Tuesday, September 28, 2004
Thanks Graham & Bethan for Sunday's servce. We ate together whilst listening to texts about food and social and economic justice. Many of these were real stories. Next we completed some spiritual reflection through some stations and then prayed. Please find below an example of a story, some prayers and some responses.
Harvest stories and prayers.rtf
Sunday, September 26, 2004
Not sure everybody has seen it yet, but this film make out of the book of the early travels of Che Guevara is beautiful and very informative. It connects with several passions wtihin me, the outrage of institutionalised injustice, passion for people and community and love of travelling. I have come away feeling very stirred. The portrayal of Church and its controlling nature in some parts of South America, is extremely poignant. Growing up in a left wing family, the criticisms made in the film resonate with the opinions of my family and are largely true. I have been reflecting how important it is that we retain an idealistic view of liberation and liberation theology. For more info see http://www.motorcyclediaries.net/html/synopsis.html
Sunday, September 19, 2004
The Sheffield Centre & ACPI are sponsoring this conference in Sheffield in the autumn aimed at church projects that come in under the Anglican Mission-Shaped Church or fresh/emerging church focus. The conference seeks to support those who lead or facilitate such anglican projects. Some of Moot will be going, as the last one that happened was great. For brief info see here.
I will put up PDF leafet and application form once I get acrobat going, but if you are interested in going contact Claire Dalpra on the webpage link above.
Saturday, September 18, 2004
I had forgotten how amazing this book by Robert Warren is - it was written sometime ago, and was incredibly ahead its time. It looks at the whole issue of emerging church, and its writings are very poignant for us now looking at mission shaped churches. Some quotes
Four words encapsulate the nature of the church in mission mode. It is a church incarnate in a particular context and setting (not necessarily a geographical one), and one which is integrating its whole life, rather than dividing itself and its life into neat separate compartments. It is also a church which is energized by a vital spirituality. It is also marked by an awareness of being a community. These emerging churches have discovered their life renewed around an openness to God, to each other and to the world.
The Danger here is that we approach the question with a blueprint mentality; that is, with an exception that there is one ‘successful’ way to be an emerging missionary church which, if everyone was to adopt, would result in all our problems being solved…. A church in missionary mode will be marked rather by uniqueness and diversity.
No church can be defined as having ‘arrived’ as a missionary congregation; for a church renewed in mission is one that is making a journey. That journey, or mission, it to be listening continually to the directions inspired of the Spirit that are emerging from the midst of its life, as well as, seemingly, from out of the blue.
Friday, September 17, 2004
Next wednesday we will be looking at Psalm 34 as a follow on from our discussion on the 'fear of the Lord'. If you need the sheet with the questions on it is here. This website will also give some useful info on background material and commentary on the text. Hopefully it will give us a chance to discuss further some of the questions raised last wednesday.
Thursday, September 16, 2004
Have been listening to Def Leppard Hysteria today. Reminds me of when I was about ten and used to sneak a walkman into bed with me with a pirate copy of Hysteria on and hum and sing along all night. Its strange how my brain can recall all the lyrics, harmonies and drum patterns after all these years.
Anyone else take the occasional sneaky listen to albums that they would die of embarassment if anyone knew they owned them?
Note: if you confess you music sins I am not ordained and therefore cannot absolve you, you'll have to speak to the Mobster about that!
The Fear of the Lord
Had a good discussion last night on the phrase 'the fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom.' We tackled the subject from three different First Testament views: -
• Royal/Scribal in Psalm 34 and Proverbs 1
• Negative/Subversive in Ecclesiastes 4 and 8 as well as Job
• Prophetic in Jeremiah 2.14-19
Its interesting that the phrase 'fear of the Lord' pretty much disappears in the Second Testament, Jesus never mentions it, and it only occurred twice elsewhere (Act 9 and 2 Corinthians 5).
We then discussed our own concepts of fear in the light of these three different viewpoints, we looked at fear of God stemming from our idea of a father, as well as church models that breed fear in their congregation by their own agenda, claiming it to be Gods. We also discussed the lack of fear for God in many churches where God becomes just a crutch, a self-help God.
We ended up trying to reconcile both fear and love of God together, seeing Jesus in the garden of Gethsemene as a good example of this. Where both a love and a fear for God caused Jesus to take up his cross, and in doing so reminds us that love and fear for God must also lead to action for God on behalf of God.
I don't think we came to many conclusions but you can download the notes from my spiel at the beginning here.
It was also really good to see a few new faces - so if your reading this I hope you enjoyed last night. Also, if you were there feel free to add your comments.
Tuesday, September 14, 2004
In the last number of months, Moot have been exploring the implications of the Doctrine of the Trinity as an expression of God. In the Trinity we see God in relationship that enshrines inclusion, intimacy and justice. Through Christ, we are drawn into this relationship with God to experience inclusion intimacy and justice, and we are called as a new covenant to live this out as community in our lives and in being Church. So these approaches to understanding God and our Christian discipleship, the series of lectures entitled "The Worlds We live in" are pertinent to developing a depth of thinking about how we should live..... So we need to consider social, economic and environmental justice as well as social inclusion.
So if you can catch one of these lectures/discussions, it should be rewarding.
1. Environment And Humanity - Friends or Foes? - Tues 21 Sept 6.30-8pm
With Dr Rowan Williams, Dr Ricardo Navarro and Professor Mary Midgley. Chaired by Baroness Williams.
2. Is Humanity killing itself? - Thurs 30 Sept 6.30-8pm
With Dr Rowan Williams, Dr Ian Smith, and Dr Russell Greig. Chaired by Dame Elizabeth Butler-Sloss.
All the dialogues are in St Pauls Cathedral. Admission is free and seating is first come first served. Doors open at 5.30pm. For more info click here
Sunday, September 12, 2004
Sunday, September 05, 2004
thanks to steve at smallfire for putting up some pics of the services we ran at greenbelt - you can see them all here.
the pics are from our service entitled 'life beyond achievement' which explored the myth within our society that people, in order to have value, must achieve (get a house, a career, a perfect family, money, fame etc...)
rather than write a long description of the service for you, you can just look at the pics and imagine what on earth went on :-)
Saturday, September 04, 2004
We had a great time, services, film and talk all went well - there were lots of highlights so add your thoughts......
Thursday, September 02, 2004
A Sustainable Christian Spiritual Life through Moot
Currently in our western world, life is frantic and it is very easy for the spiritual parts of our lives to take a back seat. Often it is not possible to see the impact of this lack of spiritual space until things get bad when we feel dried up, exhausted or emotionally 'stunted'. In Moot we are trying to develop a way of sustaining a spiritual life given the pressures we are under, that reflect shared and personal Christian worship mission and community. The key word is balance. Balance between doing and being church, a personal spiritual life and being integrated into the real world.
In an article on being Christian in a post-modern world, McCarthy proposed the need for the following activities to sustain an authentically Christian spirituality in a post-modern world:
listening to God, being able to see the bigger picture. Spiritual awareness in the real world.
Effective action in the world:
dynamic relation between contemplation and action. Working towards healing of the world and well being of all creation.
Grounding in community:
belief and practice in and out of shared relationships. Spiritual questing is done through community.
Disposition to openness:
openness to the new and unexpected, hospitality to persons and ideas. Openness to others.
Non-dualistic thinking & acting:
discipline of integrity – of inclusivity. Ability to hold together opposites and bring them together into a larger synthesis.
Hermeneutic of restoration:
effective ways of putting our lives in dialogue with the tradition, for genuine transformative power.
In Moot we have tried to balance these needs against a demanding world by having a once weekly commitment to shared and personal spiritual activity. We are encouraging people to attend a balanced variety of worship mission and community activities as a balanced Christian experience. The danger, is that we can create our own ‘pic-n-mix’ approach to spirituality that becomes stale and self-seeking, so it is down to us individually to ensure that we are giving as well as taking and balancing worship mission and community involvement through Moot at St Matthews Westminster.
Moot Community - time for building relationships, support, governance, Christian teaching, exploring scripture, deepening spiritual understandings of God and ourselves.
Moot Worship – devotional times of shared worship including Sunday evening services, café church meal events, prayer, meditations, meditation development, ‘lectio divina’ forms of ancient worship including ‘Godly Play’ Sessions. Activities will include opportunities to experience different forms of personal prayer and meditation to incorporate into your own individual life.
Moot Mission – time for building up relationships with people who are not involved in the core community through social events and other gatherings. There is the desire to be involved in art festivals and other arts driven events as mission activities.
Patterning of Shared Weekly Events
1. Shared Community Monthly Prayer Groups for up to 5 people
2. Shared Worship Worship Services on the 2nd & 4th Sunday
3. Shared Community Planning & Questing evening on the 1st Weds of the month
4. Shared Community Moot: Scripture Space on 3rd Weds in the month
5. Shared Community Moot: Discussion on the 2nd Weds in the month
In the Christian faith, there is a real danger of getting stuck on the journey where we need assistance from others to help us move.
If individual members of moot want to meet with a member of the St Matthews staff team to discuss spiritual or related issues, then Ian Mobsby as Curate would be the first port of call. Peter Hanaway and Philip Chester are both available if you would like this to be with one of them.
Additionally there are a number of schemes involving spiritual mentoring, spiritual direction and forms of counseling that are available and aimed to meet different needs, in and outside of the Diocese. If you are interested in any assistance of this nature, again please do chat these through with Ian. All such conversations will be treated confidentially. In such situations Ian is happy to meet with you at a convenient time and can travel, within limits.
If you are wanting to arrange some pastoral support then please do contact Ian Mobsby, Peter Hanaway or Philip Chester on 020 72223704 in office hours. If you require assistance outside of this time then email firstname.lastname@example.org