“Ask a…” Series

Today I want to highlight a “Question and Answer” series from a blog which I often read. The blog is authored by Rachel Held Evans, an author from what I guess you would say is the more liberal end of Protestantism. She’s a really interesting writer. I often don’t agree with her conclusions, but her articles are always engaging and thought-provoking…

Anyway, what I wanted to do today was to highlight her “Ask a…” series which I’ve enjoyed greatly. What happens is she invites her readers to email her questions for an upcoming guest on her blog. These guests have included a Quaker, a Mormon, a gay Christian and many others including a Catholic, Devin Rose, whose book I recently reviewed.

Check it out!

Also, if you have time, I’d invite you to take a look at her Year of Biblical Womanhood project 🙂

The Genesis of Genesis

Name the movie in the Comment Box…

Have you ever wondered how the Bible as we know it actually came to be? Why do we only have four Gospels? Why is the Gospel of Peter not included? Why is the letter of Clement to the Corinthians not included? Who decided this and when?

I remember a train ride in my early twenties when I got into conversation with a fellow passenger who was reading “The Da Vinci Code”. This was quite some time before Dan Brown’s book became well known so, in ignorance, I asked her what it was about…

She told me a little bit of the story line and then, seeing that I was reading a book about Scripture, asked me why it was that the Dead Sea Scrolls were not also included in the Bible. I can’t remember exactly what I said, but I remember thinking at the time that my explanation wasn’t very articulate or didn’t sound convincing…

If your faith has its foundation in Sacred Scripture, shouldn’t you know where it came from?

Pope writes another great blog entry

No, not that Pope. There is a priest in Washington DC whom I have long regarded as my Virtual Chaplain, completely unbeknownst to him!

Virtual Internet Pastor

During my years of wandering I lacked a spiritual director or even a regular parish (this blog isn’t called “Restless Pilgrim” for nothing!). During those wilderness years I had a three month stint in Washington DC and, towards the end of my time there, I discovered Msgr. Pope’s parish.

I greatly enjoyed my visits – my exposure to gospel music until then had been limited, but I loved the enthusiastic singing I heard there. What impressed me most though was the preaching…

Msgr. Pope’s homilies were of good length, exegetical, impassioned and practical. I had often been critical of the standard of homilies in the Catholic world and hearing this kind of preaching was a breath of fresh air.

After my visa expired I left Washington DC and continued my wanderings around England and the USA. Fortunately, I soon discovered Msgr. Pope’s blog, together with his homily recordings and podcast feed. This meant that whether I was living in London, San Diego or somewhere in between, I received the same teaching. It was like having a regular pastor again 🙂

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Peter Kreeft on Islam

I actually had this post scheduled for mid-November, but I thought I’d post it a little early because of the recent media storm concerning pressure over classroom crucifixes from Muslims at a private Catholic University. In this entry I have a video of a debate Peter Kreeft had on the subject of Islam. He tells a story at 35:09 that I think is particularly relevant to the current controversy.

I have devoted quite a lot of time to studying Islam and probably read in total about a third of the Qur’an. Despite the fact that Islam is a major world religion, I often find awareness of basic Muslim beliefs rather lacking among Christians. A little while ago I produced a series of posts about Islam in an attempt to provide a basic introduction to the religion.

I often have rather animated conversations with another member of the Catholic community here in San Diego on the subject of Islam. A lot of these conversations revolve around how Islam should be viewed by Catholics. I was therefore delighted the other day when I stumbled upon a debate Professor Peter Kreeft had on this very subject…

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