echoes of athenian idols

Monday, March 31, 2003:

well, not a good day for team echo. got a ticket for £30 for parking for 10 minutes on a clearway. and we didnt even know it was a clearway! funny how the parking ticket machine will sell you a ticket for when it is a clearway without warning you. the traffic warden nearly had an accident with a big bus a few minutes later.
anyhow, on a more positive note, you can hear the report from sunday sequence on the web all week by clicking
here. Rarely have i ever felt more, as oor friends in Edinburgh say, 'in the gap/chasm' between christian culture and club culture. to one you're too christian, to the other you're too clubby. to one you're too liberal, to the other you're too conservative. to one you're betraying religious ideals, to the other you're too religious. neither understands that they both have something of the truth and could learn so much from each other. we need to just keep listening. two ears and one mouth...maybe to be used in that proportion - to listen out for the truth, interpret it, translate it, and name it.
**** // 5:55 pm


the chaplaincy's godspace continues in UUJ, this week is the theme of 'redemption'. check it out if you're down there, they are a really nice bunch.
**** // 5:05 pm


Sunday, March 30, 2003:

there was a wee report on some of the stuff echo do on BBC radio ulster's sunday sequence programme this morning. it's repeated again between 7 and 8 tonight on 94.5fm
thanks to william and jenny for doin it for us.
**** // 3:39 pm


lovely post by the real live preacher regarding caterpillars...'It's not a particularly exciting life, but it's safe. If you blend in, nobody will eat you. Safe is nice. Safe is responsible. Safe is conservative and smart, like investing for the future. Safe is what you settle for when you give up your dreams.
I'm not interested in safe...'

Just added the ooze to the links section. definately worth checkin out.

**** // 12:10 am


Friday, March 28, 2003:

tomorrow night @ shine

Room 1:
11pm: Simon McDermott
1am: DJ Rush.

Room 2: The Progression Sessions:
9.30pm: Jusge Dredd.
11pm: Makoto.
1am: LTJ Bukem & MC Conrad.

In the bar:
9.30pm: Alan Simms.
11.30pm: Damian Lazarus (City Rockers)
1.30am: Alan Simms.
**** // 6:14 pm


thanks to everyone who came last night to GSG. Was a nice atmosphere, next one will be in two weeks. For anyone who wasn't there, there is a little taster below. We send the stuff out every week to a few folk who cant make it so if anyone else would like that, let us know.

'Too much of the world’s happiness depends on taking from one to satisfy another. To increase my standard of living, someone in another part of the world must lower his. The worldwide crisis of hunger that we face today is as a result of that method of pursuing happiness. Industrialised nations acquire appetites for more and more luxuries and higher and higher standards of living, and increasing numbers of people are made poor and hungry. It doesn’t have to be that way. The experts on the world hunger problem say there is enough to go around right now. We don’t have a production problem. We have the agricultural capability to produce enough food. We have the transportation technology to distribute the food. But we have a greed problem: if I don’t grab mine while I can, I might not be happy.' - Eugene Peterson

**** // 2:22 pm


Wednesday, March 26, 2003:

didnt think it was possible to make things as bad as this. am finding it hard to believe these exist....girls, get your wwjd thong here, and i quote: 'Offering pure protection from pesky penises'....if you click, prepare to be shocked!!
**** // 7:16 pm


god's secret garden tomorrow night is called 'consume'. drop us an email if you want the stuff sent out.

shine on saturday looks like:
Room 1: DJ Rush & Simon McDermott
Room 2: Progression Sessions presents: LTJ Bukem & MC Conrad plus Makoto
The Bar: Damian Lazarus (City Rockers) & Alan Simms.

"My younger brother asked forgiveness of the birds: it may seem absurd, but it is right nonetheless, for everything, like the ocean, flows and comes into contact with everything else: touch it in one place and it reverberates at the other end of the world." - Dostoyevsky
**** // 12:10 pm


Tuesday, March 25, 2003:

this week, the chaplaincy team of UUJ have allowed us to set up a godspace type thing, as part of their lent programme. If you're down there check it out. details at the chaplaincy office.
also, God's secret garden is on this thursday @
the bush. drop in anytime and explore....time: 9pm-11pm. the theme is consumerism. come and consume.
another thing - the group witness are holding a silent candle lit vigil every night while the war is on at the front of belfast's city hall. it's not a protest as such, so you dont have to believe anything in particular about the war to go. went tonight and it was very powerful and humbling experience, hard to articulate, i'd recommend it for anyone who's concerned about this bloody conflict...
one more thing, there is a wee message board on the left so remember to say hi - even if we dont know you - and leave some feedback for us if you like
quote of the day: 'if cowardice is the only alternative to violence, it is better to fight' - gandhi
**** // 12:58 am


Sunday, March 23, 2003:

just read a great story of one guy's journey trying to work things out for himself.
Here's a bit of it:
"..the greater your doubt the more heroic your faith.
I learned that it doesn’t matter in the least that I be convinced of God’s existence. Whether or not God exists is none of my business, really. What do I know of existence? I don’t even know how the VCR works.
What does matter is whether or not I am faithful. I think faithful is a hell of a good word. It still has some of its original shine. It still calls us to action.
Once I stumbled upon this very old truth, I prayed the most honest prayer of my life.
'God, I don’t have great faith, but I can be faithful. My belief in you may be seasonal, but my faithfulness will not. I will follow in the way of Christ. I will act as though my life and the lives of others matter. I will love...'"
**** // 12:35 am


Saturday, March 22, 2003:

tomorrow morning:
we'll be at
BCM methodist church on Glengal St. in the centre of town, taking the service at 11am. this is one of the city-centre churches that has supported echo since the beginning. we'll be doing some stories, some visuals and talking about athenian idols in clubland... it means not too late a night tonight though, but should be fun

click here for an interesting thought on the current world situation

**** // 3:42 pm


Friday, March 21, 2003:

silly and useless, but funny nonetheless....get your gangsta name here
**** // 11:14 am


Wednesday, March 19, 2003:

@ God's secret garden this week we're examining the theme of community. Here's a little foretaste of what's to come...

The trouble with the global village are all the global village idiots. - Paul Ginsparg

"i keep tellin' you be careful who you step on in this life 'cause when you're through they'll be all over the bottom of your shoe and that's where your soul is" -monk e wilson

‘And I have a feeling that September 11 has changed America forever. I think before, it was a continent acting like an island. I think now it is clear that you cannot be an island of prosperity in a sea of despair. And if September 11 has taught us anything, it's taught us that the world is a much more interdependent and interconnected place.’ – Bono

"basically, we are all addicts - addicted to the comfort and convenience that technology provides - addicted to the notion that progress is directly related to the size of your computer screen. of course it is. we must be right. we come from the developed world. we're already developed. sure. then again, wealthy kids in america shoot each other. poor kids in soweto can't stop smiling.
so who's developed?" nitin sawhney - march 2001

Isn't Love thy neighbour in the global village so inconvenient? – Bono

"My true community is the poor - their security is my security, their health is my health. My home is among the poor, and not only the poor, but the poorest of them: the people no one will go near because they are filthy and suffering from contagious diseases, full of germs and vermin infested; the people who can't go to church because they can't go out naked; the people who can no longer eat because they haven’t the strength; the people who lie down in the street, knowing they are going to die, while others look away and pass them by; the people who no longer cry because their tears have run dry." – Mother Teresa

‘All Life is interrelated. All men are caught in an inescapable network of mutuality, tied in a single garment of destiny. Whatever affects one directly affects all indirectly.’ – Martin Luther King

**** // 1:28 pm


Monday, March 17, 2003:

Check out this week's Portadown News. Very amusing site, although if you're not from here, I dont know how to explain it!
Couple of things for this week:
The lovely folk at the UUJ Chaplaincy are continuing their godspace exploration during lent, the theme this week will be 'brokenness', so if you're down there go down and check it out - you can find out what room it's in from the chaplaincy office. I think it might be D106 but if you get lost dont blame me! We'll be doing next week on the topic of 'confict and war', which is quite a daunting task given yesterday's news..
Also, God's secret garden is on Thursday night this week, exploring the theme of community. We've done this before, but this one will be a bit different. For those who dont know, this is a time where we try to create godspace, with individual reflection, meditation and contemplation. Once again it's at the bush cafe, elmwood ave. Everyone welcome, no dress code, no admission fee, no sermons and definately no singing.
Thanks also to Steve for his mention on the radio the other week.
If you're suffering from congregational model withdrawal, and you do want to hear a sermon (I cant promise it will be good), then team echo is taking the service at BCM Methodist church this Sunday. You've stopped reading already, haven't you??
Here's an interesting thought during lent:
"Puritans should remember it is possible to be a non-smoking, teetotal vegetarian, and still be Adolf Hitler." – Karl Barth
**** // 1:21 pm


Friday, March 14, 2003:

This week @ shine there is a great line up:
Dave Clarke, Darren Emerson, Medicine8, Doves (dj set), Simon McDermott and Paul McClean
check out their site for more details...
**** // 6:27 pm


Wednesday, March 12, 2003:

another new feature (ambassador, vit dis curley wurleys you are really spoiling us) can now search through google via the bottom of this page - this is fast becoming one of the most fantastic sites on the internet, i'm sure you'll agree.
Just a reminder, there's no God's secret garden this week, but there will be one next thursday (20th) and the one after (27th), details to follow (if anyone would like to get a reminder email just drop us an email at the address on the right)
was reading an old email recently from one of oor ;-) friends in Edinburgh, i hope he doesnt mind, it's good to be reminded of what it's all about sometimes...thanks Paul for these words:

'this is what we keep hearing........ 'GO
SLOW.................... ' one step at a time
3 most important things..... right at the heart of everything we do

christian reputation/cool reputation
doctrinal and theological systems
worship and holy spirit experiences
anything.................. else is idolatry - christian flavours of
idolatry are particularly damaging and toxic - and really addictive

stick close to christ and the disciples in the gospels - chew on it
together - breathe it - give it plenty of time to percolate...'
- Paul Thompson

**** // 10:49 pm


particularly strange website, with a rather unique way of selling absolutely nothing!!
And apparently there is: 'Alongside T-shirts to proclaim your chosen few, the Theological Tag Team Tournament video game (TTTT ™ coming soon), posters and the Sacred Friends comics...'
The video game sounds good!
**** // 12:50 pm


Tuesday, March 11, 2003:

there's a new wee score thing at the bottom of the blog...if you'd give us a rating we'd really appreciate it. only pointing it out cos i only ever check the top of blogs for updates...thanks!
thought for the day:
'Christians remind me of schoolboys who want to look up the answers to their math problems in the back of the book rather than work them through.' - Kierkegaard

**** // 9:21 am


Monday, March 10, 2003:

This has gone on too long. I'm coming out....I'm suspicious of Christian marketing. In fact, actually I hate it. It's, quite frankly, embarrasing, contrived, arrogant, and manipulative. The world is dying of starvation and Aids and we're arguing over whether we should sing hymns or play nice folk tunes in church (the style of which is decades behind popular culture). It's a question of style over content, and I for one do not give a crap about what style of music is played on a sunday morning.
There is way too much obsession with style. There is too much hype. There is too much spin. There is too much cool. And let's face it, most of it aint that cool anyway. Style is the drug, and we're all hooked.
Some stuff is worse than others of course:
exteme examples
God is not a new soft drink. He doesn't need us to market him and he certainly doesnt need us to make him look cool.
Actually, I think God is more like marmite than a soft drink. [new theological depths or what?] Seems to me that you either like him or you dont.
And no amount of marketing is gonna make me eat marmite. I hate it, so they're wasting their time and their money. The only way they could make me eat it is too change my taste buds. Which they cant do. So maybe it's about time we stopped working on the advertisments and get on with building the kingdom of God in the world.
**** // 9:02 pm


Sunday, March 09, 2003:

Starting from tomorrow, the chaplaincy team at UUJ will be doing a godspace type thing in the university. It'll be on every day from 10-2. The theme will change each week of lent. This week's theme will be the beauty of creation. If you're down in J'town check it out.
Also -
interesting article on Bono from Christianity Today...
**** // 2:44 pm


Thursday, March 06, 2003:

another student group last night at queens had the godspace experience. big shout to any of the 'idea' folk, who were a very friendly bunch indeed. hopefully we'll see ya again sometime. thanks to the lovely people at the bush for inviting us along (again)
thanks also to steve from emergent downunder for giving us a link. Very interesting stuff on there.

Big night @ the mighty Shine this Sat:
Mandela Hall:
10.30pm: Alan Simms.
1am: Dave Angel.
9.30pm: Mixmaster Records.
11.45pm: Steve Lawler (three hour set).
The Bar:
9.30pm: Nik Muzka.
11pm: Erol Alkan.
1am: Nik Muzka.
**** // 12:35 pm


Tuesday, March 04, 2003:

The Formula

The mystic came back from the desert.
"Tell us," they said, "what God is like."

But how could he ever tell them what he had experienced in his heart?
Can God be put into words?

Finally he gave them a formula - so inaccurate, so inadequate - in the hope that some of them might be tempted to experience it for themselves.
They seized upon the formula. They made it a sacred text. They imposed it on others as a holy belief. They went to great pains to spread it to foreign lands. Some even gave their lives for it.

The mystic was sad. It might have been better if he had said nothing.

De Mello

**** // 3:18 pm


Monday, March 03, 2003:

'okay then...'
a few things happening:
Will be settin up last thursdays God's secret garden again tonight at Derryvolgie Halls, Derryvolgie Ave, Belfast. Anyone who missed it and would like to check it out, let us know. Starts at 9.30pm.
Also, starting next Monday, the Chaplaincy at the Jordanstown campus of the University of Ulster are doing a similar godspace thing. It'll be set up all day for peps to come along and go as they like. Each week they'll explore a new theme, and we'll be helping them out a couple of those weeks.

**** // 11:55 am


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This is the echo weblog. An echo is somewhere between a voice and no voice, somewhere between hearing and not hearing, and somewhere between knowing and not knowing. It's a place of faith and doubt. It's for all those trying to shed their snake skins of tradition, pride, ignorance, prejudice, and trying to work things out for themselves. It's for those caught dancing in the dichotomy of clubbing and christianity, and still trying to follow Christ.
a few of us were discussing what songs the disciples hummed to themselves as they walked home on ascension day....which do you think it was?
'leaving on a jet plane' - like in armageddon (the film that is, not the real thing)
anything by 'air'
'lifted' by 'the lighthouse family'
'up, up and away' by 'andy williams'
'i believe i can fly' by 'r kelly'
'reach for the stars' by 's club'
'stairway to heaven' by 'led zeppelin' (or rolf harris, depends on your taste)
'the only way is up' by 'yazz and the plastic population'
'i'll fly away' by 'alison krauss'
'movin on up' by 'primal scream'
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wee beautiful pict
Jonny Baker
emergent downunder
Douglas Rushkoff
Real Live Preacher
Emerging Minister
Charlie Knox
Peat Blog 5110
living room
David Steele



raven live
Bush Cafe

irish drum and bass
Across the Line
NI clubbing
radio 1

The Portadown News
Landover Baptist
Ship of Fools
The Door

social concern:
make trade fair
Independent Media Center
Fight fire with water
Amnesty International
the christmas project

small fire
Third Way
rhythms of redemption
the ooze



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