Sunday, September 6, 2009

"Who do you say I am?"

The question Jesus asks of his disciples comes down to us through the ages. It is asked as loudly and clearly as it was asked then. Now, as then, it can be understood just as the disciples understood it. You are our Friend our companion, you are a baptizer, a prophet the wise one come down from heave. yet Jesus is more so much more. Jesus is god incarnate on earth experiencing our hopes, dreams and disappoints. Those he felt and experienced himself and each one of ours down through the last 200+ years. Not only does he know me, not only does he know me before I was conceived in the womb. He knows me now. As I am today with all my memories, successes and failures, pains and joys, loves and loves lost. Because of this knowledge can I call Jesus, Friend, companion and Lover.

"Who do you say that I am" I say you are my Friend, protector, teacher, mentor and partner in this life and the next. I choose to follow your way as the way for me knowing that the God in you has made ways for others as well. Those other ways I respect and seek the knowledge they can offerme as well as I translate it into my personal relationship with my all loving all compasionate God and Christ.

Monday, June 8, 2009

one in 18000

My husband and I just experienced the first advatage of marriage we only have one AAA policy now instead of paying for two and because we are married we get a lower rate. Really could use a few more perks like that!

last week went to fresno to meet in the middle mariage equality rally. It was huge. we caught up with the Rev. Troy Perry. An intersting twist in the fight. Troys Perry's part of the original suit was that CA would recognize gay marriages from outside the state. Prop 8 did not address the issue nor did the supreme court so technically Gay people can go outside of the state to get married and come back and demand to be recognized.

Can't wait to do it again in 2010! Lets win this thing once and for all!

Monday, May 25, 2009

Why Marriage between Homosexuals is Good for Marriage

An Article By World renowned theologian Rosemary Radford Ruether

Why Marriage between Homosexuals is Good for Marriage

By Rosemary Radford Ruether - May 17 2009

In the current culture wars, we are constantly told by conservatives that gay marriage would be a disaster for the ideal and institution of (heterosexual) marriage. James Dobson, founder of the conservative evangelical group, Focus on the Family, has opined, "Barring a miracle, the family as it has been known for more than five millennia will crumble, presaging the fall of Western civilization itself." Pope John Paul II judged same sex unions as "degrading" marriage. The Vatican Declaration "Considerations Regarding Proposals to Give Legal Recognition to Unions between Homosexual Persons" (2004) stated that "Legal recognition of homosexual unions obscure basic values which belong to the common inheritance of mankind."
But are these warnings that gay marriage poses a threat to marriage true? Do they make either logical or empirical sense? At a time when fewer Americans are marrying at all and many are divorcing, at a time when a third of American households consist in single people, why is it a threat to marriage that homosexual people are embracing marriage? Shouldn't we find the large numbers of people who are unmarried, often raising children as single parents, the prime threat to marriage? What is remarkable about the current movement for marriage among gay people is that they are asking for basically the same institution and ideals of marriage as heterosexuals currently enjoy. They want a publicly recognized sealing of a commitment to a life long monogamist union with another person with whom they want to share their lives, an institution which also carries with it certain legal rights, such as shared pensions and health plans. Why is this a threat to marriage?
If marriage is not allowed gay people, what is the alternative that conservative Christians are demanding for gay people? For some, gay people shouldn't exist at all; they can and should be converted to heterosexuality. But few medical and psychological experts now share this view. Sexual orientation has proved to be deeply imbedded and not easily changed. Another alternative is lifelong celibacy. But celibacy has generally been recognized in the Christian tradition to be a special gift, not given to most people. Why should all gay people be assumed to have this "gift?" If conservative Christians demand that gays remain unmarried, but not capable of celibacy, what are we saying? That they should be promiscuous, that they should have uncommitted relations?
Two evangelical writers, Letha Scanzoni, author of the 1978 book, Is the Homosexual my Neighbor?, and David Myers, Professor of Psychology at Hope College, have recently (2005) published a book arguing for gay marriage from a Christian evangelical perspective, What God has Joined Together: A Christian Case for Gay Marriage. In this book they argue that marriage, in the sense of a permanent life-long egalitarian monogamist relationship between two persons for mutual care and child raising, is a fundamental human good. Couples in such relations are healthier and happier. Children are best raised in a stable two-parent household. If this is good for heterosexuals, then it is also good for homosexuals. Gay marriage does not destroy marriage, but rather extends this same good way of life to homosexuals.
The arguments that opening marriage to gay people is a slippery slope that will quickly lead to promiscuity, group marriage, polygamy and incest make no sense. Gay people and heterosexuals have both been promiscuous and pursued various extra-marital relations. The gay marriage movement is precisely a rejection of casual and plural relations. It is an option for a committed, monogamous relation with one other beloved person for the rest of one's life. One of the remarkable things about the recent opening of marriage to homosexuals, briefly in San Francisco and then also in Boston, is the number of gay people who came forward with great joy to officially seal what in many cases has already been a committed relationship of 10, 20 or 30 years. Are gay people "capable" of committed monogamous relations? Obviously so, at least as much as heterosexuals. What they are asking for is for this committed, monogamous relationship to be legally recognized as marriage.
Scanzoni and Meyers argue that accepting gay marriage, far from threatening marriage, will confirm and strengthen the ideal of marriage itself for all of us, heterosexuals and homosexuals. Gay marriage can be a positive example for the many people in our society that hesitate and fear to embrace a permanent monogamous and life-long relation, with its struggles as well as its joys. Gay marriage should be embraced by Christians as "pro-marriage, not anti-marriage." In Scanzoni and Meyers' words, "It can prompt heterosexual men and women to appreciate marriage in a new way."
Rosemary Radford Ruether is Visiting Professor of Feminist Theology at Claremont School of Theology and is the Carpenter Emerita Professor of Feminist Theology at Pacific School of Religion, as well as the Georgia Harkness Emerita Professor of Applied Theology at Garrett Evangelical Theological Seminary. She has enjoyed a long and distinguished career as a scholar, teacher, and activist in the Roman Catholic Church, and is well known as a groundbreaking figure in Christian feminist theology. Ruether has published numerous books, including Sexism and God-Talk, In Our Own Voices: Four Centuries of American Women's Religious Writing (ed. with Rosemary Skinner Keller), and The Wrath of Jonah: The Crisis of Religious Nationalism in the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict. Her most recent books include Goddesses and the Divine Feminine: A Western Religious History (May 2005), Integrating Ecofeminism, Globalization, and World Religions (Nature's Meaning 2005) and Mountain Sisters: From Convent To Community In Appalachia. Most recently, she collaborated on a multi-volume Encyclopedia of Women in American Religion, with Rosemary Skinner Keller (2006).

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

finished my Thesis

I have finished and turned in my thesis. Now I am just going backl and tweaking a few things before my oral arguements. I have a papers due on Crisis counseling, marriage and counseling, and a film project proposal and then I am done. I cannot believe it. now all i need to do is find gainful employement.

Saturday, January 31, 2009

This article just came out on boxturtle http://www.boxturtlebulletin.com/2009/01/31/8492

LDS Prophets’ Latest “Reveation”: Church Gave $190,000 To Pass Prop 8
Jim Burroway
January 31st, 2009
When supporters of Prop 8 went to Federal Court to try to block the public release of the names of late donors, they said that their move was to protect individual donors from harassment. Now we know the real reason Yes on 8 had to try to circumvent California’s open campaign finance laws. In fact, Yet On 8’s chief benefactor had 190,00 reasons to fight the release:
Mormon church officials, facing an ongoing investigation by the state Fair Political Practices Commission, Friday reported nearly $190,000 in previously unlisted assistance to the successful campaign for Prop. 8, which banned same-sex marriage in California.
The report, filed with the secretary of state’s office, listed a variety of California travel expenses for high-ranking members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and included $20,575 for use of facilities and equipment at the church’s Salt Lake City headquarters and a $96,849 charge for “compensated staff time” for church employees who worked on matters pertaining to Prop. 8.
The Mormon church had been under investigation by the Fair Political Practices Commission for failure to report its contributions as required by law. The investigation was prompted by a complaint filed by Fred Karger, of Californians Against Hate.
IRS regulations barred from endorsing political candidates, but they allow churches and religious groups to campaign and contribute on behalf of issues. When doing so, churches are required to report their contributions just like every other donor. They are also required to report and attach fair market dollar values to “in-kind” donations, which consist of services and activities provided directly without charge by a donor that a campaign would otherwise have been required to pay for.
Until yesterday, Mormon church had denied any direct financial support for the campaign. I guess some of the Mormon prophets in Salt Lake City had one of their famous “revelations” last night.

Monday, January 26, 2009

final semester crazy

OMG I am crazy, or am I. i am finishing my final semester of a dual degree MDiv + MA in Pastoral care and counseling. I am also working on my 4th unit of CPE and trying to get my thesis done.
During this process i still serve my community at MCC in the Valleya s best as I am capable. then to top it off I am still working towards my black veil for the sisters of perpetual indulgence los angeles.

I need a month off!

peace
Rev. Joe