The Serenity Prayer (Part 3 of 3)

By Dwight Lee Wolter. Welcome to part three, the concluding part of this three part series on the Serenity Prayer. Today, we pray not only for the serenity to accept the change we cannot change and the courage to change the things we can, but also for “the wisdom to know the difference.”Look around the world today. Do you see a whole lot of wisdom? Maybe wisdom is a thing of the past. Maybe the modern-day wise ones avoid the media, politics, and religious. Or maybe people are … [Read More...]

The Serenity Prayer (Part 2 of 3)

By Dwight Lee Wolter.  “God, grant me the…courage to change the things I can…”Welcome to part two of this three-part series on the Serenity Prayer. In part one, I told you a story about a man who stood on the beach, threatening the tide if it dared to come in; and later pleading with the tide not to go out. Neither threats nor pleading worked. The man lacked the serenity to accept [the tide] he could not change.Allow me to tell you another beach story: A woman … [Read More...]

The Immoral Economy and Donald Trump’s Tax Returns

By Rev. Jennifer Butler, CEO of Faith in Public Life In response to public outcry over his newly revealed tax return, Trump responded that it was a smart move on his part to take advantage of a tax benefit for real estate investors that allowed him to write off twenty years in taxes, paying himself a handsome salary while stiffing his workers.Our faith traditions teach us that this is not a smart move: it is a sinful move born of a broken economic system that too often fails … [Read More...]

The Serenity Prayer (Part 1 of 3)

By Dwight Lee Wolter.  “God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change…” The Serenity Prayer was conceived in a little stone cottage in Heath, Massachusetts by theologian and professor, Reinhold Niebuhr, around 1932. It was printed on cards and distributed to the troops by the U.S.O. and circulated by the National Council of Churches. The Serenity Prayer became even better known after being adopted by Alcoholics Anonymous in 1941 when an early AA member saw it in … [Read More...]

Becoming a Minister of Listening

By John Helmiere, founding minister of Valley & Mountain.  Over 12 months, the Forum for Theological Education is spotlighting 12 leaders, their stories, and how their passion and call to shape a more hopeful future through Christian ministry guides the impact they are … [Read More...]

Racism Is a Spiritual Issue

By Therese Taylor-Stinson. The shooting of unarmed black men by law enforcement officers and lone vigilantes ambushing churches has exposed the lie of a "post-racial" America. The polarization, the violence, and the controversies make it seem there is no turning from our human … [Read More...]

Real Youth Ministry: More Than Kumbaya Around the Campfire

By David StevensonReal youth ministry isn’t about making nice. It’s about making waves. It’s more than Kumbaya around the campfire; more than bowling and pizza. It’s spiritual jazz; organic, always evolving, never the same.Real youth ministry isn’t for the faint of heart. Like jazz you have t … [Read More...]

No Ideas But In Things: A Baptist Recovers Ritual

Over the course of 12 months, the Forum for Theological Exploration (FTE) is spotlighting 12 leaders, their stories, and how their passion and call to shape a more hopeful future through Christian ministry guides the impact they are making in their communities, institutions and universities.By Aa … [Read More...]

Is God Guilty?

By Ryan Patrick McLaughlinIn a previous blog, I noted how the structure of our cosmos—including the dance between its law-like structure and chance—renders certain horrendous harms an inevitable outcome.  For example, if evolution depends in part upon random genetic mutations, some of these muta … [Read More...]

Are There Pets in Heaven?

A member of our church died and was cremated and then had her ashes blended with the ashes of her dog that had died and was cremated a year earlier. Another member of our church brought his five year old son to see me because the boy had told him that, “more than anything in the world” he wanted to b … [Read More...]

Struggling with Silence in an Instant-Gratification World

By Breanna MekulyOn developing our interior lives, Sister Joan Chittister explains the Benedictine practice of silence. “Silence lays us open to possibilities, to people, to ideas we would have otherwise forever scorned,” she says in her book The Monastery of the Heart: An Invitation to a Mean … [Read More...]

Give Ben-Hur a Chance: Watch the Movie with Your Heart and Imagination

The new Ben-Hur movie from Paramount Pictures opened over the weekend and the reviews have been, well, not all that great. It’s not surprising really, after an enormous promotional lead-up setting expectations high, that folks (especially the non-Christian cadre) have been quick to criticize the big- … [Read More...]

I Needed Somebody to Hope Me: An Update on the Moral Revival

By Rev. Dr. William BarberWhen I was growing up in Eastern North Carolina, I used to love to sit in my grandmama’s kitchen and listen to her sing as she made dinner. Whenever she was done cooking, she’d give me a plate to eat. Then she and some of the other sisters from the church would make … [Read More...]

Patheos 10+1: A Q&A with the Rev. Bruce Reyes-Chow

“The Asian American community is far from unified in its perspective, but a growing number are pushing our community to confront the racism that exists in our own communities and how we reinforce anti-Blackness and benefit from white supremacy. If you want to know more, track the hashtag # … [Read More...]