All posts by Chuck Fager

Knoxville & “Killing All Liberals”

A good friend of mine from college days is a member of the Tennessee Valley Unitarian church in Knoxville that was shot up on Sunday, July 27. She was there with her husband, but thankfully was not hit.

(Thankfully. I feel a twinge of survivor’s guilt writing that; but there it is.)

The reports Monday about the rantings of the shooter, wanting to kill all liberals and gays, and the targeting of this particular church, well-known for its welcoming stance and other progressive views, brings a lot of things home to me.

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Dave Zarembka: “Not To Engage FUM Is Cowardly”

The short essay below is by a Friend who has spent much time in Africa, working with the Africa Great Lakes Initiative (AGLI) project.

I believe Dave makes some cogent points. In particular, I agree that “engaging” Friends United Meeting (FUM) over the issues of homophobia, and the other matters listed in my post below, “Wrestling With a Roomful of Elephants,” is the best course.

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The Shame of Kenya: Epistles of Hate

Below is the complete text of two epistles issued by East Africa Yearly Meeting — North.

I note that the 2007 Epistle comments on the statements at the FUM General Board session in Kenya, as well as responding to some reaction to them from a Yearly Meeting in North America.

From this 2007 Epistle, it appears to me that it would be a mistake to consider this matter in any way “resolved.”

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Wrestling With A Roomful Of Elephants:

FUM After Kenya (First posted on June 1, 2007)

[See the response linked below from Patrick Nugent, former head of the Friends Bible College, Kenya.]

Current Quote: “While somewhat less colonial, the [Friends United Meeting] work in East Africa is still structured around economic disparities that promote patterns of dependency. FUM has made a lot of progress in this area, but old patterns die very hard. Impoverished Kenyans and Ugandans expect all help to come from outside, in the form of U.S. dollars.

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“Roomful of Elephants” – A Response by Patrick Nugent

A response by Patrick Nugent, who is soon to complete his work as Principal of Friends Theological College.


Introduction: I’ve long admired Patrick Nugent for the high quality of his theological scholarship and reflection (see this essay for a fine example: . I also bow to his commitment to putting that theology into practice, as in his service in Kenya.

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