NFL Admits to the Link between Football and CTE

Wow, not long ago I wrote on Why I’m Not Watching the Super Bowl. Today, the NFL finally admitted the link between football and CTE: Read this and ask yourself whether you would knowingly let your son play football: Dr. Ann McKee, a neuropathologist at Boston University, said this about the relationship between football and CTE (Chronic traumatic encephalopathy):"I unequivocally think there's a link between playing football and CTE. We've seen it in 90 out of 94 NFL players whose brains we'v … [Read more...]

Why I’m Not Watching the Super Bowl

The Seahawks Aren’t Playing. Okay, I like my Hawks, though even here, the reality of money, violence and the cynicism of the League are beginning to dim my loyalty to this team. Nonetheless, Pete Carroll’s sheer will to transform any negative into a positive is stunning.The Chris Borland Story. Read it and it will sober you too. Borland, a former Forty-Niner linebacker, is a physical and athletic specimen and watching him play was like watching Spiderman spring on people, breathtaking. But at … [Read more...]

Conscious Bliss

I’ve been thinking about this concept of bliss my whole life. What would it be like to be consciously filled with bliss? I had moments of this when I was young, sitting around my family table with my parents and four siblings. I was the youngest and I remember that they would take turns making me laugh, and often I would find myself so caught up that I couldn’t stop laughing, and everyone would join in. And I remember that it was blissful. I didn’t want it to end and it felt like it never would. … [Read more...]

Elizabeth Chapin’s “Facing ‘the Talk’: Conversations with My Four Daughters about Sex”

First, three confessions:1. Elizabeth was my graduate student in the MA Comparative Religion Program at the University of Washington. I promised to read and review her book. I was worried, “Maybe I wouldn’t like it?” Well, NO WORRIES, this is a great book that parents of youth, whether girl or boy, should definitely read!2. I am the father of two grown daughters, I worried I’d find out that I had done something wrong in talking with my daughters about sex. And truth be told, my beloved sp … [Read more...]

Is There a Future for Progressive Christianity in America?

Editors’ Note: This article is part of the Patheos Public Square on the Future of Progressive Christianity in America. Read other perspective here.Since writing my book on Evangelical vs. Liberal I’ve taken a more skeptical view of what we now call the “Progressive Christian” movement in America. The book was to be a follow up to my study of Fourth Presbyterian Church, a robust liberal Protestant congregation in Chicago. Fourth Presbyterian had an unusual blend of prophetic preaching, pastora … [Read more...]

A Beautiful Legacy: My Friend Bill Harper—Pastor Extraordinaire

(This is a sermon I gave for Bill Harper’s retirement on April 24, 2015. Bill helped to found Grace Episcopal Church on Bainbridge Island. In twenty years of service, he helped to build an extraordinary, progressive Christian witness, which attracted not only hundreds of parishioners but a thriving youth ministry of more than fifty young people every Thursday night. Progressive Christian leaders should take note of Bill’s amazing legacy.)As some of you know, Bill and I have a few things in co … [Read more...]