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Tom Stuckey
01425 270802

 

Tom Stuckey was President of the British Methodist Conference in 2005. This website has been set up with his wife Christine Stuckey, who is the MWiB Southampton District President, to encourage theological reflection and dialogue both within the Methodist Church and beyond. You can participate in this.

  

Tom Stuckey

CLICK PICTURE FOR TOM'S PROFILE

                 JULY

See the new REFLECTION triggered by the reforendum result.

Both Christine and I have had some inspiring 'God Moments' within the services we have taken. We feel very blessed and hope you will too when you read our joint BLOG.

My theological paper entitled 'God's Violent World' triggered a lively discussion both at the superintendents meeting at at a meeting at Sarum College.  I have to do some more thinking on the issue of violence and revise my paper
The best of all possible worlds? 

How about emailing your comments!   mail1@tomstuckey.me.uk
 

  

  
 
       

    HERE ARE SOME OF CHRISTINE'S PAPERS
                            (click below)             
                                                                     
   
   1.  Pilgrimage to Lindisfarne

   2.  MWiB District Celebration

   3.  A Pilgrimage at home      

   
 

        THIS MONTH'S REFLECTION   by Tom

 The Shaking of the Foundations

In the year that King Uzziah died, the prophet for the first time saw beyond the current political upheaval. It enable him to set current affairs within a vision of the ultimate.

The nation had enjoyed 50 years of stability. There had been no king like Uzziah since the reign of Solomon. National pride had been restored and the upheavals of recent years forgotten yet that stability was about to crumble. The great king overreached himself, compromised the holiness of worship and had been struck down with leprosy. He sank into a leper’s grave.

As the prophet was worshipping he was suddenly swept away in a hurricane of sorrow. The nation, like the king was sick from top to toe with uncleanness, injustice, curruption and division. It had leprosy and would become prey for the surrounding nations.

Isaiah experienced the shaking of the foundations of everything he had known. Henceforth the nation would have to live with instability and threat. The rise of a new superpower in the East would make the whole earth tremble.

Isaiah's vision of holiness could no longer be confined by the temple. God's Royal Presence was to inhabit the whole earth. Only his skirts were in the temple.

Smoke and mist arose as they always do when holiness and sin touch each other. A confession is forced from the prophet's lips. ‘I am a man of unclean lips and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips.’ 

The social and political sin – sin of heart, home and market- have been exposed through the worship and they fall to the ground like rotten leafs beneath the stainless beauty of the seraphs praise.

The words above are drawn from George Adam Smith’s famous Commentary (revised 1931) on the book of Isaiah.

I turned again to this Commentary in the week following the referendum vote. They spoke to me of the sickness of our nation, of how ambition and power can corrupt, how greed and selfishness destroys justice and how public speakers can use words as weapons devoid of truth.

The Isaiah passage offers me an alternative vision for the world but tells me that in and through such a holy God 'all the nations are accounted as dust on the scales'.

 

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 LAST MONTH'S REFLECTION 

 Memory and Amnesia

The American Old Testament scholar Walter Brueggemann highlights the importance of memory.  He describes memory as a magnet which in drawing the people of God back to the past gives new stimulus to prophetic imagination in the present.  It serves a subversive purpose, legitimates a newness marked by amazement and discontinuity and energizes new action. He sets out the principle that ‘Only memory allows possibility’. I conclude that a church which suffers from amnesia has no future.

 The narrative memory of Israel is articulated in credo, liberation songs and poetry, liturgical recital and the reflective literature of the Torah. The wisdom of the past however has little place in a post modern culture governed by technocrats and managers. Erosion of memory is inevitable in our fast moving society dependant on instant communication. Has Methodism’s well organised Connexional system, once our strength, now become our Achilles heel?

Where is memory now? It is found in those churches overseas established through the Methodist Missionary Society. It is found in the grey-headed congregations of our local churches in Britain who carry the DNA of Methodism in their blood through memories and stories.

Brueggemann continues ‘When we have completely forgotten our past, we absolutize the present and we will be like contented cows in Bashan who want nothing more than the best of today.’  Are those who lead today's Methodism really listening to the retired, ministers and lay people who carry a wealth of knowledge and experience in their memories? 

Part of the Durham Lecture delivered in Spring 2014

   

 
  Boards and President