Rose Madrid-Swetman

— Random Thoughts, Stories of Life, and Questions about the Journey —

March 23, 2008


Category: All Posts – Rose – 5:29 pm

He is Risen
He is Risen Indeed!
Our Easter worship gathering was great…great music, great people followed by brunch…plenty of food and good company.

Easter at the Vineyard

March 16, 2008

International Women’s Day – Late

Category: All Posts,Leadership,Stories of Life – Rose – 6:19 pm

Last week was International Women’s Day. In 2006, Rachelle organized a gridblog entitled, “Dismantling Patriarchy”, (I was in Thailand officiating a wedding at time) which I participated in. This year I didn’t participate because I have been too sick and too behind in my studies. If I am going to take time to write I have to write for school. I have been too sick to concentrate on my studies or much else…in fact I have spent more time in the last two weeks watching T.V. than I have in years…it doesn’t take much energy to watch T.V…
While reading through some of the posts, I found I really resonated with Julie Clawson’s post.
From her post:

    There are many issues that I try to be open minded about. I respect differences of opinion in theology and politics and disdain single issue voting, but this is a deal breaking issue for me. If a church sees women as inferior and denies them their voice, I honestly could not join as a member of that community. I could not worship week after week alongside those that denied my full humanity. I don’t deny their faith or anything, but it’s not worth it to me to subject myself to such life-denying forces. Others with far more patience are attempting to bring hope to those situations, but (at least for now) I can’t be a part of that world.

I have to say I agree with her. It is a justice issue for me, I am respectful of difference, but I couldn’t attend a church week after week that denied my right to be who I am created to be.

March 14, 2008

Change – What does it mean?

Category: All Posts,Leadership,Questions about the Journey – Rose – 6:36 pm

I don’t think many people would disagree on times are changing. The question to followers of Jesus becomes, what does it mean to be faithful in our time, what does it mean for the church to navigate the waters of societal change?

“Every few hundred years in Western society there occurs a sharp transformation…within a few short decades, society rearranges itself—its worldview; its basic values; its social and political structure; its arts; its key institutions…fifty years later, there is a new world and the people born then cannot even imagine the world in which their grandparents lived and into which their own parents were born. We are currently living through such a transformation.”

Peter Drucker. Post-Capitalist Society, New York: Harper’s Business. 1993. p. 1.

March 3, 2008

Church of the Savior

Category: All Posts,Community,Stories of Life – Rose – 10:36 pm

Tonight I was reading through the journal I kept in 2003. I read through my entries on my trip to Mozambique, Africa and Church of the Savior in Washington D.C. Some of the entries from Africa brought tears to my eyes.
While at Church of the Savior we heard a number of amazing practitioners, one in particular jumped out at me tonight (I am re-reading some of my thoughts so I can shape my dissertation proposal), it was a talk given by a man named Bill Haley. Bill had just returned from a trip around the world visiting Christian communities that were or had been successful in bringing about personal, societal and global transformation. (Sidebar – I was struck by the fact that five years later we use similar language in our community about following Christ to serve others in three realms: personal, local and global). He talked about Wilberforce and the Clapham’s (social reformers within the Church of England.
Bill then talked about small communities of Christians committed to prayer, study and service as the most powerful tool in God’s hand for personal, societal and global transformation. Then went on to name some of the groups he studied and visited:
The Sisters of Charity
The Iona Community
Various monastic communities
Church of the Savior
The common denominators he found:
1. The Communities are Christ centered – Jesus is the reason they exist and they know him as a suffering God
2. There was some degree of life together
3. They had strong leadership – leaders that had a strong inner sense and a focus “what is not yet needs to be done” there are things God wants to do in the world
4. There was a great willingness within the community to live sacrificially
5. There was a profound reliance on prayer
6. There was an external goal – the entire community internalized an external goal, namely, they existed for other people, social justice was equated with loving God
7. There was shared discipline
8. There was a high expectation for membership (individualism was not part of their language or practice) they realized they could get more done with 10 committed people than 100 people who were not committed to the mission
9. They all had a commitment to commitment – you choose how you live

Here was Bill’s definition of Christian community:
An interdependent group of Christians whose lives are centered around Jesus and ordered by love, who share common goals and common commitments and who together intentionally seek to love God and love their neighbor.

March 1, 2008

Dinner with the Family

Category: Stories of Life – Rose – 10:31 pm

Tonight Rich, Alex and I had dinner with my extended family. My mom, my cousins, my uncle Dan (85 years old) and old friends of the family. We watched the videos that Rich and I made of my mom…this spurred a lot of questions and story after story…we had rigatoni, green beans with pancetta and lots of wine!
My mom was having a great time rehearsing the stories of her childhood…and of her siblings, funny stores about my aunts that we grew up around…all four of them have died within the last 10 years.
We talked about death and dying, cremation or burial, scattering ashes — it was really fun…at one point someone said, this is like a scene out of Meet the Fockers! There was lots of laughter.
It was great to see my mom being the center of attention and everyone celebrating the moments of her life. She is totally cool with making the videos public (everyone at dinner wanted access to them)…we are going to videotape my uncle Dan as well. He loved documenting the stories we all grew up hearing but have not had anyone really document to this point.
Only sad moment, when we first arrived, an old friend of the family I haven’t seen in a couple of years said to me (referring to Alex) “is that your grandson?” to which I replied, “nooooo, that’s Alex our youngest” 🙂

February 29, 2008

Domestic Violence Pt 2

Category: Stories of Life – Rose – 12:01 pm

Yesterday I posted on domestic violence. My mom, and all 5 of us kids are the victims of domestic violence. I am 51 years old and the second to the last of 5 kids. We were abused in the 60’s and 70’s — before Dr. Phil and Oprah, when counseling was taboo…

The following is just one of several comments that have been left on my blog in the last two days by my brothers who protect the system. It might give you a little more clarity as to why I can’t have a relationship with my three older siblings. It is referring to the fact that Rich and I videotaped my mom telling her family history (not our history) but her story, her parents, immigration from Italy etc. Apparently my siblings are not happy that my mother and I have reconciled our relationship and she actually enjoys hanging out with us. Here is the latest comment…I am actually not afraid for people to know who I am and that I have reconciled with my mother. One reason I am making this comment public is because my brothers have both retaliated against me for telling the truth. I would expect they are scheming a way to retaliate once again so for the record I will expose any threats or manipulations and attempts to control me or my relationships. By the way, my mom was happy to tell her story and very happy to have them up on YouTube (they are set to private) she calls me and lets me know how happy she is that people are viewing them. She did say my brother David called her and screamed at her for doing the videos with me. Welcome to my life…

1. david madrid | | IP:
Hey Rose you had the odasity to put My mother on YOU TUBE!! How insulting!! Hey you big forgiver how about forgiving your father !! Yea right!! You better delete this or peolpe will find out the real YOU. You hipacrite!! Why don’t you just stay away from my Mother you are EVIL. You only think of yourself you self centered evil woman JEZIBEL
Feb 29, 10:02 AM — [ Edit | Delete | View Post ] — Bulk action: Approve Spam Delete Defer until later

February 28, 2008

Domestic Violence

Category: Stories of Life – Rose – 4:35 pm

Here is a good site on recognizing if you currently or have been a victim of domestic violence. The characteristics on the wheels have a continuum. Some people learn to control by manipulation, intimidation and the lot. Tragically it begins early in life and without real healing it continues through a lifetime…

February 22, 2008

Very Very Busy

Category: Random Thoughts,Stories of Life – Rose – 5:35 pm

Wow, life is so full! I am trying to keep up with it all. Charleston was good, I made it late. Good meetings, met some great people and spent time with our regional leadership. Back home, trying to catch up with VCC, Turning Point and my course work. I am very, very behind…I am taking three days next week to go away and catch up…Alex is on mid-winter break so Rich and I and Alex are going to Leavenworth.

February 13, 2008

You Had a Bad Day

Category: All Posts,Stories of Life – Rose – 11:18 am

Alex, my ten year old (who btw just made the little league majors!) plays the chipmunks CD over and over…especially – You had a bad day…I am sitting at SeaTac and that song has gone through my head…actually I’ve had a couple of bad days. Last week Alex and Rich both had a bad flu. I was feeling pretty good and happy it I didn’t get it. Monday evening in the middle of dinner, it hit…bad…stomach flu…I was up all night, hoping it was only a 24 hour bug since I had to leave at 7:00 a.m. today for South Carolina for the Vineyard National Leadership retreat. I was in bed all day yesterday, barely coherent. Was feeling a bit better this morning, weak and tired. I got to the airport a little late, somehow in my delirium I didn’t calculate the time correctly. I ran to security, line was so long…got to the gate literally the minute they shut the door. They wouldn’t let me on. Once they shut the door that’s it, done, you lose…
So, I am sitting in the airport, next flight is at noon which will get me into Charleston around 9:30 p.m. ugh…I will miss the “meet and greet” time tonight but will be there for the meetings in the morning.
If you think about it, please say a couple of prayers, I am not feeling so well and don’t want to relapse…I doubt I am contagious, just feel weak and have a bit of a headache…thanks

February 8, 2008

Life after life after death

Category: All Posts,Questions about the Journey – Rose – 2:02 pm

I have been trying to wrap my brain around this statement made by N.T. Wright in regard to resurrection. This afternoon I was studying Walter Brueggemann’s “Interpretation Genesis” for the series we are teaching on Sunday mornings. As I was reading the commentary on the text from Chapter 16 -18 Brueggemann (speaking of the promise) states:

“At the end of 18:15 there is still no resolution. The promise is still in limbo. Sarah is still without child. The whole narrative presses to the birth in chapter 21. The task of the exposition is to portray the anguish of these texts. That anguish turns out to be labor pain, but that is not known here. These texts present the creation “groaning in labor…groan inwardly as we wait for adoption as children, the redemption of our bodies. For in this hope we are saved ” (Romans 8:22-24). These first parents of faith might well have made that same statement. The story of their lives is the story of hopeful but impatient groaning as they wait for the redemption of their bodies and of their history.

I wrote in the margin of my book — this is it, this is life after life after death…then I typed in my notes…how did we lose this ultimate hope in our teaching in the church…how did this core Christian tenet of faith get reduced to “going to heaven when I die”

I am thinking about this a lot as we journey with Jesus through Lent and to Easter…contemplating on Resurrection and what that means for us today – how do we re-imagine our faith around that story…

Then I read the following from Bob Hyatt’s blog and it came just a bit clearer. N.T. Wright in Time Magazine makes it pretty clear. What do you think?