The last post, WordPress tells me, was number 1000.
Phew. I don’t have time to do much pausing to reflect save a couple of thoughts.
I remember the blog being ‘born’ in Kevin and Claire Hargaden’s kitchen back in 2010.
The aims then, and still are now, are loosely these:
1) To write!
To put down ‘on paper’ thoughts about issues relating to Christianity, Christian theology, Christian ministry and mission. I learn by processing ideas in writing, and this is a place where those ideas are worked out.
Someone has said that if you want to be a writer then write a lot and read a lot. So one spin-off from this blog is that by writing a lot, often about what I am reading, has made me a better writer.
2) To enjoy it.
I’ve always said that if I stop enjoying blogging I’ll stop. And at times over the last 9 years I have pretty well stopped, but that scribbler’s itch returns (a Dr friend laughed when I told him that – he said it sounds like a nasty skin condition)! If it ever gets healed, I will stop for sure.
I can’t remember enjoying a series as much as the current one on the Cross – so thank you Fleming Rutledge for writing a marvellous book.
3) To do theology in an Irish context
I believe business people talk about things like KPIs (Key Performance Indicators) and USPs (unique selling points). I know nothing very much of such things – but a passion behind this blog is that in a not very crowded market, it is, for all its faults and weaknesses, trying to think and reflect and apply theological ideas within the missional context of the Republic of Ireland.
All theology is contextual. That is why this blog has the name it has – I have never been too bothered to try to broaden its identity or reach a wider audience, but welcome that when it happens.
4) To be a civil place for dialogue, learning and a place to share ideas
I love exploring ideas, discussing with others, listening and debating. I love to teach and engage students in learning.
I think in any personality test I come out on the ‘Open’ end of the spectrum. In a context of increasing tribalism in wider culture, and where Christians can tend to retreat to their own communities, I hope this is a safe and hospitable place for discussion.
I am exactly the same as the vast majority of readers of this blog. For the few blogs that I read regularly, I very rarely comment. But I keep meeting people who say very kind things about the blog – how they found such and such helpful, how they used the series on Abortion in their church …
So, a gentle encouragement – if you find this blog helpful do throw in the odd comment. Not for me – I enjoy it regardless – but for other readers. I would love to see more of a community of discussion and learning together, particularly around ministry and mission in Ireland.
And if you have any suggestions for improvement, topics, developments and how to build more of a community of people discussing and thinking about theology in an Irish context do let me know ..