Frendz cafe, West Lindfield

Lavazza coffee. Adjacent to a garden shop, pricey (we’re far enough north to expect that) but healthy and less healty menu options in a good ratio.

Coffee was as expected; not great. The fact that they’d never heard of a ristretto before should have been the warning sign, but my 1pm caffeine headache was getting the better of me. Coffee: 4/10.

ministry formations

In the first hour of the ministry formations class, we watched a DVD related to the Presbyterian church’s breaking the silence program. When something bad happens in the church, as far as inappropriate conduct goes, then the ways of dealing with it are covered by these guidelines.

It’s confronting stuff: the moral failure of people is easy enough to deal with when it’s no-one that you know, and you’re just relating to it from a TV-headlines perspective, but the DVD (we were watching a nearly-finished version) presented it as something of a TV drama, but one where he viewer can empathise with the characters. Something must be done, but exactly what needs to be done? And who should know about it? I’m looking forward to reading up on this further.

In the second hour, we heard some more about real-life situations where these rules had to be brought in, and then I had to give a talk / presentation on Ezekiel 1-3. I thought it would be a good time to bring in a brief pulp fiction reference; Samuel L Jackson quotes Ezekiel 25:17 (more accurately, some imagined verse with elements of 25:17 thrown in) so memorably, but it was a tough crowd: only one person had even seen the movie.

Ah well. I guess you can’t expect too many people at bible college to be Tarantino fans (and in fact, I’m planning on giving his next film – Grindhouse – a miss)

The third hour was spent on a personality test: we were separated into groups based on the results of the test, and had to work out the strengths and weaknesses of our particular leanings. Unsurprisingly, I ended up being more a traditionalist, with a tendency towards thinking things through, rather than jumping straight into action.

Refreshingly, none of the personality types were made to feel like there was something wrong with them: I can remember other similar exercises where I walked away unhappy.

And from there, I went back home to pack boxes: this probably explains why my recall on the personality test leaves something to be desired.

greek test (and moods)

It’s a very strange sensation to go from working, to sitting an exam, to normal classes, to packing up house and moving.

Last week’s Greek class: the first hour was an exam – the first assessment task for the semester, and worth 40% of the marks for the first half of the year. It wasn’t as difficult as I was fearing – by the end of it I felt that I’d passed the test – but the format, too, was different to what I was expecting.

As part of learning how to make the correct form of a Greek word, there’s a lot of memorising of whole tables of information. In this test, we were given a few tables that we had to complete from memory, in addition to the work of translating. This meant that it wasn’t just the translation skill that was being tested, but something of the breadth of vocabulary and rules, too.

The rest of the lesson was spent covering another aspect of Greek – Moods. All the words we’ve looked at so far are in the indicative mood – they describe something that is really happening. In Greek, there are other moods too: the imperative (commands), the infinitive (eg "to see"). Next time, we’re looking at the participle, and much later, the subjunctive.

By the end of it all, I’ll at least have a much stronger grasp of english grammar.