Sunday, February 25, 2007

A Celtic Prayer

I bind unto myself today
the strong Name of the Trinity,
by invocation of the same,
the Three in One, and One in Three.

I bind this day to me forever,
by power of faith, Christ’s Incarnation;
his baptism in the Jordan river;
his death on cross for my salvation;
his bursting from the spiced tomb;
his riding up the heavenly way;
his coming at the day of doom:

Against the demon snares of sin,
the vice that gives temptation force,
the natural lusts that war within,
the hostile men that mar my course;
of few or many, far or nigh,
in every place, and in all hours
against their fierce hostility,
I bind to me these holy powers.

Christ be with me, Christ within me,
Christ behind me, Christ before me,
Christ beside me, Christ to win me,
Christ to comfort and restore me,
Christ beneath me, Christ above me,
Christ in quiet, Christ in danger,
Christ in hearts of all that love me,
Christ in mouth of friend and stranger.

Attributed to St. Patrick (Late 5th Century A.D.)

Saturday, February 24, 2007

Lighting Matches in a Light Bulb World- By Spencer Burke

When Jesus invited his followers to be “the light of the world,” what do you think went through the minds of the disciples? It only would have been natural for them to think in terms of the resources available in their day – spark, wood, oil, flame, and fire. But how much has changed since the first century? Even more radically, how much has changed in the last 150 years?

If Jesus were to pose the same invitation today, would we think in terms of matches or alternating current? Wood or filament? Oxygen or vacuum? Therein lies the tension.
We—the Church—have the job of being truth in an ever-changing world. Yet the reality is often that the church has over romanticized matches, wood, and oxygen.

The invitation of Jesus is not to remain captive to things that held true in the past, but to transcend, to evolve, to discover new ways of embodying the things that held true in the past. I find it fascinating that when we mapped the human genome, it was called genius. When we explored the mechanics of quantum physics, it was a step forward. When we democratized communication through the Internet, we called it revolutionary. Yet when we dream of a socially networked church, without walls or the one-hour event, it is perceived as the destructive to the Church.

Press here to read the full article along with comments from various readers

Mission to, in and from South Korea

As you know, South Korea is the country with the largest number of Presbyterians. The video below is an interesting depiction of some of the things that are going on there. What would have Calvin or Knox thought of that?

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

POST CHRISTIAN UK? ( A Times Online Report)

Thousands of churches face closure in ten years
Thousands of churches face closure, demolition or conversion in the next decade, leading to the demise of some branches of Christianity in Europe, according to experts.

In some parts of the country, former churches are being turned into centres of worship for other faiths. A disused Methodist chapel in Clitheroe on the edge of the Yorkshire Dales is the latest, destined to become a mosque for the town’s 300 Muslims.

There are more than 47,000 churches in Britain today, and 42 million people, more than 70 per cent of the population, consider themselves to be Christian. It sounds a lot, but behind the figures lies a story of decline in the country’s established religion.

Although the Pentecostal and Evangelical branches of Christianity are growing, worshippers often prefer modern, functional, warehouse-style buildings to the traditional neo-Gothic landscape of British ecclesiastical architecture.

Read the rest of the report