what's on the CD player?
. the big chill - ichill . !k7 . fila brazillia - brazilification2
what books are by the bed?
. the music of silence - john tavener . hey nostradamus - douglas coupland . this is uncool (the 500 greatest singles since punk and disco) - gary mulholland . the bible . fences and windows - naomi klein . the art of looking sideways - alan fletcher
Friday, June 27, 2003
one of the fun things about running a blog is that people send you links to stuff... here's a few i've been sent recently
Thursday, June 26, 2003
a year or two back tony jones came to visit when he was researching for a book on youth ministry that was looking at classic spiritual disciplines. in particular we chatted about the labyrinth. well the book has just come out published by youth specialties called soul shaper: exploring spirituality and contemplative practices for youth ministry. i think it's a really significant book and a welcome shift of emphasis for youth ministry. there are chapters on things like silence, the jesus prayer, daily office, icons, meditation, pilgrimage etc... all pretty neatly summarised. if you are in youth ministry get the book. if you're not it's probably worth getting anyway for yourself or whatever group/church you are involved in. for example in grace we have had services incorporating quite a few of these pratices - stations of the cross, icons, jesus prayer. this kind of move towards spirituality and away from a sort of entertainment based approach to youth ministry has been pioneered by mark yaconelli amongst others who has been running retreats and programmes with various youth groups for several years now as the youth ministry and spirituality project.
the book has a pretty useful list of web sites and resources in the back connecting with the different disciplines (although unfortunately the labyrinth web site address is wrong in the book!).
Thursday, June 26, 2003
Monday, June 23, 2003 worship trick 47 arkaos is a VJ programme. i mentioned it a whle back. but whilst in canada i have been trying it out for presentations and it really is good!!! thanks to andrew jones for putting me onto it.
the way it works is that you can put either still images or movies (quicktime or swf) in a visuals window. you then simply drag these onto a key on a visual representation of your keyboard. there are also a series of effects (movie effects, transitions etc) that you can also drag onto keys. so you can see this keyboard here has a series of pictures and effects on it that i have set up for a presentation (you can have either an effect, a movie or image, or both on a key). then you simply press the appropriate key to play what is on it or use the effect that is on it. it really is simple but very powerful. it's good both for running visuals, but i also used it with words - a little tricky in that you have to set the words up as jpg files. but the beauty of it is that unlike powerpoint or appleworks where you have to run things in sequence you can do the keys in whatever order you like. and you can layer them i.e. overlay words over a video.
here's a couple of screen shots. now i've only just tried this out so i've a long way to go. the good news is you can download a 20 day trial which is the full version (it's 40mb so make sure you have a fast connection!). the bad news is that it isn't free - it's about $250 i think. anyway try it out and see what you think...
Monday, June 23, 2003
Sunday, June 22, 2003
blogging from fredericton airport waiting to fly home. catching up on e-mail etc at the airport. anyway whilst looking around noticed steve had posted a prayer from the last grace service on the trinity. taking its cue from de la soul it's entitled three is the magic number and is on his blog. i've pasted the text below as i don't know how to make a direct link that will stay. it's worship trick 46. bye bye canada!
three is the magic number
calling us out of individualism
insisting on relationship
i to you
we to another
trinity seeding networks
until all the cosmos joins in
Friday, June 20, 2003
have just travelled from fredericton to saint john. caught sight of a moose on the way. not a big deal for canadians but fun for us!! the clergy college for the diocese of fredericton went really well. i must admit i had no idea what to expect and as it's such a rural diocese was thinking that me coming from london and all that would have nothing relevant to offer. but pete's teaching and the worship really seemed to spark and provoke people in a really good way. i hope some good things grow out of it both in terms of developing new ways of worship, kickstarting some youth ministry and training and just a general encouraging of creativity. tonight and tomorrow we are meeting with and doing some teaching/training/worship with youth leaders and volunteers - again not quite sure what to expect but looking forward to it. anyone at the clergy college or the youth leader training who is dropping in for the first time welcome to the blog!! check the links on the left hand side - the worship tricks are pretty popular... and feel free to leave a comment below any entry...
Friday, June 20, 2003
Sunday, June 15, 2003
fantastic news! the outstandingly creative and poignant adbusters magazine has got a UK launch!!! so it should be available in smiths, newsagents etc... - get to your nearest one and ask them to stock it. plus the may/june issue which is the launch one over here has a stunning CD live without dead time. it is a protest album put together by DJ Spooky - his tracks alone are worth the four pounds cover price - there's about 29 tracks on there including the likes of coldcut. it is the most refreshing thing i have listened to in a long time. if you want to get a feel for the flavour of it one of the tracks (i think this may be a different version of it?...) is downloadable here. it will be about 1.5 mb to download. it's a track 'not in my name' by saul williams.
was also surprised/delighted to see a letter on the letters page from 'an alternative worship group in north west london' - turns out it's from james trafford of L8r - way to go james! the letter is worthy of a worship trick but i haven't got time to copy it out just now (i should be packing my bags for canada) but i will do so shortly. anyway thanks to adbusters for the inspiration and the commitment to evoke grief about the state of things and daring to dream of new worlds and possibilities in the prophetic tradition... now get down the shop and buy it!
Sunday, June 15, 2003
Friday, June 13, 2003
off to canada on monday for a week with pete ward to do some training for the clergy and youth ministers from the diocese of fredericton - be teaching on a mix of liquid church, alternative worship, and youth ministry..... looking forward to it.
Friday, June 13, 2003
grace tomorrow is on the trinity. we have artist paul hobbs visiting and bringing some of his work including a triptych of the trinity. this should be a wonderful evening... 8pm start. couldn't find much on paul his work on the web but there is a short piece here.
Friday, June 13, 2003
Monday, June 09, 2003
'hail to the thief', the new radiohead album is out in the uk today! i have been disciplined and resisted going and buying it as i've probably spent my quota of spare cash this month in paris and beyond... so imagine my delight to find it as a present from jen with a card when i got in this evening - thanks!xx it's now playing - opening line of the album is
Friday, June 06, 2003 jonathan raises the question of whether i'd say the same things about mission in france if i'd lived there. good question (i can't possibly answer it) - probably not. they were only meant as thoughts/observations from an outsider. he also asks whether we can trust our 'missiological instincts'... which is an even better question - mmmmm.
Friday, June 06, 2003
Thursday, June 05, 2003
back from paris...
so much to think about, so many reflections. the thing about blogging is it's immediate top of the head stuff most of the time. having met the people we met and reflected on mission, france and the emerging church ('l'eglise en devenir') it kind of feels like i need to come up with thoughts a little more profound than usual. but if i wait around i'll probably never post anything so it's the usual!
matt glock (top photo) was the main man hosting, holding things together. i love matt - he is what we would call an unsung hero - faithfully been doing stuff for 10 years in a tough part of the world, and has the right spirit - keeping out of the limelight, building relationships across networks, thoughtful, reflective, knowing that the french have to be at the heart of anything emerging in france
had the chance to catch up with andrew jones which i always love doing. a highlight for the guys we took was a session in which we had the chance to hear from andrew about what god is doing round the world in the emerging culture... it was conversational but so refreshing to hear someone speak where internally you find yourself saying YES rather than drifting off at the irrelevance of what is being said. one particularly memorable line...
the kingdom of god is a house full of poor people partying
one afternoon we got to hear stories of things happening in france - mission radicale, phrog, temoins, and les passagers (lorenzo is second photo from the bottom, didn't get one of marie elise - sorry). témoins are an organisation that have been reflecting on france and writing reflections on mission, spirituality etc and incorporating and translating thinking from other places in the world. they have been quietly doing this for 30 years. sitting listening to jean (must be about 70 years old) oozing wisdom was brilliant. they are currently in process of developing a web magazine rather than a print one. i hope this opens up a window for their wisdom and instincts to others - may well save some mistakes along the way.
also spent a day at jonathan finley's house, home of the oikos community. thanks for the hospitality! had one of those blog moments - someone who reads your blog and all that when you think you just write for yourself, a computer and a couple of friends or less. he has some larger pics on his blog and has pulled off the ultimate scam of getting a mountain bike via an appeal on his blog!!!!! the house was wi-fi with macs all over the place - heaven i guess. makes me wish i had an airport card (no that wasn't an appeal). one other blog moment was meeting someone who wanted to have the advertising removed from my blog and had paid to do so. the honest truth is i hadn't even noticed - oops.. but thank you - v. kind and i'm sorry i am so lacking observation.... and ethical commitment
there were twelve in our group - some from CMS, some mission partners, some friends (well they were all friends really - certainly by the end), some guys doing tough creative church and youth ministry. all of them have come away with different things - encouragement, challenge, inspiration, wine, cheese, belgian beer, ideas, new relationships and networks. it's so easy to get isolated when trying to cut something new in mission and church - so i hope this will help lift people up and encourage them.
my two thoughts on france - the instincts from cross cultural mission round the world could really be useful for the guys doing stuff there (and temoins could help develop them); and the catholic church/protestant church tension needs some risk takers to plunge in head first to reimagine the world without that tension and see what happens!...
a question i was asked was 'what do you mean by missiological instincts?' - i gave a reply but this is something i need to come back to.... see if i can develop a better answer.
a personal goal was to get a look at arkaos in action (the mixer not the visualiser). this is the VJ software andrew has been raving about for months. looks stunning and user friendly so i'll be tring it out and see how i get on.
Thursday, June 05, 2003
a bit about me...
i am a londoner; christian; dad; postmodern (whatever that means - i know at least that i'm not modern); director of an independent record label proost which we set up to release music without being subject to christian record labels who had a frankly unimaginitive approach to music at the time as far as we were concerned; a member of grace , an alternative worship community in west london that has been an inspiration, lifeline, home, great bunch of friends, provided an arena in which to be creative about faith and worship and culture; i'm also part of the wider alternative worship movement/scene in the uk where i have lots of friends sharing the same dreams and struggles; an ideas person; a husband; national youth co-ordinator for cms; involved in various creative projects, the most successful of which has been the labyrinth which has been on a roll since we first installed it in st pauls cathedral in 2000; a mac user; co-ordinator of the worship at greenbelt arts festival where we have tried to create a space for new/creative/alternative worship especially in the new forms venues - a good place to visit if you want to encounter lots of creative uk worship in one go; writer (albeit a novice) with a few articles in books, mags and the web; a chelsea football supporter; involved in youth ministry - i have been for 15 years now - in the uk at least many people involved in alt worship want to avoid being labelled youth ministry as it's a convenient way for the church to write off what you do and the people involved aren't by any means youth (though some are), but i live in both arenas and think there's lots of overlap and creative conversation and ideas to be shared between the two; songwriter; lover of music especially the ambient, chilled, dub, instrumental end of things; lover of good food, belgian beer and conversation;