Deconstructing Caesar (Salad)

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My wife Pam and I spend New Years Eve with our friends Bob Scott and Sharon Linnea.  Bob’s hobby is gourmet cooking and this year, like previous ones, did not disappoint.  One of the seven or eight (I lost count) courses of the evening was a Caesar salad deconstruction.  I was unfamiliar with deconstruction in regard to food.  Basically, a deconstructed dish is one that takes foods that are normally combined, changes their forms and puts them on the plate in a different way.  In this case, the el … [Read more...]

From Where I Stand: Coming of Age in The Village

"Life Together" Photo by Paul Soupiset

“It takes a village to raise a child,” or so the African proverb suggests.By way of introduction, I’m one of those unfamiliar people Doug mentioned when he introduced this blog almost a month ago now.What excites me the most about this blog is the rich diversity of voices that are present in the collective conversation. I’ll be contributing from where I stand and while my vantage point has much common ground with many of the other contributors, I’ll be writing from the perspective of what … [Read more...]

Is God Fun? [Improvisational Christianity #3]

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This is the third post in my exploration of Improvisational Christianity. You may want to catch up by reading the first two posts:1. Improvisational Christianity: I Hope You Like Me2. Saturday Night Live, Modernity and StoriesThe first rule of improv we looked at last week was “Tell a Story.” This week we look at the second rule I learned as an improviser:Rule #2 - Everyone Plays.Deeply embedded in this rule is that improvisation is supposed to be fun and communal.So i … [Read more...]

My Need For Emergent Village – Then and Now

Then - My Need For the Emergent VillageBy way of introduction, here is the thumbnail version of my spiritual trek in 2 sentences. I could likely write a book about it but it echos many of the stories I’ve read from emergent writers. So many of you could write the book too and have!I grew up in a conservative evangelical church, encountered the Holy Spirit in my 30’s. My husband and I planted a Vineyard church and after 10 years (+/-) burned out, dropped out and disappeared.  The book vers … [Read more...]

The Process of Emergent Village Theological Conversation

Over the last dozen years Emergent Village has hosted conversations with Theologians. The idea is to put practioners in conversation with theoreticians. The conversations have spanned a wide spectrum of perspectives.The 2012 conversation will be with Process Theologians January 31-Feb 2, 2012 at Clairmont School of Theology in the Los Angeles area.You may not be familiar with Process thought, or may have written it off, or may be an adherent. Regardless you are invited to this … [Read more...]

Everything I needed to know about church, I learned in Kindergarten.

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Okay, so I actually don't remember much about Kindergarten, apart from the location of the classroom at Vandercook Elementary in Rockford, IL (which is interestingly, now a Muslim community center).  I remember the strange allure of paste (I was a player, not an eater), the utter joy of the playground (remember defying certain death on the merry-go-round?), and tables with toys.  If I learned any important lessons there, I have forgotten them.No, the place where I've been learning a … [Read more...]

Christmas…a revolution birthed in pain

" Silent night, Holy night...all is calm, all is bright ", every christmas we sing this carol. Usually candles in hand, flickering flames dancing on the walls like some angelic visitation. And we reflect on the birth of the God-child. Having two daughters and being present for both of their entrances into this world, I recall vividly it was anything but silent. Despite the pre-natal and birthing classes when the moment came, calmness and a plan were abandoned...for what ever works. Me standing … [Read more...]

In which I am done fighting for a seat at the table

I'm done fighting for a seat at that table.The one filled with (usually) white men, all reading the same books, spouting the same talking points, quoting each other back and forth. It's the table where the men - a small, select, vocal group in no way representative of men in the Church overall - sit around and discuss who is in and who is out, who is right (usually them) and who is wrong (every one else) and, a favourite topic, whether women should be allowed to write or teach or preach or … [Read more...]

Incarnational or Missional?

During this season of Advent, I've been reflecting a lot on the idea of incarnation — specifically, these words from author and activist Parker Palmer: "The Christmas story is ... about God taking the risk of showing up in the flesh, and all that comes with it. I think that's a risk that we're all called to — the risk of incarnation, the risk of embodying our values and beliefs, the risk of manifesting our identity and integrity in the world, the risk of being fully human. And it's … [Read more...]

Why I Am Emergent, Part 3: Theologically Counter-Cultural

 Continuing in the series of processing through the reasons of why I resonate with the Emergent Movement (See week 1 and week 2), I’m left pondering being theologically countercultural.One of the first things I noticed as I began reading emergent books and blogs, visiting emergent churches and events, and meeting emergent people, was that there seemed to be a uniqueness about them and the way they were.  I have heard of a church that jokingly refers to themselves as “the island of mi … [Read more...]


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