If you wanted to learn how to play soccer, how would you go about it? If soccer became your passion, how would you go about engaging in it? How might that same question apply to any other activity, sport or discipline? There are, of course, many stories about self-taught persons (Abe Lincolns galore), but were not most of them drawn by their self-education into the company of other educated persons in order to hone their skills? When I was a young teenager my friend Jim and I tried to teach ourselves Judo and Karate out of a book as we practiced on each other in his yard. Only our gross incompetence and dumb luck prevented us from doing some serious harm to each other.. So how is it that we can feel so comfortable with the idea that living into a relationship with God requires only a willing mind, a heart that asserts its own brand of spirituality, an affirmation of belief in the higher power of one’s own choosing, and possibly the reading of a book or two? We Episcopalians tend to come down on the universalist side of the salvation argument, so can we say, with a straight face, that a faith built on that sort of foundation is enough? Enough for what? If it is enough, is there any value in looking into the two thousand year old argument over salvation and learning anything from those who have had their say? If ours is a faith built on Scripture, Tradition and Reason, should we in any way assert the need and value of disciplined formation in knowing what Scripture says, being guided but not governed by Tradition in our understanding of it, and developing our abilities to Reason it all out? Scripture seems to suggest that there is something important about coming together to discuss these things with one another, and, through prayer, with God. Scripture also suggests that there is something essential about developing our relationships with God and one another through some rather mysterious gifts given to us in the sacraments. Is that still true? Now here is a really tough question? Does God care, and if God does care, is there any evidence that the touted power and presence of the Holy Spirit to do great things beyond our understanding has been doing anything but resting these one hundred years or so?