Last Acceptable Prejudice on College Campuses

I don’t often go to campus talks at my university. I don’t go because if I attended all those that interest me I would never get my work done. But I made an exception for Dr. Eboo Patel. He was named by US News & World Report as one of America’s Best Leaders of 2009. He is the Founder and President of Interfaith Youth Core (IFYC), a Chicago-based organization building the interfaith movement on college campuses. He served on President Obama’s inaugural Advisory Council of the White House Offi … [Read more...]

We Are Not All Bruce Lee, Part 2

Around the time that Bruce Lee reached the height of his Hong Kong cinematic career, a few Asian American writers put together an anthology called Aiiieeeee! (1973). I grant that readers who know what they’re talking about will gently protest that this collection has been contested by feminist and queer API writers for leaving out women’s and non-heteronormative Asian American experiences (for details, read David Eng’s Racial Castration: Managing Masculinity in Asian America). I’m using the antho … [Read more...]

We Are Not All Bruce Lee, Part 1

My post-doc, Justin K.H. Tse, is guest posting for me this week, sharing his fascinating thoughts on Asian American religion which will be featured on these next several posts.I’d like to thank Jim Wellman for letting me guest post on his American Religion blog during this Asian Pacific American Heritage Month. Inaugurated in 1977 by Representatives Frank Horton (R-NY) and Norman Mineta (D-CA) and Senators Dan Inouye (D-HI) and Spark Matsunaga (D-HI) as Asian/Pacific Heritage Week, President … [Read more...]

Best Book on Youth Ministry

I wish I read Jeff Keuss’s brilliant book, Blur: A New Paradigm for Understanding Youth Culture, when I was a young youth minister. In many ways, I intuited many of his conclusions out of my own experience, but I felt alone. Like many I heard that youth ministry was about converting kids and making them disciples of Jesus Christ. Moreover, that one had to be certain in one’s faith and follow whatever the hippest method to come out of Youth Specialties. And, to be sure, some of this worked, but I … [Read more...]

Super Bowl, Civil Religion and Our Dirty Little Secret

I suppose I can be accused of being biased on the Super Bowl. I live in Seattle. I’m rooting for the Seattle Seahawks to win the Super Bowl. So be it. I have, however, tried to think about this grand national pastime and wonder, on occasion, should I participate in it? Shouldn’t the violence, so typical of an NFL game, be a kind of rebuke to my enjoyment of this game? More to the point, why is an NFL football game so central, so absolutely necessary to so many Americans? What is the draw? Is thi … [Read more...]

Rob Bell is the Real Deal

I wrote a book on Rob Bell, and for many reasons, its been a blessing to me. But one of the unexpected blessings was that he became my friend. Now, with Rob’s new interview with Oprah, there may be a sense in which some might say, “He can’t be for real. He’s gone Hollywood. Now he’s really full of himself.”Well, let me tell you a story of a friend of mine. Some know that my wife passed away two weeks ago. I let my friend know that this had happened and how painful it was for my two daughters … [Read more...]