others and of unforgiveness. The still small voice cannot be heard over that. God is a gentleman and will not intrude where He is not wanted or where has been rejected and turns his face away.
Even the Lord’s prayer may help with its general sweep up clause seeking forgiveness for trespasses we have committed as well as acknowledging our forgiveness of those who have trespassed against us.
If there is such an impediment it needs to be dealt with, and in part that may be what God is saying, even when He appears to be silent.
As the morning prayer says: O God, make clean our hearts within us and take not thy Holy Spirit from us.
In response to Pageantmaster’s comment, yes I believe blogs are fading as a useful means of communication, even though I have been following TitusOneNine for years and have filched leads from it to post on my Facebook group, Anglican Evangelicals. No one reads my blog, An Anglican Witness, anymore, whereas we are approving new members of the Facebook group daily. I was very pleased when Kendall joined the group.
I don’t really have any experience of a “dark night of the soul”, though there have been dry patches. The first I remember was as a late teenager at my boarding school. I was seeking contact and growth and nothing was happening, even when I sat praying in the chapel - so I am afraid my thinking rather went: “Well if you can’t be bothered with me, I can’t be bothered with you.” So I put God on the back burner for a bit - as unfinished business and got on with life. I still attended services, was part of a small group of Christians in the school who took communion regularly, continued in the choral society to sing one mass after another and regarded myself as a Christian believer. It took someone else to help me realise that you are part of a family whether you are talking to each other or not, and things got better.
Now I think I have realised that God speaks if He has something to say, and the Spirit moves in your life when He is equipping you for something you have to do. I find God economical in effort and directed in what he does - He does things for a purpose. I don’t find him ‘chatty’ for the sake of it. There will be dry times, but it does not mean that He is not there, nor that you are not part of the family.
What resources can I recommend? I am sure there are lots of them, but I would say that central is regular prayer and reading the Word. As William Temple said: “When I pray, coincidences happen, and when I don’t, they don’t.”
I have taken to an online daily prayer podcast site where much of the effort of preparation is done for you: Pray as you go. It is run by UK Jesuits, which is fairly Ignatian and ecumenical in character. And of course there is the ever faithful and regular Lent and Beyond which is brimming with resources and ideas. Prayer brings you an awareness of being in the Presence and keeps you in the zone open to communication.
As for learning to pray, I found Philip Yancey’s book on Prayer helpful for perspective, and for deepening it being part of a regular weekly prayer group is now part of life for me as well as a source of joy.
For those who are struggling, it is a challenge, but not being aware of anything happening does not mean that nothing is going on.
#1 DRLina - prayers for your recovery from Lyme’s.
David Handy—You know, back in 1998 it wasn’t that bad. We were really into Claude Payne’s book on Evangelism and the rector had not gone to the dark side (yet)—that didn’t happen until 2004. Almost all of the vestry went to DioTex Evangelism conference in 2001 and 2002. A large group of us, including the rector, rector emeritus, a couple of staff members and about 1/2 the vestry went to Dallas in October 2003 for the original Network meeting. After that, the bishop started putting on the pressure and we started collapsing. As for the Anglican Communion, I couldn’t agree more. My church is part of Rwanda and we are growing like crazy! A very “funny” story is how one of the liberal members of CC grabbed me up at a non-church function and said to me “so I hear you have an f(expletive) c(racial semi-expletive) bishop now”. But of course, you and I are the racists! Thanks for your comments.
I believe that part of the problem is that the touchy (and hopelessly ineffective) Nigerian military has turned down offers of technical assistance from the U. S. Army.
1. Years ago a favorite priest/pastor taught about how to lose your religion and become a Christian. Based on the gospel of Luke if I remember correctly.
2. I have learned during the past year that God does wonders when I attend especially the week day services at my local Greek Orthodox Church. Putting myself and just being in the presence of the whole company of heaven for three hour stretches at a time does wonders for soul and body. (I have also been recovering from Lyme these last few months.) This allows God to work on me and what He wants me to be. Not what I think I ought to be. (P.S. After a life time, 72 years, of being an Episcopalian, God led me into the Orthodox Church. Five years later I am most thankful.)
David Keller (#6).
Interesting anecdotal evidence, even if it’s sad. There are lots of bits of such evidence that show that TEC or NEC (the New Episcopal Church, post Gen. Convention this year) is badly crippled, and like the Titanic, it’s going down. For me, the most damning is the national mean/average for the age of lay people in the pews. That mean age is now over 60, whereas the mean age of the national population as a whole is 35. Obviously, that is an ominous gap, that has been inexorably increasing for many years. Gray heads everywhere you look in TEC, and very, very few young families with kids to be found (less every year).
The dream of ++Michael Curry and other leaders in TEC to make evangelism the highest priority in TEC and to grow the brand is almost ludicrous. They have no real gospel to share, only a false gospel of unlimited tolerance and inclusivity.
It reminds me of the state of denial that evangelical UMC bishop Richard Wilke complained about when the UMC back in the 1980’s made a solemn resolution to reverse the denomination’s decline and in fact double the membership in a short time. Wilke’s scathing comment was this: “We thought we were just drifting along, like a sailboat on a lazy summer day. Instead, we’ve been wasting away like a leukemia victim, after the blood transfusions no longer work.” And that was back in the 1980’s! It’s far worse today.
But just so we don’t end on such a sour, negative note. While I think that TEC is hopelessly doomed, I’m confident that the best days for orthodox Anglicanism on this continent are still to come. Remember the parable of the growth of the mustard seed.
P.S. Back in 1998, I was interviewed for an associate position on the staff of CC, Greenville. Boy, am I glad that I wasn’t chosen! (And I suspect that Sarah Hey is glad too, wink)
Nice, apt quote, Kendall. Thanks for posting it.
I know these feast day threads hardly ever attract notice, but I’ll add a comment about Augustine in terms of his ecumenical significance. This fine quote captures the great Doctor’s immense stress on God’s grace, which has always impressed Protestants, and not least evangelical ones, who find in Augustine an early kindred spirit. And he was, in his zeal for a grace-based Christianity. That is his anti-Pelagian side.
But the great monk and bishop had another side as well, that is really equally important, i.e., his anti-Donatist side, for Augustine was also fiercely opposed to all church schisms.
Over a century ago, the great orthodox Princeton (Presbyterian) theologian B. B. Warfield wrote a brilliant essay contending that the Reformation in the 16th century represented the “triumph” of the anti-Pelagian side of Augustine’s legacy over the anti-Donatist side. Or as he put it, the Protestant Reformation represents the “triumph” of Augustine’s (crypto-Protestant) dictrube of grace over his (Catholic) doctrine of the Church.
Personally, I think Warfield made a colossal mistake in thus pitting the two sides of Augustine against each other. Today, fifty years after the end of Vatican II, one way of expressing the ecumenical challenge that we face in the early years of the third Christian millennium is this. Today the challenge is to rejoin and reintegrate the two sides of the Augustinian inheritance that have, for too long, been separated and kept apart (especially by Protestants).
Or as I like to whimsically put it, based on the famous words of the Master about divorce in Matt. 19/Mark 10: What Augustine hath joined together, let not lesser minds put asunder.”
I was looking for something in an office cabinet yesterday and found a picture of the Vestry of Christ Church Greenville, SC in 2002. Of the 14 vestry members, 4 are left a at CC. Five are at St. Paul’s Anglican, my church, including the Junior Warden in that picture and the next Junior Warden. The Senior Warden is at a PCA Church, but his daughter is on the vestry at St. Paul’s and he visits St Paul’s regularly. Two are at “mega” (very orthodox) independent churches. One is now a Methodist. One is deceased and only 4 are still at CC. Of those, one is a very close friend of mine who wants to leave, but his wife won’t leave because she wants their daughters to get married at CC, one is still at CC, but his older brother (a former Senior Warden at CC) is a member at St. Paul’s and he has visited St. Paul’s often. One is deceased. Of the four who are still at CC and none of them has ever served on the Vestry again. The goal of GC 2000 was to double the size of TEC by 2020. TEC will probably lose 1/2 of its membership by 2020. Thanks, Louie Crew. Your work here is done.
As someone who lives in the area named for him, I have never understood the enthusiasm for St. Louis either. The Sainte Chappelle is beautiful but it’s not that great.
This piece is new to me, but it is just wonderful.
Yes, prayer and intercession seems to me to be more and more the key. It is not just that God answers prayer, but He uses prayer to shape and encourage us according to His will for us and to see clearly.
But most of all there is power in the Name of Jesus. To release this in prayer is an empowering thing and aligns and brings us closer - and then who knows what may happen?
#3 David Keller
The provision for religious education in schools is one of the things we can be thankful to William Temple for. Even though many state schools ignore the law, he entrenched it and it remains a benchmark, much flouted as it may be.
In the private sector, religious education is pretty usual as is corporate worship. Much of the population passes through CofE and Catholic schools at some stage, and this may in part explain the continued claim to denominational belonging and allegiance which remains with them in later life, even if they rarely actually get around to turning up to church.
However, from an evangelism point of view, one foot in the door is better than no foot, and if only our religious leaders could recover their confidence, who knows what could be. But there is little sign of that happening.
Choristers work hard and go through a daunting work load. Cathedral clergy could learn a lot from the youngsters. That is why sending them on any number of management courses is a waste of time, because the attendees are determinedly liberal, lazy and second-rate.
Under Welby things are only getting worse. Its a great pity. Still - more facilated conversation are going on so things will go downhill, even as Mike Hill is shipped off to Uganda to calm the GS. You know there is panic in the CofE establishment when he gets wheeled out, much as there was when they wheeled him out to neuter the Synod resolution to recognise the ACNA. He is no friend of GAFCON or the Global South. He is a good man and loves Jesus, but is not the brightest mitre in the box, and gets used. We are a mess.
#1 Hi David Keller
At 1:55 in, ‘Katy’ says she has been doing RS, which is her favorite subject. Perhaps she is referring to Religious Studies, but otherwise you make a good general point.
Most private schools in the UK have a religious foundation and ethos, and even state schools following on from the requirements of the 1944 Education Act still may include assemblies/worship as well as religious studies, but sadly this is constantly under attack.
This reminds me of my daughter’s education in the arts—VERY demanding. The thing I find interesting about this video is that no one seems to have any relationship with or connection to the institution that ostensibly has brought them together. I didn’t see anyone taking a religion class or going to a church service, other than the Evening Prayer they have to sing at as part of their curriculum. My daughter went to high school at the Governor’s School for the Arts and Humanities, a public institution. It appears this is essentially a secular arts school that happens to be located near a church and sings old music. So what’s the point?
I thought this was quite interesting, particularly for the light it sheds on how different doors are opening and shutting in the Christian world.
It is also interesting for Patriarch Kirill taking the long view on the results of Christian faithfulness. God’s view of time is not the same as ours, and we can get too caught up in the here and the now and lose heart.
The only way through is to trust God, and to listen to His voice, rather than those which surround us at any given time. The resurgence of Christianity in the former communist countries has been nothing short of miraculous.
I think of a vacation/trip I made in my early 20’s. It was a challenging time for me - I was awaiting news of a new job and recovering from three days in bed when my back had gone into spasm after some unwise wrestling with my parents’ garden. An advert for a fortnights holiday on the beach in Kenya led to me taking up the offer and I said goodbye to my then girlfriend [who was miffed at not going with me] at the airport and headed into the departure zone.
Doubt set in and the thought came into my head that I was off on my own - I would have a miserable two weeks not knowing anybody and not talking to anybody. I was quite wrong - I started talking to people heading to the same place in the departure area, met a group of non-English speaking Germans who I had supper with on the first night challenging my Goethe Institut German attempts at conversation. Things got better - my father rang with news of a firm career offer, I swam every day and the back strengthened. I met people I would never have met if constrained by those I was with. I had to make the effort and formed into a group who headed out each day along exploring the coast, and its forts and its beaches by tuktuk. On one occassion the tuktuk diverted to drop us at the hotel. The priceless expression on the face of the hotel manager contemplating the noisy and happy group of passengers letting us out made that worthwhile. We took the train up to Nairobi, and I only missed out on a chartered aircraft visit to Zanzibar due to the closeness to my departure time.
I had time on my own when I wanted it - sitting on the sea wall watching the beautiful African sunsets listening to music through my earphones, thinking and sometimes praying. I had time to read. I returned healthy, happy, and encouraged after the best holiday I can remember.
I was challenged, taken outside my comfort zone, and rewarded with experiences and growth which would not have happened if I had travelled with others. Sometimes it is good to just strike out on your own.
I am skeptical of some of the alleged Ashley Madison data being reported upon. Comparing the numbers with the population and discounting children and the elderly,it would seem locally that between one in about every six to ten adult people regionally plunk down money to use the site.
Resources for renewal during spiritual slow downs.
There is a difference between a vacation and a trip. A vacation is without the kids.
I would rate our last cruise to the eastern Mediterranean as one of the best.
I’m the kind that likes a big party. But It never fails that the most enjoyable and refreshing vacations are those where its just my wife, my children and me.
A small but important correction…
As the DECR chairman noted, the process of liberalizing moral teaching is going in a number of Protestant Churches today. The Moscow Patriarchate breaks off communion with such Churches.
There is no communion between the Orthodox Church and any Protestant church. I think the author meant contact or dialogue.
My favorite childhood vacation was to Gettysburg. My dad was a Civil War buff, later a re-enactor, and it was the last trip we took my grandmother, his mother, with us. We visited family I’d never met before on the way there, I made a friend at the pool when we all went there evenings who was visiting from the strange and exotic land of New England, I ate shoo-fly pie. And from Jennie Wade to Armistead’s last ride, I learned something of the story and the sacrifice in why this place was meaningful and how all these monuments came to be there. I was barely Boy Scout age, burdened with three younger siblings and responsibility I barely fulfilled in watching out for them at Devil’s Den and on Little Round Top, but it became the beaux-ideal of what a real vacation feels like to me ever since. The summer of ‘73 gave me a taste of family and history and mystery that I first began to respond to in my own right, not simply as a child along for the ride.
What vacation experience gave you the model for what makes for getaway and renewal and enjoyment?
Sounds like a cross between THX 1138 with Robert Duvall and Donald Pleasance and Logan’s Run with Michael York and Jenny Aguttar. Interesting. I’ll have to check it out when it comes out on DVD/Blu-ray.
How many “Days of the Lord” are there? We had one at Pentecost. We also have one when we die and enter eternity like in 2nd Peter, Chapter 3. Are there others?
Where is an in depth analysis of “Speaking in Tongues”. Is there a scholarly approach to be found anywhere that is understandable to a 12 year old?
#2 AO Charles I had mixed reviews, even among his own supporters. Archbishop Laud apparently summed him up as: “a mild and gracious prince, that knows not how to be, or be made, great.”
As for obscure and dubious French kings, well at least today we can celebrate Monica, mother of Augustine of Hippo, apparently.
With twitter, facebook and other social media providing instant albeit short interactions, are weblogs approaching their sell by date?
Cats - they are on another plane from us. Not necessarily better, although it may be, but very very different.
A thoughtful and interesting exposition on joy. I read through it expecting it to reach its Christian point of the reason for joy, but it never came. Volf never quite got there.
The Letter to the Hebrews says
Therefore, since we have so great a cloud of witnesses surrounding us, let us also lay aside every encumbrance and the sin which so easily entangles us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. For consider Him who has endured such hostility by sinners against Himself, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.
That is why Christians are joyful - for the joy set before us, of eternal life with our God, who gives us a future and a hope.
writes Kasper, “history is the ultimate framework for all reality.” For the cardinal, then, there seems to be nothing properly describable as “human nature,” a careful study of which will yield moral truths. There is only humanity in the flow of history. And just as there is no “human nature,” but only historical experience, so there is no Scripture understood as a “sacred given.” There is only the evolving reception of Scripture in a Church that is, so to speak, rafting down the whitewater rapids of history. Thus Kasper can write without blushing that “the truth of the Gospel can only emerge from a consensus.”
This idea that no individual can know God’s truth, but only the whole of the church discerning could be Rowan Williams speaking. It underlies everything Williams put in place from the listening process to its latest iteration in Welby’s ‘facilited conversations.’ It rejects the idea that the words of Scripture can be either prescriptive or determinative in and of themselves without this process of reception and openness to a new move of the Spirit, and which ultimately may well lead to the conclusion that the Spirit has changed his mind [or led the Church into ‘new truth’, as its advocates put it].
Well, it may well be a liberal catholic perspective, but it is not particularly Anglican, contradicting as it does the doctrine set out in the CofE’s canons.
But it is interesting to hear it coming from Cardinal Kasper, as well as from Rowan Williams, whose spirit of theological vapidity and confusion insists upon rising from its grave like a vengeful wraith to perplex and afflict the living.
My theory: God put dogs on this Earth so we poor ignoramuses would have a creature who unconditionally loves us. God put cats on this Earth so we wouldn’t get swelled heads from all that canine adoration.
Smart cat. But you have to block the cat door open for the first few days so they get used to going through it.
For those who want to look at this issue in terms of philosophy and public policy, I highly recommend Life, Liberty and the Defense of Dignity: The Challenge for Bioethics (2002) by Leon Kass, who chaired President GW Bush’s Council on Bioethics. Kass caused me to go back and reread Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World for the first time since my teenage years. It is still a very compelling and relevant read.
Thanks, #1, for that interesting background info. But thanks also to Kendall for posting this, and especially to Robert Munday for calling our attention to this chilling parallel. I missed seeing the movie when it came out too, but Munday’s incisive observations are spot on, as usual.
I agree with jhp about Louis IX.
I’m puzzled by the description of this monastery as an ancient site, perhaps like St Catherine’s monastery in Sinai. Given its location, I would think that it has (sadly!) been destroyed and rebuilt many times in 15 centuries. When better times return, I hope the Christian churches throughout the world will help to rebuild it yet again. The plight of the Christian folk there, living stones of the church, is heart-rending.
Although I wish something would be done to end this demonic political movement, I don’t see the West as principally responsible to find that solution. We should generously assist the refugees. But the political will to solve the ISIS problem has to lie in the hearts and minds of Syria’s neighbors—Iraq, Iran, Turkey and Saudi Arabia—who know this region and its ways far better than we.
I must say I find it curious that we keep seeing many decidedly non-Anglicans being commemorated. Yet in all of the years I have been following this blog (more than a few) I have never seen the one and only saint canonized by the Church of England honored.
The Royal Martyr Charles I.
I may stir up a hornets’ nest here, but frankly I don’t see what exemplary value the French medieval king Louis IX has for 21st century Anglicans. Friends, I honestly await enlightenment on this one.
As you will remember, Louis was the 13th century king who permitted the Talmud and rabbinic Judaism literally to be put on trial in Paris in the 1240s. The Talmud was actually “found guilty” of blasphemy and hundreds of Torah scrolls and post-biblical rabbinic texts were burned in Paris. It was a very dangerous time and place to be a Jew.
Then there’s his spectacular defeats as a crusader, when he opened up new military campaigns against Islam in North Africa and Egypt. He was taken prisoner in one crusade and died of tropical disease in another.
He was known for his piety and as a friend of Aquinas and Bonaventure. He built La Sainte Chapelle, the Gothic masterpiece, to house the “crown of thorns” relic. Yet apart from his historic significance, not seeing why we should celebrate him in our churches ...
To Tory (#11), I agree that developing the habit of daily Bible reading is essential. To that end, I recommend The One-Year Bible. Every day has its portion ready-to-hand; the whole Bible in 365 portions. And it comes in many translations and formats (I have used the NIV in a small but easy-to-read format). For beginners, a commitment to read the NT portion, the appointed psalm and proverb would be a great introduction to the Christian faith. Even seasoned church folk could profit from this practice. It’s simple and takes 10 minutes.
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