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For some reason this week has been absolutely crazy, and I’m not sure why.  But there have been some definite highlights…

Many of you know the story of Elora, a seventh grader in our youth group who was diagnosed with Stage III Leukemia early in the fall.  Last night at youth group Elora made her triumphant return.  She’s been in the hospital ever since her diagnosis this fall and she’ll return shortly for her bone marrow transplant.  But while she’s out, her parents brought her to youth group.  While she’s not out of the woods yet, she was the same old Elora, happy to be there and as pleasant as ever.  Something seemed right with the world last night since she was there.  Keep praying for her!

In other news, I am making a short weekend trip to Maryland to see Renee tomorrow.  I need to be in church on Sunday to push our Small group campaign for Advent, but I wanted to see her and this is the last good weekend since after this final exams are only a week away.  

One of the more exciting projects I’m working on is for our Evangelical Student Fellowship.  We tend to have a lot of “discussion panels” on various topics.  Past topics have included language for God in worship, a discussion of Mel Gibson’s The Passion of the Christ, etc.  Back in September someone asked about having a discussion panel on the Emerging Church and I took up the idea and volunteered to do some of the planning.  So far things are looking really good.  Its going to feature a few of the pastors from local emerging churches as well as Dr. John Franke who is one of the leading theologians in the Emerging conversation.  While details of the event are still sketchy, I think its going to be a great opportunity for PTS to be introduced to something that for the most part, has passed us by.  

We also have enough people signed up to take Theology and Ethics of Karl Barth next term, which has been quite excited.  Dr. Burgess generously offered the course after a few of us requested it so the one course that I’ve wanted to take since I first encountered Barth my first year of seminary I’ll get to take.  I have also started working on my paper for my independent study on Karl Barth this coming term.  

Also, I’ve finished the first volume of Alister McGrath’s “Scientific Theology” which I’m reading with Matt Bell and Dr. Andrew Purves (and Rev. Jim Mead of Pgh Presbytery when he can make it).  I have to say that this independent study is one of the most fun courses I’ve ever taken, because there is such a high level of mutual respect and trust that we can really engage the texts and ask serious questions without worrying about being attacked or having to be defensive.  What’s even better is that McGrath is a jumping off point for us, we don’t always agree with one another or with McGrath, but we can usually go for about an hour and a half straight without losing any steam.  Next term we’re picking up volume 2, and third term volume 3 (doesn’t that make sense).  

But tomorrow, I have a Hebrew quiz to take so I should probably do some last minute studying for that.  I hope at some point to start posting some more substantive material than these bland “here’s what I’ve been doing” posts, but that may have to wait till after finals.  

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