Welcome Aboard!

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  • I second Piglet’s advice and say Welcome.

    Lothorien, AS host

  • RossweisseRossweisse Hell Host, 8th Day Host, Glory
    Welcome aboard, @caroline444!
  • And thank you Tree Bee, Piglet, Lothlorien & Rossweissse! :O)
  • JoanofArcJoanofArc Shipmate Posts: 32
    Greetings, all. I'm from Arizona, USA. I was brought up Roman Catholic, but stopped participating upon reaching adulthood. I'm now exploring the Episcopal Church. I've enjoyed the reading material here for years, and I finally got around to joining. Happy Ascension Day!
  • NicoleMRNicoleMR Shipmate
    Welcome JoanofArc!
  • PigletPiglet All Saints Host, Circus Host
    Welcome aboard indeed, JoanofArc!

    If you've been lurking, you'll probably have an idea of what's what; the FAQ and 10 Commandments pages (links on the home-page) should tell you everything you need to know.

    Happy sailing!

    Piglet, AS host
  • PigwidgeonPigwidgeon Shipmate
    Welcome, JoanofArc! There are several of us in the Phoenix area -- do you mind mentioning what part of the state you're in? We're mostly Episcopalians -- and we sometimes have Shipmeets. We'd love to meet you!
  • Welcome Joan of Arc ! I'm a fellow newbie but I've never lurked, so it's all new 0_0
  • JoanofArcJoanofArc Shipmate Posts: 32
    Welcome Joan of Arc ! I'm a fellow newbie but I've never lurked, so it's all new 0_0

    Thanks! I've only lurked in the section with articles, not this board section. Welcome to you, too.
  • JoanofArcJoanofArc Shipmate Posts: 32
    Pigwidgeon wrote: »
    There are several of us in the Phoenix area -- do you mind mentioning what part of the state you're in?

    Tucson

  • PigwidgeonPigwidgeon Shipmate
    JoanofArc wrote: »
    Pigwidgeon wrote: »
    There are several of us in the Phoenix area -- do you mind mentioning what part of the state you're in?

    Tucson

    Maybe we can meet you halfway.
    :smile:
  • Welcome, Joan of Arc.good to have you on board. I am in Australia so a different time zone altogether.

    Lothlorien, AS Host
  • PigletPiglet All Saints Host, Circus Host
    I was thinking Arizona was Pigwidgeon's corner of the planet!
  • RossweisseRossweisse Hell Host, 8th Day Host, Glory
    Welcome, @JoanofArc!
  • JoanofArcJoanofArc Shipmate Posts: 32
    Thanks for the welcomes, good people. Yes, I've pm'd my neighbor. Thanks @Pigwidgeon.

  • Welcome caroline444 and JoanofArc - nice to see new people joining the happy crew.
  • JoanofArc wrote: »
    Thanks for the welcomes, good people. Yes, I've pm'd my neighbor. Thanks @Pigwidgeon.

    Oops! I just noticed this now. We'll be in touch.
  • Just a note to introduce myself and say I'm happy to be here! I'm Caroline, 67, and from the UK. Slowly edging my way from atheism into something else. Not yet sure what that something else is, but enjoying my explorations. Have been reading Richard Holloway, Francis Spufford and John Polkinghorne with great interest. Further recommendations much welcomed.
    I have to respond here of course!! I haven't looked at this 'welcome' thread for ages and it is interesting to realise that names, such as yours and Sir Palomides, already met on other parts of the ship are so new.

    Try A C Grayling, 'Against all gods' .. in case anyone wonders about it, it is if I remember correctly quite a mild book and quite short, and unlike others of grayling, which my reader and I have attempted, it is not bogged down by incomprehensible, interminably long sentences at the end of which one has lost the will to live way before the end of the introduction! :)
  • ECraigRECraigR Castaway
    Hello everyone! I’m an Anglo-Catholic Episcopalian in the Capital Region of New York. I’ve lurked for awhile and finally worked up the will to join. Looking forward to getting to know you all better!
  • NicoleMRNicoleMR Shipmate
    Hello ECraigR! Welcome and enjoy the ride.
  • PigletPiglet All Saints Host, Circus Host
    Welcome indeed, @ECraigR !

    If you've been lurking for a while, you'll probably already have an idea of how the Ship works, but if you have a look at the 10 Commandments and FAQ pages (links on the home page), they should tell you anything else you need to know.

    Happy sailing!

    Piglet, AS host
  • Welcome. My co-host has said it all.

    Lothlorien, AS Host
  • Welcome Craig! I too am Anglo-Cath (by my roots anyway) and happily settled in TEC in perhaps more broad church settings in New England. Happy sailing on the Ship!
  • bigjonbigjon Shipmate
    Howdy one and all. Been lurking for a couple of weeks, time to start participating. Have read the FAQs and the 10Commandments, and had a browse through the other boards. Mid-40s, Evangelical Anglican, favourite hobby playing electric guitar (& singing) in the church band and in secular venues! :-)
  • Welcome to you, bigjon. Your reading as detailed is a good thing to have done. Enjoy sailing. My co-host is away but would echo my welcome.

    :Lothlorien, All Saints Host
  • Hey folks.

    Long time lurker, fresh face here. Commandments and FAQs read. Early 40s, dastardly bureaucrat by trade (the dastardly part is mandatory in my line of business), often confused about religion and where I fit into it, and a history nerd by way of hobbies. Writing from Oslo, Norway.
  • Welcome to you too, Friendly Fire. Any queries, either Piglet or I will be happy to help. She is currently away but will be back soon.

    Lothlorien, All Saints Host
  • RossweisseRossweisse Hell Host, 8th Day Host, Glory
    Welcome aboard, @bigjon and @FriendlyFire! Happy sailing!
  • PigletPiglet All Saints Host, Circus Host
    Welcome indeed, Bigjon and Friendly Fire! I'm still across the Pond but should be back to full hosting in a couple of days.

    Piglet, the other AS host
  • Hi folks, Greetings from Southampton UK! just arrived on board and came to say hello.
    I think I must be a tank engine because although I once aspired to mainline work I have had to accept I am more suited to sidings and branch lines. Also, being in my late 50s, I am a bit nostalgic about things steam etc

    TE
  • PigletPiglet All Saints Host, Circus Host
    Welcome aboard, @Tank Engine! You'll find most of what you need to know about the Ship and the various boards in the Ten Commandments and FAQ pages (links on the home page).

    Happy sailing!

    Piglet, All Saints host
  • Thank you! :smile:
  • Welcome Tank Engine. Are you painted in the right colours and have coaches behind you? Have a read of the Ten Commandments and spent some time getting acquainted with the feeling of the various boards.


    Lothlorien AS Host
  • Thank you Lothlorien!
    I am painted in Bluebell blue as befits an engine from a famous preserved line in Sussex!
    I will do my homework and then see if I have enough steam to join any discussions.
    I belong to a C of E church but that is mainly because Mrs TE is that way inclined. We enjoy fellowship at our shack but sadly boredom re sermons and songs is never far away...
  • RossweisseRossweisse Hell Host, 8th Day Host, Glory
    Welcome aboard, @Tank Engine!
  • Thank you @Rossweisse !
  • BoogieBoogie Heaven Host
    I like your name @Tank Engine!
  • Working backwards... A belated welcome!
  • bigjonbigjon Shipmate
    Hi, sorry for going AWOL, I went ashore on Thursday but didn't post it here. I intend to take Shore Leave for about another week.
  • bigjonbigjon Shipmate
    Hi, going to extend my Shore leave for bit longer - maybe a month or so - will check back here when I return :-)
  • RossweisseRossweisse Hell Host, 8th Day Host, Glory
    See you soon, @bigjon.
  • HagenTheDwarfHagenTheDwarf Shipmate Posts: 38
    I am an Evangelical [*1]; as a Christian I could be no other.

    My first experiences were with a High-Church Anglo-Catholic Church of England church. They were, in the vernacular of today, racists. When international students came our family was the only one in the church willing to host coloured students; our family doctor was an Indian. I remember enjoying the Church Summer Fetes, with portraits being drawn by the likes of Tony Hart. I do not remember having many other positive experiences and it is perhaps telling that I have a vivid memory of being told how nice people were, indicative of how, as a young child, I had been unconvinced of this supposed truth. Before I became a teenager the family moved to another home some six parishes away. It is sobering to see the fruit of two decades with this church.

    My father held the view that the church was full of obnoxious hypocrites and refused to have anything more to do with it; he died nearly 50 years later unchanged with an atheistic viewpoint enhanced by a slight flavouring of Buddhism.

    My mother was alienated from the church for 30 years but in her old age had a profound spiritual experience and in the last few years of her life became involved with the local Evangelical Low Church Anglican congregation.

    My elder brother had endured a full experience of the delights of the (Anglo-Catholic) church and felt antagonistic towards it thereafter. Being at an age of a teenage young adult he was already advanced enough in life to be self-sustaining in relationships.

    For myself, my memory suggests that I had a view that equated the workings of the church to a cross between black magic and voodoo, although I would not have understood such terms at that time. It is said that the Jesuits are content with having the first seven years of a child’s life; well that church had the best part of a dozen years from which I emerged with a lifelong suspicion of clergy and deep distrust of those wearing vestments. Establishing relationships in church has been a lifetime struggle. My parents took a view that my school friendships should be augmented by outside contact and through Christian youth groups, the Church was to get another chance.

    Looking back over my time as a teenager and young adult one could divide my experiences between the Liberal and Evangelical churches. The former seemed to have small congregations with an absence of young people. Occasional reference to scripture would be made in sermons but the main theme seemed to be one of contemporary issues. Given my previous experiences with a church that was overtly racist, there might be justice to that. However, in my youthful thinking in struck me that I was being invited to join a form of political party where the main purpose was ‘the struggle’ for some contemporary global issue but with an ‘extra’ religious element. There seemed to be lots of meetings to discuss the issues and doing something to create change but not a lot of action. It always amuses me when Evangelicals are accused of taking single verses and working them to death; Liberal churches, in my experience, are by far the worst offenders at this. I have had some, limited exposure, to liturgical churches. Other than sound contact with low-church Evangelical Anglicans my general experience of them has not been encouraging

    The Evangelical churches seemed to have youth groups with youth in them, which was rather helpful if you wanted to play soccer or table tennis. They were also to prove to have another asset that had at first not been of particular note: girls. Advancing through my teenage years I discovered that relating to them had more attractions than at first seemed the case. However, the most significant point was that the leadership really tried to relate to the group members. It was the first time adults in the church showed concern and they were very keen to teach effectively. The Bible came out at some point in every meeting. One was taught key aspects to discovering God through the Bible:
    (1) What did the Bible actually say?
    (2) What did this mean to contemporaries?
    (3) What does it mean to us today?
    Through this, I was taught to examine scripture for cultural context, time and space, difficulties of vocabulary through translation. Above all was the message of putting what one learnt into action! Subsequently, I did encounter some people who insisted on literal readings of the bible or seven-day creation and learnt that effective debate was meaningless because their way of reading scripture ran on a different basis; this did not impede being an evangelical and these few individuals were just bumps on the road of life.

    I first encountered the SoF forum in 1999, assuming you ignore the original magazine version in the 1970s, of which I was one of the original subscribers. Only now that I have reached retirement age do I have the time and inclination to spend time on posting on the site; previously it had been an opportunity to see what was current in thinking across a wider international plain. My wife and I have had many moments of ROFL with SoF posts; well RIBL really: Roll In Bed Laughing. Who builds hospitals in the third world: Evangelicals. Who takes aid to the Third, or Fourth or other Worlds: Evangelicals. Who builds schools and colleges for the deprived parts of the world: Evangelicals. Even here, locally, it was the Evangelicals who organised the Foodbank. Who works on evangelising the world: Evangelicals. What is it that the other churches do?

    I am an Evangelical; as a Christian I could be no other.

    ……………………………………………………………………….………………………………………………
    [*1] For the purpose of this post this should be defined by the statement of the Evangelical Alliance UK. My sister-in-law, while in the UK, happily self-identified as an Evangelical. Since moving with her family to the USA she has refused to use the term as she considers Americans who use it to be best described as bigots and racists.
    ……………………………………………………………………….………………………………………………
    [*2] Carrot Ironfoundersson is my cousin.
    ……………………………………………………………………….………………………………………………
    [*3] I am posting an unusually long introduction to avoid scattering points across different threads.
    ……………………………………………………………………….………………………………………………
  • PigletPiglet All Saints Host, Circus Host
    Welcome aboard, @HagenTheDwarf - as you've been aware of the Ship for considerably longer than I have, there's little need for me to point you to the 10 Commandments and FAQ pages, but they're linked on the home page if you need to know anything.

    Happy sailing with us!

    Piglet, All Saints host
  • RossweisseRossweisse Hell Host, 8th Day Host, Glory
    Hoiho, Hagen! As a Christian, I could never be what is termed an evangelical - but welcome aboard!
  • HagenTheDwarfHagenTheDwarf Shipmate Posts: 38
    Rossweisse wrote: »
    Hoiho, Hagen! As a Christian, I could never be what is termed an evangelical - but welcome aboard!

    Thank you for the welcome.

    If you have read my introduction then you will understand why it is the ONLY option for me.

  • Timo PaxTimo Pax Shipmate
    edited September 2019
    I'm introducing myself here in a continuing state of mild surprise. And apologies if the below is a bit incoherent and fragmented. Like a lot of people these days, I find I don't really have a good language for talking about religion. But you seem like a friendly bunch, so here goes ...

    So, two months ago I was a reasonably committed Zen Buddhist - at least, committed enough to meditate every day, read a fair number of Zen texts, and help to organise a local meditation group.

    Then, last month, my father died. Not unexpectedly. And not the worst death possible. But I decided to take a couple of days off work and ramble around the Peak District, for no better reason than that my father had been a nature lover and I wanted to remember him and get my head together a bit. I ended up following the route of the Peak Pilgrimage, just because it was convenient to have an itinerary predefined. There were few things further from my mind than Christianity or God. I had my existing belief system, it had helped me through the difficult times of my father's illness, and if anything I was hoping to find further refuge there.

    And then, walking down a hill, I found myself contemplating a tree, and thinking how different it would look to me if I felt it had been fashioned by a benevolent Creator rather than seeing it as an arbitrary assemblage of organic molecules. And that somehow started a slow-burning spiritual ecstasy in me that lasted several days and during which a lot of things slowly fell into place, despite how much of me tried to fight that - and all of which pointed to the love of God and His presence in and through me. And while I still don't really understand much of Christianity or God or Christ or how any of this can be true or what to do with this unexpected grace ... well, it also feels tremendously important, to the point that I can't imagine what it would be like to go back to how I lived before it came upon me.

    So anyway ... that's what I'm doing on the Ship of Fools. Trying to figure out what that was all about, and what my next steps are. It's not the only thing I'm doing - the parish priest is very good and understanding, and I'm talking to him. But I'm also acutely conscious of all the years I've spent apart from God's grace. So I'm thirsty.

    Credo ut intelligam.

    T
  • "Unexpected grace" is good. Welcome!
  • Welcome @Timo Pax
    What a precious and wonderful story- may you continue to be held in this grace
    And have lots of fun on this Ship!
  • RossweisseRossweisse Hell Host, 8th Day Host, Glory
    Welcome aboard, @Timo Pax. Thank you for sharing your story with us!
  • Welcome to you, @Timo Pax You will find many of us are on a journey. Not the same as each other, but travelling. Please join us.

    Lothlorien, AS host
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