Listening for the Still, Small Voice: Reflections on Kristen Vincent’s book “A Bead and a Prayer”

UR1217 Bead and Prayer1

“God was not in the wind…God was not in the earthquake…God was not in the fire; and after the fire, the sound of sheer silence.” (I Kings 19:11-12) We are people, used to noise and constant communication that often fragments and distracts rather than unites and focuses. At my local Cape Cod market, I sing [Read More...]

Big Enough Desires? Reflections on Jen Pollock Michel’s “Teach Us to Want”

BC_TeachUstoWant_1

Jen Pollock Michel’s Teach Us to Want: Longing, Ambition, and the Life of Faith is an honest and insightful book, born of her own experience of responding to the legion of desires characteristic of daily life as a mother, spouse, and professional seeking to be faithful to God’s call. She invites us to explore the [Read More...]

On Families and Faith: A Response to Mary Eberstadt’s “How the West Really Lost God”

BC_HowtheWestReallyLostGod_1-2

Our congregations should make families key to our ministries, but we should support the health of families regardless of their constitution. [Read more...]

Saints Everywhere: On Brandon Vogt’s “Saints and Social Justice”

BC_SaintsandSocialJustice_1

Although I am a progressive Protestant and by inclination feel some discomfort in setting apart certain people as saints, I found Brandon Vogt’s Saints and Social Justice: A Guide to Changing the World is an inspiring book. While many of the stories of saints belong more to legend than fact, what shines through is that [Read More...]

Relativity and Revelation: Responding to Samaa Habib’s “Face to Face with Jesus”

BC_FacetoFacewithJesus_1

Samaa Habib’s Face to Face with Jesus: A Former Muslim’s Journey to Heaven and Encounter with the God of Love is a fascinating spiritual autobiography, describing one person’s encounter with the holy.  It is a highly personal book with universal ramifications.  It is highly particularistic and sectarian, yet it also has an unexpected globalism. Like [Read More...]

What’s a Church to Do? A Response to Naomi Shaefer Riley’s “Got Religion?”

Got_Religion

As the pastor of a mid-sized congregation, South Congregational Church, United Church of Christ, on Cape Cod, I am as perplexed as most of my colleagues about how to reach out to twenty and thirty-year-olds in our community. With the exception of the children of long-time members or persons planning to get married at our [Read More...]

Slow Church and the Transformation of Time

BC_SlowChurch_1

A Response to Slow Church: Cultivating Community in the Patient Way of Jesus, by Christopher Smith and John Pattison In a recent conversation, a young adult noted, “I’m not interested in going to the big church down the road, with its band and big screen. It’s just like the mall. When I go to church, I [Read More...]


CLOSE | X

HIDE | X