Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Christian Peace Witness

Thousands of Christians from across the US will gather on Friday in Washington DC to mark the fourth anniversary of the Iraq War.

Expected to be the largest peace gathering of Christians expressing opposition to the war since it began, it will involve public prayer, a candlelight procession through the centre of the nation’s capital, vigils in cities and towns throughout the country and a protest culminating with 1500 Christians surrounding the White House.

The Christian Peace Witness has been organized by a broad cross section of Christian denominational peace groups. Involved will be prominent religious leaders and peace activists, including Jim Wallis, Celeste Zappala, Bernice Powell Jackson, and Raphael Warnock.

“The mistaken war in Iraq can only be mercifully ended, in ways that cause the least damage to everyone involved: the Americans and the Iraqis, the volatile surrounding region, and a world longing for security,” says Jim Wallis, founder of Sojourners/Call to Renewal and bestselling author of God’s Politics: Why the Right Gets It Wrong and the Left Doesn’t Get It.

After a worship service, thousands of Christians will make a two-mile candlelit procession to the White House. There, hundreds of participants, including many clergy members, will encircle the White House with a band of candlelight to express their conviction that the teachings of Jesus call unequivocally for an end to the war.

“Jesus taught us that nothing could be more impractical, or more foolish, than responding to violence with more violence,” says Rick Ufford-Chase, convener of the national steering committee of Christian Peace Witness for Iraq. “Congress needs to act swiftly and boldly to challenge the escalation of the war in Iraq. We will pray, worship and protest on March 16th and send a message to our leaders and the world that peace and reconciliation stand at the very heart of the Christian message and our respective traditions.”

Thousands more Christians yearning for peace will organize simultaneous rallies and vigils throughout the country.

Sunday, May 22, 2005

An Open Letter to the President

An Open Letter to the President of the United States of America, George W. Bush

On May 21, 2005, you will give the commencement address at Calvin College. We, the undersigned, respect your office, and we join the college in welcoming you to our campus. Like you, we recognize the importance of religious commitment in American political life.

We seek open and honest dialogue about the Christian faith and how it is best expressed in the political sphere. While recognizing God as sovereign over individuals and institutions alike, we understand that no single political position should be identified with God's will, and we are conscious that this applies to our own views as well as those of others. At the same time we see conflicts between our understanding of what Christians are called to do and many of the policies of your administration.

As Christians we are called to be peacemakers and to initiate war only as a last resort. We believe your administration has launched an unjust and unjustified war in Iraq.

As Christians we are called to lift up the hungry and impoverished. We believe your administration has taken actions that favor the wealthy of our society and burden the poor.

As Christians we are called to actions characterized by love, gentleness, and concern for the most vulnerable among us. We believe your administration has fostered intolerance and divisiveness and has often failed to listen to those with whom it disagrees.

As Christians we are called to be caretakers of God's good creation. We believe your environmental policies have harmed creation and have not promoted long-term stewardship of our natural environment.

Our passion for these matters arises out of the Christian faith that we share with you. We ask you, Mr. President, to re-examine your policies in light of our God-given duty to pursue justice with mercy, and we pray for wisdom for you and all world leaders.

--Concerned faculty, staff, and emeriti of Calvin College

Sunday, April 24, 2005

Injustice Weekly

So now we have 'Justice Sunday'.

I just have a hard time determining who the activist judges are who threaten 'People of Faith'. To hear Dr. Dobson tell it, they might not be the same ones who gave me the willies following Bush v Gore. Those activist judges threatened my faith in justice.

Yet I suspect that decision might not be held up as an example during the Gantryesque telecast. It all seems some complicated.

The Golden Rule is all you need.

Friday, March 18, 2005

"manifest sinners"

SAN DIEGO (AP) - San Diego's Roman Catholic bishop has denied funeral rites to a man who owned a bar and a dance club popular with gays, citing a clash with the church's moral teachings.

Chancellor Rodrigo Valdivia cited a church canon that states "manifest sinners" are among those who cannot be granted funeral rites "without public scandal to the faithful."

Valdivia could not recall any examples of other cases in which the diocese has invoked the canon to deny funeral rites to Catholics.

Death shouldn't be this complicated.

The Golden Rule is all you need.

Tuesday, March 08, 2005

So Many Exodus' So Little Time

There are several versions: Exodus 20:2-17, Exodus 34:12-26, and Deuteronomy 5:6-21. Different language in Catholic Bibles and the Jewish Torah offer more variants.

Which version of the 10 Commandments to use.

Pish Posh.

The Golden Rule is all you need.

Tuesday, February 22, 2005

10 Commandments

The 10 commandments are one of those things that seem pretty uncomplicated but once you get down to it....well.

Thou Shall Not Kill.

OK. Sure....

but now there are all these exceptions. Like war or self defense. Don't get me started on the Death Penalty.

Treat others like you want to be treated.

The Golden Rule is all you need.

Monday, February 14, 2005

Religious Texts

Somehow or other, we have become enslaved to so-called 'Holy' texts for understanding of the deepest sense of ourselves.

When we don't agree over what the text means, we fight or wage war or.....don't treat others as we would like to be treated. The texts are too complicated, so let's get rid of them?

The Golden Rule is all you need.