Archive for the ‘Developing Spiritual Leadership’ Category


Holy Spirit College

Holy Spirit College (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The Donut of Life

 

What does this donut chart mean? It is something that came to me during SON-rise (my new term for Easter to avoid any ties to bunnies and chocolate, although that is fun too), for we are in the midst as a Body of Christ, struggling with not dying in Canada.  A church a week shutters its doors.  But is it the Body that is dying or the institution?

But it is dying for some say we are irrelevant. And that is the saddest commentary ever for a movement that was founded to be something transformational and life giving…purpose giving in life.  This is what we need to get back to, not a bunch of academic head games, but the heart of the Gospel.  The heart of Christos… that is what the birth, life (teachings/miracles), death and victory of the peasant labourer Jesus of Nazareth truly mean to us.  These ideas represent no one else’s reflection but my own, shaped from a journey of recovery in the institutional church.

Life that is true theology lived…God within everything, everything within God. For a wisdom seeker for salvation (personal and communal transformation).

Each of us has an understanding of what we believe of the story of God with us and us with God, the impact of Brother Jesus in our personal and communal life, and the family we have been called into by the Holy Spirit. Mine is:

https://tyragan.wordpress.com/creed/

What is your Creed? 

Take into account how and what we classify as the scriptures.  Is it simply what the Christianity we are immersed in calls the Holy Bible? Does it include our liturgical service? Hymnology? Prayer books? Theological texts? Fictions? Non-Fictions? Mythologies? Legends? The litany of what shapes our character in text, auditory, visual and action goes on and on… For me my understanding of the Holy Texts of the Holy Mystery are vast, but I come to it not as inerrant word on a page, but for the deeper metaphorical meanings that transcend time to speak directly to me and my community today on our journey.

What is Scripture to you?

For it is in the resurrection of SON-rise that our lives are given peace, hope and meaning.  We truly experience the love eternal of our beloved Creator.

Within the stories, we find a redaction or insertion if you will that does not fit in the time of the piece written. But in Matthew 28: 16-20 we have the Great Commission. Something we have truly pooched as an institution. For we have made it about converts, and saying pretty prayers. When what it is about, the essence, is that we are to mentor (disciple). Live life with one another and help one another grow.

Statistically the secular world understands this. Alberta Mentor Foundation for Youth and Big Brothers & Big Sisters know and have proven that one hour a week will radically change for the better someone’s life. Interdependence is the new vogue in humanism… yet in the Christianities we still exist in the heresies of independence, not only a heresy but a farce.

What is disciple making to you?

It is kind of funny because the last piece I want to reflect on within this life with God is sacraments. Which is our outward showing of our inward mystery. Yet each of the previous sections could fall under this.

Some may know the traditional SEVEN found in Christianities in some form or another: http://www.americancatholic.org/features/special/default.aspx?id=29

Now there is nothing wrong with these sacraments, but I think they are trying to tell a story themselves that each believer needs to understand.

Holy Orders, Baptism, Confirmation, and anointing of the sick are all Life Passages for once we are a believer we are an ordained priest in the Order of Christ Jesus. Baptism is an initiation, confirmation is apart of disciple making, and anointing of the sick Or last rites (also the funeral service or life celebration or wake) are all pieces of a life lived in community for transformation. So let us acknowledge that while living in community together we will honour and celebrate each milestone and step on the journey together? Let us honour one another’s callings, some are called to teach, preach, prophecy, but others are called to serve, to cook to be trades people or emergency responders or … fill in the blank… once you have chosen life with God whatever your passion is, is your calling… and it needs to be celebrated. So I would say honestly a sacrament of Affirmation/Celebration is what is needed.

The next step is looking at marriage… sadly this is a contentious debate that even for church goers in Canada is not about love and souls being entwined by God and honoured by family, it has become about a piece of paper issued by the Government. For me, I would say this is the wrong sacrament for the Christianities to honour.  We need a Blessing of Family a time to recognize the life cycle of relationships within our communities. Friendships, romantic relationships and familial blood ties.  Those bonds that bind us together as family within the Holy Spirit need a time to be honoured before God and our beloved.

Finally we look to the Eucharist/Lord’s Supper/Communion and Reconciliation. Why are these two tied together? For me it comes down to the heart of a sacrament of Community or Hospitality if you will. It is about being a welcoming and loving community, with no hierarchy, a willingness to admit wrongs, and celebrate joys together.  The marriage vows are actually quite appropriate for a community of believers. We are to enter into communion together drinking of the Cup of Promise and eating of the Bread of Life for Jesus called us friends.

This leads to the additional sacrament that of Service.  This is a reminder that Jesus lived his life by actually living his life out of God’s love. It is about serving our world to produce the transformation we want.  It would be about enshrining in the values of the Christianities the idea of Giving/tithing our time, talent and/or treasures depending on our level of blessing. This is not to some rotting institution but to the family we have been brought into by the Holy Spirit and our neighbours. It would be reminding folks that volunteerism is a pillar of Christ, so is donating money and goods (for it is in the Acts of the Apostles we are told the communities held everything in common and no one was in need). So is honouring are callings.

What are your Sacraments?

Put simply, reflecting on the close of this SON-rise, what is LIFE to you?


Thin-skinned Wildrose bullies attack the media, again.

The Wildrose Party is proving to be more thin skinned, and bullish than the Klein Government of 1993-2006 that saw a decimation of social programs; health care; etc (any historian or Poli worth their salt knows the tale). Klein dissasociated many reporters (rumour being me among the black listed while I was still in High School).

Yet here the WRP is lashing out at journalists attempting to discover truth in their sound bite vote buying platform planks. My dialogues on twitter with their supporters veers very closely into confusion, as the party’s policy writers do not seem to understand the Canadian Constitution Act 1982 (or the BNA Act 1867 for that matter) or the Health Act; the Charter of Rights and Freedoms (and what our rights actually are as Canadians–sorry we are not Americans);the history or character of our province, the diversity of our citizenry in culture, religion, age and socio-economics or the basics of capacity issues when it comes to growing social sectors; the impact of privatization. The fact that school fees are actually illegal and not just a financial impediment to the family.

But why do one’s homework in regards to those you are seeking to lead? Why not just blow smoke and mirrors… this is the result, motions to eliminate communication, and the ability to create accountability and transparency. The question is not just eliminating those things they view as ineffective, but truly understanding why they exist (much like the Human Rights Commission and legislation they want to abolish) and how to make them actually work properly.

But the question does arise, how do they hope to make this all happen? Let’s be honest, it is not the first time a Conservative Party has sold Albertans a “golden ticket solution” to our problems. Sic Klein and Harper’s $100 a month cheque for child care.

Just sayin’ before voting this April 23, scratch the surface, ask the questions, and find the answers…


Spiritual Leadership Development

Course Description:

 

The hardest path, journey or pilgrimage for a spiritual leader is not those steps taken outwards, but rather inwards.  This course is adapted from Rev. Dr. Tyler Ragan’s book Pilgrimage to the Heart of the Sacred, the course itself is a 20 week self-discovery pilgrimage to aid a leader in defining their mission and calling.

Course Author:

 

The Rev. Dr. Tyler Ragan, Psy.D. holds a Doctor of Psychology (Holistic) from the Eisner Institute for Professional Studies, he has been active in ministry to those in need for over 15 years starting when he was in high school, and has been a life long peace and human rights activist.  His published works and research centre on outreach, self-discovery of personal calling, and spirituality.

Course Instruction:

 

Each week has multiple assignments called “Soul Work” please post these pieces as your assignments whenever possible.

Course: Developing Spiritual Leadership