A Sermon by Pastor Danny Cortez
New Heart Community Church, La Mirada, CA
This message was given on February 9, 2014.
My response to the Southern Baptist Convention: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/danny-c...
I watched this video last night and found it most helpful in informing my search for understanding about an appropriate Christian response to this subject. Danny's thoughtful, sincere and informative message about his journey and changing understandings is well worth viewing.
Alexander Shaia with his pilgrimmage Compestela
Dr Alexander Shaia who was in New Zealand during 2011-12, is preparing to return to New Zealand from his home in the USA.
Alexander who is a spiritual director, psychotherapist and theologian blessed many in New Zealand during his earlier extended stay. His studies on the Gospels around the theme of Quadratos were at the Centre of his teaching earlier.
After further ministry in the USA this year, Alexander walked the Way of St James - a 600 mile walk from southern France through Spain from September to November. There is a comprehensive pictorial record of this on Alexanders Facebook pages https://www.facebook.com/ashaia I am sure he would be happy to have you as a "friend" if you want to view and digest this - tell him Terry Alve sent you!
My understanding is that Alexander shortly will make another extended stay in NZ and Australia. He will be in Auckland during Easter 2013 conducting a 72 hour retreat. He also wrote in Facebook on Dec. 8th,
Final morning of mything and exploring the Great Tree within and amongst us but especially in our hands. And yes Josie and I are planning now how we may take this work literally around the world beginning with NZ and AU. Consider joining us.
Pray for this man of God as he returns to be among us and consider joining him as he ministers around New Zealand in the next few months. Contact Terry Alve (iCareResources) for more information.
As my last post suggests, I am very appreciative of the fine Catholic lay and religious whom I have had the privilege of knowing over the years.
Indeed, my introduction to Christianity as an adult was gained by regularly attending mass at Our Lady of Victories Church in Sockburn, Christchurch. The depth of community, scholarship and devotion that I have witnessed amongst Catholics is immense. My current spiritual director is a Catholic sister. The teaching of Alexander Shaia has greatly impacted me during the last year. We count amongst our closest friends a Catholic couple who have left the Church to join a protestant one; who are deeply disturbed by some of the hierarchical abuse issues they are witnessing in the Church.
I was prompted to make this post after one of this couple made a Facebook post referring to this article:
From the National Catholic Reporter, it begins:
Tui Motou - the Independent Catholic Magazine - interviewed Alexander Shaia in its June edition.
Interview: The Gospels are texts about individual and community transformation, not a ‘newspaper record’ of the life and times of Jesus of Nazareth. Michael Fitzsimons talks with author Alexander Shaia about how the Great Story is more about the Jesus in us than the Jesus of history.
Alexander Shaia comes to town in late autumn, keen to shed a fresh light on the Great Story of the Gospels that we are so familiar with, in a sense too familiar with. He grew up in Birmingham, Alabama, the third son of Lebanese immigrants and still retains a Semitic outlook.
“I grew up in a Lebanese village, living in the old ways, right in the middle of an industrial city in the American south. The gift of this was to grow up seeing the Christianity of my ancestors, the same as it has been for more than 900 years, brought from a mountain village in Lebanon, recreated in Birmingham. My father’s family is the family of Maronite priests in this village, and nine of our last 11 generations have included priests called Alexander...."
John Murawski - Religion News Service Review of this Book
Christian apologist and theologian Bishop N.T. Wright, "How God Became King: The Forgotten Story of the Gospels," insists that Christianity has got heaven - a blissful realm of harp-strumming angels - all wrong, "An awful lot of ordinary church-going Christians are simply millions of miles away from understanding any of this."
"Our picture (of heaven), which we get from Dante and Michelangelo, particularly of a heaven and a hell, and perhaps of a purgatory as well, simply isn't consistent with what we find in the New Testament," Wright said. "A lot of these images of hellfire and damnation are actually pagan images which the Middle Ages picks up again and kind of wallows in."
This is a place where we can discuss mentoring, ministry and what we have found helpful for sustaining our inner lives and good relationships.