Loving your political opponent – Creative Conflict

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Rev. Clay Nelson

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Rev. clay Nelson © 26 March 2017

In this Age of Trump, for many of us, loving our political opponents seems a step too far. Friends in the US report political differences in their families and life-long friendships are fracturing them, some seemingly beyond repair. This goes way beyond “unfriending” them on Facebook. Marriages are dissolving. Children and parents are estranged. Communities are divided. Political debate has always been a blood sport in the US, but this level of carnage is beyond my experience. Continue reading Loving your political opponent – Creative Conflict

Reforming the Reformation

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Rev. Clay Nelson

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Rev. clay Nelson © 19 March 2017

Until 500 years ago this year, one church had controlled all of Christianity for more than a millennium. It had become grievously corrupt, in part because it had become interwoven with the state. One particular abuse was the last straw that enraged a young monk, Martin Luther, so much that he sent a message to his bishop condemning the practice of selling indulgences to political leaders to raise money to build St Peter’s Basilica in Rome. An indulgence was like a “Get out of jail free” card. No matter how serious the sin, the rich and powerful could buy an indulgence and have the church’s guarantee that they could get into heaven, without having to confess and do penance. Continue reading Reforming the Reformation

Unitarians Seeking Sanctuary

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Rev. Clay Nelson

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Rev. clay Nelson © 12 March 2017

Our recent experience with providing the Indian students with sanctuary has been a rich source of reflection for me since we said our farewells to them. And I know I’m not alone in that as I listen to conversations at morning tea. And not just for us, if comments of colleagues from other faith groups are any indication. Even the head of Auckland’s office of Immigration called this week to ask if we could have a coffee to unpack the experience. Continue reading Unitarians Seeking Sanctuary

Building A Beloved Community

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Rev. Clay Nelson

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Rev. clay Nelson © 5 March 2017

I’ve been reflecting a lot recently on why, since the age of five, I’ve more often than not been in church on Sundays. Of course, for most of my adult life it has been my vocation. It paid the bills. But in my reflections I’ve wondered, if that was not the case, would I still find myself here almost every Sunday? What need does it fulfil? Continue reading Building A Beloved Community

Breaking Free

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Craig Hoyle

Born gay in an Exclusive Brethren family.

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Craig Hoyle © 26 February 2017

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