Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Wonder How This Will Work...

This Sunday the sermon is talking about Emerging Spirit and Wonder Cafe.

IT seemed inappropriate to only do this topic orally so I have arranged to borrow a projector and use the PowerPoint. The slides are very basic, and the bulletin is done as per usual as well so people will have the choice of which to read. All the ads from the campaign will be shown (that may be a mistake) and we will look at the website. First time PowerPoint has been used in worship here.

Wonder what the reaction will be?? Mind you it isn't like I rearranged the chairs or something drastic like that.

Friday, February 23, 2007


GOt Miriam baptised at opening worship for Presbytery this morning. Thanks SUe!

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

A MEditation

DUst and ashes touch our face,
mark our failure and our falling.
Holy Spirit come, walk with us tomorrow,
take us as disciples
washed and wakened by our calling

"Dust and Ashes Touch Our Face" 1986 Brian Wren. #105 in Voices United verse 1

Ashes. Pale, grey, nondescript. Ashes. That is how our Lenten journey begins. We take the remnants of last years triumphant palms and turn them from signs of joy into pale grey nondescript ashes.

As we look at the ashes we remember to confess those times we have slipped in our attempts to be the people GOd would have us be. We "mark our failure and our falling" as we rub the grey powder between our fingers. We remember and we recommit ourselves to try again.

As we look at the ashes we are reminded of the old words "Remember you are dust and to dust you shalll return". SOme of the ashes in our life are signs of bitterness, signs of mortality and destruction. And so we remember this year our brothers and sisters in Nipigon, left to watch as the town's main empoyer was reduced to ashes. We remember all who have placed caskets and urns into the ground to the refrain of "ashes to ashes, dust to dust". AShes mix with tears to become a pasty mess, ready to mark our lives.

ANd yet ashes are also a sign of hope. The ashes of the forest fire provide a rich bed for the new forest to start growing. The legendary phoenix is only able to be refreshed after the fire, then to rise again from the ashes. From the fire of destruction can come hope, as again we remember our sisters and brothers in Nipigon with the promise of rebuilding.

The world around us is ful of ashes. The ashes of burnt out souls. The ashes of burned up dreams and hopes. The ashes of regret and repentance. But amidst all the ashes and fear and depression lies a promise. "From the ashes a fire shall be woken, a light from the shadows shall spring". The Lenten journey takes us to Jerusalem and destruction. But beyond that lies the hope of resurrection and new life.

Dust and ashes choke our tongue
in the wasteland of depression.
Holy Spirit come, walk with us tomorrow,
through all gloom and grieving
to the paths of resurrection
Take us by the hand and lead us,
lead us through the desert sands
bring us living water, Holy SPirit come.
"Dust and Ashes Touch Our Face" 1986 Brian Wren. #105 in Voices United verse 3 and refrain

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

I Like this Idea

Australia has announced it will ban incandescent light bulbs in three years in an effort to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, becoming the first country to do away with this technology, which has been in use for more than a century.

This is the sort of thing we need to make change real. Maybe a total ban is a little over the top (there are places where flourescents are not appropriate (a dimmer switch for example) but sometimes people need a little push.

DANGER! Highly addictive!!!

Can you park the car?

Use the 4 arrows on your keyboard, and the space bar for brake.

This is addictive:->>>>>>

ANd I thought parking on my driving test was hard

Sunday, February 18, 2007

This One Seems Right, Sort Of

You Are Bert

Extremely serious and a little eccentric, people find you loveable - even if you don't love them!

You are usually feeling: Logical - you rarely let your emotions rule you

You are famous for: Being smart, a total neat freak, and maybe just a little evil

How you life your life: With passion, even if your odd passions (like bottle caps and pigeons) are baffling to others
ALthough the logical part is in doubt and the neat freak thing must be a joke.
Hat Tip to Scrivener

Don't I Look Organized--But am I really?

AS named here I am doing a sermon series for Lent. Just worked out what Scriptures I will use for it:

March 4: The Church In the World: WonderCafe/Emerging Spirit

March 11: The Church In the World: Witness/Testimony

March 18: The Church In the World: IN But Not OF

March 25: The Church In the World: Poverty and Wealth

Now I just need a clue about hymns (not to mention the content of the actual sermons)...

Cross posted at Riverview Rolls On

Yeah Sure...NOT!

You know the Bible 100%!

Wow! You are awesome! You are a true Biblical scholar, not just a hearer but a personal reader! The books, the characters, the events, the verses - you know it all! You are fantastic!

Ultimate Bible Quiz
Create MySpace Quizzes

Truly it is a fairly elementary level quiz. No way I would get 100% on a real test.

Hat tip to Richard

Saturday, February 17, 2007

THe Things Kids Say

Last night eldest is delaying going to sleep. She hears me coming and quickly curls up with her eyes closed tightly "sleeping".

Dad: TIme to sleep...silence....time to go to sleep now
CHild Whispers: I already sleeping (with a faint grin on her face).

Seriously, I had to almost run to the other room so I wouldn't burst out laughing.

Truly it was quite adorable.

HOme Again, HOme Again

ANd now we return.

Left last thursday for a week of study leave--well 9 days of leave, 6 of which were spent on the highway. HAd thought I might hotel blog while travelling but that would mean I had time to do so....

Everyone had a great time and the event was well worth going to. Now just have to collect my thoughts about it into a sermon for tomorrow.

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

WHat's Up With That???

Oldest child is eligible for Junior Kindergarten next year. And she will love it, that we know (I still have reservations about 4 year-olds being ready for half time schooling--or 5 year-olds for full time-- just not sure it is developmentally appropriate but that is another rant).

This mornign the Catholic School was having an observation day so mom and daughter went over. THe one big reason we may use this school is that it is literally just down the block and therefore easier to walk to. NOw here's the kicker. ALthough I walked there in under 5 minutes our children would be eligible to be bussed to that school unitl they are 7. Even better, when we suggest that we think it important that the kids walk to school people ask "why would you make them walk? THe bus will come right by and pick them up"

In related news...childhood obesity rates in North America are soaring. Nah, that couldn't be related could it???

A Sermon posted

Although I am not preaching Transfiguration in Sunday worship this year, I am doing so at the local Extended Care tomorrow -- mainly because I had a story-sermon from before that I could use. Said sermon has been posted on the church blog. It is the Transfiguration from Jesus' point-of-view, written for a preaching class in seminary 6 years ago. You can find it here

Monday, February 05, 2007

NEw Look

THought it was time for a little bit brighter look. Besides, the other template didn't allow some of the new features to be used.

In other news. The new laptop is "vista capable" and came with a free upgrade. ANyone hear what Vista is like to actually use?

Sunday, February 04, 2007

Worship to Celebrate Music

On February 18 I am giving a report on my ConEd time (won't have time to prep a sermon anyway, and I think the congregation deserves to hear about what happened). Since I needed to get the bulletin prepped before leaving, here are some pieces of that liturgy.

The organ plays a Prelude, the choir sings an Introit,
And we come together to worship.
The first hymn is announced and we stand to sing,
And the Spirit of God moves in our hearts and voices.
Here in this place we raise our voices in song together,
Here in this place we worship God in story and song.

Singing God, you invite us to join in the song
But we are afraid that our voices are too thin.
You challenge us to sing of justice and truth
And we prefer to listen to the lovely music.
You fill our hearts with hopeful lyrics and uplifting tunes
But still we are afraid that our singing will not be good enough.
Help us, O God, to sing the Lord’s song no matter what strange land we find ourselves in,
Help us to loose our tongues in joyful praise and sorrowful lament. Help us to sing with vigour, to sing lustily.
…time of silent prayer…
God calls even the most reluctant singers to join the choir. God refreshes us and inspires us to join with many who have gone before and sing:
We shall overcome, we shall overcome
We shall overcome someday
Oh deep in my heart, I do believe.
We shall overcome someday

The Amens are sung, the organ plays a postlude,
And the people go out from worship into the world.
We go with the Music of God in our hearts, the Rhythm of God in our steps,
We go to sing God’s song in many keys, in many styles, and in many places.
As we take the next steps in the Dance of Life,
We do so knowing that God: the Dancer, the Singer, the Song itself, is with us in each and every note. Amen.

Saturday, February 03, 2007

COld COld Cold

Current temperature--- -31C (-24F)
FOrecast high to day--- -25C (-13F)

Chances of going outsides today? NEgligible.

Friday, February 02, 2007

The Times, they are a changing

Change is a given in life, yet it's not easy for any of us. So strap on your seat belts and let's talk about it:
  1. Share, if you wish, the biggest change you experienced this past year. Well there was that whole "birth of a third child" thing...
  2. Talk about a time you changed your mind about something, important or not. When I was in third year University our minister asked my mother if I had ever considered ministry. We all had a good laugh. 12 months later I was visiting the UCCan Chaplain at the UofA to ask about the candidacy process...
  3. Bishop John Shelby Spong wrote a controversial book called "Why Christianity Must Change or Die." Setting aside his ideas--what kind of changes would you like to see in the Church? I did some writing about this in October 2005. See here and here. Looking back, I will stick with those thoughts (and could probably come up with some more).
  4. Have you changed your hairstyle/hair color in the last five years? If so, how many times? Not intentionally. But the top of my head seems to be changing from blond/light brown to flesh toned. AS for style, well I tried it once in junior high--didn't work, my hair is firmly set as to how it wants to lie.
  5. What WERE they thinking with that New Coke thing? You got me. But Malcolm Gladwell discusses the event as part of his discussion around making fast decisions (actually talking about the famed "taste tests" that Pepsi was doing) in Blink