I have to say at the outset I’m not particularly particular about which Bible translation anyone uses. Long ago I came to the conclusion that if indeed I do believe that God is capable of creating the entire universe, then it’s just possible that S/He might not necessarily confine Herself to the pages of any one particular translation of a fifth generation copy of the transcription of the oral traditions of generations of stories written down in the non-native tongue. That God might just be capable of revealing Himself through more than one translation; indeed, She might use other books too. So I follow the suggestion of Thomas aKempis: â€œIn things essential, unity; in doubtful, liberty; in all things, charity.â€
I do, however, have a strong suggestion to make to the folks who are participating in the conversation known as the Emerging Church. Please, o please, extend your horizons past Guiness! Guiness is the Budwieser of stouts. It is a crass commercially over-produced beer that out-grew itself in the late ’80s. There are so very many good, fine stouts out there and ales too. If it takes a chick to raise this issue, then raise it I will.
I think my favorite stout is Samuel Smith’s Oatmeal Stout, although Young’s Double Chocolate is too close a second to call. I have used Young’s in my venison chili with fine results. They are both deep, rich and absorb light when you slowly pour them into a glass. They are best served luke warm (of course).
I have to say that my favorite beer category is India Pale Ales. I love them … all of them. If you ever get to Vermont, or a gourmet beer establishment be sure to try Magic Hat’s #9. It not only has that great citrus tang, but also has the zing of apricot for a fun surprise. Also from Vermont, Long Trail Brewery’s unfiltered India Pale Ale is fabulous. It fills your mouth and sticks to your ribs. Dominion Brewery here in Virginia has a Pale Ale with a fine grapefruit bite.
Here’s an ale that’s almost a stout and has been a favorite of mine for more than 20 years — Old Peculier. It’s a British beer and wonderful to behold. It’s rich and full and has a lot of texture. I discovered this ale during my misspent youth. A favorite haunt of LightHusband’s and mine was The BrickSkeller off of Dupont Circle in DC. They serve several hundred different kinds of beers. On our first date, LightHusband (in a vain effort to impress me) ordered a bottle of beer from Scotland which had been numbered by hand with a ballpoint pen!
The larger point I’d like to make here is this. From my vantage point, it seems that a strong value being expressed by the emerging conversation goes something along the lines of “think globally, act locally.” That is that while we see the larger issues and problems in the world, we see the solutions beginning with us and with our immediate communities. That we are able to influence and establish change there within our local circles. So, why, I have to wonder, are we not extending this argument to beer? Those engaging in the emerging conversation need to find their local microbrewery or pub and imbibe! Stop feeding the corporate, commercial machine. Raise a glass to your brother, the brewer and support him (or her)! For those of you across “the pond,” find the CAMRA pubs and support them. And, for heaven’s sake, expand your hoppy horizons. There’s a great big beery world out there … explore it!
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