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Chi Rho Connection, Vol. II, No. 30

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  • Adam DeBaugh
    ************************* CHI RHO CONNECTION The Chi Rho Press eNewsletter Vol. II, No. 30 7 December 2001 ************************* Contents: 1. The
    Message 1 of 1 , Dec 7, 2001
      *************************
      CHI RHO CONNECTION

      The Chi Rho Press eNewsletter
      Vol. II, No. 30
      7 December 2001

      *************************

      Contents:

      1. The ‘Twelve Days of Christmas’ Explained
      2. Holiday Shopping Guide
      3. The Eleventh Step to Recovery from Bible Abuse
      4. An Opportunity to be a Part of this Ministry
      5. Adam's Last Word: Thoughts on Advent and the Church Year

      --------------------------------------------------

      Welcome once again to the Chi Rho Connection, the
      electronic newsletter of Chi Rho Press. Thank you for
      passing this Chi Rho Connection on to others.

      To join our list, send an e-mail message to
      mailto:ChiRhoPress-subscribe@yahoogroups.com.

      To unsubscribe send an e-mail to
      mailto:ChiRhoPress-unsubscribe@yahoogroups.com.

      Please visit our Web site at http://www.chirhopress.com
      to see our entire lines of books, handouts, tchochkas,
      and stained glass.

      Direct all other e-mail to Adam@.... See
      the end of this eNewsletter for a complete list of
      e-mail addresses at ChiRhoPress.com.

      --------------------------------------------------

      1. The ‘Twelve Days of Christmas’ Explained

      (From the UFMCC LeaderLink, 17 December 1999, taken from
      the Las Vegan, the MCC Las Vegas newsletter.)

      From 1558 to 1829, Roman Catholics in England were not
      able to practice their faith openly so they had to find
      other ways to pass their beliefs. The Christmas carol
      ‘The Twelve Days of Christmas’ is one example of how they
      did it. Written in England as a catechism song for young
      Catholics, ‘The Twelve Days of Christmas’ contains hidden
      meanings intended to help children remember lessons of
      faith. Instead of referring to an earthly suitor, the
      ‘true love’ mentioned in the song really refers to God.
      The ‘me’ who receives the presents is symbolic of every
      baptized person.

      The ‘partridge in a pear tree’ is Jesus Christ. In the
      song, Christ is symbolically presented as a mother
      partridge that feigns injury to decoy predators from
      helpless nestlings.

      The meaning of the other symbols are:

      Two turtle doves the Old and New Testaments.
      Three French hens faith, hope, and charity.
      Four calling birds the four Gospels.
      Five golden rings the first five books of the Old
      Testament which outline humanity’s fall from grace.
      Six geese a-laying the six days of creation.
      Seven swans a-swimming seven gifts of the Holy Spirit
      (the seven sacraments of the Roman Catholic Church).
      Eights maids a-milking the eight Beatitudes.
      Nine ladies dancing nine fruits of the Holy Spirit.
      Ten lords a-leaping the Ten Commandments.
      Eleven pipers piping the eleven faithful disciples.
      Twelve drummers drumming the twelve points of belief in
      the Apostles’ Creed.

      --------------------------------------------------

      2. Holiday Shopping Guide

      Christmas is just a few weeks away. On the Chi Rho Press
      Web page, every day is a shopping day. We never close!
      Shop from the comfort of your own home at
      www.ChiRhoPress.com.

      Books make great gifts! Please do at least some of your
      holiday shopping at http://www.ChiRhoPress.com. Choose
      from our many wonderful books and gifts. Even if you
      have visited our Web page recently, we encourage you to
      click on again today and order a Christmas gift or two.

      You will have wonderful gifts to give your friends and
      loved ones and you will be supporting your LGBT Christian
      publishing house as well.

      Here are some great ideas for your holiday shopping:

      *****

      Stained Glass: We have five stained glass designs to choose
      from on our Web page. In this issue we feature all five
      designs.

      Stained Glass Rainbow Cross. The rainbow cross is made of
      seven different pieces of glass (the arms have rectangles
      of red, orange, yellow, green, blue, and purple with a
      frosted clear center). They are handcrafted in the copper
      foil and solder method. They have an attached hoop so you
      may hang it in a window or from a Christmas tree as a
      holiday decoration. Our Rainbow Cross is $18.00, plus
      shipping and handling. Order on our Web page.

      *****

      Stained Glass AIDS ribbon made from three pieces of red,
      textured glass measuring three inches high. There is a
      loop for hanging this fitting reminder of our concern for
      all those affected by the HIV/AIDS crisis. $7.50 each,
      plus shipping and handling. You may order on our Web page,
      using your credit card.

      *****

      Stained Glass Lesbian/Gay Rainbow Flags. A solid rectangle
      of bright red, orange, yellow, green, blue, and purple
      glass, four inches by six inches, with two loops for
      hanging. The rainbow flag has become an international
      symbol of Gay/Lesbian Pride. Show your pride! $18.00
      each, plus shipping and handling. You may see a picture
      of this stained glass Gay Flag on our Web page, and order
      using your credit card.

      *****

      Stained Glass Cross, a simple, yet striking addition to
      any window. Made from five pieces of glass and measuring
      seven inches high and four inches wide, these crosses are
      hand crafted in the copper foil and solder method. The
      cross has an attached loop so you may hang it in any window
      to catch the light and remind all of the power of our faith.
      The arms of the cross are clear, frosted glass and the
      center square is red. $12.00 each, plus shipping and
      handling. You may see a picture of this stained glass
      cross and order on our Web page, using your credit card.

      *****

      The Stained Glass Rainbow Star of David is a perfect
      Chanukah gift for our Jewish friends. It is made of seven
      different pieces of glass (the points of the star are
      triangles of red, orange, yellow, green, blue, and purple
      with a frosted clear center). They are handcrafted in the
      copper foil and solder method. They have an attached hoop
      so you may hang it in a window or as a holiday decoration.
      Our rainbow Star of David is $18.00, plus shipping and
      handling. You may order on our Web page, using your credit
      card.

      *****

      We have designed gift certificates that can be made out
      for any amount you care to give.

      These are not yet available on our Web site, so send your
      check with a note indicating that you are buying a Gift
      Certificate and we will make up an attractive Gift
      Certificate for the amount of your check for you to give
      along with a copy of our catalog.

      Chi Rho Press Gift Certificates make excellent gifts!
      Order some today at Chi Rho Press, P.O. Box 7864,
      Gaithersburg, MD 20898.

      *****

      Salvation Army Protest Cards in protest of the Salvation
      Army’s attempt to circumvent local and state civil rights
      laws protecting gay and lesbian people. The cards are
      4 ¼” by 2 ¾” on light green card stock. Considering the
      Salvation Army’s recent change of a brief decision of its
      Western Region to provide limited domestic partner
      benefits, we need to make a statement to them now more
      than ever.

      Our cards say, ‘Dear Salvation Army, While I appreciate the
      good works that you do in terms of feeding, clothing, and
      housing the poor and needy, I am appalled by your attempt
      this past summer to subvert local and state civil rights
      laws. Because of your homophobic policies, I am bypassing
      your Red Kettles this season and will be giving my
      charitable contributions to organizations friendly to the
      gay and lesbian community. Merry Christmas.’

      Buy a stock of cards and put one in the bucket every time
      you see a Salvation Army bell ringer this holiday season.

      Salvation Army Protest Cards are available at 15 cards for
      $1.00 plus shipping and handling. For one packet, shipping
      and handling is $0.50. For 2 or 3 packets, add $1.00
      shipping and handling. For 4 or 5 packets, add $2.00
      shipping and handling. For 6 or more packets our regular
      shipping and handling schedule applies. The shipping
      schedule is as follows.

      For orders up to $19.99 add $2.50;
      orders of $20 to $39.99 add $3.50;
      orders of $40 to $59.99 add $4.50;
      orders of $60 to $79.99 add $5.50;
      orders of $80 to $99.99 add $6.50;
      orders of $100 or more, add 7% of the order.

      These are only available by direct mail, and are not on
      our Web site. We will send your Salvation Army Protest
      Cards by First Class Mail. Send your check or money order
      to Chi Rho Press, P.O. Box 7864, Gaithersburg, MD 20898.

      *****

      Please visit our Web page for your holiday shopping and
      order stained glass and all our books on our secure shopping
      cart. Our Web site is at http://www.ChiRhoPress.com.

      --------------------------------------------------

      3. The Eleventh Step to Recovery from Bible Abuse

      (From Chapter 16 of 'Steps to Recovery from Bible
      Abuse,' by Dr. Rembert Truluck, pages 345 and 346.)

      The Eleventh Step: Learn to Share Your Faith

      Did someone help you to become a Christian? Have you ever
      helped anyone become a Christian? Have you shared with
      anyone else your experience of coming out as gay? These
      questions are important as you consider the Eleventh Step
      in recovery from Bible and religious abuse. Telling your
      good news can be fun. It is also a great challenge. These
      four lessons will help you think through and become better
      equipped to share your faith with other people. Write out
      your own experience with God and share it.

      ‘Always be prepared to explain to anyone who asks you a
      reason for the hope that is in you, yet with gentleness
      and respect’ (1 Peter 3:15). This verse was on the cover
      of my earlier book on personal evangelism in our community,
      ‘Invitation to Freedom’ (Chi Rho Press, 1993, now out of
      print). Much of the material in ‘Invitation to Freedom’
      is also in this book.

      ‘Jesus said, Follow me, and I will make you fishers of
      people’ (Matthew 4:19). Later, Jesus repeated his need
      for helpers, 'Seeing the crowds, Jesus felt compassion
      for them, because they were distressed and downcast like
      sheep without a shepherd, and Jesus said to his disciples,
      The harvest is plentiful but the workers are few, ask God
      to send out workers into God’s harvest’ (Matthew 9:35-38).

      Read John 15:1-27 and John 17:18-23 as preparation for
      studying these lessons on finding and carrying out your
      mission of representing Jesus in your life and through
      your words.

      *****

      The Eleventh Step continues with Bible studies on How Jesus
      Liberated Outcast People, Let Jesus Borrow Your Boat, How
      to Help Others Experience Jesus, and Resources for Sharing
      Christ.

      You may buy 'Steps to Recovery from Bible Abuse' on the
      Chi Rho Press Web site, http://www.ChiRhoPress.com, using
      your credit card on our secure shopping cart.

      --------------------------------------------------

      4. An Opportunity to Participate in this Ministry

      Guardian Angels: Become an Angel On-line! You
      may make contributions to the ministry of Chi Rho Press
      on our Web site, http://www.ChiRhoPress.com. Don’t
      forget, contributions to the ministry of Chi Rho Press are
      fully tax deductible.

      To put tax deductible contributions on your credit card,
      using our secure shopping cart on our Web page, go to
      http://www.chirhopress.com/frame_sponsor.html.

      Highlight the numeral 1 in the box and type in the amount
      you want to contribute (for instance, $150 to become a
      Guardian Angel). Click the Add to Cart link to the right
      of the amount box and the Shopping Cart will come up
      and you can either continue shopping or click on Check Out
      Now, which will take you through the check out process,
      asking you for your credit card number, etc. Be sure to
      give us your mailing address as well as e-mail address so
      we can send you your welcome gifts.

      If you have specific questions about the Guardian Angel
      Program, you may e-mail us at Angels@...,
      or telephone us at 301/926-1208.

      --------------------------------------------------

      5. Adam's Last Word: Thoughts on Advent and the Church Year

      Happy New Year! We are in the midst of Advent, last Sunday
      being the first Sunday in Advent. And since Advent is the
      beginning of the church year, the Church Liturgical Year
      begins anew.

      The first purple candle was lit on the Advent wreath. The
      nativity scene tapestry is now hanging behind the altar at
      my home church, Holy Redeemer MCC, College Park, MD. It
      replaced a wonderful painting by gifted artist Maxwell
      Lawton, aflame as it was with the fires of Pentecost. It
      is a truly amazing painting.

      Perhaps I love that painting because Maxwell incorporated
      the Greek letters Chi (like an X) and Rho (like a P). It
      is the name of our publishing house, and on our logo. Chi
      and Rho are the two Greek letters that begin the word
      ‘christos' or Christ in Greek. Historically, from ancient
      times, the Chi superimposed on the long tail of the Rho
      were a monogram for Jesus Christ. That is why we chose to
      call our publishing house Chi Rho Press, to emphasize that
      while we are a publishing house for the gay, lesbian,
      bisexual, and transgendered community, we are fundamentally
      a Christian house.

      Maxwell’s painting had the traditional Chi Rho monogram
      seemingly on fire, the reds, oranges, and yellows of the
      Pentecost fires of the Holy Spirit. It symbolized for me
      our church being on fire for Jesus, touched by the Spirit.

      But now our reredos (the decorated wall behind the altar)
      is a grand and colorful tapestry of the nativity scene.
      Christmas looms up ahead. Pentecost with its red stoles
      and frontals and the flames of the Holy Spirit gave way to
      green (of what we used to call Kingdomtide or in more modern
      times Dominiontide), which seems to last forever in the
      church year. But finally, as autumn begins to chill the
      air here in the Northern Hemisphere, we in the United
      States set aside a harvest day of thanksgiving, and then
      we plunge into Advent.

      I’ll freely admit it. I am a liturgical queen. A son of
      the Church of England. A former MCC pastor once asked me,
      after I pestered him about instituting ‘better’ liturgy in
      our church, ‘What’s a nice Anglican boy like you, doing in
      a place like this?’ Good question, and luckily there is
      an easy answer for that question in MCC. We ‘nice Anglican
      boys’ and girls, men and women, are as welcome in MCC as
      are our Pentecostal sisters and brothers. The beauty of
      MCC, to my mind, is that we are striving to live the
      ecumenical dream of bringing together the fractured Body
      of Christ.

      Most often we are even successful! And despite the
      rigorous ecumenism of the Metropolitan Community Churches,
      I still value my liturgical past.

      I do love the change in liturgical colors, the stately
      progression of the seasons of the church year. Advent is
      the beginning of the church year and after four weeks gives
      way to Christmastide, quickly followed by Epiphany. Then
      comes the penitential period of Lent, followed by Holy Week
      and Easter Sunday, then the Sundays of Easter, and finally
      the interminably long season of Pentecost. And before you
      know it, it is Advent again. I love the colors. I love
      the subtle changes in the liturgy (like not saying
      ‘Alleluia’ during Lent, so the explosive ‘Alleluia!’ of
      Easter is that much more dramatic and exciting). I love
      the sights and sounds of the living faith.

      The most beautiful thing to me about the seasons of the
      Church year is that it embodies change. Colors change,
      liturgies change, the very hymns we sing are different
      from season to season. At Holy Redeemer our reredos
      changes, even though it isn’t a weighty stone sculpture
      like in many cathedrals, but a painting, a tapestry, or
      some other artwork. Life is change and no more so than
      in the life of the Church Universal.

      Good liturgy is a theatre art, filled with sights,
      sounds, and even smells like all good theatre. Enjoy
      the majestic liturgy of the church year!

      --------------------------------------------------

      We are glad you are partners in ministry with us here at
      Chi Rho Press. We are eager for your comments, your
      suggestions, your assistance with selling our books,
      and your own purchases! And of course, we covet your
      prayers for this ministry.

      If you've received the Chi Rho Connection as a result of the
      good offices of someone passing it along to you (which
      we certainly encourage) and would like to receive it
      directly from us, please follow the directions at the
      end of this Connection to subscribe.

      To order, please visit http://www.ChiRhoPress.com. You
      may pay by credit card on our web page or we will ship
      your order after receiving your check or money
      order. Include your e-mail address, mailing address,
      and telephone number please.

      If you have questions, please write to
      Question@....

      For comments and suggestions
      about this eNewsletter, please write
      Connection@....

      To learn about our Guardian
      Angel Individual Sponsor Program, please write
      Angels@....

      For all other correspondence,
      please write Adam@....

      Our snail mail address is:

      Chi Rho Press, Inc.
      P.O. Box 7864
      Gaithersburg, MD 20898

      Our telephone and fax number is 301/926-1208.

      Customers outside the U.S. and especially our Canadian
      friends can order using credit cards on our Web page or
      through our Canadian distributor, MAP Enterprises, Mary
      Ann Pearson, at her new Web page,
      http://www.christiangays.com.

      Copyright 2001, Chi Rho Press, Inc.

      ******************************************

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