Theology, evil and forgiveness

Today, I’ve spent some time ‘nesting’ pages under the heading theology, and included two of the essays that I have written during the course of my training.

They feature a couple of really tough subjects – how God can allow evil in his creation, and, if or how forgiveness can be applied in the context of offenders and their victims. Both were really tough to write about, but as I note at the end of the page they’re attached to, they are subjects which are much, much harder to apply into your real life (however you believe it appropriate to do so) than they are to write about.

Feel free to go read, and comment.

On a technical note, one file is attached as an Open Office document, the other as a MS Word document. I will be interested to discover which you find easiest and fastest to down load, as it will colour what I do in future. Thanks.

Technical Questions

OK – so I’ve done a little more work today, so now you can see my face as well as my hat!

What I want to do is have the page currently titled ‘Welcome’ as the first page that is seen when you enter the site, and then have the page currently titled ‘Home’ retitled as ‘Blog’ on the next tab. But I don’t know how to do this, and there might be two problems:

a) I wonder if this can only be set up as you create the site;

b) It might not be possible to do it with this particular template.

It’s just that it’s what I want to do with the MU site once I can get it going, so I’d like to have this designed the same if possible so that when I get folk to come look what’s possible, it’s laid out like I expect to lay out the MU one… if you get my drift.

Great British Garden Bird Watch

Yesterday morning I spent my first tea drinking time of the day sat in the french windows for an hour, doing my bit for the RSPB sats. The idea is to log the maximum number of each species you see at one time, during the course of the hour.

So my list for this year (which I’ve up-loaded to the RSPB) is
1 Greenfinch
2 Robins (both feeding the fat ball feeder – a first for me)
2 Starlings
2 Siskins (a pair)
8 Long Tailed Tits
2 Blue Tits
2 Great Tits
2 Blackbirds (a pair)
3 Chaffinch
1 Blackcap (yeh – a male – still no female seen in the garden)
1 Pigeon
1 Collared Dove
1 Magpie

The birds I didn’t get that I really wanted for the RSPB were the Greater Spotted Woodpecker, Wren and the Goldcrest. Ho hum – I know they’ve been recently, even if the RSPB don’t!

Give Generously

I gave the following sermon at the 11.15am Service on 23rd November 2008 at St. Peter’s Church, Yateley. It was an assessed sermon that formed part of the Preaching module of my Reader Training course. As yet, I’ve not received a final mark for it.

It formed the fifth in a series of sermons relating to the timely theme of ‘Money Revolution’ (how Christians should seek to manage their money in response to what God has revealed of his will in this respect) and referred to 2 Corinthians 8:1-15 and Luke 10:25-37. The notes in italics as you read it, refer to the visual aids I used at the time; I hope they are self explanatory. The text offered below are the opening and closing paragraphs; the full sermon is available here: sermon-givegenerously-23nov082

It would seem that the wheels of the economic wagon haven’t fallen off completely, yet. People are still buying and selling, paying off debts and possibly dreaming of future expenditure when times are better. The wheels are still turning.

The wheel of our ministry here in St. Peter’s is still turning too, and I’ve brought it with me to prove the point…

…God is the distinctively Christian source of our compassion; Jesus’ sacrifice is the image with which we compare our giving to see how distinctive it is; the Holy Spirit forges our partnerships in ministry, enabling God’s purposes to flow through us to those we minister to.

That, and nothing else, is what makes us rich. That is what makes us so abundantly rich, that we, like the Macedonians should be pleading for the privilege of sharing generously in giving and ministry with each other. Our distinctive relationship with God, that we celebrate at Communion, is what gives us the wealth, the strength and the motivation to give generously.

Hello world

Hello world

This experiment aims to do two things:

Firstly to get me used to using WordPress as a Web/Blog tool before using it to create a new website for Mothers’ Union in the Diocese of Winchester – currently we’re out of date and need to do something new and exciting!

Secondly, it would be great to have a more useful Blog than my current LJ, to which I can load all sorts of things that someone, somewhere might find interesting – everything from wildlife photographs to sermons!

My thanks to Alec Muffett for the bright idea of coming here and helping to get me started!

Something therapeutic

There is something very therapeutic about trying to ‘capture’ a little bit of what makes you ‘you’ for the purposes of sharing with anyone with a passing interest in your view on the world.

I’ve just written a ‘page’ about wildlife as it happens, something that I find increasing fascination with as I get older. I found myself feeling slightly poetic – which probably seems daft – and also wistful as I ‘captured’ memories of my past to share with those who weren’t there.

The process was encouragingly simple as far as the future of the Mothers’ Union website is concerned – more than you can so for the its current hosts’ ability to offer me WordPress! Claranet are not doing themselves any favours – their Starter pack, which I first started using at least five years ago I think, hasn’t moved with the times in either features or price! I’m also frustrated that as a charity we’ve recently (like, last week) paid a years subscription, so porting the domain will be un-necessarily expensive. Since they caused the problem by stopping their support of Frontpage, it seems even more daft, as they’ve not upgraded their package in recompense. Ho hum – I shouldn’t have buried my head about the problem for so long. However, in the long term, I think Alec has put me on to something so much better, that I will thank them as I say goodbye!

Here’s a question though – what is a “category” as opposed to a “tag”? How should I name and use them both to best advantage? (OK so that’s two questions!)