When All the Church Can Say is “I’m Sorry”

Two weeks after we arrived in Portland, Amy (my wife and new senior pastor at First Christian Church in downtown Portland) decided she needed to do something meaningful to express her voice as a person of faith in the community. There already were the folks handing out tracts down on the campus of Portland State [Read More…]

Wild Goose 2012: An Exercise in Mindfulness

How do you know when someone has a Prius? Don’t worry; they’ll tell you. We got a Prius about four years ago, and immediately we bought into the hype about milking every gallon of gas for another tenth of a mile. We read the hyper-miler blogs about how to employ the gas and brake pedals [Read More…]

Church Sign Epic Fails, Volume Nineteen

Apologies for the tardiness, as I’ve been at Wild Goose all week. More on that soon, but for now, down to business… Church Sign Epic Fails, Volume Eighteen Church Sign Epic Fails, Volume Seventeen Church Sign Epic Fails, Volume Sixteen Church Sign Epic Fails: Volume Fifteen Church Sign Epic Fails, Volume Fourteen Church Sign Epic [Read More…]

Love Greater Than Our Differences: My Interview on ChurchNext

I spoke with Chris Yaw recently, host of an online program called ChurchNext. On it, he has dialogues with a number of church leaders about the current state of organized religion, the changing face of Christianity and what our churches may do to remain (or become) relevant, vital ministries in the world. Here’s a video [Read More…]

WWJB (What Would Jesus Brew)? Tapping Our Franciscan Roots

There’s a well-known saying, often attributed to Ben Franklin, about God and beer. I’ve even seen it on T-shirts and the like, but it turns out it’s mis-quoted. The one I see and hear is generally some derivation of, “beer is evidence that God loves us and wants us to be happy.” However, on further, [Read More…]

Mad Men, Catholics and a “Moral Revolution”

Amy and I have been working (translated: watching lazily) our way through the first several seasons of Mad Men. The writing is remarkably subtle, and I was particularly struck by the fact that such a long-standing show could effectively have little or no plot focusing instead on rich character development. For a writer, this is [Read More…]

Church Sign Epic Fails, Volume Eighteen

You’ve got to ask yourself: “Do I feel lucky?” Well, do ya, punk? Well, you should since it’s Sunday, which means… MORE CHURCH SIGN EPIC FAILS! Church Sign Epic Fails, Volume Seventeen Church Sign Epic Fails, Volume Sixteen Church Sign Epic Fails: Volume Fifteen Church Sign Epic Fails, Volume Fourteen Church Sign Epic Fails, Volume [Read More…]

Justice Kennedy and Relationship as Social Justice

I’ve always been fascinated by the supreme court. I think I read Jeffrey Toobin’s book, “The Nine,” in about 36 hours. I think the most interesting part about the court is how set apart it seems to be, not beholden to the other two branches of government in making their decisions. Yes, they bring their [Read More…]

“Study Drugs” Point to Greater Social Failure

Everyone has pulled all-nighters in school. It’s sort of a rite of passage, really. For us, when our stomachs would get too bloated from throwing back Dr Peppers to stay awake, we’d bust out the No-Doz, which is basically a super dose of caffeine. It made me jittery, made my stomach upset, but I’ll tell [Read More…]

The Fallacy of Statements of Faith

I have a confession to make. A while back, I was applying for an editing job with a fairly prominent Christian media company, and in the application process, I was asked to sign a statement of faith. For those unfamiliar, this is a list of things that the organization in question claims to believe, and [Read More…]