Emerging Church Still Making Headlines

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The reports of the emerging church's death are greatly exaggerated. The existence of the new Emergent Village Voice blog is one example of a new chapter that's being written. My experience with the Charlotte Emergent cohort over the past eight years reminds me over and over as I meet and talk with new people joining the conversation every month. Then there's the ongoing media attention that this movement continues to receive, 10+ years on.Brian McLaren, Phyllis Tickle, and I were … [Read more...]

Advent’s Economic Good News

It’s Advent, and I am waiting for Jesus, trying to keep my eyes open to see him when he shows up. I’ve committed to some particular prayers; I’m meeting one-on-one with each person in my community. I’m listening to the lectionary—listening for clues about where to look. The words of an ancient monk are on my mind: “he comes to us now in order that his future coming may find us prepared.”But I know all the stories about how religious people aren’t prepared. We fall asleep. We let the oil burn … [Read more...]

The Steve Jobs of Religion

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Each week, it seems there is some new article that gets repeatedly shared in my Facebook feed.  This week, it was this Op Ed piece in the NY Times by Eric Weiner.  In it, he describes himself as one of the “Nones” – those with no religious affiliation, neither a “True Believer” nor an “Angry Atheist”.  His piece closes with the plea, “We need a Steve Jobs of religion. Someone (or ones) who can invent not a new religion but, rather, a new way of being religious.”That last bit created a flurry … [Read more...]

Racism and the Fear of the Other

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Woops! It surfaced again. Most of the country was shocked to hear the news of an interracial couple being kicked out of the all White, Freewill Baptist Church in Pikeville Kentucky last week. Sure, we were a bit surprised but after all, it is “rural Kentucky” and wasn’t the word “Baptist” used? Easily dismissed as a anomaly, we store the occurrence in the “you know you’re a redneck when” file of our brain and move on but please…Not so fast…What about October 2009 when a Justice of the Peace i … [Read more...]

My Mormon Baptism

I am not a Mormon, but my neighbors are. They invited me as a guest to the baptism of their son. I reflect on the experience during my weekly radio show this week. There are a number of insights from that experience that may be meaningful to us all. … [Read more...]

If the Last Supper was a Seder, then did Jesus celebrate Hannukah?

Joseph Edelheit, is a Reform Rabbi—retired from Temple Israel, Minneapolis in 2001—and now Director and Professor of Religious and Jewish Studies at St Cloud State University. His D Min is in Christian Theology from the Divinity School of the University of Chicago. He is a founding Director of Living India an NGO doing HIV/AIDS work in rural India. He has been called, Solomon Porch’s Rabbi where he teaches and does dialogue sermons with Doug Pagitt and Tony Jones.This semester in my semi … [Read more...]

And Our Eyes At Last Shall See Him

In our family, we saturate the airwaves with Christmas music during the Advent season. We play it in the car, and as soon as we get home, and all through dinner, and as the kids are nodding off to bed. Every year, I tend to develop a new favorite song of the season. This year, it’s “Once in Royal David’s City.” I’ve always liked the song, which I place in the category of “fun British Christmas songs” along with “Good King Wencelas” and “I Saw Three Ships,” all of which are loads of fun and take c … [Read more...]

Wonder and Tragedy: Thoughts Inspired by “The Tree of Life”

At the heart of the nature of things, there are always the dream of youth and the harvest of tragedy.  The Adventure of the Universe starts with the dream and reaps tragic beauty.  This is the union of Zest with Peace: - That the suffering attains its end in a Harmony of Harmonies.  The immediate experience of this Final Fact, with its union of Youth and Tragedy, is the sense of peace.  In this way the World receives its persuasion toward s such perfections as are possible for its diverse ind … [Read more...]

Mary…re-imagining Advent

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( Mary...East Vancouver 2007 ) It's late Sunday evening and I'm working on the computer and I get a text from my daughter, " help!" She has to give a reflection at chapel the next day around Advent. My daughter works at christian based Drug and Addiction Rehabilitation Center for young women. So we start the ball bouncing, me sending it across the " net " and her returning it. Suddenly something profoundly redemptive starts to unravel...it may not be biblically, or theologically correct. … [Read more...]

Two Events for the Missional Church

Funding the Missional Church

When Doug and I started The JoPa Group, it was an effort to resource the missional church for a sustainable future.  We've been running social media boot camps and some other events over the last couple years.  But we're especially excited about what we've got planned for 2012.  We'll be hosting two consecutive events in Minneapolis in May: Funding the Missional Church will take place in Minneapolis, May 1-3.  It's a conference to explore the best thinking and practices in building sustainable g … [Read more...]


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