Sunday, September 18, 2016

Father Stephen, Mother Mandrine

Father Stephen, Mother Mandrine

It was fifty years in the past
When Stephen and Mandrine wed.
A marriage expected to last
Far into the future, this love has led.

Our Lord’s blessings upon them flowed
Like God’s love for His lamb.
This couple’s love for each other never slowed,
Yielding another generation in son Sam.

The gospel in marriage lives through people,
Each with their own praise to carry.
With their marriage bound under a steeple,
Mandrine gave birth to daughter Mary.

With two children delivered through grace,
To their mother with honor we curtsy.
But all was not yet complete in this case,
Until the arrival of baby Mercy.

There are grandchildren and generations to come,
For God has blessed this family with His love.
Stephen and Mandrine follow God’s sacred drum
Sharing our Father’s Spirit like a dove.

Family, mission, and service – their calling.
This is not some idle theory.
Any different work would be appalling.
This is the family Ireri.

May God the Father bless their marital union.
May God the Son be their salvation,
And May God the Spirit advocate in Holy Communion.
The Holy Trinity, their Foundation.

© Worth Earlwood Norman Jr
September 17, 2016
Birmingham, Alabama

Our parish, St. Peter's Anglican Church in Mountain Brook, Alabama, has had for more than a decade Kenyan families as members. Stephen and Mandrine Ireri celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary on September 17, 2016 at our church. The ceremony was fully Christian and fully Kenyan. The Ireri's are parents to three adult children and many grandchildren. For them this celebration was also a family reunion as relatives came from near and far for this special occasion. Stephen is an assisting priest and has been active in Torati Vision International Torati Website click here.

Friday, September 16, 2016

The Emerging Chamber

The Emerging Chamber

Its parents were Athens and Jerusalem.
One the abstract, of logic and beauty.
The other the real life, hope, and love.

Sages provided concepts of order.
Patriarchs followed created order.
Jerusalem gifted Athens.

Heraclitus and Anaxagoras were on to something:
Science, philosophy, the cosmos.
Socrates, Plato, Aristotle their beneficiaries.

Abraham, Isaac, Jacob:
Obedient, patriarchs, wrestler.
David, Solomon, Jesus beneficiaries.

The marriage of Athens and Jerusalem,
The thought, the idea, and the true reality:
“The Way” the beneficiary.

“The Way” from the two cities
Westward tamed barbarians.
Europe the beneficiary.

Two thousand years
European mission.
The world, the beneficiary.

Two millennia passing,
Followers losing their way,
Forfeiting their benevolence.

The formerly Holy now deemed offensive,
Positive law overshadowing “The Way.”
Hush or be taken to jail!

Despite appearances,
No separation between secular and divine.
But secular subjugation close at hand.

Excluded from public square assembly,
Holy spaces soon to be quashed.
Prepare “The Way” for a new chamber.

A new catacomb.

Monday, September 12, 2016

A Tale of Two Restaurants

A Tale of Two Restaurants

Every once and a while
My love and I go out to eat.
We do not dine in high style,
A reasonable restaurant is more our beat.

One mostly a burger place,
The other southern border cuisine.
The first a fairly recent face.
The latter with well-tested corn, salsa, and bean.

Considering both with quality food,
Service reigns as the organized ship.
If servers to customers be rude,
We have the basis for leaving no tip.

Many visits went well,
Our 20% minimum thus exceeded.
But one day service went to hell,
And our 20% offering not needed.

Upon entering, we were placed at a booth.
I said, “No, I prefer over there that table.”
Silently she complied, it was her youth,
But for the servers to get our orders seemed unable.

After fifteen minutes waiting,
I began to shake and bake.
My patience grating,
From the premises we escape.

Then there is the other
So efficient and good,
No problems to bother
With, just good service and good food.

One wonders how that burger place thinks,
With poor service in this era.
Although both conduct business in our precinct,
We prefer to dine at Frontera’s.

Friday, September 9, 2016

Personal Truth?

Personal Truth?

At some point you’ve heard
What is true for you may not be true for others.”
That statement is logically absurd.
Unfortunately, most people accept it and don’t bother.

The statement, though groundless in its assertion,
Requires an agent external to truth
Who simultaneously lies through verbal assertion.
Logically not truth, a sleuth.

Truth by its nature objective,
Not proven of its own, but revealed.
Belief in truth subjective,
Truth is for all. Thus our appeal.

Saturday, September 3, 2016

Epistemology of Enlightenment Science

Epistemology of Enlightenment Science

Enlightenment or modern science rests
On faith-commitments
Which cannot themselves pass the tests,
The very methods of science being insufficient.

Two beliefs are foundational
On the development of science, the infringement?
That the universe is rational,
That the universe is contingent.

Rationality itself cannot be proven
By the methods endeared by science.
But it must be an assumed conclusion
That a faith-commitment is starting point compliant.

If contingency were not creation’s groan
But an emanation from an absolute spirit,
Then all would be totally known
Thus to science, not sincere it.

Pure contemplation, if thus so,
And not of scientific explanation,
Ultimate reality directly accessed, though,
No need then for laborious, scientific experimentation.

But if the Spirit of creation
Were a personal God, an alliance
Gifting a degree of autonomy through incarnation,
Then contingency is foundational to science.

Therefore, let it be known in our memories
That Enlightenment science motifs,
In a culture of centuries
Were born and shaped by these two beliefs.

A versed interpretation and re-presentation by Worth Earlwood Norman, Jr. of
Lesslie Newbigin, The Gospel in a Pluralist Society
Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co., Grand Rapids, MI 1989, page 20.