Sunday, January 15, 2012

The Theology Centre, Mariella Frostrup and Occupy

The chicken is in the oven and my 3 yo daughter decided not to do my hair so I have a moment.  Did you read Mariella Frostrup today in the Guardian? http://www.guardian.co.uk/lifeandstyle/series/dearmariella

She had the perfect message for Martin Luther King Day.  Why not join with a church community, since everything else sucks so bad.  This woman is a closet fan of Occupy and has been since 15 October and this one is her best message yet:  when overwhelmed with life and parenting and work, put yourself in a real community.  Have real friends and relationships.  And churches are real communities and you don't have to believe in God to go.  You need only believe that too much of your identity is getting and spending and that there must be more.  Sorry about the typical pronoun slaughter but she was making a point.  In the absence of answers from anyone else, why not try the church? 

  This is a big day for Occupy.  The Camp in London is celebrating Day 90.  And they are remembering Dr. King, a man who moved the United States by speaking church to church.  This calling upon a common love of justice Dr. King's work, or, as he was misquoted saying - drum major activities - informed my work on Winter Carnival and my understanding that an alliance between people of faith and the people of Occupy is fundamental to improvement in our society. 

Earlier this week I met with a group called the Contextual Theology Centre.  I have concluded that there are pockets of powerful good will within the Church of England that seek to help Occupy. This would be a good and fruitful alliance. 

A friend from the States is visiting and it is so very great, it has been way too long since I spent time with her.  I keep boring her  by complaining about how shockingly narrow the political discourse has become in the United States and saying the things I always say, that both the Democrats and the Republicans are just about the money, and the public dialogue stultifies with the narrowness of available discussions.  No one speaks of stopping wars, the most left leaning Democrat seeks only to streamline defense spending.  It is taken for granted that we will invade at the whim of our Federal government and not complain.  For a start.   Even the most progressive people I know will not easily give up on the system, not give up on the bitter bipartisan war in Congress, not give up on giving money to campaigns and thereby exacerbating the problem that campaigns are all about money.  They do tend to think twice when I say that if anyone could fix Washington, wasn't it the Obamas?  I mean, if these guys can't do it, then I can't think of anyone else who could.  The system is irrevocably broken from within.  The culture of money is too powerful to vanquish within the rules and means of the old ways. Here in the UK too.  The good news is that there are lots of people of faith who think this as well.

So we will fix it.  This is going to take a long time and I think things will get worse before they get better.  But I am excited about the opportunity to leave a better world for Liberty and Owain.  

I am with you, Occupy. 

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