Where God Weeps: Sandy Hook and the Myth of Redemptive Violence

Toys of Mass Destruction.

God weeps. That, if anything, has been the primary theological response of Americans in the wake of the Sandy Hook massacre where 20 young boys and girls were murdered. Indeed, in the wake of such incomprehensible tragedy, perhaps this is the only theological response that makes much sense. It’s not that God is absent, whether [Read More...]

Born to Die?: Why the Cross Doesn’t Belong at Christmas

Yesterday, I passed a church sign that proclaimed Christmas was the story of a baby born to die. It seemed a macabre, odd way to wish passersby a merry Christmas. Apparently, though, quite a few Christians root the story of Jesus’ birth in his death, as if they are determined to nestle the cross into [Read More...]

Just Marriage: Jesus, Divorce and the Vulnerable (Lectionary Reflection)

Just Married

Proper 22B/Pentecost 19 Mark 10:2-16 Earlier in the gospel of Mark, Jesus has a very public falling out with his family. His brothers declare him insane and his family seeks to retrieve him so he won’t make a fool out of himself and the family anymore. In return, Jesus publicly disowns his family, a rejection [Read More...]

Battle of the Sundays: Pulpit Freedom vs. World Communion

The cup

A curious thing is happening this Sunday in churches across America. For some, this curious thing is Pulpit Freedom Sunday. The day, promoted by the conservative group Alliance Defending Freedom for the fourth year, urges pastors to speak out in favor of candidates they support, defying IRS restrictions that forbid such political speech in religious nonprofits. [Read More...]

The Transforming Death of God

death-300x300

This is the final post in a series on the death of God. Read part one, The Foolish Death of God and part two, The Orthodox Death of God. A few weeks ago, I began a series on the death of God, and perhaps, with all this talk of death, you are wondering where is [Read More...]

Jesus Was Not Colorblind: Racial Slurs and the Syrophoenician Woman (Lectionary)

4.2.7

Proper 18 Mark 7:24-37 Was Jesus a racist? This might be an uncomfortable question for Christians to ask, but, given this week’s lectionary text, I think it’s one we must ask. And we must ask it unvarnished. Our immediate response likely is, “Of course not! Jesus couldn’t possibly have been racist!” But Jesus’ exchange with [Read More...]

The Orthodox Death of God

Over the next week, I will be posting a three-part essay on the death of God, my experience of it, and my search for meaning through it. I invite you to walk with me and dialogue with me. Part one, the Foolish Death of God, can be found here. In the 1960s, the notion of [Read More...]

Amendment One and An Angry Lament of a Native Son

I am a native son of the Deep South, born and bred in the land of cotton, Christianity and conservatism. As a native son, I soaked up the homophobic culture in which I lived just as I soaked up a love of college football, the smell of fresh mown grass and cut wild onions on [Read More...]

The Resurrection and Wounds that Won’t Heal

Some wounds do not heal. When I was a journalist, I remember sitting with the mother whose son’s remains had only recently returned from the war in Iraq. I listened to her grieve as she told the story of how her son unexpectedly came to join the military, how she feared for him, how she [Read More...]

Of Mothers and Fathers: Male Privilege, Parenting and the Priesthood

This is a response to Rachel Held Evans’ request for men to write about the women, femininity and the Church. When I became a stay-at-home father several years ago, I slowly realized that all the theology I had studied in seminary, if I were honest, didn’t connect with my new reality of diapers, spit-up and [Read More...]


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