Soil, Seeds, and Harvest

Gregg Koskela

(Our Thanksgiving service for Newberg Friends Church was at Bauman Auditorium on the George Fox University campus on November 23, 2014. We love sharing community with fresh pressed apple cider and pumpkin donuts, and then worshiping all together instead of in separate services. This year, two of our farmers–David Brown and Lisa McMinn–shared their experience and wisdom to help us think about the connections to giving thanks.)

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Peace Part 5: Peace and Quakerism.

Michael's 'Deep Thoughts'

Quakers are likely best known for embracing the peace testimony.  My Theological response was my own, but it has much in common with Robert Barclay’s response in his Apology.  The language that Friends have used in expressing their official opposition to war has been strong, both historically and currently.  Yearly meetings throughout the world have their official statements against all wars, and many yearly meetings write minutes condemning current wars. Meetings ranging from theologically liberal to fundamentalist offer ‘counter-recruitment’ advice, recommending against military life.  There can be no doubt of the official position.

There is a rather strong streak of individualism among Friends.  Even when there is consensus to oppose all wars and discourage military service, military enlistment among Friends is fairly common.  American Friends have fought  in every war, and with the exception of the revolutionary war, returning soldiers were welcomed back into their meetings.

This confusing relationship with…

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Uganda: A Draft of “the Prohibition of Promotion of Unnatural Sexual Practices Bill” – 29th October 2014



Today I will release a draft of a law called:‘the Prohibition of Promotion of Unnatural Sexual Practices Bill 2014’. This draft was 29th October. It must be seen as a continuation of the 2009 “Anti-Gay bill” that became Uganda Anti-Homosexuality Act of 2014. Not that I have cared much about it, because I see the bigger picture. By all means no prosecution of any person is right or deemed fair, unless your proven guilty by rule of law. This law in the end didn’t get passed because of the Criminal Court of Uganda ruled the law invalid. Even though this happen. Still a few donor countries have sent fewer aid-dollars to government of Uganda. This is the governments of Norway, Netherlands and United Kingdom.

I haven’t been vocal about that law like all the rest of the western hemisphere. For the simple reason: I don’t see the big…

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god is not elsewhere / some conversation about movies, art, politics and spirituality with gareth higgins

A Story for International Coming Out Day

This is a long post, but it comes from the heart. I welcome your comments.

I’ve waited a long time to write this, and I’m still not sure.

I have been afraid all my life.  Afraid that you might find out about me. I have sustained insults, devoted myself to other people’s plans for me, avoided people that I used to know because I’m scared of what they might ask me, hidden who I am from myself, been interrupted every day with thoughts that I am hateful and broken and deserve punishment.

I have felt this way, not because I have done anything wrong, or anything more wrong than the rest of us, but because I love men. And I, myself am a man. I also love women, but that never invited persecution. I identify as bisexual, and since I started to think…

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