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Welcome to 2013. I’m still trying to forget that work starts again on Monday. Hope you’re adjusting ok.

What a legend!

Elizabeth Coleman, an 82 year old lady, has started a farm to take in ex-prisoners. It’s to give them a base, a safe environment, love, support and respect while they re-establish themselves. She believes in second chances, no matter what you’ve done. She wants to expand the work too. She knows Jesus.

Radio National Freedom. It’s worth listening to the podcast just to hear her gentle 82-year old voice speak with such passion.

On violence against women

Swati Parashar Where are the feminists to defend Indian women?

The lack of self-reflection among feminists is profound these days. The inability to empathise is astounding and the mimicry of the mainstream is becoming the norm rather than the exception.

We are obsessed as feminist academics and activists about where we publish, how we are seen, what we speak and where we stand, who notices us and who we speak for. We are concerned about whether what we say looks good on our CVs or in our public persona, whether we are on the side of the ‘progressives’, whether our politics is popular.

Saying unpopular things or taking radical positions is no longer fashionable or desirable. The comfort of the’ ivory tower’ from where we preach is good enough. Our job is done as soon as we have made the judgement of where we want to be seen/to belong…

John Piper has clarified his previous statements on domestic violence and abuse, explaining that women should also submit to civil authorities (which may mean calling the police).

On welcoming

Jon Acuff I wish every church said what this church says in their bulletin

We extend a special welcome to those who are single, married, divorced, gay, filthy rich, dirt poor, yo no habla Ingles. We extend a special welcome to those who are crying new-borns, skinny as a rail or could afford to lose a few pounds…

On guns

Jeffrey Bishop The Massacre of the Holy Innocents; who is responsible for Newtown?

Garry Mills Our Moloch

James Martin More parables for our times: not your grandma’s prince of peace

1. When Jesus saw the crowds, he went up the mountain; and after he sat down, his disciples came to him. Then he began to speak, and taught them, saying: 2. “Blessed are those who know how to defend themselves, for they will be secure. Blessed are those who arm themselves, for they will not be sorry. Blessed are those with one club, for they will be safe. 3. How much more blessed are those with two clubs, for they will be able to win a fight with those with one club. 4. Let the one who has two clubs buy four, and the one who has four buy ten. Let them increase clubs a hundredfold and a thousandfold.”

On language

Francois Grosjean Change of language change of personality?

On monotony and yearning

Michael Spencer Just beyond the 100th time

Today’s secret thought was uttered by a commenter in a recent discussion thread, but it’s the kind of terrible thought that lurks in the minds of many of you reading this post. What terrible, shameful, embarrassing secret thought am I referring to?

‘Frankly, I’m to the point where there isn’t that much a pastor/teacher is going to be able to say that I haven’t heard 100 times already’…

On masculinity and faith

Radio National Men and Faith – ‘how Christian and Jewish men define masculinity today, and how it affects their relationship to power, women and other men.’ I tend to see masculinity as a false god and a harsh master. Though perhaps it’s better to ask the men how they feel about it:

As men, though we desire to be powerful—and I think as all of us perhaps, we desire to have everything under control—I think there are moments in our life when we realise, I am utterly powerless. I mean, at any moment now, I could die. I’m just a puny little thing and we, we recognise that when we go into nature or if we find ourselves amidst a booming thunderstorm. We realise just how small and insignificant we are, and that’s a terrifying thing.

Just speaking from personal experience, I don’t like being out of control. But I think this is the Christian message—you know, if you want to find life, you must lose it, our Lord says. And all we need to do is—I think Catholic men, Christian men—is to look to the symbol of our faith, look to the crucifix. I mean, there we see utter powerlessness. But at the same time we believe that that was the greatest victory, that at that moment, God conquered death itself…

On Les Miserables

Peter Enns Jesus himself would have bought a ticket and waited in a half hour line to see Les Miserables

Morgan Guyton Javert vs Valjean and the two Christianities of Les Miserables

Nathan Newman The enduring radicalism of Les Miserables

On beer and history

Koen Deconinck How beer created the state of Belgium

On women giving sermons and women in ministry

Michael Bird Women in Ministry Blitz begins

Luke Collings Gender and Ministry: Why John Dickson is wrong about women and preaching – make sure you read Dickson’s comments too.

I’m sure there’ll be more to come soon on this one.

On homelessness

Toby Hall Safe in their big houses, Australians are blind to the plight of street people

and for the single parents now on newstart

Thank you firstdogonthemoon

Newstart

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