>"The Internet Is My Religion"

>I think this is an important video, telling the story about how one man’s faith in God is replaced (to some extent) by the internet.  It’s where religion becomes the interconnectedness of separate individuals working for good.  There are a lot of very Christian themes that come through this talk and I think it’s an important video to watch.

It might make you tear up.

It might make you want to tell him all about Jesus.

It might make you wonder where the church is in the story.

It might help you see technology in a new way.

You might just agree with everything he says.

(Also, know that you might be asked to offer up an email address in order to watch more than about five minutes of it.)

HT/Matthew Paul Turner

http://cdn.livestream.com/embed/pdf2011?layout=4&clip=pla_8a026681-a944-4459-a735-6ff526f72b5a&autoplay=false

Watch live streaming video from pdf2011 at livestream.com
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>Stanley Hauerwas — US is More Secular than Britain

>Stanley Hauerwas lecturing on Friday morning i...Image by Jordon via Flickr

 Stanley Hauerwas has an article in The Guardian this weekend where he addresses the professed atheism of Ed Millband, the leader of the Labour Party in Britain.  Some hold this up as an example of how much more secular Britain is than the US.  After all, people in the US can’t imagine what it would look like to have a professed atheist running for office over here.  It’s assumed that all of our leaders must be Christian or we’ll end up going to hell in a handbasket. 

But, is that really true?  Because England has a atheist party leader does that make them more secular?  Perhaps a lot of that depends on how we view the faith one finds in the US.

Here’s what Stanley Hauerwas has to say:

I am not convinced that the US is more religious than Britain. Even if more people go to church in America, I think the US is a much more secular country than Britain. In Britain, when someone says they do not believe in God, they stop going to church. In the US, many who may have doubts about Christian orthodoxy may continue to go to church. They do so because they assume that a vague god vaguely prayed to is the god that is needed to support family and nation.

Americans do not have to believe in God, because they believe that it is a good thing simply to believe: all they need is a general belief in belief.

And, I would argue, for our leaders, the more vague their belief, the better…

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>So, What is "A Christian Response to the Ground Zero Mosque"?

>Ground Zero, with Google EarthImage by Stijn Vogels via FlickrSarah Cunningham gives her answer in a post called “A Christian Response to the Ground Zero Mosque” over at Q Blog.  I have struggled with this issue, as have many (or all) persons of faith.  This response of Sarah’s resonated with me. 

I’ve been encouraging Americans, particularly people of faith, to make a purposeful attempt to pump love and grace into our culture rather than to add to volatile or antagonistic attitudes that could fuel further violence as it escalates. Does this mean I am abandoning my spiritual or moral positions in favor of relativism? Absolutely not. I do not pretend that I see the Muslim faith and Christian faith as compatible and I do not rescind that I believe the best hope for healing in our communities is found solely in the way of Christ. Political correctness aside, I am not ashamed to say this.

(Thanks to DashHouse for this.)

I have always thought, along with, I think, Mother Teresa, that “There is no way to peace.  Peace is the way.”  I think that phrase can be shifted to say, “There is no way to love.  Love is the way.”  Or, “There is no way to grace.  Grace is the way.”  When I am questioned about our food pantry and whether or not we are giving this or that family too much, my response is that “I would rather err on the side of giving too much than too little.”

I DO NOT and WILL NOT diminish or lessen or make light of the loss of life on 9/11.  It was a horrible attack by a group of persons…killers.  Those killers were Muslim.  But that doesn’t make all Muslims killers any more than Christians who kill abortion doctors making all Christians killers.
I’m actually not saying here that there should be a mosque near Ground Zero as is being planned at this time.  I’m merely saying that we need to approach this issue on a basis of what response from the Christian community brings grace and wholeness to the conversation while being honest about our characterizations (and mis-characterizations) of the Islamic faith and our own baggage that we bring to the table.  We can do so without abandoning our faith in the process.  More importantly, perhaps it is by doing so that we are most clearly embracing our faith.

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