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ParSal190

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ParSal190 last won the day on September 2 2010

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  1. Unfortunately I think it's even more basic than that, that parts (at least) of America are going back to a state ranging from minimal literacy to outright illiteracy. I'm just starting Karen Armstrong's "The Case For God" and in her introduction she's made a point that while we can read our scriptures for ourselves today, this was not always the case. And I think for many Christians in the West, particularly in America, this may be becoming progressively less and less the case. And yes, reading the Bible can be hard and/or painful if you're marginally literate at best. The Bible is a
  2. Hi Lake Gazer and welcome. I understand the feeling of wondering where you belong. Many of us do. I'm curious about what you mean by "sacrificial based theology" since you seem so worried about serving God in that paradigm. Do you mean serving in a church with conservative theology, which regards Christ only or predominantly as a sacrifice for sin? Or do you mean something else altogether? In any case, blessings on your adventure, including the challenge of your call to ministry, and we're glad you've given us the chance to share it with you.
  3. Sigh. Maybe actually *reading* an OP closely might be helpful... On one hand, at least in America, and as with traditionalist Christians, progressive Christians aren't being routinely imprisoned, tortured, and martyred for their faith. This doesn't mean this couldn't happen, nor that groups like Dominionists aren't actively working to make that happen, or that loudmouths on radio and TV who man or may not get the implications of what they're doing, aren't helping create a climate for that eventually to happen. That said, however, yes, I do think that traditionalist Christians often p
  4. Hi Sharon, and welcome. When I was living in Tennessee I visited WNC several times. It's fearsomely beautiful country. The portion of Pennsylvania where I live now (Metropolitan Philadelphia) is near Appalachia, but much of it is built up even to the mountains, and I hope that's not the case where you live. IIRC it wasn't that way years ago when last I was there. Look forward to your continuing presence here.
  5. It's a good thing you clarified that, David--and that I caught it in time to edit an earlier post here to correct my misunderstanding--because that original comment did not sound whimsical to me. Albeit perhaps for different reasons, I abhor "prosperity theology" and the like as badly as you do. And I would not have taken kindly to your lumping Joseph in with such people like, originally, I thought you had. I don't always agree with Joseph, but he is a good soul and has often been of help to me since I came here.
  6. How exactly do you define persecution, David? I mean, seriously. Or perhaps to word the question more accurately, what all does the term "persecution" encompass for you? Because in America I really don't see Christians, at least not fundamentalist or other traditionalist ones, hiding in fear of their lives or in fear of being jailed or tortured, or routinely at risk of losing their jobs, SPECIFICALLY for being the kind of Christian they are. Now *I* sometimes wonder if some yokel isn't going to walk into any church I'm likely to attend, and shoot us up solely and specifically for havi
  7. Probably at least part of it is that, right or wrong, too much is invested in our Bible as it is. Why, for that matter, don't we have the Didache or the Gospel of Thomas in our canon (or for that matter why don't most Protestants accept the Apocrypha as canonical)? Because somebody decided it was not useful to most Christian faith communities of the period, and/or was politically inconvenient. This isn't just a problem for fundamentalists and other traditionalists either. Jesus ben Sirach, for example, wrote some nice things but if I were female, I'd probably seriously recoil at several pa
  8. Hi, SaintJK: For me. it's like an old devotional story called "Footprints," which you may have run across. Honestly, the story as written is too mawkish for me to quote in full; but nonetheless the basic idea--that God carries us always, and particularly when and where we absolutely cannot walk for ourselves, has become very powerful to me over the last several years. As such, no, I don't think you have to stop altogether an habitual sin to start (or continue) a relationship with God. Yes, there are Scripture verses here and there that seem to indicate that this is the case. The
  9. Hi Nancy, and welcome aboard. Thank you particularly for your kind comments on the "Afterlife" thread.
  10. I've not read very much Walter Wink, but I am glad you are aboard. Welcome.
  11. We all do, man, we all do. Welcome aboard.
  12. Hi again annalisa and welcome again. Before I really start with the post I'd note that there is a Unitarian Universalist Christian Fellowship, and post the link here: http://www.uuchristian.org/[/u]"]http://www.uuchristian.org/, in case you might find the resources helpful. I've only given their site a cursory glance, though, literally Googled it right now having remembered the organization, and while they seem like a progressive group I'm not entirely certain about their agenda, so use with care. It is worth bearing in mind that Unitarianism started out as a dissident Christian group that,
  13. Hi and welcome aboard annalisa. I think similarly to Joseph that the path chooses us, but that it has forks that allow us at least some choice. I wish you well and look forward to your participation here.
  14. I did tonight, as well as some progressive Baptist resources (including congregation lists) I remember from my Baptist days.
  15. Hi again everybody. I guess this could be construed as a prayer request also. Anyway, In addition to this forum I've also started posting on a "Liberal Christians" subforum at christianforms.com. Since this is part of a larger and mostly more conservative forum, we're not immune to drivebys from fundamentalists. A few days ago, a young Baptist woman (age 19) posted there about her struggles with a growing sense of alienation from her current church. Though the real kicker for her is having GLBT friends and trying to reconcile supporting them with her church traditions, she's also find
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