A Spirituality blog from our Community

Posts tagged ‘Community’

Another Thought for the Week 10/06/2012

From Miroslav Matavka, Chaplaincy Assistant:

This week I went for a short trip to Munich, the capital city of the Free State of Bavaria, which is the largest and oldest state in the Federal Republic of Germany, and also the most Catholic one. (more…)

Thought for the Week 11/06/2012

The first rule of being Queen of England is never misplacing your trusty bumbershoot.

From Peter Hardy, Chaplaincy Assistant:

When in last week’s edition of The Tablet I read at least a couple of letters lamenting -tongue in cheek- that republicans would be miserable over the Jubilee bank holiday weekend this came as news to me. Not only had this republican very much enjoyed attending a massive street party (with the most food I’d ever seen in one place), but somehow I was captured as (a very small) part of the celebrating crowd in the local paper, ITV regional news and BBC national news! I was aware of irony here, but not, I don’t think, hypocrisy. Republicans certainly do not hate the Queen and for the most part appreciate her life of service for this country- we simply do not approve of the a central part of the fabric of the state being the institution of the monarchy.

What was truly significant, however, was the rare opportunity this holiday provided for communities to come together and express our shared identity. I was reminded of something that Desmond Tutu (as an Anglican archbishop presumably a royalist!) said in his native South Africa a few years ago: “One of the sayings in our country is ‘Ubuntu’- the essence of being human. Ubuntu speaks particularly about the fact that you can’t exist as a human being in isolation. It speaks about our interconnectedness. You can’t be human all by yourself, and when you have this quality -Ubuntu- you are known for your generosity. We think of ourselves far too frequently as just individuals, separated from one another, whereas you are connected and what you do affects the whole World. When you do well, it spreads out; it is for the whole of humanity.”

Still, a theme running through the Gospels is that we are sometimes made to feel like an outsider from our community, and it strikes me there is a parallel with religion here. Just as one doesn’t have to approve of the monarchy to enjoy royal celebrations, one doesn’t have to believe in God to receive the benefits of being religious. A number of recent books evincing a trend which Alain de Botton has dubbed ‘Atheism 2.0’ has made this clear, not withstanding the three nastika schools of Indic religion which predate Christianity by many centuries. So in addition to the widespread belief that ‘atheist’ = an immoral person, that ‘atheist’ = a non-religious person is another stereotype we need to break down. (more…)

Thought for the Week 12/03/2012

From Libby Holderness, Chaplaincy Administrator:

1 Samuel 16: 7

Do not look at his appearance or at the height of his stature, because I have rejected him; for God sees not as man sees, for man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.”

I’ve been struck by preconceptions a lot recently. There have been many incidents where I’ve thought badly of people based on my personal history and events from the past, which have continued to affect my present. But I’ve discovered that some are unfounded, and need to be rectified. The shifty-looking youths hanging out round the off-licence at night-time making jokes and noise turn out to be the sons of the senior server at church, and are buying cheap lemonade. The scary, big guy with his eyes partially obscured and scruffy clothing is my neighbour. The young lady who is researching options for getting rid of her unborn child is a confused friend of a friend. The fat girl who won a modelling competition, portraying a bad image of unhealthy eating and lack of exercise, has actually done an amazing job at getting so far with her history of mental illness. I’ve been aware of my preconceptions a lot recently and am seeking to amend that.

Thought for the Week 20/02/2012

From Edmund Burke, Quaker Chaplain:

Last Saturday, at the Friends Meeting House, Ruth and I, with some others, met Dr Inderjit Bhogal, the new leader of the Corrymeela Community. This, briefly, is an interdenominational group, founded in Northern Ireland in the 1960s, to promote mutual understanding and tolerance between the Catholic and Protestant elements, historically at odds with each other (more…)

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“Great opportunities to help others seldom come, but small ones surround us every day.” – Sally Koch

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“One cannot think for oneself if one thinks entirely by oneself.” – Alasdair MacIntyre

Christian Creeds

The following are four different Christian creeds to comtemplate. (more…)

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