A Letter to the Church in North America

Last weekend saw a really innovative gathering in Toronto called ‘Eighth Letter.’ It asked the simple question: if the writer of revelation had written ‘A Letter to the Church in North America’ what would they have said? A number of people were asked to present their letters – some in person, some virtually.

Mine’s now on YouTube, and carries a simple message: if you want to find the Kingdom of Heaven, you’re going to have to abandon your pursuit of paradise. In other words, the purified utopian ideal is dangerous; God is found in the dirt of the incarnation.


4 responses to “A Letter to the Church in North America”

  1. Great stuff.

    It’s curious how the idealism of North American pioneers and citizens actually forged a society quite different to the one they envisaged. Perhaps if they’d seen the value of some of the dirt they sought to leave behind they might have avoided creating a country which has gone so belly-up?

  2. Kester, this is brilliant. Thank you… as one who is trying to live in the dirt in North America, it is not easy to convince our brothers and sisters in Christ to join us.

  3. Karsten R

    It’s always easy to see the problem “out there” and to name whatever/whoever you identify with that according to your current frustrations and dissatisfactions.

    I wonder very much if the hunting for utopia is not much nearer to those in emergent/postmodern circles than they imagine. When will their longing for the unchanged goal for bringing in the “kingdom” turn either into trying to force it upon others (we simply change the means, to pursue an unchanged goal, that would sound like Saruman talk to me) or into black despair (Denethor like) if something goes irrevocably wrong with their dream?

    And is it good at all, if the bringing of the so called “kingdom of god” has to rely upon man, is there any reliable historical ground that mankind that brought all the evil into the world can overcome that and bring back something like the “garden of eden” into the world?

    I think, we must be realistic about ourselves first before dealing out anything that matters towards others. As long as we find something out there that is so depraved we might easily forget that we are no better than they are.

    I personally stick more with this one:
    “For thus says the One who is high and lifted up, who inhabits eternity, whose name is Holy: “I dwell in the high and holy place, and also with him who is of a contrite and lowly spirit, to revive the spirit of the lowly, and to revive the heart of the contrite.” Isaiah 57,15

  4. I’ve written something which is sort-of a letter to all the church – believe in the creed or the beatitudes, you can’t do both – not very original but then I never claimed to have an original thought.