Monthly Archives: March 2017

Still More John Donne for John Donne Day: on the Awfulness of Hell

 

When all is done, the hell of hells, the torment of torments, is the everlasting absence of God, and the everlasting impossibility of returning to his presence…to fall out of the hands of the living God, is a horror beyond our expression, beyond our imagination…. What Tophet is not Paradise, what Brimstone is not Amber, what gnashing is not a comfort, what gnawing of the worme is not a tickling, what torment is not a marriage bed to this damnation, to be secluded eternally, eternally, eternally from the sight of God?

–From a sermon to the Earl of Carlisle in 1622

Posted in Church History, Eschatology

More John Donne for his Feast Day–from a sermon at Christmas in 1624

I can bring it so neare; but onely the worthy hearer, and the worthy receiver, can call this Lord this Jesus, this Christ, Immanuel God with us; onely that virgin soule, devirginated in the blood of Adam but restored in the blood of the Lambe hath this Ecce, this testimony, this assurance, that God is with him; they that have this Ecce, this testimony, in a rectified conscience, are Godfathers to this child Jesus and may call him Immanuel God with us for as no man can deceive God, so God can deceive no man; God cannot live in the darke himself neither can he leave those who are his in the darke: If he be with thee he will make thee see that he is with thee and never goe out of thy sight, till he have brought thee, where thou canst never goe out of his.

–John Donne (1572-1631), Preached at St. Pauls, upon Christmas Day, in the Evening, 1624

Posted in Christmas, Church History, Preaching / Homiletics

John Donne on his Feast Day–Easter Faith that Sustains

If I had a Son in Court, or married a daughter into a plentifull Fortune, I were satisfied for that son or that daughter. Shall I not be so, when the King of Heaven hath taken that sone to himselfe, and married himselfe to that daughter, for ever? I spend none of my Faith, I exercise none of my Hope, in this, that I shall have my dead raised to life againe. This is the faith that sustains me, when I lose by the death of others, and we, are now all in one Church, and at the resurrection, shall be all in one Quire.

–John Donne (1572-1631) (my emphasis)

Posted in Eschatology

John Donne’s Batter My Heart for his Feast Day

Batter my heart, three-person’d God, for you
As yet but knock, breathe, shine, and seek to mend;
That I may rise and stand, o’erthrow me, and bend
Your force to break, blow, burn, and make me new.
I, like an usurp’d town to’another due,
Labor to’admit you, but oh, to no end;
Reason, your viceroy in me, me should defend,
But is captiv’d, and proves weak or untrue.
Yet dearly’I love you, and would be lov’d fain,
But am betroth’d unto your enemy;
Divorce me,’untie or break that knot again,
Take me to you, imprison me, for I,
Except you’enthrall me, never shall be free,
Nor ever chaste, except you ravish me.

–Holy Sonnet XIV

Posted in Poetry & Literature

A Prayer for the Feast Day of John Donne

Almighty God, the root and fountain of all being: Open our eyes to see, with thy servant John Donne, that whatsoever hath any being is a mirror in which we may behold thee; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.

Posted in Church History, Spirituality/Prayer

A Prayer to Begin the Day from William Bright

O Eternal Light, illuminate us; O eternal Power, strengthen us; O eternal Wisdom, instruct us; O eternal Mercy, have pity upon us; and grant us with all our hearts and minds to seek thy face, and to love thy name; through Jesus Christ our Lord.

Posted in Spirituality/Prayer

From the Morning Scripture Readings

O come, let us worship and bow down, let us kneel before the LORD, our Maker! For he is our God, and we are the people of his pasture, and the sheep of his hand. O that today you would hearken to his voice!

–Psalm 95:6-7

Posted in Theology: Scripture

(Christian Today) After months of silence, bells at York Minster will ring out the joy of the Resurrection this Easter

After months of silence, the bells of York Minster will sound out the joy of Christ’s Resurrection on Easter Sunday.

Volunteer ringers have offered to help out in the belfry for the most important Christian church service of the year.

The Minster is trying to recruit a salaried head or captain of the Bell Tower to find and lead a new team of volunteers, after the last team of 30 ringers was sacked. The former ringers will be welcome to apply to join the new team.

The row last October centred around ‘safeguarding issues’ with a member of the team. The team member concerned has never been convicted of any offence.

Read it all.

Posted in Church of England (CoE), Easter, Liturgy, Music, Worship, Parish Ministry

Archbishops Justin Welby and John Sentamu to attend Spring Harvest

The Archbishops of both Canterbury and York, the Most Revds Justin Welby and Dr John Sentamu, will be joining those attending this year’s Spring Harvest.

Archbishop Justin will be at the Butlins resort in Minehead on Palm Sunday 9 April and Archbishop Sentamu will be in Skegness on Tuesday 11 April. The title of Spring Harvest this year is ‘One for All’ and the theme of the event is ‘Unity’. Both Archbishops are known for their concern on this issue, with Justin Welby in particular popularising the concept of ‘good disagreement’ – how to disagree without being disagreeable; being gracious without compromising and the Archbishop of York on ‘how to disagree Christianly’.

Read it all.

Posted in --Justin Welby, Archbishop of Canterbury, Archbishop of York John Sentamu, Church of England (CoE), England / UK, Religion & Culture

Leaving on a Jet Plane

On a personal note, my wife Elizabeth kindly got me tickets to this Saturday’s Manchester United game (a surprise for my birthday). Since I have never been to Old Trafford, this is a big deal for me. My son Nathaniel is coming to meet me and today we fly to the UK for a little over a week. Blogging will be catch and catch can during that period–KSH.

Posted in * By Kendall, England / UK, Harmon Family, Sports, Travel

(ACNS) Conference, hosted in Jerusalem, links up theologians from around the globe via the internet

A three day conference of international theologians has taken place – with the organisers in Jerusalem but the participants taking part via the internet.The intercontinental webinar of theologians from the global south was hosted from St George’s College and funded by the Saint Augustine’s Foundation.

It was led by Bishop Graham Kings, Mission Theologian in the Anglican Communion and Dr Muthuraj Swamy, Associate Professor in Theology & Religion in Pune, India.

Theologians from the Middle East, Nigeria, Myanmar, South Sudan, Egypt, Brazil and Tokyo were among those joining the link up. They had all prepared papers on reconciliation and mission which will go towards a book on that theme ahead of the next Lambeth Conference in 2020.

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Blogging & the Internet, Globalization, Religion & Culture, Science & Technology, Theology

(Guardian) The boy who lived: surviving the scars of Nigeria’s Boko Haram insurgency

It is a story repeated in conflicts the world over – one of the innocent people accidentally maimed or killed by casually discarded ordnance. In this case, the culprit was a bomb left behind after a Boko Haram raid.

In north-east Nigeria, where progress to defeat the Islamist militant group is finally becoming apparent, it is a reminder that, even after the violence dissipates, the recovery process will be long and hard.

Two years on from the accident Jonathan, now 14, is back at school but it has not been an easy journey. Following the incident his family relocated from their village to the town of Yola. The move, which meant the youngster could undergo a series of major operations, came at a cost to the family’s farming livelihood.

“Before this incident I was very happy with my mum, we even had a farm and my mum bought a cow,” Jonathan says. “My elder sister got married and went to her husband’s house. There are a lot of things I could do before that I can’t do now, like farming.”

Read it all.

Posted in Children, Nigeria, Terrorism

(Lancashire Telegraph) New Dean gets warm welcome to ‘beautiful town’ of Blackburn

THE new Dean of Blackburn has said he is ‘overjoyed and excited’ after taking up his new role.

Canon Peter Howell-Jones was installed at a service at Blackburn Cathedral on Saturday.

The 55-year-old dad-of-four was previously the Vice-Dean of Chester Cathedral and will succeed The Very Rev Christopher Armstrong.

In his new role, as well as taking overall charge of the cathedral, the Very Rev Howell-Jones will be a key member of the Diocesan Bishop’s Leadership Team.

Read it all.

Posted in Church of England (CoE), Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry

Restaurant workers in Denver are asking: Why work in a stressful kitchen when you can make $22 an hour in a Pot greenhouse?

It’s hard to think of an American city that isn’t experiencing a restaurant boom these days. Put Denver at the top of that list: By some accounts, 30 spots will have opened this spring, including the new Departure Denver, a popular Asian small-plates spot recently transplanted from Portland, Ore., and an outpost of the beloved New York bar, Death & Company on the way.

However, the city is facing a major problem as a result of one of its biggest recent tourism drivers. The pot industry is taking a toll on local restaurant work forces and in some cases, liquor sales. “No one is talking about it,” said Bobby Stuckey, the James Beard award winning co-owner of Frasca Food and Wine in Boulder and the soon-to-open Tavernetta in Denver. “But Colorado’s restaurant labor market is in Defcon 5 right now, because of weed facilities.”

Read it all from Bloomberg.

Posted in Drugs/Drug Addiction, Economy, Labor/Labor Unions/Labor Market, Urban/City Life and Issues

A Prayer to Begin the Day from Leslie Hunter

Eternal God, whose majesty is revealed in mercy: Grant that as we draw near to thee thy truth may set us free from the bondage of our own thoughts and desires, and that as we abide in thee our prayers may be an instrument of thy righteous will; through Jesus Christ our Lord.

Posted in Spirituality/Prayer