Posts Tagged ‘Twitter’

It has been a unique staycation. It started with 3 days on my Dad’s farm, which actually allowed for a complete decompression before returning to the city to move forward into a new reality. Yes the art of relaxation is to create that space of release and renewal.

But what continues that? Part of it is the Shadow/Soul/Self-work to release the energy sludge that holds us back, and letting our Chakra’s renew and burn it away as it leaves our system. This renews the spiritual self.

But what of our physical world? We live in a world that tells us we desperately need the newest, best, brightest! That our drive is the accumulation of belongings, money and wealth in such away. Yet what is wealth?

It begins with wholeness of character, that starts with passion, and knowing what you are meant to do in life. Then from there it is looking at our physical surroundings, yes these things have been useful in our life up to this point. But what is being kept simply out of duty? Out of tradition? Out of not knowing what that space would be like without that there?

For the release of the physical of things creates space and peace in our physical environments that becomes contagious to our own being. The question though is are we willing to peel the onion of our own homes, briefcases, purses, to see what can be found when that we simply have because that is what has already existed is released whether it is garbage, recycled, given to a non-profit or a thrift store…what does the face feel like now? what is new space saying about whom you are and how to use it? How comfortable are you to release the old? To allow the space to sit empty when it hasn’t been before?

What does how we keep our homes say about our inner self?

What happens when both are brought into a healthy vibration with one another?

Are you up for the challenge?

This week off has been quite productive in continuing a renewed life of simplicity and watching things that no longer serve us in the now go forward into the flow to bless others.

Are you ready to renew?


Okay I freely admit the last few weeks there has been more reblogs of articles from elsewhere than new material from me. Was this intentional? No, but as regular readers know I do tend to reblog the news from the world that fits my own paradigm, or is just inspirational for justice ventures, or to percolate discussion.

Why nothing new out of this keyboard? I have been settling into a new job, then leaving there, and preparing to settle into another new role (with some permanence me hopes) as well as prepping a new semester of classes to teach online, so it has been a bit busy. I am hoping to have some new material soon for these pages to inspire or spark controversy. 🙂

Buddy Jesus bobblehead

Buddy Jesus bobblehead (Photo credit: _escalade328s_)

Some would say during this Sabbatical I was to learn about relying on God. For those who say that, they have never really known me, my life or ministry. Others would say that it is time to reflect on what has come before. The unfortunate part of the contemplative walk is that we spend so much time looking and grieving at where we’ve been that we sometimes miss the blessing in the now or yet to come.

For many in the interview process look at my professional life and say that I could run this agency, why do I want this, what they mistakenly or crassly class, as entry level position. What they miss is the idea of getting to know the culture of an agency, but also there is more to the why answer.

Simply put, it is my wife & kids, my family. Yes titled leadership in a healthy non-profit is awesome, but it can also destroy one’s personal life, and control one’s home life (actually much like being a pastor if one does not create solid boundaries). And is this worth it with my children so young? This loss of the blessing of now with my family, for a title, for a minor remuneration increase?

For my kids to become part of many generations of helping parents who look at their parents and state, you cared more about those you served than us…a statement I never want them to think.

Lent for me, this whole sabbatical life, has been reflecting on the rise  of the religion/spirituality of compassion in all its manifestations, yet like the Shema presented by Brother Jesus, it all falls apart if it does not begin with compassion for yourself, your family, friends, and community…then grows our from there.


Operation Shocktober The Sequel 011

Operation Shocktober The Sequel 011 (Photo credit: Anonymous9000)

Unlike your college textbooks, this 2nd edition costs you nothing more. The first edition outlined some simple paths to see if the religious organization you have affiliated with is a cult, here are two more advanced ways to tell:

1) Forced tithing/giving/pleding – that is the group forces one to disclose how much they earn and then bullies/coerces into one giving 10-25% for “God‘s” work to the organization whether the individual can or not.

Pre-1970’s this type of shenanigan was more common, and was actually coupled with quite a bit of spiritual abuse from the pulpit of the hell fire and brimstone type that tied one’s giving to their ability to get into heaven (indulgences in pre-reformation Catholicism, pew purchasing in Protestantism which led to the “Free Church” movements).

2) Spying – Members befriend you to get information for the leadership to control you through bearing down on one’s self-worth. This monitoring and “friending” has become easier with the rise of blogs; Twitter; Linkedin; Pinterest and Facebook (to name a few) where individuals can be monitored and/or added to groups without one’s approval. This information is then forwarded on to see who is “inline” or not with the leadership.

3) This one is either a sign of a cult, or that your spiritual support is burnt out– everything must be ran by them and no one else.

Two more advanced points, but one needs to remember that with God there is no labels, there is no hierarchy…So please if you are involved with any religious organization that practices these 2nd edition extremes or those listed in yesterday’s article, RUN!

Former MLA questions need for Alberta Party

Dave Taylor wonders if its time to ‘fold the tent’

CBC News

Posted: May 25, 2012 8:46 PM MT

Last Updated: May 25, 2012 8:51 PM MT

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The only person to ever sit as an Alberta Party MLA is raising questions about its future now that the Progressive Conservatives under Premier Alison Redford share the centre of the political spectrum.

“The Alberta Party’s values are now the Redford PC government’s values,” Dave Taylor wrote in a blog posting on Friday. “They stand for everything we stand for — and they’re in power. Who needs us?”

Former Alberta Party MLA Dave Taylor decided not to run in last month's provincial election. Former Alberta Party MLA Dave Taylor decided not to run in last month’s provincial election. (CBC)Taylor, a former Calgary Liberal MLA who joined the Alberta Party after spending time as an independent, decided not to run in the April 23 election, where the party failed to win any seats. He is calling on the party executive to let members have a free discussion about its future.

Now that the party no longer has an MLA in the Alberta legislature, it has lost a platform for building support, Taylor writes. He adds the party lacks the political knowledge and experience to convince Albertans to vote for them instead of the Tories.

“The Alberta Party has a big decision to make: Should we ‘fold the tent,’ or can we find a way to differentiate ourselves from the PCs?”

Taylor went public with his feelings one day before the party holds an event in Edmonton to thank candidates, volunteers and supporters for their efforts during the campaign.

Sue Huff ran for the Alberta Party in Edmonton-Glenora. She said Taylor is simply putting the issue out there for discussion.

“Dave is provocative. He always has been,” she said. “You know I think it’s good to ask yourselves the hard questions. We’re a party that has always embraced the hard questions and not shied away from that so I think that’s a perfectly legitimate question to ask.”.

As for Taylor, he writes that isn’t attending the event in Edmonton as he will be in Seattle on Saturday.

Musings Two Bits: This would be an excellent opportunity for the infrastructure and passion of these individuals to open talks to join in a merger with either the Alberta Liberals or Alberta NDP to strengthen the opposition/accountability voice of the government.

Glenn’s debate wrap-up video released – watch it now

Posted by Brian Thiessen 103pc on April 13, 2012 · Flag

Glenn_jeans_2.pngWatch Glenn share the Alberta Party‘s perspective on all of the debate questions.

During the televised leaders debate over 1700 Albertans followed Glenn’s live blog (read the transcript).  We’ve received tremendous feedback on our innovative and positive approach to participating in tonight’s debate – despite not being invited.

Immediately after the debate, Glenn and I filmed the Debate Wrap Up Video, where Glenn provides the Alberta Party’s responses to all of the questions raised in the debate.

Please share this video.

Since we didn’t have the opportunity to partcipate in the televised debate, we need your help to share this important video.  Please use the Facebook and Twitter buttons below to share this page.

It’s working! Our impact is growing every day.

All of our hard work is starting to pay off and the Alberta Party’s message is spreading faster than ever. With your continued help, we can make a huge impact in this election! Thank you for all of your support!

Brian Thiessen
President, Alberta Party

– Have you updated your profile image on Facebook and Twitter to show your support for the Alberta Party?  Visit our do-it-yourself campaign tools page to download a special Alberta Party profile image.

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Evangelistar von Speyer, um 1220 Manuscript in...

Evangelistar von Speyer, um 1220 Manuscript in the Badische Landesbibliothek, Karlsruhe, Germany Cod. Bruchsal 1, Bl. 1v Shows Christ in vesica shape surrounded by the "animal" symbols of the four evangelists. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Image representing Twitter as depicted in Crun...

Image via CrunchBase

This is a deep question that set of quite the 3 way then 2 way conversation/dialogue on Twitter. Why am I writing about a twitter chat? Simple, the case study that emerged in this convo was around Sex Work, which yes is a current hot button issue of “justice” within the church.

Yet it comes to a much larger issue. For we in Christendom find it easy to acknowledge the “button justice issues” whether it be peace work; just war theory; sex trafficking; slave trade; LGBTTQ Rights (or human rights in general); ending misogyny; inclusion/exculsion of X-Y-Z community; who gets into heaven; feeding the poor; ending homelessness; providing shelter; community involvement; mentorship; tutoring; ESL; sanctuary; sponsoring families; short term missions; long term missions; abortion; petitions; and the litany of our justice issues go on and on.

And yes, I am writing as a member of Christendom currently working in one of the “hot buttong justice” issues of the day in Calgary, AB and that is ending homelessness.  Yet I also reflect on deeper understanding of issues. So do I agree with all the questions and answers bandied about, who knows… I know each and every issue is deeper and more complex than a black and white answer; or statistics on a page (stats can be skewed or used to tell any story we wish to tell with them depending on what we declare within the bounds of the statistics, and what are the outliers of the statistics).

But it comes down to the concept of what is justice? A quote I tossed out is from the defrocked Dominican Priest, Matthew Fox, who is highly involved in the progressive Christian movement known as creation spirituality, and it goes simply, “We need to tear down Jacob’s Ladder, and as a world embrace the dancing of Sarah’s Circle”. This quote lends itself to the story in Genesis where Jacob sees the angels (aliens to some) climbing up and down the ladder, it is an image that the Protestant world has used as a metaphor for rampant individualism; caucasoid patriarchy and oppressive practices for if one truly wants to get ahead they need to work hard and climb that ladder.  The metaphor of Sarah’s Circle comes from the practice in matriarch of laughter and dancing to get to know one another, and to work together in the household.  This idea is to bring all into the communit of inclusion.

Now we humans like to complicate things and Christendom is no different, as I have noted in other writings the term Christianities is much more palpable, but we are attempting to figure out how to renew our world and bring Heaven here, as Jesus of Nazareth commanded us to do in the Gospel of Mark.

Yet the idea of true justice goes beyond being Emergent, Missional, Charismatic, Evangelical, Convergent, Post-Modern, Modern, Catholic, Monastic, Post Christian, Progressive Christian or any other funk label or denomination we in the Body of Christ can come up with to be a plug and play program ideology to solve our woes.

What true justice is?

It is quite simple, and there are over 2 billion of us to lead the way. It is seeing each and every human being as the Sixth Day of Genesis (Genesis 1) states: Made in the image of our Creator, She called us beloved, blessed and Very Good. We are not commodities, we are not rungs on a ladder, we are beloved children of a loving Creator that is in everything, and everything is in her.

Justice is the realization of this creation, marked with our lifespan choices, when God let us leave his care, and enter the world it was not because we were evil or despots, it was simply because we were ready to explore like many late stage adolescents/early adults. This is the truth in Genesis 3 as I read it, for God still provided love and care by clothing us (offering protection), walking with us (as any loving parent when kids leave home), and turning the world over to us to care for and craft paradise in.

So what is justice? Truly living into and out of the love of God…seeing one another as the blessed image bearers…seeing ourselves as the beloved image bearer…

Creating a world where all are included, all 7+ billion of us are seen this way, and a world system is created where each of us can live out not only our agency, but our passion/dreams that is our calling to create make our own community better.

Pollyanic? Maybe, or is it simply moving beyond the cynicism and commodification currently found in our caucasoid heteropatriarchal societies?



The Mustard Seed is a Christian non-profit organization that delivers basic services, housing and employment programs to those in need and partners with the community to address the root causes of poverty.
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March 2012
Mountain Mover Prayer Calendar

Dear friends,

During the month of March, we’re asking you to pray for The Mustard Seed’s Permanent Supportive Housing. PSH is in the process of transformation from a transitional housing model to a supportive long-term community for our 30 residents. We secured our licensing for this new venture on January 31, 2012. The residents elected their first Resident Assistant five months ago, with the next election coming up in 30 days. God’s guidance would be greatly appreciated.

So how else can you help? One of the main areas of community support we need is for Housing volunteers, both downtown and in our Aftercare program. It is our deep desire for community members and groups who would be willing to come alongside our residents and aid them in healthy community ventures. Together, we can support change in a supportive and interdependent way.

Contrary to popular belief winter is not over, so please also continue to pray for our folks out there on the street. It may seem like spring during the day, but it’s only February and it’s still cold at night. In addition, the milder weather has brought an increase in Cold and Flu among guests and staff at The Mustard Seed, with many staff continuing to work during this busy season. Please pray for the health of The Mustard Seed staff downtown, Foothills Shelter and in Edmonton.

We thank you for your prayers and support as we move forward.

To view March’s Mountain Mover Prayer Calendar, please click here.

Don’t forget to join us on Twitter prayer at #MMPRAYER and to sign up to receive prayer requests.

Bill Nixon

Church Engagement

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Dear Colleagues and Friends:

Rev. Debra W. HaffnerThe Religious Institute is in the fight of our lives, and we need your help.
Please donate now!
On February 21, 2012, the Religious Institute received shocking news from its fiscal agent, Christian Community Inc., that it had ceased business operations, and that it was shutting down immediately. In its capacity as our fiscal agent since 2001, Christian Community Inc. was responsible for processing all donations to the Religious Institute as well as managing its financial obligations. We were notified that all of the Religious Institute funds already obtained for fiscal year 2012, and all of the Religious Institute reserves and fund balance, were gone. With the exception of $3800 in a bank account in Connecticut, the Religious Institute’s foundation monies and reserves for the end of 2011 and all of 2012 had been used by the fiscal agent.

We immediately severed all ties between the organizations.

We are pleased to announce, effective immediately, The Unitarian Church in Westport (TUCW) is the new fiscal agent for the Religious Institute. In this role, it will receive tax deductible donations to the Religious Institute. (I have served this congregation as a Community Minister since 2003, and I have been a member there since 1988.) Additionally, the Religious Institute has started the process of being recognized by the IRS as an independent nonprofit organization, and is managing its own finances, under TUCW’s supervision. Once the Religious Institute receives IRS recognition as an independent nonprofit organization, it will no longer need the services of TUCW.
The ministry of the Religious Institute will continue. We are open, working 15 hour days, and are committed to our ministry. The work of the Religious Institute is too important, too vital for us to do anything but continue. We have done great work, changing the landscape of how denominations, faith communities, seminaries, and clergy approach sexuality issues. If you are not familiar with our work, please go to our web site at
If you have ever considered supporting the Religious Institute, now is the time. In the past three days, we have begun to receive donations ranging from $1.45 from a seven-year-old to commitments from foundations. In total, we must raise $425,000 in the next three months to implement the plan for 2012 activities. I am confident we can do so.  Every donation, no matter the size, will have a profound effect on the Religious Institute.

If you support sexual health, education, and justice in faith communities and want to preserve the progressive religious voice in the public square on our shared issues, please make the most generous donation you can. A generous private donor has agreed to match every dollar until $10,000 that comes in from this appeal. Please ask your friends and colleagues to donate as well. Help us spread the word on Facebook and Twitter!

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In faith,

Rev. Debra W. Haffner

PS Please make your donation TODAY. Any amount will be gratefully received. A donation will have never made such a difference.

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Throughout my education the rise of Pentecostalism has been unique to track. This article raises an intriguing thought around the institutional church’s challenges. This is where the charismatic simplicity of faith, and mystical experience allows for a healthier community. Your thoughts?