Apr 15 2014

Sandpiper's Thoughts: You Know How When…

Last week I attended a conference.   The keynote speaker told us to use more stories in the work that we do.  That’s not a new idea for me – we use stories all the time in the work we do at the Foundation.  It’s so easy to see the presen…

Permanent link to this article: http://methoblog.com/3_0/2014/04/you-know-how-when/

Apr 15 2014

connexions: Latest foodbank figures ’should shock and anger’ say Churches

900,000 needing to use foodbanks “should shock and anger us”
Figures “should lead Government to examine why the post-Welfare Reform benefits system allows so many people to go hungry.”

Leaders of the Methodist Church, Baptist Union of Great Britain and United Reformed Church have responded with concern to the latest figures from the Trussell Trust, released today.
“These [...]

Permanent link to this article: http://methoblog.com/3_0/2014/04/latest-foodbank-figures-should-shock-and-anger-say-churches/

Apr 15 2014

Pastor Patrick - Never On A Sunday: The Garden Plot – A Review

A Review

A classy cozy mystery starring Pru Parke, a transplant from Dallas, TX, to the English countryside, with the hope of working in the garden estates of the landed gentry.  As the one year deadline she had given herself is coming to an end, she also finds herself wrapped in a murder mystery that may force her to stay in England longer than her finances will allow,

It was a pleasant read as my wife and I celebrated our 40th wedding anniversary on our very first Caribbean cruise.  The visits Pru makes to various English gardens throughout the story added a vacation feel to the book, though the excessive number of rejection letters she received for positions for which she applied or interviewed was a downer.  Perhaps it was bit too much like real life at the start of the 21st century.

In the midst of her part time job Pru discovers a body in shed on the property that served as temporary employment while waiting and hoping for that permanent position that would allow her to remain in England.  It is this murder and Pru’s lack of a permanent position that serve to anchor the story and give a believable quality.  

Though it served as a pleasant vacation read for me, for others it will no doubt serve as a similarly pleasant Spring read (for those in the northern hemisphere) as the days grow longer and the temperature warms up.  

This review is based on a free electronic copy provided by the publisher for the purpose of creating this review.  The opinions expressed are my own.

Permanent link to this article: http://methoblog.com/3_0/2014/04/the-garden-plot-a-review/

Apr 15 2014

All Shall Be Well: Holy Tuesday 2014

Although I had realized this at the beginning of Lent, somehow I had forgotten again until now the fact that the Eastern (Orthodox) and Western (Catholic/Protestant) branches of the Christian family have celebrated Lent at the same time this year, meaning that Holy Week and Easter are being celebrated together by everyone in the Christian […]

Permanent link to this article: http://methoblog.com/3_0/2014/04/holy-tuesday-2014-2/

Apr 15 2014

Enter the Rainbow: A Bewildering Dinner – Maundy Thursday – John 13

It must have been quite a bewildering dinner. It started with him taking a basin of water and a towel, taking off his robe, and kneeling in front of each of them to wash their feet.

Their Rabbi! On his knees to serve his own students! And then, he followed that with an instruction to follow his example.

As if that wasn’t bewildering enough, the very next thing he said was that one of them would betray him. They were stunned!

But instead of wondering how he knew, they wondered to whom he was referring. Apparently they trusted him enough such that they were sure what he was saying was true, but were not confident enough to refrain from harboring selfish thoughts.

Thankfully, he meant Judas. That must have been such a relief! And now Judas was gone, so they could relax again. Maybe even with a snide chuckle and under the breath, “I never really liked Judas, you know.”

But he wasn’t done. Next he told them that he was leaving and that after he went away they must love one another the same way he loved so that people would see that they were his students. And it was Peter who asked the question that was begging to be asked.

“Wait, what? Where are you going?” An honest question, simply gave voice to what the others were thinking.

And then he landed another blow. “You can’t come, Peter. Maybe later, but not now.”

All eyes turned to Peter, who was suddenly very aware of himself.

With a bewildered laugh, Peter asked, “What? What do you mean? I’d lay down my life for you.”

I – would – lay – down – my – life.

“Would you, Peter? Would you?” And he didn’t even really need to go on from there, but he did. “Before morning, you will have pretended not to know me … three different times.”

(And you have the audacity to claim you would lay down YOUR life?)

By this point they must have been utterly numb. The pendulum swings of emotion in these last ten minutes! Jesus Christ!

And so, the very next thing he said was a word of comfort. “Do not let your hearts be troubled.” He saw their bewilderment, he heard their concern, he sensed their worry. And he responded with love.

“Do not let your hearts be troubled,” he said. He knew they wouldn’t lay down their lives for him, but that did not prevent him from laying down his for them.

Which is exactly what he did. It must have been a bewildering dinner.

Permanent link to this article: http://methoblog.com/3_0/2014/04/a-bewildering-dinner-maundy-thursday-john-13/

Apr 15 2014

General Board of Global Ministries: A letter from Northern Europe and Eurasia Central Conference

As unrest in Ukraine continues, United Methodists are urged to pray for peace. Read letter now.

Permanent link to this article: http://methoblog.com/3_0/2014/04/a-letter-from-northern-europe-and-eurasia-central-conference/

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