Archive - Dec 2009 - Oct 2016

Wednesday, 27 December 2017

Colleagues List, December 31st, 2017

Vol. XIII No. 25


Wayne A. Holst, Editor
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Dear Friends:

This is my  final edition of Colleagues List for 2017. I sent you a total of 48 issues this year - a record since I began using this format almost 10 years ago.

In this issue I include my December Anglican Journal column entitled:

"The Man Who Invented Christmas." It is a reflection on how I believe Charles Dickens turned a secular tale - "A Christmas Carol" - into a story with significant spiritual meaning.

Traditionally, I collate all Special Items from the past year for those who may have missed some articles they might still like to read. 

These articles have been divided as follows: 

Book notices - 19
Anglican Journal columns - 12
Personal reflections - 9
News items - 5
Lectures and letters - 3

Total - 48 Special Items

Please enjoy this summary of a year of hard but enjoyable work. I try to share with you some of the most pertinent information in the field of religion and culture that I have encountered in 2017.

I look forward to our relationship in 2018!




My Anglican Journal column for December -

"The Man Who Invented Christmas" - Charles Dickens
  transforms a secular parable into a sacred story


48 Entries

January, 2017

AJ January Column: "From Souq to Shopping Mall"

Pilgrimage: My Search for the Real Pope Francis

February, 2017

Joan Chittister: Her Journey from Certainty to Faith

This United Church of Our's (Milton - fourth edition)

AJ February Column "Mending Wall -
A Reflection on the Poem by Robert Frost"

Talk Sex Today: What Kids Need to Know
and What Adults Can Teach Them
March, 2017
James Martin - Essential Writings

True North Strong and Free -
New Ways of Looking at Canada
During Our 150th Birthday (Brown)

AJ March Column "Changes" -
Four Ways the Churches in Canada
Have Changed in the Past Fifty Years"

"Religious Pluralism and Religious Nationalism
and the Culture Wars (in the USA)" A Lecture
by Stephen Prothero of Boston U. at the
University of Calgary, March 17th, 2017

Personal notes and interpretations by Wayne Holst

April, 2017

Days of Awe and Wonder (Marcus Borg)

The Souls of China -
The Return of Religion After Mao

AJ April Column "Canadian Churches
Moving from Uniformity to Diversity"

The Mythic Dimension - Essays by
Joseph Campbell, 1957-89

May, 2017

A Short, Personal Reflection on Our St. David's
Spiritual Travelers' Journey to South Africa,
October-November, 2017

The Divine Dance: The Trinity
and Your Transformation (Rohr)

A God that Could be Real: Spirituality,
Science and the Future of Our Planet

142 Year Old Historic Alberta Church
Destroyed in Weekend Blaze

June, 2017

AJ May Column "Living
Faithfully in a Secular Age"

Only Leave a Trace:
Meditations by Roger Epp

AJ June Column "Canada's Churches -
A Conscience for Social and Eco-Justice"

Teaching Progressive Christianity
in a Local Mainline Congregation -
Reflections on Our Past Twenty Years,
and Anticipating the Next Twenty at
St. David's United Church Calgary

July, 2017

Canada at 150 -
Canada's Contribution to the World

The Rise and Fall (and Rise?) of
Evangelicalism in Canada
From Confederation to Today
by John G. Stackhouse, Jr.

Fifty Years an Imam
Interview with the Aga Khan
Poverty, Climate and Demystifying Islam

AJ July Column "Enlarging Our Faith Communities -
Ecumenical and Inter-faith Developments

"Marjorie's Maxims" -
How my friend and mentor Marjorie Gibson
reflected progressive Christian principles in the
way she thought, related, and lived her life

August, 2017

Some Personal Thoughts on Canada 150

At 92, Jimmy Carter Continues to Lead
Bible Studies - He Draws Many to His
Georgia Church to Join the Experience

AJ August Column - "Honouring Our
Christian Departed and Mourners Alike"

Is God a Scientist? Religious Views of Science
An Inter-faith Approach to the Discussion

September, 2017

Joyce Ruff - Essential Writings

Encountering South Africa and the South
African Continent - Spiritual Reflections
to Accompany Us On Our Travels

Gift and Task - A Year of Daily Readings
and Reflections With Walter Brueggemann

The New Map of the Global Church (Jenkins)

AJ September Column - An Amazing Witness
to Gospel Values

October, 2017

"Autumn Leaves" A Short Personal
Reflection on the Changing Seasons

What the Qur'an Meant and
Why It Matters (Wills)
AJ October Column -
Reformation, a Personal Reflection

November, 2017

An Initial South African Assessment
My First Thoughts After a Recent Trip

Faith and Religion in the Public Life -
Canadians Deeply Divided Over the
Role of Faith in the Public Square
How do Canadians view religion today?
From the Angus Reid Institute - Nov. 2017

AJ November Column -
The Promise and Challenges of South Africa
December, 2017

Resilient Gods - Being Pro-Religious,
Low Religious, or No Religious in Canada (Bibby)

The First Christmas -
What the Gospels Really Say About Jesus's Birth
(Borg and Crossan)

Holst Family Christmas Letter, 2017
AJ December Column
The Man Who Invented Christmas
Summary of Special Item Selections, 2017


For me Christmas has always been about this: contemplating
the visit of God to his people.

- Pope Francis


The Christian challenge of Christmas is this: justice is what
happens when all receive a fair share of God’s world and only
such distributive justice can establish peace on earth.

- John Dominic Crossan


God’s peace does not automatically include inner tranquility,
the absence of conflict, or other, worldly estimations of peace.
As we can see from the life of Christ, it was precisely by his
rejection of the world and its peace that his perfect peace was
established. And this peace was rooted in his acceptance of
the most harrowing self-sacrifice imaginable: death on a cross.

- Johann Christoph Arnold 


See to it that you do not treat the gospel only as history,
for that is only transient; neither regard it only as an example,
for it is of no value without faith. Rather, see to it that you make this birth your own and that Christ be born in you.…

Of what benefit would it be to me if Christ had been born a
thousand times, and it would daily be sung into my ears in a
most lovely manner, if I were never to hear that he was born
for me and was to be my very own?



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