Friday, May 25, 2007

Pentecost-al

We had a wonder-filled week of pentecost at church. Small groups of twenty something people faced the icy cold Highveld at our creche, where we meet. Interesting discussions and conversations ( my new buzzword after Amahoro, conversations...) Yes, we sang, we danced and did the pentecostal thing, but also reflected silently, stiffly on what the Spirit is doing, today. The Spirit, we dare say, give us superpowers ( like Neo in the Matrix or Superman ??) - but this power connect us to the divine. We read passages in Acts and discover its surprisingly an earthly divinity of grace- in the midst of ethocentrism, persecution, violation of human rights and empires (ecclesial, economic and political). It almost as if pentecost-al emerge in the midts of these, as the courage to be different- to defy hegemonies, to follow a leader who subvert the powers that be, by being a servant, dying, by witness through the stigmata of the nails and the thorns- the spear (of the nation), to seek alternative community.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Again Amahoro

Thinking about Amahoro, I realised how relevant the another confession from Africa was for the conversation, namely the Accra confession 2004. I got this Accra worshipresource from an American church. Cool hey !

Good to be back on the hill far away

Good to be back in Riverlea and the Tshwane-hill, although its freezing, according to SA standards. According to the weatherprophets- it was -4C last night here in the north. Anyway, it makes sense to be back and to reflect on my experiences with colleages and with members of our faith community, the Alpha Community. This in a sense is a time of working through the experiences and allowing the Body to temper one's concentrated views. This is sometimes humbling, but also importantly grounding, (rooting) you in your community of faith, in the reality of our community life. This means: amongst others reports to be finnished, scrips and assignments to be marked, meetings to be set up and children to be taken to school, recorder and violin lessons and feeding the Zazza, our German ( yes, German) sheperd dog. In the midst of it all- I think- we need to explore the what it means to be church....

Monday, May 21, 2007

Amahoro-Uganda

Amohoro ! I was taught that this means something like 'peace', so Amahoro!! again. I suppose as Africans we probably cannot over-stress this greeting. I will not repeat what was said and happened. For those interested check out the Amahoro blog or for the technically advanced there is Greame's Future church site.
Good, it seems, to be able to reflect on my 2 week experience in Uganda. it was good to experience the Uganda hospitality, to be re-affirmed in many things, but also challenged on a fair ammount of areas in one's life. After all, an unexamined life is not worth living, right ?
Jenkins/Jurgens would say that the centre of gravity has shifted towards the global south, towards Africa, where seemingly the church growing at its fastest. The question is: what type of church and whose Christianity. Coloniality, and therefor colonial Christianity or religiosity it seems to me, is not confined to the period which came (past tense) to an end at the time of independance. Some (at Amahoro, amongst others) would still shoot at the old styled missionaries from Europe and the rest, not realising that the Emperor is now disguising self in new clothes and masks- some of them South African, some as black as can be. Some still hold to the myth that God came to Africa with the ships of the colonists. If we hole to a trinitarian theology then we'll have to revisit these positions.

Postcoloniality, for me, questions fundamentally an imperialistic and conquering gospel- and discover amongst the silenced the humble cross, the empty grave, the witnessing, vulnerable church, under the shadow of the cross....The postcolonial church, therefor might be at places where we didn't look for and certainly not at the big stadiums with Holy Spirit Miracle Crusades. I was so disappointed at an old gospel artist whom I admired and whose music me and my family loved, who seemed to lead the pack of ravaging Crusaders ( not Richie McCaw and his cohorts) aiming to ( again) plunder Africa's soul. I don't even want to mention Ron Kenoly's name. (oops- there it's out) How can our Christian African American brothers be so gullable and susceptable to proprerity cults is beyond me, for now. Are we as a church beyond the point of redemption, beyond the point of repentance and conversion ?

Musings.....