Fleming Rutledge is a preacher and teacher known throughout the US, Canada, and parts of the UK. She is the author of eight books, all from Eerdmans Publishing. Her most recent book, The Crucifixion: Understanding the Death of Jesus Christ, is the product of the work of a lifetime and is being described as a new classic on the subject.
One of the first women to be ordained to the priesthood of the Episcopal Church, she served for fourteen years on the clergy staff at Grace Church on Lower Broadway at Tenth Street, New York City.
Fleming and her husband celebrated their 50th anniversary in 2009 and have two daughters and two grandchildren. She is a native of Franklin, Virginia.
Discerning God's Work In The World: Tips From The Times For Preachers: Credit where credit is due
Tuesday, January 01, 2008
Credit where credit is dueSpeaking as one who has been quite critical of the Presiding Bishop, Katharine Jefferts Schori (see "The PB Has a Dream," in Ruminations) I think it is important to call favorable attention to her Christmas message, especially this part:
The long arc of biblical thinking...has to do with seeing God's care for those who have no other helper. Indeed, Jesus is understood as that helper for all who fail, by the world's terms, to save themselves. More accurately, we understand that Jesus is that helper for all.
She notes that Christmas is a time when people tend to make an extra effort to reach out to those in need, and concludes:
The challenge is to let our seasonal "seeing" transform the way we meet our neighbors through the rest of the year, and through all the coming years.
That is a good message, and one that we might all do well to reflect upon.
I would just observe that the missing ingredient in all her messages is a closer emphasis on the Biblical "arc" [a word borrowed, I think, from Dr. King] that depicts all human beings in desperate need of God's salvation--in other words, a sense of common sinfulness that transcends all categories of needy-munificent, blinded-enlightened, bound-liberated. I wish that the bien-pensant among us in the Episcopal Church would be a little less smug, a little less hortatory.
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