Monday, June 30, 2008

Monday Links

Rather than lots of posts on lots of topics, a bit of a round-up

The new Narnia film, Prince Caspian, has opened to mostly positive reviews, despite what the summary of reviews on BBC Ceefax tells you. Fulcrum have a review which goes into the theology of CS Lewis's book, and questions whether the film-makers have really got it. Bishop Alan has also seen it, and posts a good review. WingClips has free clips from the movie which you can use in services & sermons.

GAFCon has finished, and produced a statement, which many are interpreting as the setting up of a 'church within a church'. In many ways this already exists in conservative evangelical circles: a tight circle of churches (St. Helens Bishopsgate, Emmanuel Wimbledon, St. Ebbes Oxford), organisations (Reform, Proclamation Trust, Cornhill) and training institutions (Oak Hill, Wycliffe): there's even a non-charismatic version of Alpha which is safe for them to use (Christianity Explored, which is a good course in its own right and slightly less of a marketing juggernaut). Every church subgroup has its networks - e.g. the way Robert Runcie appointed all his chums from Cuddesdon to senior CofE posts - this seems to be going a step further in formalising it, and extending it to the international field. My concern is that it will either marginalise conservative evangelicals in the UK, or create some difficult tensions with those of us who are happy to work within the existing CofE structures, are perhaps a bit more patient, and are more focused in working on the ground than the higher levels of church politics.

Lots more comment and interpretation on Gafcon on the Church Times blog, including the full text of their declaration. There are 14 statements of faith, of which I agree with 12 and would want to debate no.s 6 and 7 (the BCP, and whether bishops priests and deacons is the last word on the ordering of ministry).

In the next few days the focus moves to General Synod - Thinking Anglicans has posted the full agenda and papers, and will update regularly once Synod starts on Friday, as will the CofE website. For an insider view, follow this blog, which links to other synod bloggers. Though a motion reaffirming the need for Muslims to hear the gospel was pulled from the Synod agenda, the Bishop of Lichfield (an area including large parts of the Black Country) has been arguing the case anyway: "Conversion is about changing your mind. And it wouldn’t be real religious dialogue if you didn’t expect people to change their minds and be converted.”

Elsewhere Steve Tilley muses about the value of a life, Jonny Baker has a very nice worship trick using textorise, one of these sites that makes words/images out of a block of text, and Madpriest is back from his holidays, and seems to have spent the whole weekend posting stories. Doesn't he have a job?

Bit of a rumble going on over faith schools: Cristina Odone, authoring a Centre for Policy Studies report, has accused the government of bowing to the secularist lobby on faith schools. The full report is here, and it reads more like a political tract than a thinktank report, but it's great stuff. Odone argues that recent Labour pronouncements on faith schools - mostly by Ed Balls - say more about divisions and positioning in the labour party than government policy.

Finally speculation about how the doctor who series will end is reaching fever pitch, so here's my guess at what will happen in the final extended episode. The Judoon (big rhino people) will turn up just after the opening credits to save the various goodies (Sarah Jane, the Torchwood folks) who are about to be killed by the Daleks. David Tennant will spend most of the episode in a coma, 'regenerating' (that's what I do after a pint too many at the quiz night), Donna will do something heroic and turn out to be a Time Lord. So far, Russell Davies hasn't killed off a single Doctors assistant, so unless he's planning a final flourish, I think they'll all survive. Some special gizmo, like the key Martha has, or the doctors' spare hand, will save the universe, and the Daleks will turn on Davros, just like they did in Genesis of the Daleks - there's already a bit of needle between Davros and the top Dalek. Too many chiefs.... Finally (in my dreams), the Doctor will regnerate as Matthew McFadyen.

95% of this is wrong, the trouble is I don't know which 95%.

1 comment:

  1. I wish we could get Dr. Who over here at the same time you folks do.