What to Do When Belief Dies

Being in congregational ministry means dealing in death. Actually, being alive means dealing with it. At its best, religious community helps bear witness to the entire cycle of life, from miraculous beginnings to often-difficult ends. And as the average age in Christian congregations continues to rise, the work of institutional and personal hospice for ministerial leaders demands more time and energy. The one thing my wife, Rev. Amy Piatt, was most worried about facing in ministry was death. Then within… Read more

GENIUS’ Young Einstein, Johnny Flynn

He’s been a halfwit brother co-parenting his mute younger sibling (Comedy Central’s BROTHERHOOD)  to a ladies’ man on with an…umm…awkward medical secret (Netflix’s LOVESICK). He’s the lead singer in the alt-folk group JOHNNY FLYNN AND THE SUSSEX WIT, and now he’s young Einstein along with Geoffrey Rush as his elder counterpart in GENIUS, Brian Grazer and Ron Howard’s new series premiering Tuesday, April 24th on the National Geographic channel. Johnny Flynn is a man of the world and of many… Read more

Director, Animator, Author Kelly Asbury

Animated feature films have been around since “Snow White,” but they’ve changed dramatically. How do artists and directors keep up? I talked with Kelly Asbury, veteran Hollywood animator and director of the new movie, Sony Pictures’ “Smurfs: The Lost Village,” as well as “Shrek 2” about the technical and creative process behind the stories that capture our imagination and define childhood and even adulthood in many ways. Kelly started out in film animation working on “Toy Story” and has been involved… Read more

Movies, Meaning and the Oscars with Gareth Higgins

Films move our culture in profound ways, but how? Did Hollywood, and particularly, the Oscars, elevate women this year after major fallout last year? How about ethnic minorities? LQBTQ? And what do 2016’s films tell us about ourselves and our world? Gareth Higgins, founder of The Porch Magazine and the Movies and Meaning Festival, joins us to break down this year’s Oscar winners, the show itself (fails and all) which films you missed this year but need to see, and his ten favorites… Read more

Guns, Narcissists and What Being Fully Human Means

What happens when an Episcopal priest Jeremy Lucas sets out to win an AR-15 in a raffle for a kids’ softball team fundraiser and gets it? What’s more, how do people – particularly Christians – react to his plans for the gun? Oh, and did I mention the the money used to buy the raffle tickets came from the church he serves? Why is this post entirely in question form? I mean…ahem… Lots of folks have suggested Donald Trump suffers from a Narcissistic… Read more

LIVE in L.A. from Homebrewed Theology Beer Camp

What happens when Christian and Amy head to a theology camp with three days of open kegs and about a dozen other podcasters? Well let’s find out, shall we? Thanks to Tripp Fuller for having us as part of his first-ever Theology Beer camp at the Hatchery Campus in Redondo Beach, CA recently to do our show live with a rotating tap of special guests. Here’s a list of who call joined us for different segments: Echo Chamber: Talking Trump on Inauguration Day with Nathan… Read more

Heaven and Hell with Barry Taylor, James Younger

What do other religions say about heaven? How about hell? Do the similarities across so many cultures and faiths point to a universal cosmic truth, or does it reveal more about our basic human nature? After a few pints of heaven at the Homebrewed Theology Beer Camp, I sat down with James Younger, executive producer of the “Story of God” series, hosted by Morgan Freeman on the National Geographic Channel. He showed us an advance screening of their episode on Heaven… Read more

Do Marches and Protests Really Matter?

It was reported that at least 3.2 million people marched in solidarity for women the day after Donald Trump’s inauguration. Hundreds of thousands filled the streets and sidewalks of Washington DC, with similar rallies in cities across the nation. There were even concurrent marches for women in countries around the world. The anger, tension and need to be heard was palpable. But did anything change? We took time to chat with Dan Koch, host of the Depolarize Podcast and Jessica… Read more

Trump’s Conflicts of Interest (And What to Do)

I wrote already about the issues with how President-elect Donald Trump plans to establish management over his business interests while in office and the trouble that putting his children in charge presents. Essentially, the problem is that there’s supposed to be the removal of conflicts of interest so that the President can’t create or affect policy that would benefit him or his family personally. But the issues go deeper than whether there’s a possibility of arms-length removal with his own… Read more

If You Bristle at the Term “White Fragility,” That’s White Fragility

You hear the term “Black Lives Matter,” and it pisses you off. You think, “What about me? Doesn’t my life matter? Why do we have to say that black lives in particular matter? Makes it sound like theirs matter and mine doesn’t.” You see a company or university going out of their way to recruit non-anglo and female candidates, and you feel overlooked, slighted. “But I have the same qualifications as they do!” You say. “Isn’t giving them that access… Read more

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