The Facts Don’t Matter. Only Love Does.

The facts really don’t matter. When it comes to divisive political and religious issues — whether its gun control, climate change, or biblical inerrancy, no one really cares about the facts, the solid statistics, and the historical narrative. We don’t see the facts in those situations, according to a study by Yale law school professor [Read More...]

A Threat to Never Forget: Sept. 11 and America’s Vengeful Memory

Today, we will be asked to never forget. We will be asked to revive the trauma and fear many of us experienced during the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001. We will be asked to relive that day, with loops of explosions, tumbling towers, rubble and rescue workers. We will be reminded never to forget. [Read More...]

Jesus Doesn’t Want You to be a Good Samaritan: Lectionary Reflection for Proper 10C

For three unconventional retellings of this parable to enliven the well-worn story, visit here (the Immigrant Samaritan), here (the God Samaritan), or here (the Wrong Samaritan) Proper 10 – Year C – Luke 10:25-37 Jesus doesn’t really want you to be the good Samaritan. At least, that’s not the point of his story in this [Read More...]

The Patron Saint of Poop: How My Kids Fell in Love with the Saints

When playing dress-up, my kids go from light saber-wielding Jedis to Julian of Norwich, patron saint of cats. If only I could get them to stop torturing the cat now ...

Like most of my good ideas, this one happened by accident. Four days into the Lenten season, I had nothing — no fast, no practice, no structure for the 40 days — even though I had spent most of January talking up the season to my two sons. We had gone to our Ash Wednesday [Read More...]

Sleeping Through Storms: Rethinking Theodicy, Natural Disasters and God’s Omnipotence

tornado-weather_l

God is not all-powerful. At least, not in the ways we tend to define power. For us, power means that we get our way, that we can impose our will upon the world around us, that we can conform others into our images in order to achieve unity and security. In our minds, we equate [Read More...]

The Divine Protest of Pentecost

The God of Pentecost doesn’t have an official language. This is the shocking revelation of the day of Pentecost, but one often  lost amid the day’s more bombastic metaphors of rushing winds, descending doves and intoxicated disciples with tongues touched by fire. But in a country with a history of suppressing other languages in the [Read More...]

Questions Not Answers: My Journey from Journalism to the Priesthood

Collared

In college, I thought that by the time I was 32, I would be working at a large daily newspaper, not a month away from ordination in the Episcopal church.* As a journalism student and a greenhorn reporter in Alabama and Northern California, I assumed I would spend the majority of my adult life in [Read More...]

Keeping Silence in Tragedy: In the Aftermath of Explosions

Violence and tragedy has again struck. And it is hard to know what to say, what to do, particularly now that mass and social media have made us all witnesses to carnage and horror. And it is even harder to remember, in moments like these, that the kind of violence our nation has experienced only [Read More...]

Transforming Film into Contemplative Prayer: A Review of Thom Stark’s ‘Who Art in Heaven’

Director Thom Stark summarizes his award-winning film Who Art in Heaven simply: “A Man Prays.” But don’t let Stark deceive you, because if you do, he will devastate you in the best possible way. There is so much more going on in this eloquent and compact film than its tagline would have you believe, and the [Read More...]

Unholy Laws: Establishing Religion in N.C., Starving Children in Tennessee

Children

  UPDATE: Sen. Stacey Campfield, who proposed the original welfare bill in Tennessee and responded to this post in the comments, has withdrawn the bill, asking it be studied over the summer. Clergy and activists in Tennessee and around the country put the pressure on and quashed the bill. I was profoundly saddened to hear [Read More...]


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