Loving the Sacred through Word and Image. The Ferryland – New Foundland Iceberg Easter 2017. A Word Press Production.

Certificate in Pastoral Ministry

The End of my Certificate…

MA Pic

Six weeks ago, I filed paperwork with the university to get into a class (late) mind you, that’s why I filed a permission slip with the AHSC department.

This morning I needed one more class to graduate with my Certificate in Pastoral Ministry. That class was AHSC 232 Working in Task Groups. I got a set of emails this morning from some woman on campus saying that HAD I gotten into the class and did all the work, they would assess my transcript, with a note from that prof that I completed all the work. HELLO!!! I didn’t get into the class, and their email is six weeks late.

I sent her a note “Sorry you are a few days late and a  few dollars short. It seems from the time I sent her that note – that SHE emailed my department and got nasty with the former chair of the Certificate program.

I had an appointment to meet with Professor Bright at 3 o’clock, she is co-teaching my “Trinity” course this session. Prof. Bright is also my Certificate adviser.She’s a classic lady with classic wit and old world charm. She is considered the Matriarch of the Theology Department.

I told her about the emails I got from the University and this strange woman and that my successive attempts to get into AHSC 232, has as of late, failed for both the summer and the fall – she was not pleased.

She then made me an offer that I could not refuse. She offered to supervise a class for me. Just for me. They are building it into the system right now. I told her about my history and my Pastoral Ministry work and a little of my life story and that I work in a mentors circle.

So here is the deal … Second Session Summer I have to write a 30 page paper on Pastoral Ministry – working in a task group. Prof. Bright and her husband are going to France for a few weeks and she said that I could write this paper and have it completed for her when they return from Europe. This little class will be certified by Professor Bright and I will graduate in the Fall with my Certificate in Pastoral Ministry and I don’t have to set foot in another AHSC class, so help me God…

We left Prof. Brights office and sent downstairs to talk to the secretary who is doing all this work for us to assign this section and class for me. The secretary says “look at this…” and she prints out pages of correspondences from the strange woman at the University and her conversations with the former chair of the department. It seems that the Applied Human Science Department has broken their agreement with the Theology department. Professor Bright is not happy, because other students are having the same problems that I was having and you know, you just don’t mess with certain brilliant Professors. Heads are going to roll over this …

I need to pay off my summer fees in the next three weeks so that I can apply for the M.A. in Theology by the end of the month. If all the stars align and God is good I will be able to pull this off cleanly. We shall see…

More to come, stay tuned …


The Seven Deadly Sins…

A reading from the Gospel of Mark: 10:17-27
The Rich Young Man

As Jesus started on his way, a man ran up to him and fell on his knees before him. “Good teacher,” he asked, “what must I do to inherit eternal life?”

“Why do you call me good?” Jesus answered. “No one is good—except God alone. You know the commandments: ‘Do not murder, do not commit adultery, do not steal, do not give false testimony, do not defraud, honor your father and mother.”

“Teacher,” he declared, “all these I have kept since I was a boy.”

Jesus looked at him and loved him. “One thing you lack,” he said. “Go, sell everything you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.”

At this the man’s face fell. He went away sad, because he had great wealth.

Jesus looked around and said to his disciples, “How hard it is for the rich to enter the kingdom of God!”

The disciples were amazed at his words. But Jesus said again, “Children, how hard it is to enter the kingdom of God! It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God.”

The disciples were even more amazed, and said to each other, “Who then can be saved?”

Jesus looked at them and said, “With man this is impossible, but not with God; all things are possible with God.”

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What is it that man can judge another man? There is a lot to be said about Pride. For Pride cometh before the fall. I am very careful in writing here because I know that every word that is written here is scrutinized by a chosen few men and women who seem to think that it is their job to judge me.

I’ve never been one to sit on pride. I’ve never been one to be prideful to the extent that I have committed a sin or sinned against anyone that I know. A person in recovery knows that pride is one of those sins that can take someone down faster than most. So let us review the seven deadly sins and let us explore together how we avoid them and why we talk about them today.

Proverbs 6:16-21

There are six things the LORD hates,
seven that are detestable to him:

haughty eyes,
a lying tongue,
hands that shed innocent blood,

a heart that devises wicked schemes,
feet that are quick to rush into evil,

a false witness who pours out lies
and a man who stirs up dissension among brothers.

The Seven Deadly Sins are: Lust, Gluttony, Greed, Sloth, Wrath, Envy and Pride.

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It was brought to my attention today by a commenter that I was Prideful and that I should read my own posts to see that truth. I beg to differ. I take pride in the fact that I hold a B.A. in Religious Studies and a second Certificate in Pastoral Ministry. And if I am not reminded daily that I am a sinner and that I have fallen short of the Glory of God, that would be a sin.

I have no need to be

(1) Lustful because I own the love I have for another and he for me. So I think I have cleared lust off my list of sins. I am not a

(2) Glutton, in fact I believe that I am just the opposite. I’ve never been a big fan of

(3) Greed
because what does greed get you but pain? It does not get you further in the game nor does it bode well to be a greedy human being.

(4)
Sloth,
I have not been in the pit of misery for many years. This sin has been called the sin of sadness and despair. It had been in the early years of Christianity characterized by what modern writers would now describe as melancholy: apathy, depression, and joylessness — the last being viewed as being a refusal to enjoy the goodness of God and the world he created.

I do enjoy every day that God gives me because lets face it living with AIDS you never know when your card is going to pop up on the dashboard of God’s choosing.


(5) Wrath
, Wrath (or anger)
may be described as inordinate and uncontrolled feelings of hatred and anger. These feelings can manifest as vehement denial of the truth, both to others and in the form of self -denial, impatience with the procedure of law, and the desire to seek revenge outside of the workings of the justice system (such as engaging in vigilantism and generally wishing to do evil or harm to others.

Well I think I have my own truth. And I know God’s truth. And I do work every day to live in that truth. My truth may not be your truth and what a bore it would be if I owned your truth. I don’t believe that my brand of Christianity is any better than the next and I do preach my truth with precision and here I am covering all the bases just to make sure that no one can say I have spoken wrongly.Envy, for sure, I don’t envy anyone in my social circle. Like greed,

(6)
Envy
is characterized by an insatiable desire; they differ, however, for two main reasons. First, greed is largely associated with material goods, whereas envy may apply more generally. Second, those who commit the sin of envy desire something that someone else has which they perceive themselves as lacking.

I really don’t desire anything that anyone I know owns or has. And i don’t think I am lacking in any of the creature comforts of house and home, my spiritual life is in tact and is very well thank you. So let us talk about the last deadly sin, PRIDE.

(7) Pride In almost every list Pride ( or hubris or vanity) is considered the original and most serious of the seven deadly sins, and indeed the ultimate source from which the others arise. It is identified as a desire to be more important or attractive than others, failing to give compliments to others though they may be deserving of them, and excessive love of self (especially holding self out of proper position toward God).

Dante’s definition was “love of self perverted to hatred and contempt for one’s neighbor.” Pride is the deadliest of all the sins and leads directly to the damnation of the titulary famed Parisian doctor. In perhaps the best-known example, the story of Lucifer, pride was what caused his fall from Heaven, and his resultant transformation into Satan. Vanity and narcissism are prime examples of this sin. In Dante’s Divine Comedy, the penitent were forced to walk with stone slabs bearing down on their backs in order to induce feelings of humility.

Hubris, that was the word that my commenter used this morning… If you think that I am as vain as some seem to think, I believe you are sadly mistaken. I do not and never have desired to be better than anyone else, I don’t believe that I set myself above anyone, lest I really sin against God.

I wish that some people who come to read this blog were stricken with a terrible disease that is fatal and that they try to live within that space for a period of time to see just what it feels like. As a person living with AIDS I can tell you that vanity and hubris went out the window years ago.

A fatal disease removes all these sins from you in ways that you the normal well reader could never imagine. I don’t know what you believe if you think that disease has not taken its toll on my physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually, and I find it incredible that someone would have the desire to point out that I have sinned in the way I live my life, what I do with this life and what I chose to print on this blog. Because I am damn well sure that You do not know me and I have no earthly desire to know you or believe like you.

I will say this again… I don’t have to prove myself or justify myself to anyone and you don’t have to agree with me or my spiritual practice. You may not agree with my brand of Christian belief, and that is your problem, not mine.

They say in recovery that IF YOU HAVE A PROBLEM WITH ANYONE THEN YOU NEED TO LOOK INTO YOUR OWN SELF AND FIND THAT WHICH IS THE PROBLEM WITHIN YOURSELF. Then you must change that which is within yourself.

Matthew 7:1-5

Judging Others

“Do not judge, or you too will be judged. For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.

“Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye? How can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when all the time there is a plank in your own eye?

You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.