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Tuesday, February 26, 2008
Book Discussion Forever & Ever, Amen by Karol Jackowski
Well, one problem with being a book lover and the mom of a toddler is that books suddenly disappear when you are about use them, and so this post isn't going to have any quotes. I hope if you've had a chance to dip into the book you've found some gems of your own, and please feel free to share any that inspire you!

In the latter part of the book, Karol talks about the breakup of the old order, with its imposition of sameness, at the cost of individuality and the voices of the sisters. She describes the crisis of community that occurred when after years of oppression, the freedom to dissent suddenly arose, causing the foundations of friendship, sisterhood and solidarity to be shaken, and the cost both of that oppression, and the pain of its lifting after being normative for so long.

1. Where is your community at in the process of valuing the voicing of its members, even when it means the loss of uniformity?

2. What is your community doing or not doing to foster an environment where people are/feel loved and safe enough to stretch beyond comfort zones to include the Other, even when the other is the person in the next seat or pew?

3. Describe a time you took a risk and voiced a dissenting opinion about theology, community or spiritual life? What was it like?

4. Describe a time you did not voice a dissenting a opinion, but felt one? What was it like?

5. Describe a time when someone else's dissenting opinion felt threatening to you? What was it like?

6. What is your heart's urgent prayer for the church/God's people?

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posted by Jemila Kwon at 7:46 PM ¤ Permalink ¤


  • At 2/27/2008 10:49:00 AM, Blogger Lydia

    3. Describe a time you took a risk and voiced a dissenting opinion about theology, community or spiritual life? What was it like?

    I was about 14 or 15, and my youth group leader was trying to convince us that in order to be truly "spiritual" we needed to stop hanging out with our non-Christian friends (unless we were inviting them to church or something. ;) )

    I don't remember exactly what was said, only that I finally spoke up and told him that I disagreed, that I thought that if anything we should be spending more time with people who didn't follow our Jesus than who did, as they're the ones who needed some hope!

    In a condescending tone he told me that I'd come to agree with him once I became a stronger Christian. (Or something to that effect....it was a real brush-off, at any rate.)

    I was so angry that I walked into another room to cry. I never spoke up in his youth group again.

  • At 2/27/2008 06:57:00 PM, Anonymous Jemila

    Lydia -- I wanted to cry when I read your comment. That's awful! I think it's worse to be brushed aside by authority than to at least be respectfully engaged in disagreement.

  • At 2/27/2008 09:52:00 PM, Blogger Valorosa

    I have just posted a disturbing story that has been revealed to me about the behaviour of a pastor from an emerging church. About a very young teen native girl, the most abused women in our country.

    My friend is the compassionate leader that took this young girl and her nephew under his wing. I have been a good friend to him ... a sounding board often.
    I have voiced my opinion ... we have had words about his silence re: this matter ... he has an important place in this emerging church and doesn't want to lose it. So he won't speak up even to defend his friend, the young native girl.

    My request that he speak to the pastor put stress on my friend and he has told me he doesn't want me to be in his peripheral group of friends anymore. We have been friends for many years ... :-(

  • At 2/28/2008 12:33:00 PM, Anonymous Jemila

    Oh what a burden so speak the truth and be cut off as a friend while also seeing someone vulnerable suffer as the result of someone's fear of loss of position/ego or whatever..

  • At 3/03/2008 09:23:00 PM, Blogger Her

    My heart's urgent prayer for God's people is for any fleeing family on their way from oppression to freedom. I had a dream about it last night...weird, I know. But I awoke to such compassion and conviction that I felt the need to pray all day for families, around the world, in such dire straits.


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