After a honeymoon in New Zealand (starting in Christ Church because Nella liked the name) we returned home to Nella's house in Werribee (where she has a mortgage, and I guess by proxy, I now do too.. I can't claim to be homeless anymore!).
On the plane flight back I sat between Nella and an elderly lady who was reading a christian book of some sort. Leaning towards Nella I whispered 'I'll make contact..' and pulled out my Bible and started to read it. Reading your Bible next to a stranger Christian is usually guaranteed to draw a comment from them (something about safe zones) but in this case the lady lent back and fell asleep. I noticed on the page she had open the heading 'Rest in the Lord'. So when she awoke a bit latter I commented to her that she was taking the 'Rest in the Lord' section literally.. We chatted a bit and I asked er what church she went to and she said she didn't attend any church; she was a 'Christadelphian'.
I had heard the name but knew nothing about them. She explained a few things and I realized they were very similar to Jehovah's Witnesses [in fact I looked them up later and it seems the Jehovah's Witnesses founders drew many of their secting doctrines from the Christadelphians..] Well I had recently boned up on that area of theology and so we discussed the nature of Jesus and what the 'Word become flesh' was all about. While the conversation was civil, I didn't feel she was discussing as much as she was teaching; or at least stating a definitive position.
I have noticed over time some Pharisaical trends with believers from more radical sectarian belief systems. When I set out to discuss theological topics with them, I find they do not discuss them back, rather they tend to centre themselves from a teaching position, addressing your questions and probes intelligently, but never questioning or probing my positions back. In short they are happy to be questioned, as an opening to give their information and ideas, but they are not interested in receiving any back, a fore mark to fundamentalism.
As the aeroplane landed in Melbourne she handed me a piece of paper with her phone number and said I was welcome to contact her further. When we got back to our place in Werribee I switched on the Christian Channel and playing was a program explaining, verse by verse, the basis for the theology of the Trinity. It was God was confirming in more detail, the ideas I had just been trying to express.. later I looked at her phone number again, and wondered what I would say if I ever called.. "Hello, I just called to let you know God has confirmed to me that you are wrong. I'd like to tell you.... " I'm not sure that's the best thing to do. I put the number away for the time being.