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Last Visit 2011-03-29 23:58:38 |Start Date 2007-01-26 16:14:24 |Comments 1,125 |Entries 367 |Images 31 |Videos 68 |

03/28/08 02:16 - 33ºF - ID#43816

Tonight

There is good polish stuff @ the Albright-Knox. That is where (e:janelle) and I will be, until we go salsa dancing.
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Location: Buffalo, NY


Category: religion

03/26/08 09:32 - 37ºF - ID#43794

A good description of Jesus . . .

Is available at this link.



I wish I had written this. When I get permission, I will probably adapt this for the elmwoodjesus.org website.
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Category: religion

03/23/08 08:48 - 21ºF - ID#43766

Happy Easter!


Today is the most fun day of the Christian calendar. Here's how I am celebrating.

Right now: Drinking coffee and making sure everything is ready for worship.

9:20am: Meeting with the people that will join Lafayette Church today, to get them ready. (Six of them! W00t!)

10 am: Worship begins: special music, special flowers, new members join, everybody dresses up, we share communion, and even have a u2 song (plus there will be more people than usual!)

11:30: Coffee with people, Easter egg hunt, and then go home

12pm: start making burritos

1pm: Easter burritos with friends!
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Location: Buffalo, NY


03/19/08 07:47 - 35ºF - ID#43730

My First GiMP


I'm learning as I go. I am sure this would have been simple for some, but it took a lot of effort and starting over for me.

But I am getting better.

image
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Location: Buffalo, NY


Category: 10 things

03/18/08 02:52 - 40ºF - ID#43719

Ten things I like about Root Beer

1. It allows kids to "have a beer."

2. It is uniquely American. Most of the world thinks it disgusting, actually.

3. It kept brewers in business during prohibition.

4. It can be made at home.

5. It is flavored by Sassafras. You've got to love a tree that tastes good!

6. It can be delightfully simple, or bold and complex.

7. Froth.

8. Floats.

9. Cool sweetness on a hot day (coming soon, I hope).

10. The taste, duh!
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Location: Buffalo, NY


Category: religion

03/17/08 03:58 - 32ºF - ID#43705

Black theology

Is the Rev. Jeremiah Wright racist?

He has been proclaimed to be such.

Today, my hometown Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, I read a column comparing Obama's association with Rev. Wright and Trinity UCC with George Bush choosing to speak at Bob Jones University, when it had some racist positions (interracial dating was illegal, for example).

She also reacted against Wright's teaching of a black Jesus.

She then told us, quite plainly, that Jesus was Jewish.

Which, of course, is true.

But she did not take time to understand what Wright meant by "black Jesus."

Black theology teaches that Jesus is black in a number of ways. For example:

a. Jesus had dark skin. To many white people, this makes you black. To many white supremacists, every non-WASP is black. By their definition, Jesus is black.

b. The "one drop" rule. This is related to the first case. In many Southern states and colonized nation, the children of white and black parents presented a problem. What were these children? According to the "one drop rule," one drop of "black blood" made a person black.

Now, if all of humanity is redeemed in Christ (which orthodox Christianity affirms) then Christ is at least "one drop" black.

c. Finally, as a Galilean Jew, Jesus was politically, socially, and economically disadvantaged. While this does not make him black, ethnically speaking, it does connect him to the black experience in the US. Jesus is black in the way that Bill Clinton was "the first black president," or the way a bunch of Irish soul singers are in "the commitments."

(I couldn't find the video, but here's the quote:

"Jimmy Rabbitte: Do you not get it, lads? The Irish are the blacks of Europe. And Dubliners are the blacks of Ireland. And the Northside Dubliners are the blacks of Dublin. So say it once, say it loud: I'm black and I'm proud.

Dean Fay: I'm black and I'm proud. )

With any one of these explanations, it is easy to see that Jesus was, in one way or another, black.

So many columnists, however, don't bother to ask these questions.

Instead, they skip directly to Wright's sermon in which he replied, "God Damn America."

Now I do not share his sentiment, but he has not been the only person to say as much. Robertson and Falwell have also preached that 9/11 was a judgment on America.

Here's a question that ought to make us uncomfortable.

Could God rightly judge America?

Now, I'm not saying that God has done so, but couldn't the enslavement of one people group and the near extinction of another qualify a nation for judgment? Wouldn't that earn it?

And, even if it isn't good to do so, couldn't you understand a member of the group that was enslaved still reacting against the nation that has treated him unjustly? Rev. Wright, I'm sure, has experienced real racism.

Is he called to forgive? Absolutely. But start with yourself before coming down on somebody else. How many of those calling for Wright to forgive America have forgiven America's enemies?

There is a big difference between associating one's self with Bob Jones and with Jeremiah Wright. Yes, both have taken a stand based on race. One however, is associated with power over a race, and another has encouraged blacks to stand up together against that power.

Wright's theology isn't perfect. Nobody's is--we cannot fully understand God, and every theology is incomplete.

But he is not a racist. And he does not deserve to be attacked as he has been recently. He has spent a lifetime thinking about what it means to be black, American, and Christian, and now he is being dismissed in a soundbite. Let's seek to understand where he comes from before we attack him for where he is.
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Category: humor

03/16/08 07:06 - 31ºF - ID#43686

Tracey Morgan is funny.

Sorry about the commercial, but it is the only way to share the joy of Tracey Morgan obviously reading from cue cards.




"That's where I come in . . ."
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Category: funny

03/14/08 07:06 - 43ºF - ID#43672

Five funny commercials


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Location: Buffalo, NY


Category: 10 things

03/13/08 04:44 - 39ºF - ID#43653

10 Things I like about the West Side

(The West Side west of Richmond, that is)

1. Guercio's market. Good food, good prices, and friendly, too.

2. Lots of good non-profits: West Side Community Collaborative, PUSH, West Side ministries, MAP, Peace of the City, and a few more. (They organized a housing meeting today that I went to--inspiring this post.)

3. Houses that are cheap, or even free.

4. It is diverse. (That causes problems, too, but I like having lots of cultures around)

5. At least 2 good thrift stores (Salvation Army and New to You)

6. Old houses.

7. Italian restaurants.

8. The bargain hardware store.

9. "Essex corners," with good food, Urban roots, art stuff, good drink, and nice places to live.

10. Good people that care about their neighborhood--all over the place.


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Category: religion

03/12/08 11:22- ID#43634

Prayer battle!!


James told me that if I prayed for him, to my God, he would pray to his gods and rats and Wiccans might show up in my house.

I'm not going to start, so I think we will have peace. But it did remind me of a dramatic prayer showdown from scripture.

For your reading pleasure:

Kings 18:21-40
21 Elijah challenged the people: "How long are you going to sit on the fence? If God is the real God, follow him; if it's Baal, follow him. Make up your minds!" Nobody said a word; nobody made a move. 22 Then Elijah said, "I'm the only prophet of God left in Israel; and there are four hundred and fifty prophets of Baal. 23 Let the Baal prophets bring up two oxen; let them pick one, butcher it, and lay it out on an altar on firewood - but don't ignite it. I'll take the other ox, cut it up, and lay it on the wood. But neither will I light the fire. 2

4 Then you pray to your gods and I'll pray to God. The god who answers with fire will prove to be, in fact, God." All the people agreed: "A good plan - do it!"

25 Elijah told the Baal prophets, "Choose your ox and prepare it. You go first, you're the majority. Then pray to your god, but don't light the fire." 26 So they took the ox he had given them, prepared it for the altar, then prayed to Baal. They prayed all morning long, "O Baal, answer us!" But nothing happened - not so much as a whisper of breeze. Desperate, they jumped and stomped on the altar they had made. 27 By noon, Elijah had started making fun of them, taunting, "Call a little louder - he is a god, after all. Maybe he's off meditating somewhere or other, or maybe he's gotten involved in a project, or maybe he's on vacation. You don't suppose he's overslept, do you, and needs to be waked up?"

28 They prayed louder and louder, cutting themselves with swords and knives - a ritual common to them - until they were covered with blood. 29 This went on until well past noon. They used every religious trick and strategy they knew to make something happen on the altar, but nothing happened - not so much as a whisper, not a flicker of response.

30 Then Elijah told the people, "Enough of that - it's my turn. Gather around." And they gathered. He then put the altar back together for by now it was in ruins. 31 Elijah took twelve stones, one for each of the tribes of Jacob, the same Jacob to whom God had said, "From now on your name is Israel." 32 He built the stones into the altar in honor of God. Then Elijah dug a fairly wide trench around the altar. 33 He laid firewood on the altar, cut up the ox, put it on the wood, and said, "Fill four buckets with water and drench both the ox and the firewood." 34 Then he said, "Do it again," and they did it. Then he said, "Do it a third time," 35 and they did it a third time.

The altar was drenched and the trench was filled with water. 36 When it was time for the sacrifice to be offered, Elijah the prophet came up and prayed, "O God, God of Abraham, Isaac, and Israel, make it known right now that you are God in Israel, that I am your servant, and that I'm doing what I'm doing under your orders. 37 Answer me, God; O answer me and reveal to this people that you are God, the true God, and that you are giving these people another chance at repentance."

38 Immediately the fire of God fell and burned up the offering, the wood, the stones, the dirt, and even the water in the trench. 39 All the people saw it happen and fell on their faces in awed worship, exclaiming, "God is the true God! God is the true God!"

40 Elijah told them, "Grab the Baal prophets! Don't let one get away!" They grabbed them. Elijah had them taken down to the Brook Kishon and they massacred the lot.





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