Catching Up

As you’ve noticed, I’ve been away for a few days. Popping back to Spring Harvest in Skegness next week to do some more stuff with Andrew Marin, but in the meantime here’s some things that have caught my eye.

Clayboy wrote a magnificent piece on the power of the Resurrection.

A resurrection which does not transform the fleshly dead body of Jesus into whatever exactly is a body fitted for existence beyond the only universe in which we know either bodies and existence – a resurrection which does not transform this stuff-ness of created materiality – is a resurrection entirely at odds with the incarnation. It is escape from this world to another, it is physical existence left behind, it is spirit freed from matter. It is, in short, the fundamental mistake which tempted many early Christians, that the body is a tomb from which we need to escape.

Go and read the rest of it – it’s totally brilliant.

Andrew Goddard has started a history of the LGBT movement in TEC. Heavy reading but really useful stuff.

Oh, and if you hadn’t noticed, the General Election is now formally under way in the UK. More on that to come I’m sure…

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30 Comments on “Catching Up

  1. Thanks for the links Peter. Would it be fair to say that you feel you can't blog in any detail about what was said in the seminar at Spring Harvest? Am wondering if you'd be able to say who else was on the panel, and sketch out what you and other panellists contributed?

    in friendship, Blair

    PS perhaps I should be putting this on Andrew Goddard's blog, but am wondering why he chose to to a history of the LGBT movement within the US Episcopal Church? What about the C of E… am I too cynical in guessing it's too close to home, in all senses?

    • Given that no recording was made it would be unfair to share some of the details. I can tell you that Andrew Marin and myself contributed, as well as a lady who'd come to Spring Harvest with her female partner.

      Two things stood out for me. The first was that the general level of missional awareness in this area is much higher then it was just a few years ago. Most people listening seemed to get the need to think creatively about where our conversation in this area has got us.

      The second was a great quote from Andrew Marin who said something on these lines – "LGBT peeps seem to think that if they produce enough evidence for a gay gene, that suddenly Evangelicals will all cave in and accept homosexuality. That ain't going to happen. Equally, Evangelicals seem to think that if they produce enough 'ex-gays' then suddenly all LGBT peeps will suddenly realise the error of their ways. That ain't going to happen either. Both sides need to realise that we are not going to get any further by beating each other with our own proof-texts".

      Profound.

  2. I also agree with Andrew Marin's observation there. It's spot on. And the logical conclusion is James Jones position, which is actually where the C of E is – despite what some of his fellow bishops try to say.

  3. I do agree with Andrew Marin’s observation there. We have to learn to live with each other – and possibly we might have things to learn from each other. Is there enough humility around for that?

  4. Isn't it a little strange to think that dialogue between the "unchurched" LGBT people and conservatives should be open and generous and elevate matters into real conversation, but that dialogue between Christian LGBT should be closed , hostile – or not even begin?

    Are you SURE Marin's is not talking about dialogue within the Church? I have his book here in front of me, he writes of,
    " the two communities who were trying to prove that their version of Christian was the correct version …(and later) My heart yearned for authentic Christianity – one where people from both communities lived together in a shared belief in Christ amidst the struggle."

    Throughout his book, he seems concerned with promoting respect among Christians with differing views as well as reaching the "unchurched". Anyhow, what would you say when the "unchurched" became the "churched"? ( OK, mate, this is where the respect and genuine dialogue and and you have to think the same as me…)
    My recent post Easter people – when it's all been said and done

    • The context peter presumes also assumes that there can be authentic LGBT Christians – because many of the 'conservative' thinkers are clear that there can be no such thing as a LGBT Christian – hence talk of two religions. This distinction between the church and un-churched is a pretty unclear one. Where is the line? is Mary Glasspool churched or un-churched? Sue's first point is very clear and faithful to the listening process – which of course has never really properly begun.
      And then of course there are LGBT Evangelicals………the boundaries are far too blurred to accept the context that you presume Peter.

  5. Isn't it a little strange to think that dialogue between the "unchurched" LGBT people and conservatives should be open and generous and elevate matters into real conversation, but that dialogue between Christian LGBT should be closed , hostile – or not even begin?

    Are you SURE Marin's is not talking about dialogue within the Church? I have his book here in front of me, he writes of,
    " the two communities who were trying to prove that their version of Christian was the correct version …(and later) My heart yearned for authentic Christianity – one where people from both communities lived together in a shared belief in Christ amidst the struggle."

    Throughout his book, he seems concerned with promoting respect among Christians with differing views as well as reaching the "unchurched". Anyhow, what would you say when the "unchurched" became the "churched"? ( OK, mate, this is where the respect and genuine dialogue and and you have to think the same as me…)
    My recent post Easter people – when it's all been said and done

  6. I don't think it is twisting things. Sue and I have raised some critical questions relating to Marin's approach. Care to answer them Peter?

    • I'm very clear that within the church the question is one of theology. There can only be one correct answer to the question "Is there such a thing as a Christian permanent, faithful, stable same-sex relationship?". Part of what I do here is to explore the theological questions in a manner that is graceful but truthful.

      Andrew Marin's concern is how we do such an exploration in such a manner. If you think that he is suggesting that both sides are right then you have seriously misunderstood where he is coming from.

  7. I do not twist things, Peter!

    Obviously, you were there and I (now) understand that the discussion was just about reaching the unchurched, but I do think Andrew Marin's also applies that approach to those divided over sexuality within the church.

      • How very odd. You clearly said in reply to Sue and me: 'Please stop twisting things.'
        I was not suggesting Marin sees both sides as right. What I did was ask you some specific questions based on your previous post about the 'un-churched'. Here they are again:
        This distinction between the church and un-churched is a pretty unclear one. Where is the line?
        is Mary Glasspool churched or un-churched?
        Sue also had some questions, which you can see above…

        • I clearly said in a reply to you – "Please stop twisting things". I do wish you would actually read carefully what I did and didn't say to whom.

          Mary Glasspool is clearly "churched". That means the debate with her is theological. You have already established for us very clearly that you do not hold to the Church of England's view that "Holy Scripture containeth all things necessary to salvation" and "Wherefore things ordained by them as necessary to salvation have neither strength nor authority, unless it may be declared that they be taken out of holy Scripture.", since you are unable to affirm that the Scriptures in their entirety are revelation from God. Since you don't hold to this view then obviously the theological discussion would be primarily on sources of authority.

          • Alas I think you are twisting things Peter. Your earlier response was very clearly to both sue and me – and we both clearly took is that way.
            What I have clearly established is that Holy Scripture uniquely reveals the faith and that you are quoting an historic formulary.
            And i do wish you'd answer the questions put to you. Where is this line between churched and un-churched that the debate you refer to was about?

            • My first response was so obviously to you Andrew. It was in reply to your comment, not to Sue's. That's the advantage of comment threading – it lets you reply to a specific person.

              • Peter your accusation about twisting concerned Marin's argument in debate as compared to the book. Who raised the issue about his argument in the book first? Sue. Your reply followed my comment, which had followed Sue's. Please re read the thread and you will see how clear that is.
                Would you please answer my question?

                • My reply was to you, not to Sue. It staggers me that you cannot see that. Are you seriously suggesting that a reply down a thread is automatically referring to every single post in that thread?

                  Grow up Andrew.

                    • Sue,

                      If I had intended the comment to be for you I would have done it in reply to your post, not Andrew's. The advantage of this threading system is that it makes it very clear who you are (and are not) responding to.

                  • Peter I really don't think there is any need for such rudeness or petulance, and I feel no need to stoop to your level of personal abuse. Sue clearly interpreted your comment in exactly the same way that I did – because of the content of your comment. I was agreeing with her, and your comment was very obviously referring to something she said.

                    Now, any chance you could (for the third time of asking) answer my question? Where is this magic line between churched and un-churched that the context you refer to hangs on?

                    • Andrew,

                      Please point out where I replied to Sue and asked her to stop twisting my words. It didn't happen. It hasn't happened. You might want to change (twist?) the rules of conversation but I don't. I replied to you and you alone. If I had wanted to accuse Sue of twisting my words I would have done so.

                      The apology that is needed here is from you, for suggesting that I said something about somebody which I didn't do.

                    • Peter you just need to read the thread. I can see it. Sue can see it. Why can't you? Sue was first to respond. Her response came first (even though you have now moved the responses around). I replied (briefly), by basically agreeing with her response. You then put in a bit about context that followed both mine and sue's response – and mine and sue's response had basically been the same.

                      Now, any chance of that answer to the question?

                    • I have not moved any responses around. You are able to sort them yourself by relevance or date using the filters at the top of the comments thread.

                      I'm afraid I'm going to stand by what I said. Please point out where I replied to Sue and asked her to stop twisting my words. It didn't happen. It hasn't happened. Unless you are able to show where I replied to Sue, or to apologise to me for misrepresenting me, I'm afraid this conversation is over.

                    • Peter I'm afraid my browser does not seem to do that on your site.
                      I have no, and no intention of misrepresenting you, and if I did do, I apologise.
                      Now, please would you address the question I put? That's the real issue here!

          • Ah, so not a black and white situation then! So, given that 'it depends' how does Marin's observation that 'both sides need to realise that we are not going to get any further by beating each other with our own proof-texts' work? Does it only work for people who are un-churched (as you suggested)? And who decides who is and who isn't 'churched'?

  8. There was a response, with your picture Peter, in which you said that you were quoting from a conversation, not from the book, and that I should stop twisting things ( as Andrew corroborates.)

    I have never suggested that Andrew Marin says both sides are right – rather that he thinks beyond terms of "sides" or "I'm right/ you're wrong."

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