Lila’s Weblog

Where are the Shepherds – Revisited in 2017
December 27, 2017, 4:37 pm
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I was reading Chris Hedges on the TruthDig site about the meaning of Christmas ( got diverted to Political Theology where there was an article on The Politics of the Shepherds (
I had to leave a comment about the contrast between the Bread of Heaven lying in the feeding trough and the political view of pigs at the feeding trough. – So sad!


Why I am not an Anglican – nor a Mennonite – nor east/west Orthodox
November 4, 2016, 11:06 am
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I am a non-conformist.

I cannot be an Anglican because:
I am opposed to hierarchy. My head is Jesus, not any human being. Joining another branch of Anglicanism is to trade one human head for another. Yes, I acknowledge the sheep-beating (Ezek.34) that is happening in ACoC, but to trade one usurping under-shepherd for another is not an answer that I find appealing.
I am opposed to bibliolatry (Scriptura Sola). My mentor, Lloyd Gedge, impressed me when he said that the Bible cannot stand alone–it was birthed in the Church by the Holy Spirit and all three partner together to reveal Jesus Christ our Lord, the only Word of God. (BTW, that phrase “our Lord Jesus Christ” hints at the Trinity-Father, Son and Holy Spirit)

I cannot be a Mennonite because:
Doctrine matters–neither the brain (general conference Mennonite) nor the hand (Mennonite Brethren) should rule over the heart, and my heart belongs to Jesus.

I cannot be an eastern or western Orthodox because:
Hierarchy. In the Orthodox setting this has led to failure at the top. I knew an archbishop-designate who fell–but I knew him before he was even an Orthodox priest.
Geographic centrism–the eastern Church seems to relish division by geography

My quandary is balancing koinonia with xenophilia. I need the fellowship and conspiracy(breathing together) of the saints but I also need the hospitality extended to the Other.

I could go on my extended rant about our need to deal with the homophilia as evidenced in Christendom before we “fix” the homosexual. I suspect that both male and female homosexuality have some roots in fear-of-the-Other and that same fear needs to be rooted out of Christendom–start at home before we proceed to Samaria and the uttermost parts of the earth. This separation of Christian from Christian is the unholy scandal of Christianity and hence one of the sources of my quandary.

4th Option for 6th Head Authority
August 7, 2016, 10:35 pm
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I’ve spent a lot of time spinning my wheels around the idea of “metalanguage” and of “frames.” I think I’m beginning to tie together some fairly discrete ideas, ranging from “Look Beyond the Bread You Eat,” to C S Lewis’ ideas about enjoyment vs contemplation, to Kierkegaard’s ideas about Reflection and my early fascination with mirrors reflecting mirrors, not to mention logotherapy and Frankl’s solution to horror by “looking beyond” the immediate pain. And didn’t the writer of Hebrews exhort us to be like Jesus and keep our eyes on the Prize?

Advent or Christmas or Ephiphany Cactus
December 25, 2013, 7:30 pm
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About seven years ago I inherited a Christmas cactus–ginormous, about three feet in diameter till I chopped it down. It would not bloom, so I distressed it:–stuck it outside in the western, summer sun and wintered it in a large living room window in the winter, exposed to those nasty winter drafts. For a number of years it bloomed from November to April, with most of the blooms at about Christmas and Easter.

However, this year it started to bloom before the first week of Advent, but all the blooms were finished by Christmas Day, December 25. There are lots of buds and I expect another round of full blooms by about…January 6–just in time for Orthodox Christmas or western Epiphany. So, do I have an Eastern rite Christmas cactus?

Where are the Shepherds?
December 25, 2013, 6:55 pm
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Shepherd Silhouette

Where are the Shepherds

Forty years ago I bought an Christmas creche from some little discount store on Bloor Street in Toroonto. It was little, hard plastic and cheap–all desirable characteristics for impoverished students living in a garret flat on Lansdowne Avenue. It still graces my sideboard, under the miniature fibre-optic Christmas tree.

After a few years it started to bother me that it had the Holy Family, two small sheep, the ox, the ass, and the Magi—but where or where were the shepherds? Over the years, I’ve looked and pondered:–why are most nativity scenes like mine–all the participants, from the Christ Child to Mary-and-Joseph, the animals, the angelsl, the Magi–but No Shepherds. Sure, they were no account people in the ANE–Palestine of 4 BC, but they were the first witnesses to the the Incarnation!!

This year I got intentional. I went first to the local Christian store. Only one creche had shepherds and it was much too big to fit in my tiny living room and No, Ma’am, we don’t sell individual shepherds. So I went to the local discount store. Significantly, the natiivity scenes were pretty much gone–only a forlorn angel was left. As I was leaving the mall, I spotted a kiosk called, “Everything for Christmas.” I asked if they had any shepherds. The new Canadian who manned/personned the kiosk looked puzzled, so I asked if she had any Christimas angels, well, yes, on one prong of her rack she had a single angel, no “baby Jesus,” no “Mary-and-Child,” no Magi, just the angel and a clergyman in his Christmas robes. I walked out of the mall, and pondered the significance of all this.

Why do we have manger scenes with the Holy Family, maybe some animals, and maybe the Three Wise Guys–but no shepherds, Does it reflect our gimme, gimme gifts for Christmas? Does it reflect our oblivion to the panhandler on the street, to the intoxicated old man we see staggering down the street? Hmm, I wonder as I wander…

November 6, 2013, 12:18 pm
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Do we have more than energy to contribute to the N American mix?  What about rare earths?  Interesting developments in north-central Saskatchewan.  There is some talk about rare earths as the 21st Century Opium, replacing blood diamonds. See the comments on:

Baja Companions Revisited
February 1, 2013, 9:42 pm
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A tragedy struck one of my closer companions from the Baja trip.  Today I attended the funeral for her husband–a loving husband and father–snatched suddenly from a woman still grieving the loss of her mother and a cousin.

May God’s consolation and strength be  hers tonight and in all her future.