Friday, January 21, 2011

rel. pol. right & group projects

Funny story...I was thinking tonight about how I hate group projects because I'm formulating a class, and it reminded me of a project I had to do in college that typifies why I hate group projects, and it makes me laugh looking back on it.

So for some class in college I apparently wasn't there the day we signed up for groups and I got put in one to do a presentation on the religious political right. Now, I really had no idea what this was until I started researching it. (I think I was basically brought up to believe that parties don't matter, you vote your conscience on any issue, not a party line. So when I registered I called myself an independent.) Anyway, when I started learning what this political group stood for, I was outraged. But the others in my group were hardcore rel. pol. right supporters. We didn't meet as a group often enough to actually talk much about our opinions, though, so I didn't really understand that until we were presenting! I think I was supposed to present the rel. pol. right's view on abortion, and I went off about how I couldn't believe that people who called themselves Christians could be all about the sanctity of life regarding unborn babies, but once they were born it was alright to kill them in times of war just because our leader told us to. I also addressed how no one in the rel. pol. right was offering to take care of a bunch of unwanted babies.

Looking back it's really funny to me to think about how utterly surprising this piece of their presentation must have been to the others in my group! I wish I could transport myself back there to watch, knowing what I do now, to see their reactions and to hear my naive 17- or 18-yr-old self in my first exposure to these ideas as a "valid" belief system, this crazy combination of God and country.

(Sorry if I've offended anyone with this post, but if so you've probably been offended before if you've read any of my other posts! I'm not saying any other party or political group is much better...just the combination here of making political claims that are supposedly faith-based but line up solely with our country's agenda is really stymieing to me. I don't think this disclaimer helped much if you were offended...)

Monday, January 03, 2011

peace month 2011

This month is the second annual Peace Month in Northwest Yearly Meeting! I'm on the committee that puts it together. Whether you're part of NWYM or not, you're welcome to use the resources we created and compiled. Here's the website.

This year we decided to make the theme "Our Stories of Peace." Last year we did sort of an overview of the peace testimony and talked about peace at various levels (personal, interpersonal, communal, national, international), and this year we wanted people to think about and share their stories, and to hear stories of historical Friends.

We created a Daily Reader, which is a devotional booklet people can use in their time with God each day. It has stories from people around the Yearly Meeting about how they came to the peace testimony and how they have been called and challenged to live out peace and justice in the world. If you want, you're welcome to download it at the aforementioned site.

I'm excited to hear how Peace Month goes this year! May God be in the conversations and controversies that this topic sparks.

Sunday, January 02, 2011

a mamma again...and "traveling with pomegranates"

First of all, happy new year, everyone!

For those of you who don't know already, we had another baby boy on Dec. 6! I've been a little preoccupied with him lately, and I'm really enjoying remembering how to be a parent of a newborn again. He's making it pretty easy for us, really (as far as newborns go). He sleeps pretty well and he's really laid-back most of the time. And, of course, he's one of the 2 cutest babies every born!

If you want to see pictures, go to our family blog.

Since Christmas I've been working on Sue Monk Kidd & Ann Kidd Taylor's book, "Traveling with Pomegranates." I have about 2 pages left. Sue Monk Kidd has got to be one of my all-time favorite authors. This book she writes with her daughter, and it's truly a beautiful work of literature, chronicling Sue's transition to being an older woman and Ann's transition to being a full-fledged adult, as well as their relationship with each other and the Divine. I love Sue Monk Kidd's other works that are so rich with thoughtfulness, wisdom, and persistence in her faith. She is so inspiring, because when she doubted her faith because she couldn't find herself reflected as an "image of God" in the patriarchal form of "Christianity" in which she was raised, she kept seeking until she found God, a God who imaged herself to Sue in feminine forms with which she could connect and grow. I'm so grateful for women like this, and for her willingness to write about it with such transparency and depth.

It kind of makes me sad I don't have any girls to share this with, but I'm so grateful for my two boys, and the chance I have to raise two male feminists. =) I'm also incredibly grateful for my feminist husband. And for a God who shows up in the ways we need her to.