epsilon!church

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I drew my versions of the reds and blues as sort of a ref for myself

if you can’t tell, from left to right it is: 

Reds: Sarge, Simmons, Grif, and Donut

Blues: Tex, Church, Caboose, Tucker, Sister, Flowers, and Wash

The Independent: Ivor Novello Awards 2015: Hozier wins with anti-Catholic song ‘Take Me To Church’

21st May, 2015

An attack on homophobia within the Catholic Church, which became a global hit for the Irish singer Hozier, was named the best song of the year at the 60th Ivor Novello Awards.

Take Me To Church, written and performed by Andrew Hozier-Byrne, took the award for Best Song Musically And Lyrically at the Grosvenor House event, which also recognised Clean Bandit and Ed Sheeran.

Take Me To Church has topped the charts in 12 countries and was the most streamed song of 2014. Accompanied by a video depicting a brutal homophobic beating, the song became a viral YouTube hit. It was given a further boost when Taylor Swift urged her fans to buy it and has sold 3m downloads in the US alone.

With its chorus -“Take me to church, I’ll worship like a dog at the shrine of your lies, I’ll tell you my sins and you can sharpen your knife…”, the song has been accused of blasphemy by Christian groups.

Hozier explained: “Take Me to Church’ is essentially about sex, but it’s a tongue-in-cheek attack at organisations that would… undermine humanity by successfully teaching shame about sexual orientation — that it is sinful, or that it offends God.”

Accepting the award, Hozier said: “This is a huge deal to me. This time last year I was a complete unknown with a set of songs I’d written and recorded in my attic.” He dedicated the award to his mother, who is in hospital.

The singer said he was flying back to Ireland so he could vote Yes in the referendum on same sex marriages. He said it was important that others followed his lead.

rosemarychungphotography asked:

Is it possible to be a worst person after attending church for so long? I feel like I was more disciplined and had better character and integrity when I wasn't a Christian.

Hey dear friend, thank you so much for your honesty and for bringing up something that we all feel, but don’t dare to express.

I think the answer, as unhelpful as it might be, is yes and no. I notice a similar pattern among Christians – most of us experience huge growth spurts in the beginning because it’s all so exciting and new, but then it turns into begrudging obligation and critical self-punishment. It seems to happen in about 99% of the Christians that I know. 

The irony perhaps is that the stronger you grow in faith, the more you become aware of your own faults and flaws. Christians are sensitive to their own shortcomings because we actually care, and when we grow in maturity, we stop making excuses and we quit the rationalizations. A sure sign of an immature person is one who cannot take responsibility for their own actions and won’t own up to their part; it was always someone else’s fault or an environmental factor. It could be true, but it doesn’t make us less sinful.

So you’re becoming self-aware, and seeing how bad our sin really is. When we get a glimpse of God’s holiness, we can’t help but feel wretched and naked and low. Even in the presence of better musicians or writers or scholars, we tend to feel like our progress was “dirty rags” (Isaiah 64:6).  Because of Scripture, we suddenly have a very clear view of our issues – we regard them as sin instead of mistakes, and so we get very hard on ourselves.

At this point, most Christians stay in morbid introspection and forget to look up to the cross and to the resurrection. This is the only place where true character, integrity, and discipline could come from. When our motivation is no longer to “be good” but instead to look to the only one who is good, then our motives change from self-punishment to love-driven effort.

The essential Bible truth is that our works cannot save us, and only Christ can – so every Christian is the most critical of their own sin but the most victorious in a savior.

You’ll often feel like you’re getting worse before you get better. The funny thing is that Apostle Paul would bash himself all the time; in 1 Timothy 1:15 he tells Timothy, “Here is a trustworthy saying that deserves full acceptance: Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners–of whom I am the worst.” That’s crazy to consider, that Paul called himself “the worst of sinners.” But the first half of the verse rides the tension between his own sin and the reality of Christ. It really is a tough balance.

If in the end you feel that you really have gotten “worse,” I hope you still won’t be too hard on yourself and that tomorrow is another day, a different day, to be who you’re called to be.

Of course, you’ll want to strive to have integrity and all those other things: but not to punish yourself, and instead embody the one who has already saved you. You don’t have to shackle yourself to your own record. Each day, I hope you’ll begin again. God wants that for you. He’s okay about yesterday and all that came before. I would know, because I really am the worst of sinners, to be the most pitied: yet I remember, I’m deeply loved. You’re loved, my friend. We are profoundly fractured, yet radically treasured in Him.

– J.S.

“[To have Faith in Christ] means, of course, trying to do all that He says.  There would be no sense in saying you trusted a person if you would not take his advice. Thus if you have really handed yourself over to Him, it must follow that you are trying to obey Him. But trying in a new way, a less worried way. Not doing these things in order to be saved, but because He has begun to save you already. Not hoping to get to Heaven as a reward for your actions, but inevitably wanting to act in a certain way because a first faint gleam of Heaven is already inside you.”    

– C.S. Lewis

GIGWISE: HOZIER DISCUSSES HIS NEXT ALBUM AND COLLABORATIONS

Hozier has revealed that he hopes to start working on his next album in March 2016, and also opened up about the one superstar he’d love to write a song for.

The chart-topping Irish singer-songwriter was speaking to Gigwise at the 2015 Ivor Novello Awards, where he’s nominated for Best Song Musically And Lyrically for the globe-conquering ‘Take Me To Church’.

We asked him who else he most dreams of writing a song for.

“I was talking about Mavis Staples at one stage, and I’d love to look into that, but I’ll be on tour until March of next year with no time at all,” Hozier told Gigwise.

When asked about progress on his second album, Hozier said: “I’m trying to keep writing, and I might have a couple of hours a day, if that. I am very, very eager to have time in March to sit down and work on what I’ve been doing.”

Responding to the current situation of fellow nominee Sam Smith who is currently recovering after vocal surgery, Hozier said: “My heart goes out to him, he’s been working incredibly hard over the last few years, he hasn’t had a break. I hope he has a speedy recovery.”

While Hozier may well be honoured today, he did admit to being more than a little envious of some of today’s other nominees: “I have to say that when I listened to Bear’s Den album, a lot of tears came to the eye on a lot of those tracks. I admire the songwriting so much. A real song is something that can really touch somebody.”

tavanilla asked:

Do the "Holy Spirit" chills really come from the Holy Spirit? I feel like Christianity nowadays is based purely on feelings. I myself am a victim of this; chasing after that "feeling". I know a relationship with God is more than just that feeling, but I want to ask you, what is "that thing" the surpasses those chills the come out of nowhere?

Hey dear friend, I’ve also heard of the “Holy Spirit chills,” also known as “the Spirit is really moving” or “I got the Ghost” or “I got totally wrecked.” I honestly thought it was a fun, goofy way of saying that we’ve connected with God on an undistracted level, but some of us are also very serious about the Spirit changing our body temperature, instead of changing our hearts. (#JesusJuke)

The thing is, I have nothing at all against the emotional element of Christianity. It can certainly be over-emphasized to a fault, but we’re all emotional beings. We’re meant to feel. Denying emotions can kill us. Some of us are never bothered by injustice or sin or never taken up by beauty and glory. We need to be spoken to in this emotional place if we’re to be well-rounded individuals who can have joyous community. Feelings are not the point, but without feelings, it’s all pretty pointless.

When a Christian tells me, “I’m looking for more than emotional religion!” – I understand what they mean, but I also hesitate, because it tends to sound like spiritualized snobbery. I think Reformed Calvinists tend to be down on Charismatics and vice versa, because no one is trying to understand that we need all of emotions and intellect to make us whole.

Instead of being too hard on our feelings, it’s better to give a balanced picture of our human needs in relation to God. In addition to emotions –

Intellect: We need a coherent theology that can explain our purpose, our suffering, the point of life and fellowship and a profound knowledge of our overarching story, so we know where we’re going.

Psychology: We need to know how our mind and motives work. What drives our will-power? How do we break bad habits and start good ones? How do other people work so we have a common foundation of contact?

Spirit: We need a conscious awareness of the supernatural, of a spiritual realm and power and reality beyond this one, where there’s a Kingdom and our citizenship in another world. Our flesh can only do so much; there’s an untapped wellspring of divinity residing within us and uniting us by a thread with others. There is a creative spark that brings us to create, heal, restore, and bring heaven to earth.

Each of us are going to have a tendency to one or two of those elements. I tend to be more intellectual/psychological, and it took me a while to realize the value of emotions and the spiritual. It also explains why some Christians love certain styles of preaching while some totally don’t. We can’t turn our nose up on any of these. God wired us all to uniquely receive and perceive in our specific ways, and we need each other to fill the areas we lack.

None of these elements are necessarily goals we chase: but if we’re chasing after Christ, we get a better handle on ourselves and how each part can break down, and also be built up. It’s only in Christ, the maker of our humanity, that we find the wholeness we’re looking for.

– J.S.

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Kylemore Abbey (Irish: Mainistir na Coille Móire) is a Benedictine monastery founded in 1920 on the grounds of Kylemore Castle, in Connemara, County Galway, Ireland. The abbey was founded for Benedictine Nuns who fled Belgium in World War I. The current Mother Abbess of the Benedictine Community is Mary Margaret Funk. source | edit

History Kylemore Castle was built as a private home for the family of Mitchell Henry, a wealthy doctor from London whose family was involved in textile manufacturing in Manchester, England. He moved to Ireland when he and his wife Margaret purchased the land around the Abbey. He became a politician, becoming an MP for County Galway from 1871 to 1885. The castle was designed by James Franklin Fuller, aided by Ussher Roberts. Construction first began in 1867, and took one hundred men four years to complete. The castle covered approximately 40,000 square feet (3,700 m2) and had over seventy rooms with a principal wall that was two to three feet thick. The facade measures 142 feet (43 m) in width and is made of granite brought from Dalkey by sea to Letterfrack and from limestone brought from Ballinasloe. There were 33 bedrooms, 4 bathrooms, 4 sitting rooms, a ballroom, billiard room, library, study, school room, smoking room, gun room and various offices and domestic staff residences for the butler, cook, housekeeper and other servants. Other buildings include a Gothic cathedral and family mausoleum containing the bodies of Margaret Henry, Mitchell Henry and a great grand-nephew. The Abbey remained in Henry’s estate after he returned to England. The castle was sold to the Duke and Duchess of Manchester in 1909, who resided there for several years before being forced to sell the house and grounds because of gambling debts. In 1920 the Irish Benedictine Nuns purchased the Abbey castle and lands after they were forced to flee Ypres, Belgium during World War I. The nuns, who had been based in Ypres for several hundred years, had been bombed out of their Abbey during World War I. The nuns continued to offer education to Catholic girls, opening an international boarding school and establishing a day school for local girls. They were forced to close the school in June 2010. The Estate includes large walled Victorian Gardens. Since the 1970s these have been open for public tours and ‘nature’ walks. The Benedictine community has restored the Abbey’s gardens and Cathedral with donations and local artisans in order to be a self-sustaining estate.

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Hozier talks about the Catholic Church & its influence on ‘Take Me to Church’

21st May, 2015

This afternoon Hozier won the Ivor Novello Award for best song musically and lyrically for Take Me Church.