Discount for Disobeying Jesus

  The receipt above has been circulating via social media. Mrs. Betty Bowers shared these appropriate thoughts on the subject on Facebook: A restaurant in North Carolina is now offering discounts to diners flamboyant enough about praying that their waiters notice. In other words, they are being encouraged to tell Jesus to stick a sock [Read More...]

Giving Thanks for Other Religions

I recently came across a blog post which mentioned (unfavorably) the existence of prayers giving thanks for religions other than Christianity in the Book of Common Worship used by the Presbyterian Church USA. Here’s an example (pp.409-410): For World Religions We thank you, God of the universe, that you call all people to worship you [Read More...]

Kindle, We Pray

I saw this prayer on Reddit, with the headline “Kindle, we pray, in every heart the true love of peace…”:   Morning Prayer: For Peace: Almighty God, kindle, we pray, in every heart the true love of peace, and guide with your wisdom those who take counsel for the nations of the earth, that in [Read More...]

Never Pray Again

The bloggers at Two Friars and a Fool have written a book, Never Pray Again: Lift Your Head, Unfold Your Hands, and Get To Work, and I was invited to participate in a blog tour about it. See their interview with Carol Howard Merritt for more general information about the book, as well as the [Read More...]

Theodicy and Thanksgiving

Last Sunday in my sunday school class, we talked about prayer. Perennial questions came up, the most pressing of which was how to avoid having prayers asking for help, and giving thanks for good fortune, become things that cause harm to those around you. It is ultimately the same issue that got Job’s friends into [Read More...]

How Christmas Shopping is Like Going to Church

David Hayward shared this cartoon: I think it is hilarious. But it makes some serious points. The oddity of giving people a certain time and saying that this will be “fellowship” time or “worship” is distinctly odd, and that oddity is only missed when we have be ome accustomed to this way of doing things. [Read More...]

Learn to Roll Your Rs

I have long wanted to be able to make the rolled “r” sound that one finds in Italian, Spanish, Romanian, and many other languages. Until recently I was unsuccessful. But I have made major progress over the past week or so, and I thought I would share what has helped. First, stop thinking of this [Read More...]

Prayer Changes…

We’ve started talking about prayer in my Sunday school class. Many Christians use the phrase “prayer changes things.” And some people at my church certainly would. But some in the class last Sunday also had qualms. There is a long history of Christians thinking that God will always do what is best, and so asking [Read More...]

Who Needs Serenity When There’s Coffee and Wine?

Spotted on Facebook   [Read more...]

Doctor Who and Religion Brown Bag Talk

My talk yesterday on Doctor Who and religion was well attended. A colleague snapped a photo afterwards when I was still answering questions but numerous people had had to slip out. I honestly don’t remember doing the jazz hands thing, but I’m sure it was appropriate in connection with whatever point I made. Also, apparently [Read More...]

Keep Christ in Christianity

The latest cartoon from David Hayward is interesting to think about in connection with the sorts of rhetorical claims one sometimes encounters from conservative Christians regarding American society. “Keep Christ in Christmas” they may say, or “Put prayer back in public schools.” What they often fail to notice is that they have only allowed selective [Read More...]


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