Thursday, November 29, 2007

Clinging to my Roots....

Now even with all of this, there are still times where something comes out of my mouth that sounds pure rural Indiana, and I don't know if that is due to four years of living here, or having fairly small town Ohio parents. Their accents got stronger when they were mad....

What American accent do you have?
Your Result: The West

Your accent is the lowest common denominator of American speech. Unless you're a SoCal surfer, no one thinks you have an accent. And really, you may not even be from the West at all, you could easily be from Florida or one of those big Southern cities like Dallas or Atlanta.

The Midland
North Central
The Inland North
The South
The Northeast
What American accent do you have?
Quiz Created on GoToQuiz

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Oh Give Thanks for the Carnival!!!

Lutheran Carnival LXIII is up at Barb The Evil Genius's blog! Great job Barb!!! Now would somebody pass the sweet potatoes????

Friday, November 16, 2007

Oh no! Am I that bad????

cash advance

So is this saying that I write at a high school "comprehension level" or that I think I am smarter than the rest of the world?

I choose to put the best construction on it...and no comments from the peanut gallery!

Monday, November 12, 2007

Ponderings on Hillary

Sometimes I just sit aghast, wondering if people remember what having the Clintons in the White House was like?

Does anyone remember their renting out the Lincoln Bedroom; White Water; the Rose Law firm scandals? How all of these things, plus her husband's repeated sexual harassment and affairs brought lawsuits and disgrace to the Office of President? How about how the Clinton Administration trashed the White House before they left? How about all of those pardons that were signed for a price?

How about promises that we would be out of Bosnia in a year (hint, we we weren't...actually, we're still not), our military being put under U.N. authority for the first time in history, The U.S.S. Cole, or promises that Osama Bin Laden would be captured?

In case you want to say that Hillary is better than that, she was the partner at the Rose Law Firm, it was her colleagues that were appointed to key positions, she was the investor in White Water, and despite all of the affairs and the law suits, when she could've ditched the bum she was married to and set off on her own (and when she might have even been more admired for it), yet she has happily remained with our former president, and wants to put him back in the White House. I wonder what kind of "first man" he will make, and what he will choose to do with his time in that role?

I'm not trying to be nasty. But I do remember. It was a national disgrace. In fact, if my son had been born a girl, his name would've been named Monica. And two months after he was born, when that scandal broke, I thanked God that it never happened, because to this day, there is only one thing that comes to mind when simply the first name "Monica" is spoken.

Maybe I shouldn't judge Hillary by these things...however, her staying with him tells me a lot about her morality. I honestly believe that she will ressurrect their previous administration, and reestablish their friends back in their administrative roles. I really don't want to see any of that happen to our country again.

We may have differing positions about our current President, but I am at least glad that the issues are truly political, not about how crooked and untrustworthy the President is, because whether we should be in Iraq is an ideological question, and yes an ethical question, and maybe even one about the failure of government to do its job...but it isn't about whether our President can keep it in his pants, or about whether he will be in jail before all of this is through, and what is his price when it comes to political fundraising and lending out rooms of the White House, or sending members of his own party blushing in shame.

So tell me, does anybody remember what it was like when the Clintons were in office?


My Inner European

Your Inner European is Irish!

Sprited and boisterous!
You drink everyone under the table.
Okay, this one cracks me up, because everyone else's seem to have personality traits. Instead, mine says I drink everyone under the table. Maybe if we are talking Diet Pepsi, but not anything else. Unfortunately, my food and entertainment choices on this quiz both involved beer, which actually, I don't like very much. And by the way, I'm really not very boisterous, either.
But I do love Ireland, would love to go to Ireland, and had a huge crush on an Irish guy when I was eighteen, who had beautiful blue eyes and jet black hair, and an incredibly melodic voice. But that melodic voice kept forgetting to mention he was married (though his behavior kind of indicated it). Oh well, I guess I'll just thank him fostering my love of U2 and Clannad and leave it at that.
Oh well, my American with the green eyes makes Indiana seem more beautiful to me than any Irish coastline could possibly be. It's funny how it is that way wherever we go.

Monday, November 05, 2007

Lutheran Carnival LXII: World Series Edition The Wycliffe Notes on the Reformation

Wow, what a wonderful coincidence that I would be hosting the Lutheran Carnival for both the first week and the last week of the baseball season!!!

Don’t worry, searching for Bill Wambsganss was enough work for me….I just want to tip my hat to the Boston Red Sox because with all the hype (wonderful hype) about Joe Torre going to the Dodgers (woo-hoo) and stuff about A-rod, they barely got noticed in their incredible accomplishment. So congrats to Red Sox fans.

Now, since this also is more than touching on Reformation Day and a lot of the posts submitted have to do with that, I decided to be a good Lutheran and touch on that as well, only it would have to be somewhat rebelliously, of course.

Since we all are reading this in English, (unless you’re using a translator), I decided to see if there could possibly be some great English-speaking theologian around the time of Luther, or who knows, maybe even before Luther and who might have even influenced him a bit....but no dice...couldn't find anybody.

(Hey, how did this History Channel documentary on John Wycliffe end up on my DVR? I’d better erase that to make room for more reruns of "Mythbusters"…no, wait…hmmmm)

Lutheran Carnival: The Wycliffe Notes version

John Wycliffe was born in Ipreswell, Yorkshire, England in the mid 1320’s. Not much is known about his childhood or his early studies, but he came to Merton College, Oxford when he was seventeen (1)(2) (actually, different sources say very different things about this).

In Wycliffe’s day, the people had access to Bible stories through word of mouth, writings, and such things as morality plays, but not to the Bible itself, except in Latin. Church services were in Latin, and the Scripture could only be read by the priests, and was often read silently, with a bell being rung to indicate to the people that the important parts were being read.

But corruption was common in The Roman Catholic Church and even many clergy had been put in place that did not even know Latin, the language of The Church. The Bishop of Gloucester had found that when he surveyed 311 deacons, archdeacons, and clerics that 168 were unable to repeat the Ten Commandments, 31 did not even know where they could be found, and 40 could not even repeat the Lord’s Prayer. Luther later wrote in the Large Catechism about this being the case in Germany as well.

Wycliffe was considered a major philosopher and was also a respected theologian. Wycliffe believed very strongly that the people should have access to the Scriptures in their own tongue. He railed against the corruption in The Church, and maintained “When men talk of The Church, they usually mean priests, monks, canons, and friars. But that should not be so. Whether a hundred popes and all the friars turned to cardinals, their opinions in matters of faith should not be accepted except in so far as they are founded on the Scripture itself.”

So Wycliffe organized the translation of the Bible into English. It is not known how many translators worked with him. Once the Bible was finished, it was transcribed by others. Currently, there are 170 copies of Wycliffe’s Bible in existence; an amazing number for a book 600 years old, especially keeping in mind how many hundreds of them must have been burned when they were declared heretical.

Wycliffe organized a whole new order of itinerant preachers that came to be known as Lollards. They journeyed throughout England, preaching against the corruption in the Church in the streets, the taverns, and anywhere else they could, and reading from the English Bible.

As Luther’s German Bible changed German, Wycliffe’s Bible changed English. Hundreds of new words entered the English vocabulary such as envy, godly, graven, humanity, frying pan, puberty, and many others. But Wycliffe was also very cautious in his translating. He made every attempt to translate word-for-word, thus many Latin words entered into the English language as well such as: emperor, justice, city, cradle, profession, suddenly, angel, multitude, and glorie. He was so careful that the Latin sentence structure was even retained, so there were sentences such as “Lord, go from me for I am a man sinner” and “I forsooth the Lord they God strong and jealous.”(1)

In May of 1872, a Synod met at Blackfriars and two days into the meeting, it was Wycliffe was pronounced a heretic, and that his associates be arrested. Wycliffe became ill and had a stroke which left him paralyzed. He died two years later and was buried in Lutterworth. The Lollards continued their work, and it was even stated that “Every 2nd man is a Lollard, going about converting nobles and the wealthy to their cause. (1)”

Wycliffe is called “The Morning Star of the Reformation,” and his theology is touted as being the closest to Luther’s of all pre-reformation theologians. He stated that there is one Universal church of which no pope could head, he condemned the sale of indulgences; taught predestination; argued against Scholasticism (formation of doctrine by attempting to explain how things such as the Real Presence happen, when the Bible does not give us such information) saying "we concern ourselves with the verities that are, and leave aside the errors which arise from speculation on matters which are not."; that the king is a higher temporal power than any bishop, cardinal, or pope; his later writings declared that he didn’t see much of a difference between the pope and “antichrist ;“ and he confessed justification by faith: "If a man believe in Christ, and make a point of his belief, then the promise that God hath made to come into the land of light shall be given by virtue of Christ, to all men that make this the chief matter.(2)(3)" All common teachings to the Lutheran ear.

Wycliffe’s work went on to directly influence the work of Jan Hus and Martin Luther as well as when his work was re-embraced upon the dawn of the English Reformation.

In 1415, at the Council of Constance, where Jan Hus was condemned and then burned at the stake, the Catholic Church reexamined Wycliffe’s work and even though he was already dead, placed him under papal ban (2). It was ordered that his body be exhumed and burned. The ashes were dumped in to a tributary of the River Avon.

There is a Lollard “prophecy” which states:

Avon to the Seven runs,
The Seven to the sea;
and Wycliffe’s dust shall spread as broad
wide as the waters be.

And so they were.


1. The Adventure of English – The Reformation (History Channel documentary thought I was joking)
2. Wikipedia – John Wycliffe

Now for the Carnival!:

We start off submission by Dan at Necessary Roughness. In The Feast of All Saints, Dan has an interesting take on the invocation of saints and reminds us that we commemorate the dead in Christ for the benefit of the living. Then he shares a post by Gina at Simul Justis et Pecatur called "Day 62: Happy Reformation."

Along the same line, and written by a friend of mine who doesn't know I am submitting this, "Here I Stand, I Can Do No Other" at Random Neural Firings from a real DogMom. She writes about how Luther modeled for us the Christian responsibility of pointing out the errors of our brothers and sisters in Christ, not just to sit there and let it be unspoken. As she puts it "Even if it's family. Even if it hurts. Even if we don't like it." She effectively conveys how difficult and painful it can be, as well.

Weekend Fisher of Heart, Soul, Mind and Strength, shares a post with us that she also submitted to the Christian Reconciliation Carnival, whose topic was to name was to name the one contribution your church body or denomination makes to Christianity as a whole. Her response from the Lutheran view was The cross is our theology. It really is beautiful. The other contributors' responses can be seen in Christian Reconciliation Carnival #9 She also adds this statement to us:Read the other responses, what the other people think their groups do best, and know this: we Lutherans need to get out more. It's not enough that we have Christ at the center; the Reformation isn't finished til all of Christendom has Christ at the center and nobody writes in saying their church's strong suit is anything other than Christ crucified. This month's reconciliation carnival could have been subtitled "Why I am a Lutheran". It also could have been subtitled "Why Lutherans need to talk more."

Paul Siems at Not Alone ponders "are we in need of a new reformation or of a return to The Reformation? When the issue of reformation arises, who is in need of this reformation and who brings this reformation to fruition? These questions are addressed in his post simply titled"Reformation" .

Pastor Walter Snyder submitted two posts. The first: Baptism - "In the Name" or "In the Names"? So asks someone uncomfortable with an alternate wording of the baptismal formula. Pastor Snyder's reply at Ask the Pastor urges "as is" repetition of Christ's words for reasons of doctrine and assurance to those of weak faith. His second post, The Law, Moses, and Jeremiah examines how understanding the meaning of Law in the context of Torah helps interpret much of the Old and New Testaments.

Kletos Somboulos of Amor et Labor shares thoughts on John 2: 23-25 as informed by Dr. Luther in Jesus knows what is in man.

Lutheran hymnody spawned a three-part hagiography at Aardvark Alley as Aardie noted the commemoration of Nicolai, Heermann, and Gerhardt, Hymn Writers. Another observance from the Alley was All Saints' Day's lesser known companion, the Commemoration of the Faithful Departed.

This makes a nice transition into something else that was written on by a few bloggers this week: music and liturgy!

Dan at Necessary Roughness shares Old and New at Our Saviour. Dan's church celebrated the Formula Missae et Communionis, and Dan had the opportunity to serve as Cantor. There are two snippets of solos for your perusal and comment.

Ritewinger presents
You tell them, Dr. posted at TheoCon. I personally liked his quote from Dr. Schalk "those of you who are pastors and those who will be, sing the liturgy, Why? Because we're Lutherans, and thats what we do."

And for the heck of it, I'm going to submit one of my own, Feeling Foreign, that talks about my struggles sitting in a blended worship service a few weeks ago.

So that's it for the Carnival this time around. God bless, everybody, and happy reading!!!