Shuck and Jive

Friday, July 20, 2007

Friday Five

Now that I am officially a member of the RevGalBlogPal group, I can play Friday Five! I have envied the Gals for fun little games like this. When I went to seminary ages ago during the Bush I regime, every Friday we would have what the seminary called "precepts." The big class like Theology 101 would break into small groups for discussion of some arcane point. Folks would be so into it and passionate about their theological viewpoints. But I knew that under these viewpoints was a story. I kept asking why do you feel that way? What is your story? Seldom did we get to the story. We deceived ourselves into thinking our personal stories were unimportant in comparison to "objective theological truth." As such, we were always on the surface, arguing over symbols without doing the deeper work of discovering how these symbols impacted us.

The RevGals are better at it in general than the RevBoys in getting to the story behind the theology. That has to do with being vulnerable, sharing your faith not your theology, and getting to know one another as human beings! The Friday Five is one such vehicle. So I am going to play with the girls today. My responses to the questions are in blue. This is a post by Sally:

When I began work here at Downham Market a wise friend told me that after one year I would see a few changes and sense God at work- years two and three would cause me to question and to wonder why I had chosen to accept the post here and in year four I might see the beginnings of something new.

And so with that in mind alongside yesterday's celebrations I bring you Friday 5 Looking back, looking forward..

1. Share a moment/ time of real encouragement in your journey of faith.

There have been many. The most encouraging moments are when people are truly helped in some way or another. It is the relationship with the individual that makes it worthwhile to me.

2. Do you have a current vision / dream for your work/ family/ministry?

My vision for my work as a pastor at this little tree-hugging church in the woods is to continue to be an oasis for those who are looking for a different approach to Christianity and spirituality than what they usually find. My vision is for a community that celebrates each other despite many differences, finds space and encouragement to grow as individuals, and works and plays together for peace and justice. Thankfully, this congregation has had this vision before me. My dream for my family is that each finds their passion and the courage to pursue it.

3.Money is no object and so you will.....

Travel, travel, travel. Not touristy travel, but real travel to see real people. Also, if money were no object I would pursue a doctoral degree in early Christian origins. And, I would take off a year and write a book. And become an astronaut, and cure AIDS.

4. How do you see your way through the disappointments? What keeps you going?

I try to be lighthearted. I try to remember that this is my one chance at this life and that whatever I experience, this too shall pass.

5. How important are your roots?

About ten years ago, for my parents 50th wedding anniversary, I put together a genealogical book of our roots. It was fascinating. I saw a lot of myself in ancestors that I had never known before. My father's grandfather, whom none of us knew, came alive for me. He was a Civil War Veteran, who fought with his brother for four years in such battles as Antietam and Gettysburg. After the war he went to law school, and moved his family out West, settling in Minnesota where he edited a newspaper. It was so cool to read his articles in the Mantorville Express in the 1880s. He was a great writer, thinker, and community leader. He was a Presbyterian who helped found several churches. Through him I found my Presbyterian roots.

6. Bonus= what would you like to add?

Life is good, short, precious, and a miracle. I try not to let my fears keep me from living it.


  1. excellent first Friday Five!!!

    I enjoyed reading your answers and your pre-amble about joining in with revgals.

    Hope you get to pursue that Doctorate someday.

    Peace and blessings.

    Sally :-)

  2. Welcome to the ring! Great play. I appreciate your visions of peace and justice!


  3. Okay, so those are some roots! Welcome!

  4. I looooooove your blog. And your Friday Five. Congrats on being at at tree hugging PCUSA church..and for a wonderfully progressive site, with so many resources. I used to be Presby, and enjoyed wonderful roots there...but am more at home now in UCC...where I can be fully and faithfully me and married to my beloved, without fear. Thank you for your all of your work...and insights. Very cool.

  5. John,

    **Life is good, short, precious, and a miracle. I try not to let my fears keep me from living it.**

    Amen to that. I'm sometimes asked what I would say if facing God when/if God can be faced in such a way, and God asks, "What did you do with your life?"

    I think the best answer would be: "I lived it."

  6. I think this a fun game and I dig your answers to the questions. I think your vision for the people is a good and I still hope you the best in the journey.

    Oddly enough, in the 1880's a lot of my ancestors were signing treaties in Canada with the Federal Gov't here - not as cool as tradition as writing for a paper.

  7. Wonderful first friday five! Welcome to the revgals ring!

  8. thanks for sharing and yes, welcome! I like your reflections about your roots. My parents celebrated 50 last year. and I went to sem during Bush I too.

  9. Welcome! Glad to have you play the Friday Five with the RevGals!

  10. Well played, and I would enjoy being part of a "tree-hugging church!"

  11. Wow! Thanks to all of you and for the warm welcome! Now I have some more great blogs to check out!


  12. Love that tree-hugging image, too!

  13. Thanks you for being part of this ring ... for opening reflections and great play. Welcome!

  14. Thanks again, all of you! What a nice welcome! So glad to be part of it!

  15. I think it is great that were accepted into the blog ring, so for that reason I hate to put a damper on the celebration, but I just found out today that RevGalBlogPals has kicked someone out of their blog ring because they didn't approve of that person's sex life.

    You can read about it here.

  16. Well pooh!

    I just read MadPriest's comment upon it here.

    Now I know what it feels like for progressive types to join my congregation then learn that our denomination discriminates against gays. I tell them, hang in there anyway. Be the change you want to see.

    Ah, crap...