Wednesday, 12 December 2018

On cakes and conscience

I've had bits of this post swirling around in my head for ages. I'd meant to post it before the verdict on the Asher's cake case. That didn't happen, but what I'm saying is the same.

As it was far too long, I've cut out everything but the main point, so people might actually read it :-)

I can see both sides. I understand why the bakers refused to make the cake (and I agree with them). But I also understand why the customer was upset.

What if it had been the other way round, i.e. someone had ordered a cake saying 'Marriage is between a man and a woman', or 'Jesus is the one true God', and a cake shop had refused to make it because they disagreed. I'm willing to bet that a lot of Christians would now be running round screaming about persecution.

BUT if I want the legal right to refuse to do something I disagree with, even if it inconveniences or embarrasses someone else, I must also be willing for other people to refuse to do something because they disagree with it, even if it inconveniences or embarrasses me.

You can't have your cake and eat it 

Tuesday, 11 December 2018

Bethlehem pasttimes

As well as worshipping Jesus and giving him gifts, a couple of the wise men spent some time in Bethlehem playing pelmanism with Mary and Joseph.

Waiting to be called for filming our Nativity video.

Monday, 3 December 2018

Topsy turvy

There's something wrong with a society where mending clothes is a time-wasting luxury.

Wednesday, 28 November 2018

Thousands of pounds

Did the prodigal son on Sunday, and I asked my class of 6-8 year old, " If you had thousands of pounds you could spend on yourself, on whatever you liked, what would you spend it on.
Here are the answers I got:
  • 2 swimming pools for the summer and 50 rabbits for the winter
  • Lego
  • Food and water [this sounds like a what-I-think-my-teacher-wants-me-to-say answer]
  • Plastic surgery [this appeared to be a joke, or I would be rather concerned]
  • Lentils and carrots and things to make soup
The prodigal son spending his money

Did you know that 'prodigal' means 'wasteful'?

Tuesday, 27 November 2018

Getting old

When I first read CS Lewis's Out of the Silent Planet as a teenager, Ransom was quite old - middle aged.

Last time I read it, he was ages with me (35-40).

Just read it again, and he's younger than me.

Christmas Chronology

This is the correct Christmas chronology as far as I can see.

Luke is yellow
Matthew is blue

  • Gabriel comes to Zechariah.
  • John is concieved.
  • 6 months later, Gabriel comes to Mary. I assume Jesus was concieved at this point (that certainly seems to be Mary's assumption when she asks how this is possible).
  • 'In those days' Mary goes to see Elizabeth (probably fairly immediately as she 'hurried').
  • Mary stays with Elizabeth 3 months then returns home. Seems odd for Mary to return home just before John is born. Maybe Luke is just wrapping up that story before concentrating on John, and John was born towards the end of the three months. Or maybe not - there could have been some unavoidable reason to go home before John was born - real life doesn't always work out tidily.
  • John is born. 
  • Joseph finds out Mary is pregnant. No idea how. No idea who else knew.
  • Angel appears to Joseph and  he 'takes Mary as his wife'. I assume this means a proper wedding.
  • Joseph & Mary go to Bethlehem to register. At this point Luke describes them as only 'pledged to be married' - this is odd, but the best suggestion I have heard was that he considered an unconsummated marriage to be not yet really married.
  • 'While they were there' Jesus was born (not necessarily the night they arrived).
  • That night, the angels appear to the shepherds and they visit Jesus.
  • When Jesus is 8 days old he is circumcised and named.
  • 'When the days of purification were finished' (33 days after circumcision for a boy) they take him to the temple to offer 2 doves. Simeon & Anna.
  • 'After Jesus was born' wise men come.
  • They see 'the child' Jesus. At least 41 days old. Because it must have been after M&J went to the temple. I assume about 1-2 years, because Herod killed boys under 2 based on the time the star appeared.
  • After they had gone the angel appears to Joseph.
  • Escape to Egypt.
  • Herod kills all boys 2 and under
  • 'After Herod died' they return to Nazareth. (4BC or 1BC, depending who you listen to!)

Tuesday, 20 November 2018


Fantasy is an exercise bicycle for the mind. It might not take you anywhere, but it tones up the muscles that can.
~Terry Pratchett