Beach Volleyball’s Boys and Babes

We have been periodically watching the Olympics over the last week.  I particularly like watching beach volleyball.  I am a beach aficionado  but not nearly in the same ways as these amazing athletes.  The sand is apparently 18 inches deep at the venue at the Horse Guard Parade in London.  Oh, what joy to plant [Read More…]

Novel Reading: A Lost Art?

Okay…..I’m picking up a theme that a couple of my blogging colleagues did on “summer reading.”   And in light of the recent passing of Gore Vidal, I’ll talk about some of my favorite novel reading over the summer.  On the news last night, an old interview was shown where Vidal was mourning the loss of [Read More…]

100 Days to Go

“100 Days to Go” was one of the main articles in the Sunday edition of the Cleveland paper, The Plain Dealer.  100 days to go before the November election, which those of us fortunate enough to live in the swing state of Ohio are reminded of about a b’zillion times each time the TV is [Read More…]

Another shooting…..what’s a Christian to do?

Here we go again.  Another shooting and the very low expectation that we will have serious conversations about the role which guns have in our culture.  The “talking heads” on the various news programs acknowledge that this recent event of the shootings at the movie theater in Aurora, Colorado, will unlikely produce any substantive conversation [Read More…]

Movement, Sect, Organization or Institution?

The sermon yesterday was organized around a quotation in the bulletin:  “The mark of a good church is not its seating capacity but its sending  capacity” (Mark Stachura).  Using the Scripture readings from 2 Cor 12:2-10 and Mark 6:1-13, we were pressed to think about the implication for how we understanding ourselves today given Jesus’ [Read More…]

God’s Competition?

It was a wild Fourth of July night in Ashland, Ohio.  We headed over to friends for the prime location on their front porch to watch the community fireworks display. A planned 21 minute presentation was crammed into 7 minutes because of the thunderstorms that quickly moved in.  So, there we were, cozy on the [Read More…]

The Moral Vacuum of the Health Care Debates

On Thursday, the United States Supreme Court upheld the constitutionality of the Affordable Health Care Act.  After months of raucous rhetoric (it’s difficult to use the words “debate” or “conversation”), we will now have accessible health care  for millions of our co-citizens, and guarantees for those of us currently with health care, that we will [Read More…]

Narratives within Narrative

Much is made about narrative as a way of reading Scripture, as a method for theological reflection, and as a means for ethical discernment and decision.  The role of narrative in Christian faith and practice has been helpful and necessary in my view. Yet it is not without difficulties.  Our postmodern milieu has raised our [Read More…]

Summer Has Arrived

Summer has arrived in Northeast Ohio.  In spite of a mild winter, and a low record of 5-6 snow shoveling gigs, the warmth, green and bursting colors are always wonderful to experience and behold.  Shortly, one of my favorite summer activities will be starting:  the Farmer’s Market, hosted by my church community, Christ United Methodist [Read More…]

People Watching in Airports

I spent good chunks of time over the week-end in three airports, more time spent than in the air getting from point A to B to C.  I do remember the old adage that airports are great places to “people watch.”  So between redeeming time by catching up on reading to traversing concourses, I did [Read More…]