Rama Ramanathan

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During WWII the bell in Tom Tower, Christchurch College, Oxford, chimed 101 times at 9:05 pm

Joy in reading and 101 chimes at 9:05 pm

An account of the intersection of my life with books. Reading some odd things about Oxford, UK – in a biography of Dorothy L Sayers by Colin Duriez – made me recall odd things in books I’ve read. And made me think about how I started reading, what I read over the years, what endures, and my habit of acquiring books as travel momentos.

Black Liberation Theology

Public Theology: Black Liberation Theology vs Political Theology

Rothney Tshaka made me think hard about black liberation theology. Tshaka’s the Director of the School of Humanities in the University of South Africa (Unisa). In his 19-minute contribution to the Lutheran World Federation (LWF) series on Public Theology, he introduces himself as an ordained minister, a student of black liberation theology, and author of …

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Among famous slaves Harriet Tubman’s my #1

Harriet Tubman was a 5-foot short, black, poor, illiterate, epileptic, divorced, remarried, and widowed, non-pacifist Christian who, in the 91 years of her life, was born into slavery, traded as a slave, hunted as a runaway, and called Conductor, Black Moses, Spy, General, Nurse, and Mother Tubman.
She conducted hundred of people out of slavery into freedom on the underground railway. She recruited and inspired hundreds of black men to fight in the American civil war (1861-1865) over slavery.

A story of German migrants

In this article I speak about German-speaking people who migrated from Europe three centuries ago. I discuss why they left, how they chose where to go, how the British government and public responded to them, and a survival strategy they adopted. I end by pointing out some key themes which can help us think about our responses to refugees. I provide three links to related resources and a link to a song recorded by Bangsar Lutheran Church.

Ezra 1:1-11 The God who counts pots and pans

In this short post, I address the issue of biblical counts of pots and pans, Jeremiah’s ‘inaccurate’ prophecy of 70 years of exile, and the tension between human agency and God’s sovereignty. I consider what the Jewish historian Herodotus said about why Cyrus invited the Jerusalemites to “go home” and pose a question about appealing to Bible texts in matters of public policy.