Thursday, January 01, 2009

Semi-Happy New Year

Among the various things said today "Happy New Year" and "Thank God 2008 is over" seem to be the most common. There seems to be a collective breath-holding at work as many people both anticipate the upcoming inauguration of President-elect Barack Obama and cast wary eyes to the faltering economy, the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, and the new flare-up of conflict in Gaza. 2009 is set to either be the year that things begin to turn around or the year that things continue to slide.

Perhaps I'm projecting, but 2009 also looks as if it will be a pivotal year for the church as well. Culture wars continue to rage, the economy is sliding, and there does not appear to be a lot of signs of the mainline church reconnecting to the surrounding culture. The Episcopal Church has its triennial General Convention this summer which will no doubt result in some controversy, a few headlines, and many resolutions expressing the church's position on various world issues, most of which no one who is not already in the Episcopal Church will pay the least bit of attention to. So, some hope, some fear, some talking to ourselves, and we'll see what else. I'm sure God will show up in some form as well, as befits the celebration of Epiphany in a few days.

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