I saw the stranger across the crowded room. My eyes were drawn to him like a dog to a raw steak. He looked lonely. I could tell that he needed a friend. I smiled broadly at him. He smiled back, and that was my cue.
Most spiritual leaders have wrestled with faith. Most of your pastors and most of the people that you look up to have questioned their faith and doubted God. It’s just that when we do it, we call it fancy, poetic things, like, “The dark night of the soul.”
Thistle Farms is a social enterprise to create handmade products as good for the earth as for the body. They work with the community and graduates of Magdalene, a residential program of women who have survived sex work, trafficking and addiction.
Closing a church is like eating the last slice of bread—somehow if you eat the last slice, you’re responsible for consuming it all (never mind that someone else ate the last 27 slices). A church can be declining for 40 years, but if a pastor comes in and starts to talk about closing a congregation, then she closed the church. Many people don’t want to be that pastor.
I turned the knob of the radio until I could hear the public station. It was a local program, a prolonged piece on a mother talking about the fear and anticipation of the "shavee." I admit. I rolled my eyes.
This podcast is an excellent resource as you think about worship this Memorial Day weekend. I learned so much as Derrick Weston talked with Amy Blumenshine. She has incredible wisdom as she navigates a pastoral response to service and honoring soldiers when we have ethical problems with war.
This will be the fourth year of UNCO. We’ve gone from a small handful of people who really wanted to meet one another after interacting on Twitter to meeting on two coasts, conconting dreams and implementing creative projects. If you are interested in working toward the future of the church with action that moves beyond hand-wringing and an institutional nostalgia, then by all means, go to UNCO. You’ll find kindred souls there.
We had a week of frightening headlines as each day greeted us with a new horror. Yet, the chorus soothes my troubled soul as I inhale and imagine God filling me with peace in the midst of all those dreadful dispatches.
When a friend got a major scar, the doctors asked her what kind of plastic surgery she wanted. She laughed at the question, responding, “Are you serious? Do you really think I’m going to give up these bragging rights? I earned this scar!”
Since Sheryl Sandberg, Facebook COO, has been urging us to lean in, conversations have been buzzing about what it means to be a feminist. I’m always thankful for the opportunity to revisit the question.
Technology is changing the nature of our selves. Yet, when I travel among different religious communities, many leaders focus on whether they ought to be on Facebook or not. I'm worried that our theological imaginations have not kept pace with our technological developments and I hope that in the decades to come, we can begin reflecting theologically on how our identities evolve.
We can't predict the future, but we can look at the interesting things that are happening now, and we can dream about where God might be calling us. When imagining what might be coming, there are a few approaches or attitudes that can orient us.
I thumbed through a stack of Xeroxed images, looking at the multiple faces of Jesus that a friend compiled for her theology paper. She had gone to the library and photocopied profiles from around the globe.