Weekly Newsletter - August 19, 2015
From Christian Vegetarian Association (CVA)

  1. Activist Feedback
  2. Thoughts on Free Will, part 6
  3. This Week’s Sermon from Rev. Frank and Mary Hoffman

1. Activist Feedback

Dara, who leafleted with Carla and Jason at the Chris Tomlin: Worship Night in America event in New York City on August 8, writes:

The leafleting went great Saturday night! It was a delight to meet Carla and Jason, and it was a great opportunity to capture a perfect target audience. There was a quick rush of people going into the concert between 6-7 PM, and they seemed really excited for the concert; for the most part, I think their good moods increased their receptivity to us. Some kind attendees even offered their extra tickets, so I was able to enjoy the concert, too.What a blessing to participate in the worship & glorious music. . . It felt like a gift from God and confirmation of the importance of the work we are doing. :)

Again, the t-shirts are great!One man even asked about buying one, and he's not even a vegetarian (yet).

Many thanks again.

Upcoming Outreach Opportunities

If you can help, please contact Lorena at lorenavalenziveg@gmail.com. The CVA will donate up to $18/hr. for the veg. or animal advocacy group of your choice.

Upcoming Activist Opportunities:

9/25/2015 FL, Sunrise Xtreme Christian Music Conference
8/28/2015 CA, Anaheim Third Day
9/11-12/15 CA, Anaheim Women of Faith 2015
9/17-19/15 MO, St. Louis Love Life Women’s Conference
9/18-19/15 FL, Orlando Women of Faith 2015
9/25-26/15 IL, Hoffman Estates Women of Faith 2015
9/25/2015 VA, Richmond for King & Country
10/01/2015 IL, Champaign Tenth Avenue North, All the Earth is Holy Ground Tour
10/2/2015 VA, Roanoke EWomen Conference
10/2-3/15 TX, Dallas Women of Faith 2015
10/2/2015 TX, Houston Tobymac
10/9/2015 AR, Jonesboro Chris Tomlin
10/10/2015 IL, Quad Cities Chris Tomlin
10/15/2015 NC, Raleigh Chris Tomlin
10/16-17/15 MN, St. Paul Women of Faith 2015
10/16/2015 MS, Southhaven EWomen Conference
10/17/2015 MO, St. Charles Tobymac
10/22-24/15 New Jersey Hillsong Conference
10/22/1015 VA, Norfolk Mercy Me
10/23/2015 TX, Corpus Christi Chris Tomlin
10/23/2015 MD, Baltimore Mercy Me
10/23/2015 IL, Hoffman Estates Tobymac
10/24/2015 IN, Indianapolis Tobymac
10/24/2015 NJ, Trenton Mercy Me
10/25/2015 OK, Tulsa Chris Tomlin
10/25/2015 OH, Columbus Tobymac
11/1-14/15 CT, Hartford Women of Faith 2015
11/06-07/15 WA, SeaTac Promise Keepers
11/07/2015 MI, Grand Rapids Chris Tomlin
11/08/2015 SC, Greenville Mercy Me
11/12/2015 PA, Philadelphia Tobymac
11/13/2015 NY, NYC Tobymac
11/14/2015 VA, Fairfax Tobymac
11/20-21/15 CA, Sacramento Women of Faith 2015
11/22/2015 FL, Jacksonville Tobymac
12/4-5/15 OR, Portland Women of Faith 2015
12/04/2015 AR, N. Little Rock Tobymac
12/05/2015 TX, Grand Prairie Tobymac
12/06/2015 OK, Tulsa Tobymac
12/10/2015 NC, Greensboro Tobymac


09/13/2015 MI, Grand Rapids Vegfest 2015
10/03/2015 DC, Washington DC VegFest 2015
10/10/2015 IL, Chicago Vegan Mania 2015
10/17/2015 TX, Dallas Texas Veggie Fair
10/24-25/15 MA, Boston Boston Vegetarian Food Festival
10/24/2015 FL, Orlando Central Florida VegFest 2015
10/24-25/15 MA, Boston Boston Veg Fest 2015
11/1/2015 MN, Minneapolis Twin Cities Veg Fest 2015
11/7/2015 FL, Tampa Bay Tampa Bay Veg Fest
11/14-15/15 OR, Portland Portland Veg Fest
11/7/2015 GA, Atlanta Atlanta Veg Fest 2015

2. Thoughts on Free Will, part 6

Prior essays have raised doubts about whether we humans have free will, i.e., that we could really choose differently from the ways we actually do choose. I have noted that there does not appear to be a mechanism by which we can genuinely choose between options, even though we often feel free to choose as we want.

Perhaps the language with which I have been describing the problem is faulty. I’ve been using physical, mechanistic language, and things described with such language tend to be deterministic and therefore unable to accommodate the notion of free will. Such mechanistic language works very well in describing falling rocks, interacting billiard balls, and orbiting planets, but it fails miserably to account for consciousness.

All properties of matter, such as color, mass, and hardness, can be as explained properties of atoms and their interactions with other atoms. However, we find nothing in the properties of atoms and compounds that would lead to an accumulation of atoms that would be conscious entity. How do we get living beings with subjective feelings from matter that (as best we can tell) does not have subjective feelings?

Perhaps the same mysterious component of our existence that gives us consciousness also gives us free will. Indeed, why should we be conscious beings at all, if we were actually unable to make choices? If our actions simply obeyed the laws of physics, it would seem that we should be like intelligent mechanical objects that can “learn” and make better “decisions” over time without actually being aware of its own existence.

I don’t claim to have resolved the question of whether we have free will. But the ambiguity, I think, has moral and practical implications, to which I will turn next.

Stephen R. Kaufman, M.D.

See more Reflections on the Lectionary (Series)

3. This Week’s Sermon from Rev. Frank and Mary Hoffman

Understanding Bible Passages After the Fall

Archived 2015 Newsletters
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