Reflections from Seminary Students

Book Review–Gilead

May 11th, 2012 § 0 Comments

Gilead, Marilynne Robinson’s 2004 novel, is one that I have heard a lot about for several years.  It is one of those books that seems to come up in discussions of favorites. The novel won the  2005 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction and the National Book Critics Circle Award.  In addition President Barack Obama lists Gilead as one of his favorite books on his facebook page.  I attempted to read Gilead on a midnight greyhound to Spokane once, but the slow pace of the book could not compete with my increasingly strong desire to sleep or the strange characters that night busses always tend to collect.  This time around I was much more successful as we were reading Gilead as a class for THEO 6720: Vocational Discernment & Discipleship. » Read the rest of this entry «

Book Review–The Great Divorce

April 20th, 2012 § 0 Comments

One of my favorite theological concepts to study is eschatology.  Eschatology, or the study of “last things,” centers around what we as Christians believe will happen at the end of time, what happens to our souls and bodies after death, and what the afterlife might look like.  While the questions that eschatology asks may seem nothing more than esoteric speculations for the future, I am fully convinced that our beliefs about eschatology deeply impact how we live our lives.  As Karl Barth writes in Dogmatics in Outline eschatology is the most practical of theologies:

The Christian hope does not lead us away from this life: it is rather the uncovering of the truth in which God sees our life.  It is the conquest of death, but not a flight into the Beyond.  The reality of this life is involved.  Eschatology, rightly understood, is the most practical thing that can be thought.  In the eschaton the light falls from above into our life.  We await this light.

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Telhu–A Foil to the Gospel

April 13th, 2012 § 0 Comments

One thing that I have done, to keep my sanity throughout seminary is to read novels.  Thanks to a very good recommendation from Josh I just finished The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss, which can be described as a poetic Harry Potter meets The Lord of the Rings.  In The Name of the Wind there is a very interesting foil to the gospel.  I have always been a fan of the argument that the story of Jesus is true because it does not have the same elements as a fictional story. No Jewish man in his right mind would have women be witnesses to Christ’s resurrection as women were not seen to give credible testimonies. » Read the rest of this entry «

Thursday. Friday. Saturday.

April 4th, 2012 § 0 Comments

Throughout  my time in Seminary I cultivated a love of creating assemblage sculptures.   Assemblage is a form of sculpture where instead of cutting away at a chunk of stone, the sculpture is built up, typically using previously formed objects.  My work tends to focus on ordinary objects (terracotta pots, empty wine bottles, cement, copper wire, wood, glass, brick, and various other odds and ends).  My work also is largely religious in theme and is very, very amateur.  I have no formal training in assemblage, sculpture or art.  But it is a thing that I love and I find that creation in a visual sense lends to a concreteness of previously esoteric theological concepts.   I think of faith, community, sorrow, salvation, the imago dei, and compromise all in terms of sculpture.

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Christus Victor

March 5th, 2012 § 0 Comments

Image from http://en.wikipedia.org

Christ Pantocrator mosaic from the Hagia Sofia

Our Theology/Ethics class has been studying and discussing different theories of atonement.  My group looked into the Nonviolent Atonement theory, which is based in narrative Christus Victor.  Almost all atonement theories have something beneficial to add to the conversation.  This poem is my attempt to bring out what’s compelling in Nonviolent Atonement.

Christus Victor
by Jordan Uomoto

To pick up the sword is to pick up a consuming fire
That spreads from clenched fist to smoldering heart
Until all this is left is a shadow of smoke » Read the rest of this entry «

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