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London, the Olympics and Getting Rid of the Poor

I read this article today in the Guardian and thought it was worth pointing out. The article, “London is getting into the Olympic spirit – by kicking out the Gypsies” by George Monbiot argues that the Olympics, often thought of being a way to boost the economy for the poor, is in fact very hard on the poor in the city, many times leaving them without any housing at all.

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Some Problems with Online Christian Communities | And Why You Should Stay Away

Screenshot Online communities continue to grow Myspace, Virb, Facebook, delicious, flickr, twitter, digg, 30boxes, box.net, etc, etc, all offer a way for people to share and stay in touch. I personally like the attention web 2.0 companies have paid to making the web more interactive in this way. I use many of the services above, and have found that they add to my life in various ways simply helping me to easily connect with other people.

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Life At Woodbrooke | 5 weeks Deep Part 1

I’ve been in the UK for almost 5 weeks now and it feels like the time is flying (I arrived on May 2nd). My Wife, Emily, will be here in approximately 22 days, 11 hours 53 min and 39 seconds. Of course, that was when I wrote that sentence, now it’s much sooner! Life has been fairly hectic since I got here and it’s kept me from reflecting too much on what’s been happening since I arrived but I thought it’d be good to at least say a few things about life in Birmingham at the Woodbrooke Quaker Study Center thus far.

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Marquee: Emerging Approaches to Church Leadership (And The Fading Ones Too)

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In our class on The Emerging Church, we spend a good amount of time talking about what leadership looks like, and what it doesn’t because these questions tend to be pretty pressing for seminary students planning on going into the ministry upon graduation. The missional and emerging churches, along with an assortment of anabaptist, radical catholic groups and Quaker meetings stress a non-hierarchical leadership role.

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Online Communities and Radical Reformation Perspectives

Today the Urban Connection of the Mennonite Mission Network has published an article on web communities. I am really excited about the article, Online Finds: Web Leads to Real Communiy by Ryan Miller, for a couple reasons. First it shows that the Anabaptists are also asking questions about the global information culture and implications for the church. And second, Ryan interviewed me and used some of our conversation in the article!

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Winds of the Spirit: Convergent Friends Workshop (Providence 2007)

As most of you know by now I spent the end of last week in Providence Rhode Island helping with a workshop about convergent Friends.  I wanted to give an overview of what we did there so that those of you who are curious can be in the know.

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Learning a New Language While Building a House: Reflections on Quaker Heritage Day

Psa. 127:1 Unless the LORD builds the house,
those who build it labor in vain.
Unless the LORD guards the city,
the guard keeps watch in vain.

This past weekend my wife and I visited Berkeley California for a gathering called “Quaker Heritage Day.” It’s not unlike any church conference that invites someone to come and speak various messages with worship scattered throughout and a lunch break in the middle. What makes it different is that the main topics being discussed revolve around Quakerism, worship is done through silence, and the people in attendance are from a variety of Christian and non-Christian persuasions within the Friends church.

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FAQs: What is Worship? (Pastoral Quaker Perspective)

In reading Thomas Hamm’s absolutely wonderfulQuakers in America I came across a good quote about how virtually all pastoral Friends today would agree on what the Richmond Declaration says about worship, the statement comes from the Declaration which is actually highly disputed but Hamm believes most would get behind this (I know I can):

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FAQs: What is the value of confession?

Question-Mark-778895-1Frequently Asked Questions (of a theologian) is a weekly segment where a guest or myself answers a question that gets commonly posed to theologians. The basic idea is to take a theological question and offer an answer that is concise and useful for ‘everyone else.’ If you’d like to submit a question, and we’d love for you to, then please contact me.

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Culture Jam and the Radical Reformation

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I just finished reading “Culture Jam: How to Reverse America’s Suicidal Consumer Binge–And Why We Must” (Kalle Lasn) for the first time over the weekend. This was another book assigned for Ryan’s class, which I will be leading a discussion on this coming thursday. Sometimes I wonder how I am so behind the times. This book came out in 1999 and was the first time I’ve ever really interacted with it or the Adbusters site (Lasn is its founder).