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Re: [Synoptic-L] On The Earliest Markan Narrative

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  • E Bruce Brooks
    To: Tony Buglass On: Church Supervision From: Bruce Excellent point about Josephus. But what I really wanted to ask about was not the message so much as this
    Message 1 of 15 , Jan 17, 2009
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      To: Tony Buglass
      On: Church Supervision
      From: Bruce

      Excellent point about Josephus. But what I really wanted to ask about was
      not the message so much as this part of the signature block:

      Superintendent Minister
      Upper Calder Methodist Circuit.

      What does that involve, and how often? My grandfather was, well, not quite a
      circuit rider, but a minister in the Methodism of a hundred years ago, but I
      would rather have contemporary data. What, in 2009, are the duties of a
      Superintendent Minister, and how do they interact with those of the Resident
      Ministers, if any?

      Pardon my administrative ignorance, but it strikes me as relevant to a note
      I was considering posting on the situation in the 1c.

      Bruce

      E Bruce Brooks
      Warring States Project
      University of Massachusetts at Amherst
    • Tony Buglass
      Hi, Bruce British Methodism is organised differently from US Methodism. Our churches are organised into Circuits, which are in turn organised into Districts,
      Message 2 of 15 , Jan 17, 2009
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        Hi, Bruce

        British Methodism is organised differently from US Methodism. Our churches are organised into Circuits, which are in turn organised into Districts, which in turn report to Conference (which meets annually). Each Circuit is run by the team of ministers and local preachers; the team is led by the Superintendent minister, who is also in pastoral charge of some of the churches (unlike our District Chairs, who are usually not in pastoral charge). This Circuit is relatively small (10 churches, 2 ministers, and about a dozen local preachers), occupying a valley running up into the Pennines from Halfax, West Yorkshire. We are currently considering joining up a few small circuits to form a larger one of some 30 churches. I am in pastoral charge of 5 churches, and in addition have a handful of District responsibilities and a chaplaincy to the local squadron of the Air Training Corps (think of a cross between Scouts and Royal Air Force). My responsibilities in the churches are the same as any minister: preaching, teaching, pastoral oversight, management, etc. In addition, as superintendent, I oversee the work at circuit level: I chair the Circuit Meeting, Local Preachers Meeting, and some of the Circuit Teams; I am also legally the Chair of the Managing Trustees of every church in the circuit, including those looked after by my colleague.

        That's the structure. Personally (to link it to biblical studies and stuff) I see it as a close parallel to the episcopal structure behind 1 Tim.3 - the superintendent is the episkopos over the team of presbyteroi and laos. I prefer that as a model of episcopacy to the post-Constantinian diocesan model, or the UM model, which makes the bishop a much more distant figure. Or so it appears to me!

        Hope that helps,
        Cheers,
        Rev Tony Buglass
        Superintendent Minister
        Upper Calder Methodist Circuit

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      • Dennis Dean Carpenter
        Bruce stated: I think a more mixed view is a better description of the whole. As von Soden long ago pointed out, large tracts of Mark are extremely sunny.
        Message 3 of 15 , Jan 17, 2009
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          Bruce stated: "I think a more mixed view is a better description of the whole. As
          von Soden long ago pointed out, large tracts of Mark are extremely sunny.
          They have Jesus preaching openly to large and enthusiastic crowds, Jesus
          healing many, Jesus commanding the forces of nature, everything going well.
          Nowhere in this material does Jesus curse his disciples, or intentionally
          hide his message from his hearers. Then, as von Soden also pointed out, you
          also have the other and gloomier part, the secretive Jesus, the abusive
          Jesus, the impatient Jesus. The problem of Mark, as von Soden thus expressed
          it, is to explain what these two types of material are doing in there
          together. The tension demands some sort of resolution in the reader's or
          hearer's mind. Wrede made a good beginning. More recently, I have suggested
          how I see this demand being met, in each successive layer, and most
          successfully (as above noted) in Layer 3 and subsequent."

          Dennis replies: That is an interesting way to look at it. Wouldn't another way of stating that be, "Why would a human being have different emotions at different times?" Whether 'tis the author of Mark or the character of Jesus, I find not "problem of Mark" that requires an interpolation explanation, especially if the hero of the story is caught between (supernatural) destiny and fate. Looking for a perfectly consistent Jesus within the gospels is one of the major flaws I have seen in modern scholarship that I have read. Humans aren't consistent in their emotions and neither are characters, even heroes of stories nor their authors.

          Anyway, it sounds like a faxcinating way to look at that gospel. Can't wait to read the findings.

          Dennis Dean Carpenter
          Dahlonega, Ga.

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        • E Bruce Brooks
          Tony, Thanks much; that does help. But let me see if I am reading you right. You have Supervisory responsibilities for all 10 churches in your circuit. You
          Message 4 of 15 , Jan 17, 2009
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            Tony,

            Thanks much; that does help. But let me see if I am reading you right. You
            have Supervisory responsibilities for all 10 churches in your circuit. You
            also have Pastoral responsibilities for 5 of the churches. So all the
            regular preaching in those 5 churches is done by you. Do I correctly infer
            that in the other 5 churches, there are "local ministers" who do some of the
            preaching, but that you occasionally preach there also? And do you exert any
            supervision over the preaching that the local ministers do?

            Sorry to be slow, but the information is appreciated.

            Bruce

            E Bruce Brooks
            Warring States Project
            University of Massachusetts at Amherst
          • Tony Buglass
            I don t have to preach in all 5 churches every week - that would get a bit silly! We have local preachers - lay preachers - who take services. They are very
            Message 5 of 15 , Jan 17, 2009
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              I don't have to preach in all 5 churches every week - that would get a bit silly! We have local preachers - lay preachers - who take services. They are very important members of the circuit team, we couldn't function without them. They are trained and accredited by the church, and answerable to the circuit through the Local Preachers' Meeting. As superintendent, I organise the preaching rota for all the churches on a quarterly plan - churches and preachers give me their requests and availability for the period in question, and I put them together. I don't tell the preachers what to preach, they are free to select their own subject, follow the lectionary or not.

              Hope that helps,
              Cheers,
              Rev Tony Buglass
              Superintendent Minister
              Upper Calder Methodist Circuit

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            • Dennis Dean Carpenter
              To say that Josephus was dependent on Mark would require some explanation. Josephus writes at length about the religious sects of Palestine. Unless one wants
              Message 6 of 15 , Jan 18, 2009
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                To say that Josephus was dependent on Mark would require some explanation. Josephus writes at length about the religious sects of Palestine. Unless one wants to speculate that the Essenes were the prototypical Christianity, we find nothing but a highly, if not completely, interpolated statement about a Jesus and a mention of the brother of Jesus. That's it.

                But, you are correct about another prototype for Josephus. Jesus son of Ananias probably had roots, according to Ted Weeden Sr, in Jeremiah, which was a huge influence on Josephus. (He considered himself a "modern day Jeremiah," it seems. The evidence is found in Wars of the Jews and in Life.) One also finds a deep connection between the gospeleers and Jeremiah. (Mark's inspiration for the narrative of the cleansing of the temple came from Jeremiah, for instance.)

                Dennis Dean Carpenter
                Dahlonega, Ga.

                ----- Original Message -----
                From: Tony Buglass
                To: Synoptic@yahoogroups.com
                Sent: Saturday, January 17, 2009 10:30 AM
                Subject: Re: [Synoptic-L] On The Earliest Markan Narrative


                Dennis: "This wouls suggest that portions of the Passion story were influenced by Josephus, placing a date of closer to 80 for this tale. "

                Alternatively, it might suggest that Josephus is dependent on Mark. Or that both are dependent upon another prototype. Surely any such hypothesis has to be finessed in the light of other evidence.

                Cheers,
                Rev Tony Buglass
                Superintendent Minister
                Upper Calder Methodist Circuit.

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