Tuesday, June 14, 2005

God is a Republicrat! or maybe a Demublican!

I'm continually impressed with the Emerging Church movement. My latest exposure is Jim Wallis' "God's Politics": Why the Right is Wrong and the Left Doesnt Get it. I think it's a very consistent and faithful expose on how many groups are failing to take a consistent stand for Jesus on both sides of the political spectrum while also acknowledging that there are good reasons why more are leaning right than left. In particular I like when he was discussing television depravity and he says

He's dead on in his assertion of why so many who have some hangups still join the far right. They're not all trying to take over the world, but they share a deep seeded fear of a society without standards of decency and without limits, and the right at least takes a stand for values and traditions. While there may be an unacceptable amount of baggage that accompanies this choice, it still has to be acknowledged that building up all Republicans as hateful heartless bastards who just want more money for the rich is... a Straw Man at best.

Friday, June 10, 2005

showdown and my Laotian pimp

I was at the Laotian Buddhist temple yesterday in support of the monks who are facing legal problems with some local Thai's who want to make the temple become a Thai temple. The temple is the focal point of the Buddhist Thai and Laotian communities in my hometown. So I was there to bolster its confidence, visit with the monks, break bread with them etc - ahhh, the ambiguities of life.

As one of the very few young guys there (kids, old men, and women of all ages, but no young asian males - too machismo) I was very well fed. I do miss home cooked spicy larb and curry. There was also some well spiced deer one of the hunter had brought in. Overall a bit of a hit to the diet, but I hadn't had sticky rice and curry deer in sooo long.

There was no immediate showdown since the other folk didn't show up with their lawer and instead said they'd be there in 10 more days. Sigh, dunno if I'll have to go keep vigil again or not.

My friend Vong's mom was telling me that she'd just gotten back from Laos and that her niece was prime age to get married, and she'd thought of me. haha. She's funny. I asked if her niece was rich and she said "no, but she's cute!".

Works for me. If she's as cute as her cousins count me in. Of course being a priest married to a Laotian Buddhist might not be ideal for the community, but who knows.

Another thing that's been really funny (I can tell the coming of age), more and more people are getting impatient with my seeming disinterest in women. Of course there are so many issues here that are not obvious to the outside ovserver (readers included), but overall it comes down to one overriding factor - I just haven't met a person I can't live without. Unfortuantely I am not 'romantic', but in the classic sense I think I do count as a Romantic - of the hopeless variety. It's not a good combo for practical things.

Of course all of this leads to some interesting situations. For example, many local catholics definately think I should just go the celibate route. After all - why not!??! Psht. I'm a little too Protestant born for that. Then there's the other side of the fence - parents who's like to have grandkids before they pass away. Sigh. Ya just can't aim to please.

In any case, I'm getting on track with a few bumps and bruises with my educational stuff. First class in Wednesday. I've visited the hospital and have to begin a long and grueling series of paperwork before that can come to fruition. Tommorrow I hope to continue my D&D with the Fayetteville homies. I do miss role playing, and it's been a blast thus far. Well.. I'll try and be a little more interesting next time. Right now I'm rather scatterbrained and sister "needs" the comp ("needs" always has to be quotation marked at that age group).

11-17 year old girls are just not an interesting age group. Just old enough to have attitude, just young enough to be completely unproductive. But that's another story.

Thursday, June 02, 2005


Brian Turner over at the ooze has written an excellent blurb on being "authentic" while remaining repentant. Check it out here. We certainly need continual balance training in our walk of faith.

Wednesday, June 01, 2005

This is ground control to Major Tom

Back in the Fort. Looks like I A'd it up except for Greek (but we all knew that was coming).

Well what's on the slate this summer? Between getting in my hospital chaplaincy hours and teaching a couple of classes... as well as keeping up with some Greek and starting on my GRE study, I should be a busy little bee.

Arkansas is beautiful this time of year as it always is, although I forgot being up in NY how smotheringly humid it is in the south. When I exited the place (for the third time.. dad's frugal planning means that a few bucks > my time) I took a nice big wiff of the air and was shocked back into remembering what it's like to breath water vapor. When you live in it you don't notice.

My health kick has gotten off to a glorious beginning. I'm minus 6 pounds and I've still managed to regain some lost strength at the same time.

As for my classes - I'll be doing a class here in the Fort that I'm titling "Developing the Scriptural Mind". It's essentially a class on how to read the Bible as salvific literature, making the connections between OT and NT themes, putting together prophetic points, etc. In Fayetteville (travelling up once a month) I'll be doing a class on the historical Jesus and the limits of historical questioning using Luke Timothy Johnson's book The Real Jesus as a source text.

That's all for now, back to work.