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Stories from Richard Carter
Thursday 25th June 2020 @ 1:58 pm / 0 comments

I rarely use this blog to rehash in full what others are writing … but reading ‘The City Is My Monastry’ by Richard Carter helps me change habits.Here are two short chapters – stories of encounter – that should be allowed air and space.I meet with a woman who is seeking asylum in this country; she is carrying a small child. She has come to ask me for my prayers as she still fears being sent back to the violence. She tells me those fears. I ask if I can pray with her.

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With you in Spirit
Monday 22nd June 2020 @ 12:08 pm / 0 comments

The reflection below was recently, aired on RTE 'With You In Spirit' ...Hello, my name is Julian Hamilton, and I am a Methodist Minister, and a chaplain to Trinity College, Dublin.'The times they are a changinh.'You have probably heard that said countess times over the last few months.Goodness knows you have probably said it yourself a dozen times or more. Yes - the times they are a changing. Every particle of your being knows this.Your household knows thisYour neighbours know thisYour pets know thisI live and work in Trinity College in Dublin - and the animals inside the campus know this! 

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Pslam 88
Tuesday 26th May 2020 @ 10:39 am / 0 comments

I was asked to participate in the ministry of Dundrum Methodist by providing a ‘thought for the day from a psalm’ … which was recorded for their website. It was a joy to do it.  Below is the text. Just a thought …         It is a pleasure to be sharing with you for a few minutes this morning … part of me in apprehensive – because the Psalm I am sharing is not a happy psalm. It is not an ancient writing that I go to when I want to sense built up and encouraged – ...

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Aldersgate Sunday 2020
Sunday 24th May 2020 @ 9:34 am / 0 comments

 A sermon, (delivered in two parts) for Aldersgate Day, given on RTE May 24th 2020.   Today in the Methodist tradition, is what we call Aldersgate Sunday – and on this day, we hold in mind the experience of the founder of the Methodist movement, John Wesley, an Anglican priest who longed for the renewal of the church in his time. He was a fiercely passionate human, as well as a strong advocate and practitioner of what we now call social justice.   John Wesley was born the 15th child of Samuel and Suzanna Wesley in a small ...

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The use of violent language and the Presence of God
Monday 11th May 2020 @ 3:06 pm / 0 comments

I apologise. I cannot write this in brief. But if you want it in one sentence … Words create worlds. And the worlds they create direct the choices we make. If you want the college length essay, go on. Feel no obligation to agree. I have been challenged (positively) by the push–back to my observations expressing concern with the language of warcraft by Boris Johnston and Donald Trump in relation to coronavirus pandemic. It is good for me to be forced to follow through – because this I do believe is important. Language of enemy and victory is always ...

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Lockdown 6
Monday 4th May 2020 @ 11:41 am / 0 comments

Lots of comment and question these days around ‘what are we learning’ through coronavirus. A major thing for me from the start has been the value of (and danger of not having) social connection. The prominence of positive social connection is well documented in the field of positive psychology. It sits alongside kindness, and living with a sense of purpose, as absolutely key indicators for living a happy life. “Once you understand the importance of social connection for happiness and well–being I think there are lots of ways in which you can think about ways in your own life that ...

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Lockdown 5
Thursday 23rd April 2020 @ 6:47 pm / 0 comments

Warning. Lockdown theological reflection. Contains an offensive thought to some. I usually get an email or two asking me if I am OK when I write from the heart like this – so to you kind people who wonder, am I OK? Honestly, I feel really good and well, thank you for caring.    Very recently I came across a note written just over two years ago. It was penned toward the beginning of a silent retreat that was part of my sabbatical. I came across this note/reflection while looking for a comment I know ‘is somewhere’ with regard ...

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Lockdown 4
Wednesday 15th April 2020 @ 9:07 pm / 0 comments

 Not exactly a blog.A confession.And I hope a healthy one that might have some people say ‘yeah, me too.’The older I get, and the more reflective I become, the more I realize, I don’t like endings. I do not try to deliberately avoid them. I do not minimize them when called upon to be in a place of leadership at a time of significant ending. The beliefs that a. change is the only unchangeable element in life, and  b. every ending is also a new beginning have led me to embrace realities of constant spirals of endings and beginnings.   ...

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Good Friday Lockdown
Friday 10th April 2020 @ 9:48 am / 0 comments

““Eli, Eli, lema sabachthani” “God, God, why? Why have you forsaken me.””   Theologically, it’s an incredible statement, and people will preach about it all around the world today. The pain of sacrifice. The absolute lowering of God in Christ to human action and punishment. The [too] incredible nature of divine life voluntarily laid down is in many ways too incredible to contemplate.   God, giving of Godself to human retribution and action? Really?   All the theological books in the world mean nothing when the pain of abandonment and loss is yours.   When you have been ...

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Lockdown 3
Thursday 9th April 2020 @ 11:22 am / 0 comments

“It’s Maundy Thursday, and it is Passover – traditionally, in both traditions mentioned – a day of remembering the stories of faith, of humility, of God–being–a–serving–god–who–frees the world. A God who calls people to be together, around tables, sharing what is in front of them, with humility, gratitude and promise.   It seems oddly right to speak truth on such a day. Emily Maitlis on BBC Newsnight last evening did such a thing. Here, without much comment are her important words.    She began her opening monologue by pointing to the language used during this crisis, confirming what many of ...

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Lockdown Holy Week 2
Wednesday 8th April 2020 @ 12:15 pm / 0 comments

 I’m loathing that people are dying I’m loving that some find new life I’m loathing the sniping and griping I’m loving that rainbows are rife   I’m loathing I can’t see my best friends I’m loving the chats on the phone I’m loathing the savior syndromes evolving I’m loving I can smile at their ego   I’m loathing that families are having to change their grieving habits I’m loving that this has been forced on them yet they find themselves brave and at rest   I’m loathing the rupture and breakdown and chaos I’m loving ...

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Holy Week Lockdown 1
Monday 6th April 2020 @ 10:27 am / 0 comments

Holy Week Chaplains Thought for The Day 1. (Recorded, but below is the script used)   … this is the first short thought for the day from your chaplains during this Holy Week – a most unusual and disrupted H.W.   Firstly, I hope you are well and are keeping safe in these strange times. Suitably distanced from but not totally separate from those you love, value, trust and whose input into your life is what helps you keep going … for these are the people we all need in such days. Use your technology platforms well. We had a ...

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Lockdown 2
Thursday 2nd April 2020 @ 12:02 pm / 0 comments

Lockdown is not what I imagined. Previously if I had to imagine a scenario where I would be housebound, it would only have meant one thing. I would be ill. Perhaps recovering from an operation, perhaps crawling through an ailment, perhaps even fighting a disease that normally carries a person to death? These were the likely scenarios. How wrong I was. Unforeseen circumstances that were so unforeseen that they were unimaginable are not the purview of the modern western imagination. In fact, the cry of the Modern World of the last 300 years has been constant progress. Progress, ...

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Lockdown 1.
Sunday 29th March 2020 @ 10:49 am / 0 comments

 “Maybe you can take your dad and me out for a drive?” “Sorry mum,  I don’t think you’re paying attention to what’s happening around the place right now – you know I’m not meant to do that? None of us are really meant to go out.” “But I want to go out.” “I know. But we really are not meant to. Why do you really want to?” “Because they tell me I can’t.”   I cannot imagine the multiple ways the above conversation, which happened in my parent’s kitchen, is being multiplied around this island and beyond in these strange ...

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Covid–19 thoughts – and it’s not even over yet
Wednesday 11th March 2020 @ 5:35 pm / 0 comments

I had occasion to hang out with a friend today who happens to be one of Ireland’s leading scientists in this whole Covid–19 thing. He is a man of faith – his faith is in science. And in these days I value his faith very much. Interestingly, he also values mine, especially perhaps at times when questions of meaning, purpose, dignity and hope are at the centre of his work due to a massive rupture in the Standard Operating Procedures of daily life.   Wash your hands.   And that is what these days are. A huge, and ...

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