Internet

News to me

This weekend saw my friend Anne-Marie's Christmas play 'While You Were Sleeping' performed at her home church in Bexleyheath.  This has been a regular gig for several years, and I've helped out the past few years with graphics and posters and suchlike.  This year I was asked to design posters, put the programmes together, and design some newspapers.  Yes, that's right, newspapers.The play's theme revolved around a late night news team in Bethlehem, looking in vain for some hot story to cover, and in their efforts completely missed the birth of Christ because it was too 'ordinary' and 'unspectacular'.  The title 'While You Were Sleeping' is actually taken from a song by Casting Crowns by the same name, which is a very poignant song about missing the truth of Christmas in all the hype and busyness of the season.  It was a fantastic play, with some hilarious scenes and in-jokes that only a few of us really got.(more…)

By Matthew, ago
Christianity

To Purgatory, or not to Purgatory?

This week saw Pope Benedict announce that to celebrate 150 years since the Virgin Mary appeared to a peasant girl in Lourdes pilgrims traveling to the town could claim time off from Purgatory.  This has caused widespread confusion and opposition amongst Protestants, who both denounce the authority of the Pope and don’t generally believe in Purgatory either.  This is a can of worms unlike any that’s been seen in recent years, and may take a while to settle.Now, I’m no Biblical scholar, but I do have some thoughts I would like to share on this topic, exploring the nature of forgiveness, sin, Purgatory, judgement, hell and heaven.  Not necessarily in that order.(more…)

By Matthew, ago
Life

Dealing with the famous

I recently had the pleasure of watching The Queen, the 2006 film starring Helen Mirren, which had been very kindly sent to us by Amazon as part of their film rental service (which is hideously unpredictable, but that's another story).  In concept it is dangerously true to life, showing those awesome and awful events surrounding the death of Princess Diana.  The danger is that not only were those events so dear to the public's heart and such a tragedy for so many people who had never met her, but that the film revolved around real people, most of whom are still alive today.  To represent these real people in a way that is revealing, convincing, yet not overly comical, is a challenge few would take on.  Needless to say, I thoroughly approved of the film, its concept, and its delivery, and if we hadn't had to post the DVD back to Amazon I would have enjoyed watching it again.(more…)

By Matthew, ago
Life

The mystery of the exploding telephone

While having breakfast this morning I happened to glance across the room at our new telephone.  We recently bought a set of cordless phones with some wedding money, and have set one up downstairs in the lounge and the other in the office upstairs.  They look pretty neat.  Except that the one downstairs appeared to be switched off.  Odd, I thought, I don't remember switching it off.  Upon closer inspection I discovered that not only was it very definitely off but it wouldn't switch on again either.  A distinctly iffy smell was detectable too, and when I took the cover off the back to get to the batteries I discovered that one of the rechargeable AAA batteries had exploded.  Not good. (more…)

By Matthew, ago
Christianity

The humanity of Christ

In my Bible study this morning my commentary was expounding on part of Hebrews that talks about Jesus as our High Priest, and how Christ suffered to be able to perfectly sympathise with our suffering, and in so doing more completely comfort us.  He was completely human, experienced the same challenges, the same temptations, the same sort of sufferings, and because of that we can draw nearer to God.I'm not so sure I agree.  At least, not in full.(more…)

By Matthew, ago
Internet

Mapping my contacts

This, rather than me sharing something amazing with the world, is actually more of a rant / feature request.  I have just spent some time searching the interweb for a contacts address book application that displays all my contacts on a map, allowing you to see graphically where everyone is.  Read more…

By Matthew, ago
Rants

Science is wrong

Most of the science I learned at school was reasonably straightforward - I understood it and accepted it, and most of the time remembered it too. Except for potential energy, which never made any sense whatsoever. In fact, I recently told a teacher friend of mine why potential energy doesn't work, and he couldn't counter my argument. The following is therefore my thought process in trying to understand and/or disprove potential energy, and may or may not actually include anything scientific.(more…)

By Matthew, ago