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Here are selected quotes from the Westerhoffs' meditations at the 2006 silent retreat. Some of the books they cited are listed below.
    1. "'Are you a Christian?' and 'Are you Christian' are different questions." --John Westerhoff (JW)
    2. "One Christian is no Christian" --Pascal
    3. "Friendship is the best metaphor for a spiritual life... friends enjoy spending time together..." --JW
    4. "If you can't swear at God, you don't have a spiritual relationship." --JW
    5. "The 'priesthood of all believers' is the community as priest, not the individual." --JW
    6. "We by nature are dependent on God; God by choice is dependent on us." --JW
    7. "Evil always encourages good... to the extent we lose our soul." --JW
    8. "For Abelard, Christ is not victim, but rather victor" --JW
    9. "The opposite of faith is certainty, not doubt; the opposite of hope is despair, not cynicism; the opposite of love is indifference, not hate." --JW
    10. "Parables are intended to subvert what you think. If you are not uncomfortable after reading a parable, you did not get it." --JW
    11. "Coincidence is God's way of remaining anonymous." --JW
    12. "Inconvenient intrusions become blessings." --Caroline Westerhoff (CW)
    13. "It is not our success that is judged, only our faithfulness ... even in our failures." --JW
    14. "We are not to make a difference, but rather participate in the difference God is making." --JW
    15. "In the story of the feeding of the 5,000, what Jesus is saying is 'give then the little that you have and it will be enough.' And it was, is, and always will be." --JW
    16. "Only modernity looks at faith as belief or assent. Faith is perception, imagining, intuition... it includes much more than sense." --JW
    17. "The Creed is intended as a love song, not a statement of beliefs to which we give our assent." --JW
    18. "Faith cannot be taught; it must be lived." --JW
    19. "Myths are the only true stories; they are beyond the facts." --JW

    The following quotes are from Betsy Adams Notes:
    1. "Anybody who needs more than God as his witness is too ambitious.” --St. Augustine
    2. "The unknown is the mind’s greatest need, and for it no one thinks to thank God.” --Emily Dickinson
    3. "I spend most of my time in spiritual direction helping people heal their image of God.” –JW
    4. "God does not give us what we deserve; He gives us what we need.” –JW
    5. "To allow mystery is not to damn knowledge, but to allow for a wider view….” --JW
    6. "I think of the Cross -- If human remorse were a pre-requisite to forgiveness, God would have skipped the whole thing." --CW
    7. And all of JW’s final statement: "We live between the Already and the Not Yet. We are not responsible for personally building God’s reign. We are to live lives totally dependent on God, and in relation to each other. We will be judged not by our success, but by our faithfulness, even in the midst of failure. We are not to try to make a difference in this world, but we are expected to live in the difference God is making. Instead of trying to run from a church that does not fulfill our dreams, or fight it to make it what we think it should be, may we learn to float –not passively, but to cooperate with the water, to cooperate with God, to act as if the Kingdom is already here in its fullness, even if it is not.”

    Books cited by the Westerhoff's with links to Amazon:

    1. Make All Things New: Stories of Healing, Reconciliation, & Peace, by Caroline A. Westerhoff
    2. Meaning of Jesus: Two Visions, by Marcus J. Borg, N. T. Wright
    3. Understanding the Windsor Report: Two Leaders in the American Church Speak Across the Divide, by Ian Douglas and Paul Zahl.
    4. The Art of Reading Scripture, by Ellen F. Davis (Editor), Richard B. Hays (Editor)
    5. The Broadway Play Doubt, by John Patrick Shanley.

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Document last modified on: 12/16/2006

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