Monthly Archives: November 2013

Ancient Wisdom: December 1, 2013 (Year A)

(Note: With this post, we begin a three-year journey through the Old Testament readings in the Revised Common.Lectionary.  The previous three-year  cycle of Gospel lessons is archived and is available by tapping the “Holy Gospel” category on the Oboedire blogsite … Continue reading

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First Day (early): Happy New Year!

This Sunday, we begin a new year on the Christian calendar as we celebrate the first Sunday in Advent.  Looking at this as a “beginning” has caused me to think about the future of Oboedire. When I began this blog, … Continue reading

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Ministry Musings: Lectionary Resources

This Sunday, we begin a new three-year Lectionary Cycle.  I want to remind you of two resources that will help you preach and teach mote effectively if you use the Revised Common Lectionary… (1) Ancient Christian Devotional (InterVarsity Press) series … Continue reading

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Let Us Pray: Simple Prayer

St. Therese of Lisieux gave us a great gift in the following words about prayer…. “It’s a mistake to imagine that your prayer won’t be answered unless you’ve prayed something out of a book, some splendid formula of words, specially … Continue reading

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In-Sight: The Aim of the Christian Life

(Note: There is a great need to understand the word “perfection” as used in the Christian faith. A legitimate fear of its pathological expressions has caused many to abandon this rich biblical metaphor. I hope this meditation helps you to … Continue reading

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And Your Daughters: Women in Monasticism

Marcella and Women in Monasticism Monasticism attracted more men than women, but from the earliest centuries women did play important roles in houses of charity. In the early centuries, the houses were loosely formed without a monastic rule or formal … Continue reading

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Listenings: Expanding the Circumference

When I discovered that the word salvation means “wholeness,” my eyes were open to a new way of viewing Jesus’ words and works.  I saw that he was essentially about taking life fragments (of whatever kind) and putting them back … Continue reading

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The Holy Gospel: November 24, 2013 (Year C)

Read:  Luke 23:33-43 Meditation:  “The Great Promise” We end the Christian Year with Jesus’ great promise, “You will be with me.”  The Cross bridges the gap, heals the breach, and ignites the reconciliation.  In every way, we are “saved.”  A … Continue reading

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In-Sight: “The Bible Says”

Larry Kalajainen and I went to seminary together.  In fact, Jeannie and I lived in student housing next door to Larry and his wife, Carol.  Since our graduation in 1973, I have followed from afar Larry’s ministry as a missionary, … Continue reading

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Ministry Musings: Counter-Cultural Ministry

We like to declare that the Gospel is counter-cultural, and thereby God-given and transformative.  Should we not draw the same conclusion about ministry that is rooted in the Gospel? Isn’t our ministry supposed to be counter-cultural. too?  And the most … Continue reading

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In -Sight: Living Liturgy

Liturgy only becomes perfunctory when we read the words rather than pray them.  Liturgy is only superficial when we speak the words without being sure they first pass through our hearts.  Liturgy, rightly used, is a doorway into encounter.    We … Continue reading

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Listenings: A Time for Review

When posts follow a theme for some length of time, it is easy to lose sight of the “grand view.”  Before we move into the third phase of the book, let’s remember where we are. Nouwen viewed the spiritual as … Continue reading

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The Holy Gospel: November 17, 2013 (Year C)

Read:  Luke 21:5-9 Meditation: “Be Prepared!” Jesus’ extended teaching (Luke 21:5-36), which today’s lesson only introduces, can be summed up in two words: be prepared.  Scholars believe Jesus was mixing two events in his discourse—the fall of Jerusalem that would … Continue reading

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In-Sight: The Marvel of Metaphor

The language of scripture is often metaphorical, not literal.  For example, when Jesus tells us to “hate” our fathers and mothers (Luke 14:26), he does not mean it literally.  But he is describing through metaphor a love of God so … Continue reading

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Let Us Pray: Asking “Why?”

Prayer always includes permission to ask, “Why?”  But often the question remains unanswered.  At such times, we cannot continue to search for explanations.  This will only result in incurable frustration and confusion.  Instead, we must turn to Incarnation.  We can … Continue reading

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Ministry Musings: Alternative Lectionaries

I have probably come late to the dance, but I have just discovered there are at least two substantive alternatives to the Revised Common Lectionary…. The African-American Lectionary The Narrative Lectionary Both have commendable features, and if you (like me) … Continue reading

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Gleanings: Living Stones

Good words from Origen about our being a spiritual house…. “All of us who believe in Jesus Christ are said to be “living stones” according to the statement of scripture when it says: “Like living stones be yourselves built into … Continue reading

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Listenings: A Global House of Love

(Note:  there was no plan to write about Nouwen’s views on the worldwide house of love on Veteran’s Day, but I find an interface between the two in doing so) Before ending his thoughts on moving from the house of … Continue reading

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The Holy Gospel: November 10, 2013 (Year C)

Read:  Luke 20: 27-38 Meditation: “Thinking Differently” Jesus not only avoided the trap that the Sadducees were setting, he added a significant insight as he did so–namely, we cannot use earthly categories to interpret heavenly realities. Marriage is one of … Continue reading

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Announcement: My New Book Is Out

I am happy to let you know that my new book, Fresh Wind Blowing, is out and available from the publisher (Wipf and Stock) for a special web price of $9.60.  It is the latest volume in the New Monastic … Continue reading

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In-Sight: A ‘Greater Good’

Our reactions to evil only make sense because somehow, somewhere, and by someone a “greater good” has been placed in us.  In moments of tragedy and suffering, our souls express this “greater good” in a variety of ways… …in anger … Continue reading

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In-Sight: A Holy Partnership

Cardinal John Henry Newman writes in a helpful way regarding the holy partnership between scripture and tradition… “Scripture tells us what to believe, and what to aim at and maintain, but it does not tell us how to do it; … Continue reading

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In-Sight: Singular Attentiveness

This not a commercial for pews, but a reminder of why churches put pews into the sanctuary in the first place.  Simply this:  worship is an “all eyes on God” experience.  We have spent the week with our eyes on … Continue reading

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Listenings: Recurring Formation

(Note:  I am not content to leave meditations on Henri Nouwen’s book unfinished.   But rather than writing them on a set day of the week, I will simply add the “Listening” posts from time to time.  You can trace the … Continue reading

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Ministry Musings: Genuineness

Saint Charles Borromeo (1538-1584) delivered these words to fellow clergy at the last synod he attended…. “Are you in charge of a parish?  If so, do not neglect the parish of your own soul, do not give yourself to others … Continue reading

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Let Us Pray: The Essence of Prayer

We begin to wander off the trail when we make prayer transactional rather than relational.  A request/answer prayer life fails to create the God/human conversation which includes requests, but does not define prayer in terms of them.  Our deepest relationships … Continue reading

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The Holy Gospel: November 3, 2013 (Year C)

Read:  Luke 19:1-10 Meditation: Ready Now! John Wesley believed that everyone is open to God sometimes….no one is open to God all the time… and some people are open to God now.  He was on the lookout for those who … Continue reading

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First Day: Onto the New Path

Hello, Everyone! For now, at least, I am going to continue the monthly “First Day” gathering post.  It gives me an opportunity to communicate things related to the blogsite itself. As you already know, the “new path” for Oboedire is … Continue reading

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In-Sight: For All The Saints

     On this All Saints Day, my mind and heart turn to “the great cloud of witnesses” (Hebrews 12:1).  In particular I am thinking today about Benedict of Nursia, Bernard of Clairvaux, and Francis and Clare of Assisi.  I am drawn … Continue reading

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