Rediscovering the Beauty: A Conversation with Brian McLaren and Nadia Bolz-Weber

It’s a rare and wonderful day when I get to spend an hour alone with two of my favorite leading lights of the progressive Christian landscape. And so it was this week, when I found myself sitting in a creaky chair in the choir alcove of the beautiful, historical St. Thomas Episcopal Church in Denver [Read More…]

Frank Schaeffer Gets Real for RealClear Religion

Popular Patheos blogger, famous ex-Evangelical, and very vocal critic of the Religious Right Frank Schaeffer gave a terrific interview to Deputy Editor Nicholas G. Hahn III over at RealClear Religion this week.  We’ve excerpted a few of our favorite responses here; click on the link below to read the rest of the interview at RCR. Frank [Read More…]

The Pottery Barn Catalog (and other pornographic literature…)

It’s here! It’s here! The October Pottery Barn catalog…be still my heart. I mean, it might be 105 in the shade outside. But inside, with me and my coffee and my favorite leather club chair (which did NOT come from Pottery Barn) it is nothing but fall bliss. Pumpkins, colored leaves, fragrant warm beverages, crisp [Read More…]

Ku Klux Clowns in East Tennessee

I started my Tennessee sabbatical with a story about 3 peace activists who recently shut down the Y12 bomb plant here in Oak Ridge with a stunning protest, armed only with a bible and flowers.  I figure I’ll end my sabbatical with another great story of East Tennessee mischief. This is the story of one [Read More…]

Pub Theology, Part III: An (Un)Safe Place

This is the third in a series on Bryan Berghoef’s new book, Pub Theology: Beer, Conversation, and God. Read the first and second post here and here. Excerpt from Chapter 6: An (Un)Safe Place Many of us who have spent some time at these pub discussions over the last several years have found that when we open ourselves [Read More…]

Arbitrarily Close to God

In 1464, not long after Easter, the secretary to Nicolas of Cusa, a Catholic cardinal, noticed a marked change in the demeanor of his superior. Cusa’s health had been fragile for a while. But now his face was beaming with joy. After being absorbed in meditation for weeks around the time of Easter, Cusa was [Read More…]

Common Sense

In 1776, Tom Paine published “Common Sense”, a widely-read pamphlet that rallied the colonists of America to declare independence from Britain. You can almost hear the penny-whistled tune of “Yankee Doodle” in the background at the mention of his name. But his role as a founder of our nation was but one of his causes. [Read More…]

Responding to 9/11: Remembering the Enemy Within

By Greg Barrett Four years ago during the homestretch of the U.S. presidential election, the Democratic and Republican nominees were asked about the existence of evil by an evangelical Christian pastor who supported the 2003 military invasion of Iraq. At his super-sized McMansion church in Orange County, Calif., Southern Baptist pastor Rick Warren quizzed Sens. [Read More…]

Poetic Proverbs

When I want to get under the surface of things, I re-read the “proverbios” of the early 20th c. Spanish poet, Antonio Machado, and those of the later 20th c. Argentine poet, Antonio Porchia.  Both men lived simply, loved deeply, and are cherished still as poets in their respective homelands. I don’t know if Porchia ever read Machado.  [Read More…]

War and the Dimensions of Love: An Army Chaplain Reflects on September 11

An Army chaplain in Afghanistan discovers that it’s easier to talk about love of enemies from a distance than up close. Fortunately, God promises to stand in the void and finish all that we have not been able to do. [Read more…]

Pub Theology, Part II: A Story of Two Tables

This is the second in a series of excerpts from Bryan Berghoef’s new book, Pub Theology: Beer, Conversation, and God. Read the first post here. Continued from Chapter 4: A Story of Two Tables The question was posed: “Is it more important to do the right things, or believe the right things?” Nearly everyone at [Read More…]

A Pilgrim Christian at the Wake-Up Festival

Whenever I’m presented with an invitation to “awaken,” I typically cancel all plans and take it. This past weekend, I packed my retreat clothes and headed an hour and half northwest of Denver to attend the first-ever Wake-Up Festival in the mystical, mist-shrouded mountains of Estes Park. My journey was blessed beyond belief: a magnificent [Read More…]