From the Dean

News items, published articles, and reading recommendations from Dean Timothy George

Page 4 of 140

Thin Places

By Timothy George
November 2, 2015

The following is a meditation for All Saints Day presented at Christchurch in Montgomery, Alabama.

Several years ago, my son Christian and I, along with our friend David from Brazil, made a pilgrimage to Skellig Michael. Skellig is the Irish word for “rock,” and Skellig Michael is a rocky mountain island jutting 700 feet out of the icy waters of the North Atlantic, just off the coast of County Kerry in western Ireland. When Charles Lindbergh made his famous solo flight across the Atlantic in 1927, Skellig Michael was the very first thing he saw of Europe.

Five hundred years after the birth of Christ, Celtic monks came to live and worship on this island. Buffeted by howling winds and rough seas, enveloped in fog and rain and mist, they huddled together in the little beehive huts they had constructed out of stone. (These sanctuaries of solitude are weathered but still intact today.) They prayed. They copied the Scriptures and lifted their voices in praise to God, morning, noon, and night. Earlier, St. Antony had retreated to the African desert to preserve a Christianity that was being contaminated by secularized Roman society. Irish monks of the sixth century did not have a desert to flee to, but they did have an ocean. Skellig Michael was the most obscure and distant island of the known world. Shrouded in darkness, it became a lighthouse to the world. From places like Skellig Michael, the Gospel was carried forth by Celtic monks and missionaries back to Clonmacnoise and Glendalough in Ireland, and on to Iona and Lindisfarne in Scotland, and eventually to Fulda, St. Gallen, and Bobbio on the continent.

Sites like Skellig Michael are called “thin places” by the Irish. Thin places—not because the air is rarified or the land is narrow but because the distance between heaven and earth shrinks, and time and eternity embrace. A thin place is where the veil between this world and the next is lifted for a moment, and it may be possible to get a glimpse of what one’s life is all about—perhaps of what life itself is all about. Read the rest at First Things.

Posted by Kristen Padilla at Monday, November 2, 2015
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Beeson Divinity School Hosts Annual Reformation Heritage Lectures with Dr. Sarah Hinlicky Wilson

Pictured is Dr. Sarah Hinlicky Wilson in her Lutheran vestments and Dean Timothy George.

Beeson Divinity School welcomed The Reverend Dr. Sarah Hinlicky Wilson for the annual Reformation Heritage Lectures, October 27-29. The theme of Dr. Wilson's lectures was, "Soundings in Lutheran Spirituality." 

Listen to Tuesday's lecture here.

Posted by Kristen Padilla at Friday, October 30, 2015
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The Dean Recommends: This is Your Wake-Up Call

By Betsy Childs Howard
October 26, 2015 

On December 13, 2012, the liver of a male infant at 17 weeks gestation was mailed from San Jose, California, to Massachusetts. The baby’s brain was sent to Stanford, same day delivery.

On January 10, 2013, the liver of a baby at 16 weeks gestation was sent via FedEx from San Jose to Colorado. The same day, the liver of an 18-week male was overnighted from San Jose to Placerville. All of these packages had tracking numbers.

You’ve probably guessed, correctly, that these body parts were sent from Planned Parenthood clinics. While Planned Parenthood disputes the claim made by The Center for Medical Progress that its clinics sell body parts, it doesn’t deny that it’s mailed them all over the country.

We already knew that Planned Parenthood kills babies. The abortions that end lives are the true tragedies, not the disposal of body parts. Nevertheless, the shocking fact that clinicians dismember babies and mail their organs across the country has led to a national debate about abortion, even prompting self-doubt among some abortion supporters. This is not the first time that a needed wake-up call has been delivered by a gruesome mailing. Read the rest at First Things. 

Posted by Kristen Padilla at Wednesday, October 28, 2015
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