The Bible gets four shots to tell Jesus’ birth — well, four gospel writers plus Paul and the other epistle writers, so at least four.
But the manger only appears in Luke. For many current-day Christians,
the Christmas story would be incomplete without the manger scene:
little baby Jesus wrapped in bands of cloth and lying in a manger.
Our local ministerial association met recently to flesh out
the details of the annual community Thanksgiving service. The meeting is always
a riot, but it deals with some tense theological questions too.
Does my pastoral role call upon me to edit the Bible?
On most Sundays, the call to worship printed in our bulletin
is taken directly from liturgical resources from the denomination. Usually it
adapts a psalm so that the leader (a liturgist, not me) and the rest of the
congregation alternate speaking the verses.
"Should I call you 'Reverend'?" someone asked me recently. I
paused for a moment, thinking a million thoughts at once. I'm not much of a fan
of the "reverend" title, in part because of its problematic grammar but mostly
because I don't want to be revered.
My local Starbucks—and
probably yours too—has a large sign on each door that proclaims, "Take comfort
in rituals." When I'm being cynical, I read it as a multinational company
preying on our cultural longing for meaning by suggesting we can buy happiness
with a $4 cup of coffee.
learned a new word recently and then encountered it three times that day.
"Retrosexism" hasn't made it into the Oxford English Dictionary yet, but a
Google search turns up several thousand hits, and Newsweeknoted last month that "the term 'retrosexual' has all but
replaced 'metrosexual' in
Rarely do I see a film when
it first comes out, but I'm very glad I chose to see The Social Network on its box-office-dominating opening weekend. It was
brilliant-a fantastic script by Aaron Sorkin, skillfully directed by David
Fincher. It tells the story of Mark Zuckerberg (Jesse Eisenberg) and his
friends and Facebook cofounders, but the film isn't just about Facebook.
As yet another megachurch pastor grabs national headlines for alleged sexual indiscretions, I’m tempted to skip the story entirely. I’d rather pretend that the civil lawsuits accusing Bishop Eddie Long of sexual misconduct don’t concern me.
Last week, the Catholic
Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis endorsed the Republican candidate for
governor of Minnesota—well, not really, but it only takes a little reading
between the lines to draw that conclusion.
"Please stand and take off your hats for the singing of 'God
Bless America.'" That's how the announcer introduced the seventh inning stretch
at a recent Minnesota Twins game I attended. Minnesotans are nothing if not
rule followers, so we stood, many took off their hats, and some even joined in