A Pondering: A quick thought or random wondering We must always take sides. Neutrality helps the oppressor, never the victim. Silence encourages the tormentor, never the tormented. Sometimes we must interfere. When human lives are endangered, when human dignity is in jeopardy, national borders and sensitivities become irrelevant. Wherever men or women are persecuted because … Continue reading A Pondering: The middle ground is not sacred
Reading: Genesis 17 "... I will give the entire land to you.... where you now live as a foreigner.... it will be (your descendants) special possession..." It's hard not to read about land in Aotearoa and not reflect on how our ancestors have fought and contested over the whenua. My ancestors read these texts and … Continue reading Reflection: #39 Abraham the Father of colonization / A.J. Hendry
Genesis 11-16 It is hard not to feel uncomfortable by the way women are spoken about and treated within this text. Sarai is reduced by Pharaoh to her beauty, she is used by Abram to gain power and security. Women are mentioned alongside property as the possessions returned to Lot after he is rescued, and … Continue reading Reflection #38: Abram’s oppression and Hagar’s Liberation
Virgin Mary and EveCrayon & pencil drawing by Sr Grace Remington, OCSO© 2005, Sisters of the Mississippi Abbey. Image can be purchased here Reading: Genesis 2-3 I read these passages with my sisters, with those who as a result of what has been written in this text, have suffered at the hands of men who felt … Continue reading Reflection #36: Deathknell for the Patriarchy
Reading: Genesis 1 It can be really easy to be overcome by how messed up this world is. For me at least. Daily, I bear witness to the consequences of some of the worst our society has to offer our people. Its horrendous, and to be honest traumatic. Holding Hope is a constant struggle. Can … Continue reading Reflection #35: Original Goodness / A.J. Hendry
A few months ago I was speaking with a friend who - though is not someone who identifies as a Christian herself - loved the liberating message within Jesus' teachings. She spoke about her early memories of being in church as a child and hearing about this Jesus who spoke about giving to the poor, … Continue reading Reflection #34: The God of the Old Testament can seem like an oppressive tyrant. Should we ditch Them?
*note, this piece is part of an ongoing series. The conversation in this blog builds directly upon the conversation prior. If you’re just joining this korero, I would encourage you to start with part one, which you can find here As we round out, I want us to consider whether this is really the hill we … Continue reading Can the Church Accept Gay Marriage? P13: Is this the hill we want to die on?
*note, this piece is part of an ongoing series. The conversation in this blog builds directly upon the conversation prior. If you’re just joining this korero, I would encourage you to start with part one, which you can find here After, a period of listening, learning, and loving, the natural question which will arise is, what … Continue reading Can the Church Accept Gay Marriage? P11: We’ve formed relationships, what next?
Reading: The Book of Acts 10-15 I grew up with a faith that was filled with boundaries, we often discussed, and agonized over who was in and who was out. People who swore, got drunk, went to night clubs, were on shaky ground. Muslims, atheists, liberal Christians (#AnyOneWhoWasntAsConservativeAsMe) and of course, Gay people, were out … Continue reading Reflection #31: So Many Boundaries, Can Anyone Get In? / A.J. Hendry
Reading: The Book of Acts 8-9 What sort of Love would prompt you to sacrifice your life? The Early Followers of the Way were willing to die for an idea, the idea, that the Divine dream was becoming reality in this world, that She had sent Her Son to enter into the messiness of our … Continue reading Reflection #30: Social Transformation’s possible, its just going to cost us
Reading: The Book of Acts 4 "They felt that what was there's was not their own... they shared everything they had... their was no needy people amoung them..." I'm exhausted, and that's the truth. I struggle, with the church, with what it could be, with what it is. We talk a good game, about justice, … Continue reading Reflection #28: Come, Let Us Dream the Dream / A.J. Hendry
Reading: The Book of Acts 3 The man was crippled, he'd given up on healing, he was just out there trying to survive. To beg enough coin to get by, to eat, to live. When he asked those two men for money, he had maybe hoped for a couple of coins flicked his way, he … Continue reading Reflection #27: Where Are the Miracles? / A.J. Hendry
Reading: Luke 24 You know some days I sit down and try and write these, and stop halfway through and start again because I realize I'm not really being honest. Today was one of those days. The honest truth is that I struggled with today's reading. Jesus is alive, hallelujah, praise the Lord. But, you … Continue reading Reflection #24: The Tombs Empty, But the Mangers Full / A.J. Hendry
Reading: Luke 22 Did you think you could stand for Justice and not be crucified? Did you think you could follow the Way of Love and not be beaten? Did you think you could join the resistance, conspire with the Divine, and not be crushed by the Empire? You wanted Liberation, but did you mean … Continue reading Reflection #22: The Powers Always Crash Down / A.J. Hendry
Reading: Luke 21 It's easy to be paralysed by the overwhelming need in the world, to think the world's to big, the injustices to great, that you're to small. But, we all have something to give. When I'm faced with something that I believe needs changing, I look down and ask, what is in my … Continue reading Reflection #21: What do you have to give? / A.J. Hendry
Reading: Luke 20 I happened across a couple of videos today of some Christians with fairly conservative and fundamentalist views talking about a whole range of different topics, sexuality, church, whether Christians should dance in worship (heads up, they shouldn't), it was interesting viewing to say the least. Where I can I try engage with … Continue reading Reflection #20: To Listen Is To Love / A.J. Hendry
Reading: Luke 19 "The people were displeased... 'He has gone to be the guest of a notorious sinner," they grumbled. Meanwhile, Zacchaeus stood before the Lord..." A couple of things stood out to me today. One is the response of the people to Jesus' acceptance of Zacchaeus. I actually get it, Jesus is the Liberator, … Continue reading Reflection #19: The Cost
Reading: Luke 18 The story of the Rich Young Ruler is the story of the white western Christian. Coming to Jesus' with all sincerity and passion "what must I do to be saved?" they ask. They have kept the moral law, they seek to live a good life, they go to church every Sunday, pray … Continue reading Reflection #18: Total Allegiance / A.J. Hendry
Reading: Luke 17 "The Kingdom of God will not be detected visibly..." Today, I have no hope. The Divine Dream seems like just that, a dream. A figment of an idealists imagination, an impossibility in a world where dreams just don't come true. My body aches for Justice, my soul joins the Divine Scream in … Continue reading Reflection #17: Today I have no Hope – A Lament / A.J. Hendry
Reading: Luke 16 It strikes me how aggressively Jesus goes after wealth and the accumulation of it. You cannot serve both God and money. As a citizen of the Western Empire His critique of wealth and the pursuit of material things is unsettling. Our society pushes us to take, to gain, to consume, we are … Continue reading Reflection #16: When We ignore the poor, we risk our soul / A.J. Hendry