Children do some funny things and some annoying things. One abiding memory of our youngest son comes from the time he was four years old. I really can’t remember what I had done to provoke the outburst but I still remember the result. Our son stood there, pulled up to his full height, small though he was, hands on hips and looked me in the eye and asked in his most challenging tone: “What right do you have to tell me what to do?” I have no idea where he came across such a phrase, even his 14 year old brother had not used that to my knowledge. I didn’t have time to worry about where the question came from. I needed to explain that I actually did have the right to tell our son what to do by virtue of the fact that I was his mother. I’m not sure how happy he was with the answer, but a son who would not accept that I had any authority in his life was going to be a big problem. Our youngest son continued to be the most challenging of all our children. I suppose one answer was not going to address the whole issue. Continue reading
On 8th February 2015, the second Sunday before Lent, Helene Milena preached the following sermon in the Anglican Cathedral on Epiphany Island in Second Life. The readings were Psalm 104:26-35, Colossians 1:15-20, and John 1:1-14.
It was very important that those living in Israel in the first century understood who Jesus is. God sent John the Baptist ahead of Jesus to prepare the way and prepare the hearts of the people to respond to Jesus. As we know, many did respond but others rejected him. Still others chose to condemn Jesus to death. John the Evangelist wrote his Gospel so that those who came along later could also understand who Jesus is and have the opportunity to respond. That opportunity is still available to everyone today. Continue reading
During the season of Epiphany we focus on incidents which show the world who Jesus was. On the first Sunday we remember the visit of the Magi who saw God incarnate in the child Jesus. This Sunday we remembered Jesus’ baptism when those around heard God declare that Jesus was his Son. The readings were Psalm 29, Isaiah 43:1-7 and Luke 15-17, 21, 22. My reflection is given below:
In this world of Second Life, many people try very hard to portray themselves as they would like to be seen. Unlike in RL, that is possible. If you want to be a tiny mouse or a scary monster, a dainty little girl or a furry cat, perpetually young or improbably thin, here it can be done. You can buy who you want to be in an instant. You can modify your avatar until the look is what you are seeking for. If your mood changes, you can change your avatar to suit.
When you first create an account in SL you can choose your name. Once again, most people choose something that sends out some message about them. A few choose their own name now that it’s possible to do so, but I suspect they are very much in the minority. It is the norm not to reveal your real name. The Terms of Service for SL have dire warnings that we are not to reveal anything we find out about someone to other people on penalty of death, or the SL equivalent, namely suspension or deletion of our account. This is a world of make believe and nothing is to disturb that without our permission.
I remember it took a lot of discussion by the Leadership Team to gain agreement that Leadership Team members and Worship Leaders should give their RL names on the blog. It’s a price we pay as a result of being in leadership positions and I know it is very costly for some who would really like to keep their SL lives completely separate from their real lives. For me the transparency on behalf of leaders here is essential and answers the call for Christians to be counter-cultural. I know others think completely the opposite and I respect their opinion. Continue reading