Such a week, with the victories and the flooding and the humor with the laughing.

joyHi, guys. As I write it’s 4 p.m. sunny/ridiculously hot today California time.

What a week!

First and most recently, lemme recommend to you a post written by David Paul Kirkpatrick, the former head of Paramount, Disney, and Touchstone pictures [!]. (Meanwhile, I can’t figure out how the camera on my iPhone works.) For the Unfundamentalist Christians group blog over on Patheos, David penned a winning piece titled The Jesus Clown Car.

This week, of course, we all had some big news. First was that Exodus International was apologizing shutting down rebranding using media to spin its fall. My own humble take on the distinctly apology-like statement of Alan Chambers (An open letter to Exodus International’s super-remorseful Alan Chambers) was shared some 32,200 times, which as far as I know makes it the most-read commentary on the affair. So that was … nice, if that’s the word. (It was also a tad surprising, given that no major or even minor media outlets linked to the piece. So, you know: yay for regular people.)

Then we got news on the DOMA ruling. I can tell you that after six years of pretty relentlessly writing on the LGBTQ issue, I was just a tad overwhelmed by that development. I decided not to at all filter my response to it, and so “wrote” and immediately published this.

Speaking of prayers, this week some 200 more people signed up for my newsletter(s). That means a lot to me, because I consider John’s Prayer for the Week about the most important writing I do. It’s certainly the most intense. (The most sheerly fun writing I do, easily, I do for John’s Monthly Newsletter. Which makes me feel sorry for the people who subscribe to it. Which is why every month I give them the chance to win stuff for free.)

Speaking of my book UNFAIR: Christians and the LGBT Question, very recently its opening essay Taking God at His Word: The Bible and Homosexuality has been garnering mucho views; in the last three days, it’s been shared about 1,200 times. I have no idea what’s triggered that. But I’m seriously appreciative of it, because … well, because it’s is the culmination of what amounts to a lifetime of thinking about that very particular issue, and it took me (and my wife Catherine) literally years to write. So … great! If you’ve been sharing that piece, I cannot thank you enough.

Let’s see … what else? Well, speaking domestically, this week, thanks to a leaky pipe, our kitchen suffered a bit of a flood. So for four long days our kitchen has looked something like this scene from E.T.:


But whatever. Talk about a First World problem.

Still, the roar of the vacuums sucking the water right up through the very pores of our floor [!] was insanely deafening.

Which meant that the only suitable television watching (because, you know: what am I gonna do, read?) was old silent movies on Hulu.

And I am now and officially hereby begging you not to allow yourself to die before you’ve seen Harold Lloyd’s all-time mega-classic Safety Last!, from which this iconic shot is taken:


It’s pretty much the greatest thing in the history of me not knowing whether I should snap an internal organ laughing or go into a trance over the phenomenon of human genius.

Also (and I assume this goes without saying, but one never knows) do not not see anything—anything ever recorded on film—starring Charlie Chaplin, who for my money is … well, I suppose the closest thing there is, visually, to Mark Twain.

Hope you all have a fantastic weekend. You’ve earned it. I think we all have—whether we know it or not.

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  • Barbara Rice

    It’s 107 here in NorCal and we (the cats and I) are under the breezes of the swamp cooler (which is to say, we’re still hot), but at least our kitchen didn’t flood when it poured earlier this week.

    It’s been one momentous week and I, for one, am going to pour a celebratory drink. Or two.

    Have a great weekend!

  • Dave Bowling

    Love your thoughts and observations. Kudos about the whole “Exodus” thing … I thought what you said was great and cannot imagine that no major news agency picked up on it … their loss for not grasping the stupidity and twisted thinking going on with that.

    Keep up the good work! You are our champion.

  • Hurrah for Lloyd and Chaplin — great recommendations!

  • Lymis

    Even better breaking news!

    The Ninth Circuit lifted the stay on marriages earlier than anyone expected, and new marriages in California started today – so all the plaintiffs in the Prop 8 case got married today and are now married (one couple in San Francisco, the other in LA). New marriages are now happening as fast as people can get their licenses!


    In more personal news, my husband and I are now even more married than we were – since our valid California marriage from 2008 is now federally recognized!

  • LN

    So glad to hear more people are reading John Shore At least once a week I post something by you on my FB and say “I just love John Shore so much!” so you can thank me for at least….hmmm…2 new readers? Ha!

  • LN


  • Lymis


  • Sah. Wheat.

  • You too, Barbara. Thanks for all you do here and on FB.

  • Allie

    Hey, that’s the clock scene that Jackie Chan nearly got killed paying homage to!

    I’m afraid I’m having a hard time celebrating the Supreme Court decision as much as I should, coming as it did right after their very bad decision on minority voting rights. I’m sad here in Shelby County, ground zero of the New Jim Crow.

  • Allie

    Very happy for you two!

  • Barbara Rice

    Like I tell my husband: everything is a pendulum. Yes, the evisceration of the VRA stinks in about 24,678,467,329 ways. But 2014 is not far away. We shall overcome.

    I know that all sounds hopelessly Pollyanna, but it’s a whole lot better than being a far-right conservative and having the top of my head go ‘splody this week. It’s easier to love and be optimistic than to hate and be angry,

  • Lymis

    Sad, as you should be. But that just means that all of us should be putting pressure on our elected officials to retool the Voting Rights Act and reissue it for the modern day, and equal pressure on the media not to let up until they do.

  • vj

    Wonderful – congratulations to you both 🙂

  • n.


  • I saw Edie Windsor speak last night. Evidently on her and Thea Spyer’s fridge was a sign that said “don’t postpone joy”.

    Maybe it’s possible to hold both the sadness and the joy at the same time?

  • It’s just nice to finally be able to take a moment to actually feel GREAT about something that’s happened before strapping on the weight and heading back up the mountain.

  • Matt

    My week was intense, too. Extreme happiness, sadness, and worry fighting for the limited space in my brain, for various reasons.

    But the weekend is looking up. Just got back from Pride St. Louis, where my partner and I hung out near the only transgender booth in the place. Got to meet the cutest and sweetest 7-year-old transgender boy and his amazing mom. She gave me a hug, saying her biggest regret was not listening to her son sooner. It’s almost mind-boggling how much pain that little boy is going to be spared, and I’m so glad for it. He won’t even have to go through female puberty and then undo it later. I have hope for this next generation of trans people. It’s gonna be good.

    I’m so happy to hear how far your writing is going, John. It’s not just deserved, but desperately needed. I saw no fewer than 5 booths today exclusively for affirming churches. Your voice is a big part of that.

  • Matt

    Big congratulations to you and your husband, Lymis!

  • Bobbi

    I enjoy your wit and wisdom and what wonderfully accurate discriptions of Harold Lloyd and Charlie Chaplin. If you’ve never seen it I recomend ‘The Great Dictator’ Mr. Chaplins speech at the end is phenomenal (Yes, you do need sound for this one) and as poignent yoday as it was 73 years ago.

  • DR


  • Susan in NY

    It has been an amazing week. I am so very thankful for all the good things that have occurred.

  • Absolutely this. A well deserved rest for the weary and more. How many opportunities do we have to be elated by justice? It’s good and right to be joyful when it happens.

  • Lymis

    Amen to that!

  • ppffft

    The false prophet glories in his delusions

  • What an awful thing to say. How can you not like Harold Lloyd??

  • I’ve seen that movie, its classic hilarity. Harold LLoyd was a physical comedy pioneer.

    As for ppffft. You would have gotten more bang for your buck with your statement if you had used one very tiny, yet important thing. The thing I’ve used five times to this point. What is it? A period.

    Punctuation counts dude.

  • I’d gladly send you some of our wetness and cooler temps. The southeast is in a wet pattern.

  • Diane U.

    That last sentence would make more sense with a comma, dudette. 😀

  • Kristyn

    I shared your Alan Chambers letter and the “Unfair” essay over at Stephanie Drury’s “Stuff Christian Culture Likes” FB page. It’s a sort of informal recovery group for those wounded by Evangelical/ Fundamentalist Christian culture. There are a number of LGBT people over there, and I think they really appreciated having Christians stand up for them–particularly when they are so used to being verbally abused by Fundamentalists. I can’t express the gratitude I see, when people who are so used to being beaten down by religion, read a John Shore piece I have posted. God Bless, and thanks for helping straight Christians allies stand up for our LGBT brothers and sisters.

  • tell that to e e cummings

  • Elizabeth

    To be nobody but yourself in a world which is doing its best, night and day, to make you everybody else means to fight the hardest battle which any human being can fight; and never stop fighting.

  • Jill

    Getting excited for our Pride event in 2 weeks. I’ll be holding down the Union UCC booth for a few hours, so that’s kind of like commitment, huh? 😉

    I’ll be curious to see how many other churches will be representing. Cynicism replaced by hope.

  • Diane U.

    Tell that to sdparris. 🙂

  • Jill

    … the humor with the laughing.

    I gotta remember to have me some of that on occasion.