Thursday, July 31, 2008

More photos from the retreat center

About ten or twelve days ago...

Click on any photo to enlarge it and see detail.

The duck is stone, but the frog is real. ** Click to enlarge.

St. Francis thinks about it all.

Why is the stone bunny bigger than Francis?

In honor of the feast of St. Ignatius of Loyola, take a little time to slow down and contemplate the love of Godde and where the Spirit is leading you in your life.

Action alert: letter re: Rosemary R. Ruether dis-invitation

The recent dis-invitation from the University of San Diego will not hurt Rosemary Radford Ruether personally or professionally; she is internationally known and has plenty of work to do.*Far more troubling (besides the insult of the rescinded invitation) are the issues of 1) academic freedom and 2) narrow definitions of the Catholic tradition. *Dr. Ruether is a practicing Roman Catholic who works theologically within the broad Catholic tradition and who happens to hold positions different from formal teaching by the church hierarchy.

And all you Anglicans out there, the issue of who defines the church tradition and who belongs (who is in, who is out) should ring a bell, no?

The public letter to sign is rather long, but you can see it via the link. I'm just posting the cover letter here.


Women's Alliance for Theology, Ethics and Ritual (WATER)
Women's Ordination Conference (WOC)

Dear friends and colleagues,

The University of San Diego recently rescinded its invitation to Professor Rosemary Radford Ruether, Ph.D., to be the holder of the Monsignor John R. Portman Chair in Roman Catholic Theology for 2009-2010. We consider this a matter of serious concern with regard to academic freedom in Catholic institutions.

The Women's Alliance for Theology, Ethics and Ritual (WATER) and the Women's Ordination Conference (WOC) invite you to join us in expressing our views by signing onto our letter to USD President Mary E. Lyons and Vice President Julie Sullivan.

Please sign the letter by close of business on Friday, August 8, 2008 by clicking here or by emailing Erin Saiz Hanna. Please include the name of your organization, affiliation, or university if applicable.

Thank you for taking action with us.


Mary E. Hunt
Women's Alliance for Theology, Ethics and Ritual (WATER)

Aisha Taylor
Executive Director
Women's Ordination Conference (WOC

And now, a visual comment from the resident feline bishop, who favors feminist theology.

+ Maya Pavlova has always had impeccable theological taste and I did not ask her to sit on this book several weeks ago when I took this picture. She chose it of her own volition. Because this book by Rosemary Ruether is called Gaia and God, I have called this photo "Maya and Gaia."

+Maya believes in your freedom of conscience and in the power of the laity, however many or few legs the laity may have, so she will not bully you into signing this letter. She does, however, invite you to read, mark, learn, and inwardly digest its concerns.

Listening to God and to each other: the bishop and human sexuality

It seems Acts of Hope cannot avoid all things Lambeth. Today we bring you a fine essay by my friend and Anglican mentor (the Rev. Dr.) Bill Countryman, biblical scholar and scholar of Anglican spirituality and history.

It's one of those read, mark, learn, and inwardly digest days.

Do have a look. The essay is called "Listening to God and to each other: the bishop and human sexuality."

Its subtitles (not sure if they are from Bill himself or from the editors of the Integrity newsletter in which the essay appears today) are

"Listening with humility / engaging in real conversation"

"Who is heard / who gets to speak"

"Faithful risk taking / listening in ambiguity"

I like the fact that this day of conversation on sexuality takes place on the feast of that great expert in discernment, Ignatius of Loyola.

She's back

Her Grace flew in after some adventures involving a connecting flight at JFK, since there is no direct flight from London to Greensboro, and arrived mighty tired in the wee hours. This did not keep her from jumping to the top of a tall bookcase after we had exchanged affectionate greetings.

While you will notice Virgil on the left and three black books which are by Dante, you need to know that there are a lot of English poets among those books. The horizontal book, if you look closely, is a volume of the complete works of Shakespeare. These are just the way +Maya Pavlova left them before going to Lambeth. (Below them is a shelf with a diptych icon and below that are a lot of French poets and playrights. Our feline bishop is multilingual.)

+Maya says: Now I get to sleep on top of something full of English words, but it doesn't get up and move every hour and a half, and it's quiet. Aaaaaaaahhhhh.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Her Grace misses home

This came in last night from the Right Rev. and Right Hon. Maya Pavlova, Feline Bishop Extraordinaire. I wasn't able to post it earlier today.

Beloved Canon to the Extraordinary and All My Friendly Humans,

I am getting homesick. You know we cats like our own turf, agile as we are in many venues. I miss North Carolina. There are plenty of laps to sit on here at Lambeth but the two-legged bishops keep getting up to run to the next event so I have to get up all the time too. There are humans everywhere and lots of hopping bunnies, so it's also hard to find a quiet corner for no-lap naps. I crept into the tent that has that nice cartoonist Dave Walker who likes cats, but he was busy giving interviews. +Clumber is tired and needs to get back to Pittsburgh and +Airedale to Fort Woof. +Rowan is fine as long as he has a place to play but even he is a little weary,and to be frank, I think he misses Lindy. It looks like we're going to come home early. I've had enough clotted cream. I'll text you from +Airedale's phone [note from Jane: where did this cat learn text messaging??] and let you know when my plane is coming in. Have the Newman's Organic Cat Food ready with a bowl of cold fresh water beside it.

I also gather from your letters that you have some more summer writing to do, and though you haven't asked, I know you do much better with a cat by your side when you are trying to think deep thoughts. My pastoral responsibilities are back with my creatures. I'll nap, you'll write, and we will both be the better for it. England was nice, but enough is enough. Besides, what else do we need to say? +Airedale has been clear as day that loving all creatures is what matters most. I've enjoyed being with my brother canine bishops. That was the best part of the trip, though I did enjoy the photo shoot with the other female bishops.

Once I am rested up, which may take some time, I intend to write a pastoral letter on the need for naps. I'm sure the two-legged bishops would be much calmer if they could nap as well as pray.

Faithfully yours, with purrs,

+Maya Pavlova, F.B.E.

For Padre Pablito, who needs some refreshment

The incomparable Narciso Yepes performing Joaquín Rodrigo's Concierto de Aranjuez:

Part I

Part II

Part III

And also by Rodrigo, the Fantasía para un Gentilhombre. Again, with Yepes performing on guitar and a superb orchestra.

Part I

Part II

Part III

Part IV

Take your pick, or listen to both.

Now that I think of it, you might want to listen to the second one first if you need that extra relief from All Lambeth All The Time.

If you are short on time, just listen to (and watch!) the third or fourth movement of that second work, the Fantasía.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

July 29: Remembering the Philadelphia Eleven on the Feast of Martha and Mary of Bethany

Blog flashbacks:

Last year's post on the Philadelphia Eleven.

Sermon on Martha and Mary and "The Martha-Mary Double-Bind."

Violence against women: they did talk about it at Lambeth

Jim Naughton has a detailed and powerful report on the Lambeth conversations on domestic violence. It is one of his most thorough reports from Lambeth and I hope many people read it.

I had written my June (published early July) essay for the Episcopal Café on women as global church with attention to the issue of violence against women, which has surfaced worldwide in women's ecumenical conversations as one of the main issues for women in churches. Clearly the Lambeth planners have listened to the voices of women in the global church and to World Council of Churches project participants and local advocacy groups around the world. Kudos to them, and a ray of hope for women in families everywhere.

When was the last time you or your congregation addressed the reality of domestic violence?

Are there resource cards on domestic violence (with hotline and agency phone numbers) in your church or synagogue rest rooms?

When was the last time you heard or preached a sermon that mentioned domestic violence?

It's everywhere, you know. Yes, in nice middle-class families too.

"There's no place like home:" latest essay at the Episcopal Café

So much for no blogging. Today happens to be the day that my July essay is published at The Episcopal Café, and I promised you a link. Here it is, with a couple of teaser paragraphs below. (Neither is the paragraph on the Café front page, which really does not summarize or call attention to the major point of the piece. I think someone on the editorial staff just grabbed it because it sounded Lambeth-y, which the piece is not, at least directly. It's very much a personal reflection -- with broader implications.)

... This land is not my land nor the land my body loves. It is not the place of my birth. In other ways it is becoming home, not least because of the church. These simultaneous truths speak to me as I walk, step by step, on a quiet summer evening in a labyrinth bounded with stone.

... my life has schooled me for the church, for broad belonging, for holding many people – and peoples – in my heart at once. It is no accident that theologies of the communion of saints and of the body of Christ are among those I treasure most and find most sustaining. ...

Read it all here. The permanent link is here.

And if you are so moved, do write something in the Comments section at the Café. It's good for them to know that I have more than two readers. :-)

(If you have never commented at the Episcopal Café before, it's a bit arduous as you have to go through a sign-in procedure, but it's worth it and you will be signed up forever after that.)

Of course, Acts of Hope welcomes your comments right here, too. Thanks!

Monday, July 28, 2008

We interrupt our Lambeth-free program to bring you this. Read it and weep. And pray.

Read the story behind the picture here.

mishpocheh and meetups

I have just returned from my travels.

Blogging is still in slowdown mode for another two weeks, though I may post a bit during that time.

Mishpocheh: Yiddish for "extended family and then some."* Most of my visit to parts North involved time with the mishpocheh.

Meetups: Had two, but I neglected to ask whether I could talk about them even in the form of a brief mention on blog, so I'll go with confidentiality, even about the identity of the meet-up-ees, until I have checked in with them about this matter.

* Wrote William Safire in a 2005 column: Every few months a query comes in about in-laws: "What do I call my father-in-law's brother?" The English lexicon does have that unfilled semantic space. Yiddish comes to the rescue by naming all one's relatives by marriage as machetunim, mokh-eh-TOO-nim, plural of the Hebrew mechutan, mokh-HOO-ten, which could signify your spouse's mother's second cousin. The most inclusive word is mishpocheh (mish-PAW-kheh), literally "family," which lumps together just about everybody invited to the wedding. It is similar to the Russian rodnye (rohd-NEE-eh).

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Earlier this week at the retreat center

Click photos to enlarge them.

Off to Our Nation's Capital in the morning.

Photos by Jane Redmont

+Maya Pavlova's English tea

Well, +Maya has been promising and promising to send photos, but it turns out +Airedale's cell phone camera had a bit of slowdown, but worse, I, Her Grace's unworthy Canon to the Extraordinary, dawdled and neglected to post the photos. One, of course, shows Her Grace in a slight state of upset tummy, but now we know that feline and female bishops can feast to excess just like their brother canine and male bishops. Equal in sin and grace, but mostly grace. +Airedale always says that as long as we love and welcome all at the table, we are on the right path.

While Clumber was up North romping with the grandpups and with the canine companions of a certain Mad ClergyTwoLegs, +Maya Pavlova, F.B.E. (Feline Bishop Extraordinaire for those of you who are just joining us) had herself a fine English tea - or two or three, we are not sure.

At this one, she seems to have had more milk than tea and enthusiastically jumped into the action. Anglicans the world over take tea time seriously. You will note that Her Grace removed her miter so as not to risk soiling it with milk-drops.

No more milk?! Well, I'll just wait for more to arrive.

Ah, cream this time. There we go!

I drank that one awfully fast...

And then there was the clotted cream. And scones. And butter. And tea with milk. And sandwiches with a little something that smelled like fish...

No photos of the scones with clotted cream, though there were suspicious crumbs on some of the photos. But +Airedale did catch a photo of +Maya after her clotted cream festivities. Oh dear... She didn't feel too well... Reminds us of a certain +friend of ours...

+Clumber, where were you when we needed you for comfort and wisdom?

What's that? Her Grace says that +Airedale and +Rowan were most gracious and sweet. +Rowan wanted to play, though, and after all that milk and clotted cream, well...

Rumor also has it that +Maya slipped through security, sans miter, whilst Their Graces were still at Lambeth this week. She is so lithe and small that no one was the wiser. What she heard, she's not telling. She did say: Avoid those press conferences!

Note from the Management: No cats were harmed during the production of these photos! We swear! (Yes, we do, and frequently.) Really.

+Airedale, +Rowan, and +Maya met up again with +Clumber, sniffed around the U Kent campus together, had a little visit to the Cathedral at Canterbury, and are back in London, resting up for the evening. For further adventures, visit +Clumber.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Writings, blog slowdown, and a July archive of saints and stories

I keep waiting for my latest piece for the Episcopal Café to come out -- I turned it in July 11 -- but the Lambeth pieces have priority these days and my essay was not related to Lambeth, at least not in the narrow sense. (We columnists write on whatever we please, and then the Café editors publish as it seems appropriate.)

Luiz's monthly essay is up today, though, and it is not an As the Anglican World Turns one. It is a short, beautiful reflection about art as ministry.

You can also visit Luiz's Lambeth art blog here.

There was also a non-Lambeth essay the other day (can you tell I have Lambeth Overload?) on the subject of waiting. Very pertinent to Lambeth, of course, but with broader, daily application.

Anyway, I'll be back on blog when my Episcopal Café essay comes out, to post a link to it. Writer's vanity. (Also, I have a photo of +Maya with her nose in an English teacup, but have run into a technological delay. It's not Her Grace's fault, or that of her brothers, the canine bishops. It's Life As Usual.) Other than that, I am taking either a break or a slowdown here for a couple of weeks.

I have to focus on some writing projects, and I'm also going out of town for a bit in the middle of that period of time. The intrepid Mother of Acts of Hope (age almost 90) and I are meeting up partway between where she and Father of Acts of Hope live and where I live. We will be attending a performance by a cousin of mine in Our Nation's Capital and having some family time. I'll stay on briefly to visit friends and then head back here. The hordes return to campus mid-August (very uncivilized -- whatever happened to having school start after Labor Day?) and I am jealously guarding my solitude.

I also have to proofread a stack of pages from the forthcoming new edition of my book on prayer, catch up on my other blog, the one I have neglected this year and which serves the constituency of the diocesan anti-racism committee, keep working on the planning committee for the conference on the racial history of our diocese and do some course planning both for Guilford and for the theology module of the diocesan deacon formation program, which I am about to start teaching. Also I'm feeling moved to pray more, for the Lambeth gathering and in general, just taking time to be still and open to the Spirit. So, something's got to give.

I've also been musing about my blogging habits, both those present here and the comments I leave (and don't leave -- I have been writing comments and then deciding not to post them more and more often) but I will write about that when I have something coherent and thoughtful to say.

Meanwhile, have a look at this.

And in case you don't have enough to catch up on here on this season's blogging, the whole month of July 2007, complete with saints and sermons, is here. (Like all blog archives, it is in reverse chronological order.) Lots of fabulous women saints in July. And the month ends with the great Ignatius of Loyola, or Iñigo, as he was known in the Basque Country where he was born.

Oh, and speaking of writer's vanity: Dennis kindly left a note in the comments to this post informing me that an excerpt from of my Episcopal Café essay on women as global church was picked up by yesterday's Lambeth Witness. Lambeth Witness is Integrity's daily publication during the Lambeth gathering. The excerpt is on page 2 under the title "Some Guiding Questions." The full, original essay is here.

Off I go. Send a few prayers my way!

Or good vibrations, if prayer isn't your thing.

Thank you.

July 22: also Theodora of Gaul

July 22, feast of Mary of Magdala, is also the day for us to remember Theodora of Gaul, of whose life and diaconal ministry Ormonde tells us.

An update on X, for whom you prayed

Thanks to those, named and unnamed, who prayed for the friend I mentioned a little while back and for whom MadPriest also appealed for prayers.

I am happy to report that Friend X has gotten some sleep and that the worst of the crippling insomnia seems to have abated. Was it the acupuncture treatment, the release of anger, the prayers, or all of these? Only G*d knows, but X is sleeping at night again.

He is also going through some inner transition that has some consequences for his work life.

He is still bearing many burdens both external and internal. Thank you for your prayers, and of your charity, please continue to pray.

Last week I found myself praying that the mothering Jesus about whom Julian of Norwich writes would reveal h-self to my friend: at the same time I prayed for a softening of the heart.

Anger can be an engine for justice. It can be a holy and righteous fire. It can also age, acquire knotted layers, fester into resentment and gall. In those circumstances it is hard, hard, hard to carry inside. Sometimes it is so intractable that it takes more than a good shrink to help get to its core and to help it melt; it can be one of those realities of which Jesus spoke when he said "it can only be driven out by prayer."

(Mind, I'm not judging the reasons for this kind of anger. They are legitimate and understandable. I'm more concerned with the long-term effects on a person.)

If you are not someone who prays, please send solidarity.

If you are someone who prays, send solidarity too!

Thank you.

P.S. This person really loves animals.

See here for another species.

July 22: Mary of Magdala

Blog flashback: last year on this feast...

Mary of Magdala, Disciple, Friend of Jesus, Witness, Apostle
(A sermon for the feast.)

"Companion: Magdalene with Joanna and Susanna"
Part of a triptych by Janet McKenzie, The Nativity Project: The Succession of Mary Magdalene

Sunday, July 20, 2008

What the Web Hath Wrought

Even as I ponder a blog slowdown (you'll notice I am still writing at least once a day, so I haven't exactly slowed, and +Maya Pavlova did ring from England to say yes, there will be more pictures, but not quite yet) and my need for thought, prayer, and a break from Perpetual States of Distraction, I received in the (e-) mail a perfectly timely piece.

Beloved Elder Sibling of Acts of Hope, once again, has tapped into his sister's psyche and sent in just the right thing. And he doesn't even read my blog. Or does he?

I'm posting below the beginning of the article he sent, and you can read the rest via the link to the magazine. Please read everything I posted here. Don't do what we all seem to be doing, which is skimming and jumping around.

I have been wondering for months and months, really a few years (pre-blogging), what is the internet doing to concentration? to contemplation? to reading? I even wrote about it in the New Preface by the Author which will be out, with the Old Book, in the fall.

It's not as simple as "the internet has wrecked our brains." It's much more complex and not all negative. But it does make one think, and I am thinking.

No, I'm not going to stop blogging. I am just pondering how to blog, and live, more mindfully.

Apparently I'm not the only one. My friend Chris is about to change his blogging habits.

Have a read and see what you think.

Oh, and the salsa was very good. The food co-op was out of cilantro today and said "come back tomorrow" but driving four miles just for cilantro is a bad idea, so cilantro-less we shall remain. But there was very fine basil and I bought some and there is pesto in my near future.

Speaking of distractions.

Okay, now read:

What the Internet is doing to our brains
by Nicholas Carr
Is Google Making Us Stupid?

Link to full text here.

"Dave, stop. Stop, will you? Stop, Dave. Will you stop, Dave?" So the supercomputer HAL pleads with the implacable astronaut Dave Bowman in a famous and weirdly poignant scene toward the end of Stanley Kubrick's 2001: A Space Odyssey. Bowman, having nearly been sent to a deep-space death by the malfunctioning machine, is calmly, coldly disconnecting the memory circuits that control its artificial brain. "Dave, my mind is going," HAL says, forlornly. "I can feel it. I can feel it."

I can feel it, too. Over the past few years I've had an uncomfortable sense that someone, or something, has been tinkering with my brain, remapping the neural circuitry, reprogramming the memory. My mind isn't going-so far as I can tell-but it's changing. I'm not thinking the way I used to think. I can feel it most strongly when I'm reading. Immersing myself in a book or a lengthy article used to be easy. My mind would get caught up in the narrative or the turns of the argument, and I'd spend hours strolling through long stretches of prose. That's rarely the case anymore. Now my concentration often starts to drift after two or three pages. I get fidgety, lose the thread, begin looking for something else to do. I feel as if I'm always dragging my wayward brain back to the text. The deep reading that used to come naturally has become a struggle.

I think I know what's going on. For more than a decade now, I've been spending a lot of time online, searching and surfing and sometimes adding to the great databases of the Internet. The Web has been a godsend to me as a writer. Research that once required days in the stacks or periodical rooms of libraries can now be done in minutes. A few Google searches, some quick clicks on hyperlinks, and I've got the telltale fact or pithy quote I was after. Even when I'm not working, I'm as likely as not to be foraging in the Web's info-thickets-reading and writing e-mails, scanning headlines and blog posts, watching videos and listening to podcasts, or just tripping from link to link to link. (Unlike footnotes, to which they're sometimes likened, hyperlinks don't merely point to related works; they propel you toward them.)

For me, as for others, the Net is becoming a universal medium, the conduit for most of the information that flows through my eyes and ears and into my mind. The advantages of having immediate access to such an incredibly rich store of information are many, and they've been widely described and duly applauded. "The perfect recall of silicon memory," Wired's Clive Thompson has written, "can be an enormous boon to thinking." But that boon comes at a price. As the media theorist Marshall McLuhan pointed out in the 1960s, media are not just passive channels of information. They supply the stuff of thought, but they also shape the process of thought. And what the Net seems to be doing is chipping away my capacity for concentration and contemplation. My mind now expects to take in information the way the Net distributes it: in a swiftly moving stream of particles. Once I was a scuba diver in the sea of words. Now I zip along the surface like a guy on a Jet Ski.

I'm not the only one. When I mention my troubles with reading to friends and acquaintances-literary types, most of them-many say they're having similar experiences. The more they use the Web, the more they have to fight to stay focused on long pieces of writing. Some of the bloggers I follow have also begun mentioning the phenomenon. Scott Karp, who writes a blog about online media, recently confessed that he has stopped reading books altogether. "I was a lit major in college, and used to be [a] voracious book reader," he wrote. "What happened?" He speculates on the answer: "What if I do all my reading on the web not so much because the way I read has changed, i.e. I'm just seeking convenience, but because the way I THINK has changed?"
Bruce Friedman, who blogs regularly about the use of computers in medicine, also has described how the Internet has altered his mental habits. "I now have almost totally lost the ability to read and absorb a longish article on the web or in print," he wrote earlier this year. A pathologist who has long been on the faculty of the University of Michigan Medical School, Friedman elaborated on his comment in a telephone conversation with me. His thinking, he said, has taken on a "staccato" quality, reflecting the way he quickly scans short passages of text from many sources online. "I can't read War and Peace anymore," he admitted. "I've lost the ability to do that. Even a blog post of more than three or four paragraphs is too much to absorb. I skim it."

Anecdotes alone don't prove much. And we still await the long-term neurological and psychological experiments that will provide a definitive picture of how Internet use affects cognition. But a recently published study of online research habits, conducted by scholars from University College London, suggests that we may well be in the midst of a sea change in the way we read and think. As part of the five-year research program, the scholars examined computer logs documenting the behavior of visitors to two popular research sites, one operated by the British Library and one by a U.K. educational consortium, that provide access to journal articles, e-books, and other sources of written information. They found that people using the sites exhibited "a form of skimming activity," hopping from one source to another and rarely returning to any source they'd already visited. They typically read no more than one or two pages of an article or book before they would "bounce" out to another site. Sometimes they'd save a long article, but there's no evidence that they ever went back and actually read it. The authors of the study report:

It is clear that users are not reading online in the traditional sense; indeed there are signs that new forms of "reading" are emerging as users "power browse" horizontally through titles, contents pages and abstracts going for quick wins. It almost seems that they go online to avoid reading in the traditional sense.

Thanks to the ubiquity of text on the Internet, not to mention the popularity of text-messaging on cell phones, we may well be reading more today than we did in the 1970s or 1980s, when television was our medium of choice. But it's a different kind of reading, and behind it lies a different kind of thinking-perhaps even a new sense of the self. "We are not only what we read," says Maryanne Wolf, a developmental psychologist at Tufts University and the author of Proust and the Squid: The Story and Science of the Reading Brain. "We are how we read." Wolf worries that the style of reading promoted by the Net, a style that puts "efficiency" and "immediacy" above all else, may be weakening our capacity for the kind of deep reading that emerged when an earlier technology, the printing press, made long and complex works of prose commonplace. When we read online, she says, we tend to become "mere decoders of information." Our ability to interpret text, to make the rich mental connections that form when we read deeply and without distraction, remains largely disengaged.

Reading, explains Wolf, is not an instinctive skill for human beings. It's not etched into our genes the way speech is. We have to teach our minds how to translate the symbolic characters we see into the language we understand. And the media or other technologies we use in learning and practicing the craft of reading play an important part in shaping the neural circuits inside our brains. Experiments demonstrate that readers of ideograms, such as the Chinese, develop a mental circuitry for reading that is very different from the circuitry found in those of us whose written language employs an alphabet. The variations extend across many regions of the brain, including those that govern such essential cognitive functions as memory and the interpretation of visual and auditory stimuli. We can expect as well that the circuits woven by our use of the Net will be different from those woven by our reading of books and other printed works.

There's more. Read on. Link to full text here.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Making salsa while pondering a blog slowdown

Pondering a blog slowdown. Not quite yet and likely temporary, but perhaps necessary the next two or three weeks.

Meanwhile, off to the kitchen to make salsa, the first homemade one of the summer. The tomatoes are in full glory at the farmers' markets and I also bought some hot little green peppers, ¡ay!, and there are onions in the house as always. And lime juice. And garlic, if I decide to include garlic. Much as I love garlic, I tend to leave it out of salsa. I will have to wait till tomorrow to put in fresh cilantro, which I neglected to get today, but the other ingredients are here, so I'll have a cilantro-less salsa tonight (with a little cumin in it) and a cilantro-fragrant one tomorrow.

Giving thanks for the earth and all growing plants and the people who grown them.

July 19: Macrina the Younger

Blog flashback: last year on this date...

Macrina's Day: fun facts on this 4th century C.E. holy woman, from ancient Christian Cappadocia to a bakery in the Northwest U.S.

Since we last wrote on the feast of Macrina, a baby alpaca has been named Macrina, no relation to anyone we know, but in lieu of kitteh blogging (though +Maya Pavlova keeps saying she will post something from England here via +Airedale's cell phone camera while +Clumber and +Rowan romp with the grandpups), here she is.

Friday, July 18, 2008

Happy Birthday, Nelson Mandela

Thank you, Nelson Mandela. God bless you.

Music here: Nkosi Sikelel'iAfrica: click where it says "download audio" and you'll be able to listen. You can just play it, not download; it will play on your computer's audio player. (Sorry, I don't have a magic music-playing thingie that goes in a blog post.)

+Carol Gallagher's blog mamabishop

For the last several weeks I have been reading Bishop Carol Gallagher's blog, mamabishop. I don't read it every day but she posts almost daily, mostly spiritual meditations grounded in daily life. Bishop Gallagher, the first Native American (Cherokee) Episcopal woman bishop, is not at Lambeth, I assume for family and pastoral reasons.

I heard of Bishop Gallagher some years ago when she became a bishop, but discovered her blog when the Episcopal Café reported on the fact that she had been asked by Bishop Michael Smith of North Dakota (also a Native bishop - Potawatomi - he blogs here) to accompany those in the diocese who did not share his positions on human sexuality and other controversial matters. This is a first because he is a more "conservative" bishop and she a more "liberal" one (I try not to use those two terms, which have become either meaningless or likely to trigger quick reactions, so I put them in quotes) -- usually the more "liberal" make provisions for the "conversative" minority. Bishop Gallagher wrote about the decision and invitation here.

She writes a lot about nature, her family, and God. And the church. Have a look. A serene and searching voice in our midst.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Random healthy foodie post: late evening summer vegetarian dinner with what's in the house

Late evening summer dinner, relatively speedy:

1. Get home around 8:30 p.m.

2. Fill large pot with water and put on stove on high, immediately. Don't forget to cover it.

3. Unload car.

(3.' Plug laptop in if it was in your briefcase in the car and you are an internet addict. Put perishables in fridge if you had any in the car. Greet and feed animal[s] as needed.)

4. Take miscellaneous ingredients out of fridge. Contemplate them.

5. Plug in the food processor.

6. Heat some olive oil in a medium-sized pot, on medium heat.

7. Peel two white onions and two carrots. Also three cloves of garlic. Or was it four?

8. Cut them in a few large chunks and dump 'em all in the food processor. Whirrrrr! They will be finely minced or smaller.

9. Dump them in the olive oil and stir. Watch the stove, adjust the heat a bit up or down depending whether you have gas or electric range. (I have electric, which I dislike, because it is less subtle and it's easier to burn things, but that's life.) The kitchen will start to smell good.

10. By then your water has boiled. Dump half package of whole wheat pasta in it. (That's what I had left over - chiocciole, to be exact; use whatever you have on hand, whole wheat or white. Whole wheat is healthier of course and lower glycemic index and glycemic load, has fiber, etc. and the food industry has figured out to make it taste good now.) Add some salt, stir, and set your kitchen timer. (The package said ten minutes but that makes it al dente very very dente, so adjust one minute up if needed; I did and it was still al dente and didn't wreck the pasta. But this was large pasta; don't do that with capellini!)

11. Notice that you have every herb and spice on the planet on your spice shelf except for basil and oregano. Sniff the thyme, decide it doesn't go with what you're making.

12. Add to the veggie mixture:
- some hot red pepper flakes (I think maybe 1/4 teaspoon, but it could have been more; be careful if you don't like hot stuff, and either way make sure you don't use too much or it will drown out the other tastes);
- a half teaspoon (more or less) of cinnamon;
- and a teaspoon of sugar (sugar takes the acid edge off tomato sauce, my momma taught me that, and one teaspoon of sugar isn't gonna kill you). Stir.

13. Grab leftover half-jar of tomato sauce (okay, it was really high-class strained tomatoes but I'd used half of it a week ago and it was going to go bad if I didn't use it -- you can use a small can of diced tomatoes instead --always keep canned tomatoes in the house, buy 'em when they are on sale at the supermarket-- or tomato sauce but not paste and nothing flavored with herbs, you just want the pure tomato) and dump it in the veggie mixture. Stir, cover, cook on low. Or a little higher if your stove and your pot can stand it, but not too high.

14. Grate some cheese if you have some leftover cheese. Parmesan or swiss would be nice. The only cheese I had in the house was a leftover chunk of extra sharp Vermont cheddar. Worked fine.

15. When your timer goes off, taste the pasta to make sure, then dump it in a colander over the sink.

16. Transfer pasta to big bowl.

17. Give the sauce a stir and dump it on the pasta. Mix.

18. Serve with the grated cheese. Only put cheese on what you're going to eat i.e. on what's on your plate.

19. If you have a bottle of red wine around, pour yourself a glass.

20. Consume.

You will also have a ton left over for tomorrow's lunch or supper and more. It stores fine in the fridge and the sauce helps the pasta not to get all dried out and hard and weird. You can eat the leftovers cold or hot.

Here endeth the lesson.

It was good, too. Trust me on the tiny bit of cinnamon. I discovered this several spaghetti sauces ago. I didn't do the red pepper flakes last time, though.

If it is a summer evening this dish will make you sweat, and a little more so if you are living in the land of hot flashes, but afterward you'll feel cool and delicious.

With tip of the summer straw hat to JohnieB, who recently paved the way to Simple Cookery.

I also had a green salad to start with.

Alas, I do not have a digital camera so I cannot take photos like either JohnieB or The Cunning Runt of foodie fame, so I had to paint with words, but I did give you a recipe.

Behind the scenes

What the conflict-hungry press are not seeing, don't want to see, and probably don't understand because it is not made of sound bites, speed, or statements:

... I must say that the mood here is not what I expected at all. There is a deep sense of contemplation and reflection and very little focus on the politics of schism. There is also a whole lot of joy - and it is not superficial. The program has been designed so well and my hope for some good to come from this conference continues to increase - even more now that the bishops have arrived. ...

You can read about it in this heartening report from a Lambeth steward from the Diocese of Newark, (the Rev.) Michael Sniffen, via (the Rev. Dr.) Elizabeth Kaeton's Telling Secrets.

P.S. An evening postscriptum: In the same vein, have a look at what Our Allie has to say. Thank you, dear stewards. Come, Holy Spirit.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Last day to sign the ACLU's FISA ad

...Unconstitutional law allows spying on Americans without warrants or oversight, threatening privacy and free speech rights....

I don't think you have to be a card-carrying member of the ACLU to sign the ad protesting the passage of FISA... The ACLU website is here.

Summer busy-ness

Yesterday, some good planning --about 50 miles from here-- for the conference we are having in September on the racial history of the Diocese of North Carolina. Stay tuned for details, within a week or so.

Today I am off to the retreat center again for the day, for some beauty and writing and quiet, away from the temptations of the intertubes.

The muggy weather abated for two days and it was just plain hot. Which felt like a treat! As usual, context is everything.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Summer tunes: time for some more Brazilian music

This is old stuff. If you like heavy metal, you will not like this. It's more for the AARP set, but hey, I've got my membership card, and besides, it's late on a summer night. Mellow is good.

A little warm-up. (Don't be fooled by the shabadaba singers at the opening. This is classic bossa nova from one of the masters.) Antonio Carlos Jobim singing "Agua de Beber" in concert in Montréal.

And now, another tune by Jobim, played by Jobim. This one's an instrumental. "Wave," with Jobim on piano and I'm not sure who on the flute. If you listen to only one, this should probably be it -- though you'll miss the soft Brazilian Portuguese caressing your ears in the other two.

Finally, to round off your mellow evening, "Desafinado" performed by João Gilberto and Antonio Carlos (Tom) Jobim. I think I first heard this when it came out. I must have been ten or eleven years old.

Jim Hightower: "Mixed Emotions" on Obama

Yes, there is life outside of a) Lambeth and b) the U.S. presidential campaign.

Nevertheless, a tiny bit of writing from that energetic populist, Jim Hightower, on Obama's two sides and (as Howard Zinn has noted and I am repeating ad nauseam) our responsibility to keep up the pressure. A quick read here.

Pre-Lambeth harmonies

Padre Rob has a great video, sent by dear Luiz, of Lambeth stewards and members of religious orders singing at evening prayer. The Southern Hemisphere is well in evidence. As I noted in the comments, if the bishops could only sing that way, we'd be fine. (Donald Schell actually had a lovely essay on singing and human communication at the Episcopal Café some weeks back.)

Padre Mickey will remind us, naturally, that the bishops of the Global Center can rock it that way just fine,* and probably will. Alleluia and adelante.

*Alas, my link to them doesn't work any more. What up, Padre?

And speaking of Lambeth, I am not posting much, if at all, on As the Anglican World Turns, because everyone else is. As usual, if something occurs to me from ecumenical and feminist perspectives or any other not-your-usual-view, I will say something, but otherwise not.

Her Grace, of course, has left for the event with the canine bishops. (Speaking of harmonies. Those four are a model of interspecies cooperation.) You can keep track of their adventures chez +Clumber.

July 14 blog flashback #2: secular France, with affection, wit, and charm

Blog flashback: last year on this date....

Thoughts on France, with pictures. Note the artistic dog poop disposal and the dishy firefighters.

July 14 blog flashback #1: La Marseillaise

Blog flashback: last year on this date...

In honor of what Americans call "Bastille Day" and the French simply call "le quatorze juillet" (the 14th of July) or more formally "la Fête Nationale" (the National Holiday) I posted the famous and stirring Marseillaise scene from the movie "Casablanca." Everybody out of your seats, on your feet, and singing!

I grew up singing this and I must say I still love it, despite my pacifist leanings.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Anglicans Online on women bishops: a must-read

I always love Anglicans Online's editorial reflections, which post every Sunday. Sometimes I forget to read them. I remembered this week, and all I have to say is

This is not usually my reaction to AO's essays. More often it is a discreet but deep, satisfied murmur of approval.

This time it is a huge letting out of a sigh of happy admiration.

The story begins with the tale of Irina Sendlerowa, about whom I read when she died many weeks ago and about whom some of this blogging community posted. Her face, radiant with goodness, is on the AO page too.

What does Sendlerowa have to do with women in the episcopate? Read and find out.

And this is not happy-clappy mush. There are steely, astutely reasoned arguments in the essay.

Not that there isn't a place for happy-clappy. But this is more: thought and joy, together. AO are always good at that combination, but they have outdone themselves.

Enough ecstasies from me. Go ye and read.

Once the week is over, I'll find the permalink and post it. For now, the essay is on the front page.

Northumbria: blue landscape

Winshield Crags, Northumbria. Photo by Joan Thirlaway via the BBC.

Blog flashback, July 13: Letty Russell, RIP; Catholic pluralism

Blog flashback: Last year on this date...

Letty Russell, RIP
(More on Letty Russell, a few days later,

National Catholic Reporter and Catholic Pluralism

Friday, July 11, 2008

Friday puppy blogging

My grandmother Melanie loved animals. Cats, dogs, puppies, kittens -- I always remember her with some kind of animal in her arms or next to her. She also had a lot of children in her life: my mother and her four sibling plus hundreds of campers and former campers from the summer camp she and my grandfather founded in 1927 in Vermont. It was all boys at first and became the first private interracial camp in New England, if not the U.S. (the data are a little foggy). The camp became co-ed around the time of World War II. All of us, even my brother and I who lived overseas and couldn't come every summer, were campers and then counselors there.

I think this photo is from the 1950s, but I am not 100% sure. This is one of the ways I remember my grandmother -- full of life and with a puppy in her hands! In the later 1950s, when I first came to Vermont as a very little girl, there were two St. Bernards at camp; their names were Jack and Jill.

When my mother and her sibs were growing up, my grandmother tended to give the dogs names out of classical philosophy and mythology, e.g. Plato and Psyche.

Not sure whether this is a St. Bernard puppy; maybe one of you dog experts can tell me. Most of the other dogs in the family were smaller breeds. The cats were of all types. Most of us grandchildren, interestingly, have become cat people -- but this may have something to do with the fact that we are mostly urban, though maybe not, because one of my urban cat-people cousins has adopted a dog this last year, in middle age (he's middle aged, not the dog) and in Manhattan. Anyway, although I was terrified of dogs all through childhood and adolescence (except for the St. Bernards, who were sweet and placid) and developed allergies to cats (eventually just to some, not others, which is why Maya Pavlova and I get along fine - she is one of the others), you can see why both +Maya and I are multi-species-friendly.

And now you know where I get the dark eyes and eyebrows and prematurely white hair!

(Well, prematurely some years ago. Not any more since I am no longer pre-mature.)

My grandmother died during my first year in college, in March 1970, ten years to the day after my grandfather.

The photo was clearly taken up at camp during the summer. That's the huge camp dining hall behind my grandmother, and that's an Adirondack chair she's sitting in, wearing shorts and a summer top. I was one of the few 1950s and 1960s kids I knew who had a grandmother who wore shorts. (She also is the person who gave me my first Beatles record -- an LP from England on the Parlophone label.) During the year, my grandparents lived in Brooklyn, New York (this is why P.J. and I are sort of related), which according to my mother was almost rural during her childhood in the 1920s and 1930s. She remembers a dairy farm up the road! Times have changed. By the time I first visited Brooklyn in 1957 and then 1960, it was a big city, and as a little girl from Paris I thought it very strange. But that is a story for another day.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Rethinking mission trips

Before I run off (see post below) --

Caminante has posted a Washington Post story and her own reflection on the issue of short mission trips. Well worth a read and a think.

All day?

What do you mean, you're going to a retreat center for the day and you have to close my window?

Click on photo for gorgeous cat detail.

Monday, July 7, 2008

Women bishops in the Church of England!

Says the Lead at the Episcopal Café.

Also, the BBC has the story, so it must be true. ;-)

Alleluia. Oremus.

There is, alas, a clause to accommodate those who are not yet persuaded of the full humanity of women,* as you can see in the BBC story, but it is less stringent than one of the original proposals.

* which is a theological matter and not just "about discrimination" - as if the two were ever separate. Still, it sounds as if Christians did listen to one another at the gathering, which may be as much a sign of hope as the actual news.

Ruth Gledhill has full detail, for those of you who are inclined in that direction and have time to read.

Slowly. Step by step.

Alleluia. Oremus.

Prayer request for a friend (for Chagall's birthday celebration, see the post below -but +Maya asks that you read this first)

My friend blogs anonymously, or sometimes pseudonymously, at Le Bestiaire - yes, despite the title, the blog is fully in English. Angry, eloquent English.

He hasn't asked for this, but I would like to summon the Prayer Posse on his behalf, because he is having a very, very hard time.

You can read about some of it on his blog. Read the last two posts, one on his current insomnia, the other on one of his (no longer) places of employ. Since the episode he recounts in that second post, a memory of some months ago, he's gotten gotten laid off from yet another job due to the usual wave of downsizing in corporations here in the U.S. There's also health and a hidden disability from early days. Life is very difficult for this man on all fronts.

So pray away, and may our friend at the very least know the mercy of Godde and relief from raging despair. And a good night's sleep.

A job and some health insurance and regular sleep would be really nice, too. If you know of any employment of the technical-writing sort, in the U.S. Northeast or by telecommute, leave a note on my friend's blog. Also pet-sitting employment. This person is very good and trustworthy with animals (both dogs and cats and probably some others). Thank you.

You can also read a powerful tale of my friend's journey of faith on the same blog.

Again, thank you.

July 7: birthday of Marc Chagall (and of beloved nephew)

Today is the birthday of the Russian-French painter Marc Chagall, one of my favorite artists.

I have a small lithograph of the above in my study. (Back in the 1970s, you could find 'em cheap in a French art magazine called Derrière le Mirroir.)

Chagall is not all flowers and flights of fancy. The painting below, "White Crucifixion," was occasioned by his reflection on the Shoah (Holocaust) and the decades of persecution and pogroms suffered by Chagall's Jewish neighbors and kin in his native Russia.

One also wonders whether the story of the Jewish artist in Chaim Potok's My Name is Asher Lev (am I remembering the right book?) and his use of crucifixion as a symbol in his painting was in any way inspired by Potok's viewing of this painting. Just a speculation, but it's possible.

Today is also, by happy coincidence, the birthday of Nephew the Younger, who is 35 years old!

(Brother of Acts of Hope, father of Nephew the Elder and Nephew the Younger, is a decade older than his baby sister, Ms. Acts of Hope here, which accounts for the adult nephews.)

Nephew the Younger, to the delight of everyone in the family, is in the wine biz. Alas, he lives in Italy (and is not to be confused with Nephew the Elder, who lives in Portugal) so it's a little hard for Auntie Jane R to bop on over and mooch freebies from him. He is also a cat person and Her Grace Maya Pavlova and I have sent him love and feline vibrations on this auspicious day.

And a couple more...

This next one is part of Chagall's series inspired by the Song of Songs.

More ocean breezes (in memory and imagination)

Blog flashback:

Last year on this date....

Research in Rockport.

Saturday, July 5, 2008

Apologies and a Portugal picture

Compared to last summer, this blog has been really low on the visuals. Too heavy on words, even for my taste. Sorry 'bout that. We'll try to perk things up in the coming weeks.

This is a view of one of the more beautiful parts of Cascais, Portugal, where I won't be going this summer.

Photo courtesy of, whose author went to Cascais during a Summer Portuguese Language Program from Arizona State University. Cascais is a resort and fishing town not very far from Lisbon, the capital of Portugal. My elder nephew and his wife and their adorable young Acts of Hope children live near Lisbon.

Summer tunes: Only a Dream in Rio

I put together a series of rather sad tuneful songs, bouncing off Grandmère Mimi's musical offering of earlier this p.m. (dedicated to an unnamed person who probably wasn't me, but you know how Smokey Robinson and the Miracles can grab you in the gut at the right time) and have decided not to post them and instead to post only the feel-good song at the end of the series.

It's "Only a Dream in Rio," by James Taylor, performed in two different videos.

A live concert performance in which JT talks about how he came to write the song.

A less glitzy but equally good and more Afro-Brazilian-influenced performance, also live, but on tv and with Milton Nascimento. Well worth a listen.

I have always loved this song.

No idea why I have Brazil on the brain these days.

In(ter)dependence day links, musings, resources

I am a bit morose, though I was at a lovely July 4 party yesterday and thereafter got a lot of rest and sleep. Things will perk up soon (I hope) when I get down to some writing that has been hanging over my head. I have always been cranky during gestation periods for pieces of writing, since my school days of writing essays in France, but I keep forgetting this. After about three hours of thinking and writing, I shall go and hear Midori play the Brahms Violin Concerto with the Eastern Music Festival Orchestra and the orchestra play Sibelius's Symphony No. 5, which I'm not sure I've ever heard live. Got a freebie from a friend, and the festival's headquarters are right on our campus.

I think part of the morose mood is that I really do not like North Carolina in the summer. Correction: I do not like being in North Carolina in the summer. North Carolina is as rich and friendly as it ever was, but my body is not happy here in the muggy weather, especially after this difficult and stressful year on the job, and this is the longest I've spent here in the summer months since moving here a little under three years ago. Some writing and other projects requiring local resources are keeping me here for much of the summer. Otherwise, I'd be somewhere else. A quick overview of last summer's blogging reminds me that I was in the Bay Area for a month (which I already remember -- every day when I step outdoors) but also that I was in the Boston area for the July 4 holiday, which I had forgotten.

Blog flashback:

Last year on this date...

A July 5 post about the Fourth in Boston, with information on the multiracial Boston Children's Chorus.

Which leads me to admit that I love looking at fireworks but hate the sound of them. They remind me of guns and bombs, and there is no way around it. The sound scares me, as does the sound of firecrackers, near and far. And I haven't even seen combat. My friend JohnieB, however, has, and if you have not already seen his post on why he doesn't enjoy fireworks, have a read. And honor veterans, however you might feel about war. Some of them are proud of their service, others are ashamed, still others have a mix of both feelings, but none return from war unscathed. My father, a decorated World War II Marine veteran (and a gentle, kind, man who has been an advocate for peace for the last several decades) was still having war nightmares a decade or two ago, more than a generation after the fact. For all I know, he may still have them.

Meanwhile, as a present to our troops, the Pentagon has extended the tour of duty in Afghanistan for 2,200 Marines, after declaring that they would come home on time. Kyrie Eleison.

A quick visit to titusonenine, where I don't go much, leads me to tip my summer straw hat in thanks for the link they provide to NPR's reading --with the written text too-- of the Declaration of Independence. (Click on "listen now" once you get to the page.) I re-read the Declaration every July 4, but received it in a new and more powerful way by hearing it this time, while also looking at the words, divided into small paragraphs for closer attention. Whew.

Also nice to hear, while listening, that some people still have good diction. (As a teacher and preacher, I am in despair over the mumbling that passes for speech these days, especially among young people. Oh Godde, that does it, I have officially become a Snooty Old Fuddy-Dud. No wonder I am grumpy.)

My friend Algernon, the Zen Buddhist actor/writer/dharma teacher/new father has a link up to True Patriotism: An Independence Day Reflection," courtesy of The Carpetbagger Report.

For a little July 4 levity, janinsanfran has put up an image that made me chuckle when I saw it yesterday. I sent the link to Beloved and Only Sibling of Acts of Hope, who lives in the country where the original of the sculpture is located.

For more levity with a little seriousness thrown in, the one and only Padre Mickey, hagiographer extraordinaire, brings us the Feast of St. Independence Day.

The Episcopal Café, in its Daily Episcopalian column this weekend, offers a Benedictine-influenced musing on independence and interdepence.

Many years ago, feminists and other peace advocates were taking the opportunity to issue a Declaration of Interdependence on this holiday. There are other such Declarations, too -- more than I realized. They date back at least to 1933 and 1944.

Finally, The Cunning Runt has written a fine letter to his (and my) country, the United States of America.

I think of these United States, of our citizenship, of war and peace, of my far-flung family in the U.S., Italy, Portugal, and Turkey, of my friends-as-family here and in France and other parts of the world, and of the creatures on this fragile earth, our island home. And I think of the earth itself, surviving, it sometimes seems, miraculously, given all that we do to assault and destroy it.

And now that I have procrastinated patriotically for an hour, I am off to a room with no internet connection, to think, read, write, and remember that I am a theologian. Peace to all.

Friday, July 4, 2008

Friday cat blogging, and a message from Max the beagle

Maya Pavlova's favorite perch this summer is the bathroom window, which is higher and smaller than the other windows in the house. She can survey the great outdoors (yes, the window has a screen), catch the breeze, and even nap there. She also greets the guests before they arrive at the door of the house.

Now that she's discovered this perch, she wants to sit there every day and badgers me till I open the window for her so she can jump up there.

Click on photo to enlarge.

In the afternoons, though, she still naps in the study on the low bookcase in front of the window ---prime sunshine spot-- or, less often, on the living room couch. She does not wear her miter when she naps. Every bishop needs a break.

Meanwhile, PeaceBang's dog Max, the beagle puppy, has reported in on his latest adventures. He lives with PeaceBang and with Ermengarde the cat, who is still not entirely pleased with the arrangement.

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Xico on GAFCON in historical perspective - it's not only Brazilian music we like here

Xico, de son vrai nom Francisco de Assis da Silva, has written one of his fine short posts on GAFCON and the Puritan reformers under James I.

Hurrah for historical perspective - and once again, for the church of the Global Center.

I have said privately and I will now say here that historians tend to be far more flexible in church matters than, say, philosophers. There's a reason for that. If you study history, you know the church is a messy and complicated reality. You also know we've been through most of this before, or at least something closely resembling it.

We've featured the writings of Rev. Cônego [the Rev. Canon] Francisco de Assis da Silva (Xico) here before, during our Latin American series of last Christmas season. Xico blogs at Katinho do Rev. He is General Secretary of the Igreja Episcopal Anglicana do Brasil (Episcopal Anglican Church of Brazil, to which dear Luiz belongs).

... The truth is always a search. There is no port where the truth arrived definitely. The truth is born in the wave of the Spirit that moves always challenging our own convictions. The truth is not an idea: it is fundamentally a praxis. Right confession of right comprehension on metaphysical dogmas is not sufficient to guarantee anything! Remember: The word was made flesh! At the place of a FOCA I think we can propose another alternative: AWA - Anglicans who act! ....

Read the whole essay "Confessing or Practicing?" here.