Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Bible bashing

Thanks for some comments made in recent days. All thoughtful. At least God knows where the Communion is heading!

Back from the ANZABiblicalStudies conference where the Bible got a bashing, in the best sense of the word: lots of papers with detailed explorations and exegeses of the text. Always interesting to reflect on how much unanimity exists in the world of biblical scholarship: we are united in wanting to study Scripture in depth, bound by unwritten protocols to be polite to each other even as we ask robust questions, and keen as mustard to enjoy our refreshment breaks and annual conference meal!

Coming up on Sunday we have a diocesan ordination service - four to be ordained deacons. I am working on the sermon for that. How to be non-soporific (the opposite is a tendency with academic papers!), non-controversial (not really the occasion to upset people), non-confusing (bound to be some friends and family present who do not quite understand the difference between, say, a deacon and a priest), and non-indulgent (the service is about the laying on of hands, not about the sermon)? Positively, how to speak up for Anglican orders, challenge those ordained to fulfil their calling, and encourage all with confidence in God building the church ...?

7 comments:

Carson Clark said...

Hello. Just came across your blog. Really enjoyed the read. I look forward to future posts. Since you're an evangelical Anglican, I hope you don't mind me telling you about my blog.

I'm an aspiring clergy-writer who's new to the Anglican tradition, and am trying to find Anglican readers. The title of my blog is "Musings of a Hard-Lining Moderate: The assorted thoughts of an evangelical Anglican."

I write about theology, culture, politics, movie/book reviews, pet theories... anything that’s on my mind. Right now I'm doing a series on the doctrine of Scripture, which was prompted by the crisis in the global communion. I also recently wrote a post on the value of the christian calendar.

Anyway, I don't know if you'd be interested, but here's the link: http://bit.ly/dXh2qd. Have a great day.

Grace & Peace,

Carson

Hermano David | Brother Dah • veed said...

Stick to the Good News as you know it Peter and you should be fine.

liturgy said...

The difference between a deacon and a priest? That's simple. Good luck to you explaining the difference between a deacon and a lay person - surely that is the issue in this service more than the one you suggest.

Peter Carrell said...

Thanks for comments! Will look at your blog sometime, Carson.

Difference between priest and deacon is a 'for instance' of a variety of issues I imagine some are confused about (including, perhaps, my own self :) ) ... in order to avoid being soporific I will not tackle all such issues!

Andrew Reid said...

Hi Peter,
God give you grace and wisdom for the ordination sermon. One of the best sermons I ever heard was at an ordination, and one of the worst as well!
The best one I heard was from Col. 1 about how Jesus is both the content and the character of ministry. There was just 1 person being ordained deacon, and the priest he had worked with as youth minister gave the sermon. There was such warmth and joy that someone he had invested in was taking on more ministry responsibility.
The worst one I heard was at St Paul's Cathedral, Melbourne, where the preacher took the opportunity to mourn and wail about how the women being ordained deacon couldn't one day become bishops under current laws. Fair enough if you hold those views, but not really the time or place.

Peter Carrell said...

It's tough these days being an Australian, Andrew, what with the cricket and the sermons ... :)

Anonymous said...

"It's tough these days being an Australian, Andrew, what with the cricket and the sermons ... :)"

Yes, they can sympathize with Peter on the Day of Pentecost, when he stood up with the Eleven and was bowled.

The backsliders will return to St Gregory's Chapel to repent in sackcloth but not with Ashes.

Al M.