The American Church and Our Ties to White Nationalism

To Separate the Institutionalized American Church From White Nationalism is… …like removing the beating heart of raging bigot. …like removing the bride from her groom. …like taking Batman out of the Jokers equation. …like having a Michael Jordan without his drive.“White Nationalism is a type of nationalism or pan-nationalism which holds the belief that white people are a race[1] and seeks to develop and maintain a white national identity.”What reason does the American Church have to … [Read more...]

Reform it’s Here: What this Means Exactly

It's weird, but, as much resentment towards the Church as I've held onto I still listen to worship music. Like, a lot. I will admit that there's not too much like corporate worship; I can't tell you how much I miss singing in unison, the rush of raising one's hands in worship and praise, knowing that everyone in that building is striving and struggling along the same mission (even though, sometimes they're not, lol - but that's another post for another time).A few months ago, I was playing … [Read more...]

From Cathedrals to Movie Theaters: Past and Present Trends Impact on the Future of the Western Church

A little over 500 years ago we had Martin Luther, John Calvin, and Philip Melanchthon leading the reformation; fast forward, a bit, we see Billy Graham evangelizing to the masses in tent revivals; and soon thereafter there was, and still is, the progressive movement composed of evangelical leaders such as Tony Campolo, Brian McLaren, Jim Wallis, et al.; last but not least, we’ve seen our evangelical-esque, semi-bi-partisan, seeker sensitive model of church lead by guys such as Rick Warren, Andy S … [Read more...]

A Lack of “Minority” Church Leaders is Killing the Church

A Lack of "minority [1]" church leaders is killing our economy which includes the health and future existence of our Church.Zoe Henry for Inc.com recently cited research from the center for Gloal Policy Solutions stating that "Discrimination--whether open or covert--could be leaving as many as 9 million jobs and $300 billion worth of income on the table."As a “minority” living in the US I was very intrigued by this statement. As a former pastor, I naturally, and almost immediately began t … [Read more...]

Progressive Christianity: Progressive, but still super racist

[This is of course not about all progressives. There are many amazing progressives not-so-well-known and very well-known, I'm friends with both and. Having said that...] I'm not a "progressive Christian." I think that I was drawn to progressivism because it was evangelicalism, just repackaged. It was the same people, same faces, doing the same things, with the same style, using the same exact culture.They have conferences, they meet in churches, have their own celebrities... But they're a … [Read more...]

Doubting God #StoriesFromTheDechurched

#StoriesFromTheDechurched is a series with no end date in mind collecting stories from those who have left the church, are considering leaving the church, or are staying in the church but have deep frustrations with their church. [If you or anyone else has a story you'd like to share feel free to email it over to me at andy@www.patheos.com/blogs/andygill]I grew up the son of a preacher in the Bible belt, which is known for its “beautiful places and smiling faces.” But my Southern heritag … [Read more...]

I Went Back to Church

I went back to church this week.It's been close to a year since I've been able to go to church on Sundays.But this week, I went. I probably shouldn’t call it going back, actually, because it was somewhere I’d never been before.But isn't that sort of how it always is with faith? It's new and old, mine and ours, holy and plain, all at the same time. It’s comfortable, but constantly vulnerable. These rituals are fresh and so old.I'd heard about this place from three different people … [Read more...]

Why I Kept Going to Church

When people hear my story, they often ask me why I stayed in church, and I rarely have a concise or coherent answer. All week, in preparation for this post, I have been trying to articulate my thoughts and feelings about why I kept going to church after being hurt deeply by the church.The truth is that it’s puzzling. I was wounded, and I kept going back for more. Then I helped start a church. It really doesn’t make sense, but I think I have pinpointed a few reasons and happenings that caused … [Read more...]

Segregation in the Church: White’s Only Bible Studies

I couldn't believe it.You're not going to invite my friends are you?You're not going to allow them in...The pastor silently stared back at me with guilt in his eyes and replied, "What do you want me to say?"It was almost as if all hope for a benevolent world had been instantaneously sucked out of me.We eventually shook hands and parted ways. I walked back to my car, closed the door, and sat there in silent disbelief.To fill in the blanks from the conversation above: I was i … [Read more...]

My Thoughts on Homosexuality

I've ignored the "topic of homosexuality" most of my life. I chose to ignore it because I didn't really see Jesus speak about it much in the New Testament. Though I do see Jesus speaking towards loving the marginalized, ostracized, and anyone else who has been rejected by the religious.I can't ignore the fact that, for some reason or another, the church has chosen to marginalize those within the LGBT community. Since I started posting and writing on this issue I've seen a flood of emails … [Read more...]