All In The Family?

Yesterday, the Out of Ur blog ran a post about one of the key reasons for the demise of Robert Schuller's Crystal Cathedral. The author of the post wrote, "A former Crystal Cathedral board member believes family dynamics led, in part, to the decline of the ministry." After summarizing the low points of the long, messy decline of this particular megachurch, the writer asks readers to offer their responses to questions including Would you want to be part of a church that's essentially a family … [Read more...]

Graduating from my own writing “school”

"Mrs. Van Loon, I couldn't do my assignment for you because I was too busy doing my work for Mrs. Stewart's class.Three or four other kids sang back-up to that excuse: "Me either...Too busy....Mrs. Stewart."I was teaching a writing class for a home school co-op, and had asked the middle-school group to pull out the short writing assignment I'd given them the week before so we could work on them together. A third of the kids in the group were also enrolled in an expensive public speaking … [Read more...]

Falling Upward, Chapter 6

I’m blogging through Father Richard Rohr’s Falling Upward: A Spirituality Through The Two Halves Of Life. Even if you haven’t read the book, please stick around and join the conversation here if you’re facing a mid-life transition. Father Rohr offers us all some meaty food for thought.Here are links to my previous posts in the series:  Intro — Chapter 1 — Chapter 2 — Chapter 3 —Chapter 4 - Chapter 5 * * * * * * * Chapter 6 is titled "Necessary Suffering", and offers a discussion about the role … [Read more...]

Book review: No Easy Choice

A couple of decades ago, I stood along the side of a busy highway for an hour a couple of Sunday afternoons holding a sign that read "Abortion Kills Children", along with about 75 others. Some honked as they drove by in a gesture of solidarity with those of us in the life chain. Others gave us the middle-finger salute, or shared their feelings with us via curse words yelled out their car windows. In the end, I wasn't convinced that our well-meaning silent protest would change anyone's mind, … [Read more...]

Welcome to the GCB-free zone

I watched the premiere of ABC's GCB last night. The low-octane blend of Mean Girls, Saved, any Real Housewives episode, a couple of jumbo cans of Aqua Net and a fifth of Grey Goose was like an overpriced drink; a GCB-tini meant to inebriate, not celebrate. There's just enough truth inside GCB's Texas-sized stereotypes about the unwritten rules of some corners of American religious culture to make this a shrill caricature. Religion here is just another way to continue the contact-sport … [Read more...]

Falling Upward, Chapter 5

I’m blogging through Richard Rohr’s Falling Upward: A Spirituality Through The Two Halves Of Life. Even if you haven’t read the book, please stick around and join the conversation here if you’re facing a mid-life transition. Father Rohr offers us all some meaty food for thought.Here are links to my previous posts in the series:  Intro --- Chapter 1 --- Chapter 2 --- Chapter 3 ---Chapter 4 * * * * * * * We now`round the bend into Chapter 5, entitled 'Stumbling Over The Stumbling Stone'. "Sooner … [Read more...]

(Don’t) take me to your leader

What is it like to be led by a spiritual leader who has immersed himself/herself in Leader Culture? You probably know a leader like this: a man or woman who devours John Maxwell books by the pound, attends conferences devoted to training his or her inner alpha dog, and exercises a vocabulary packed with tech words like "bandwidth", "capacity", "strategic" and "leverage" to talk about the congregation.A memorable series and a recent blog post got me thinking about this question. Leadership is a … [Read more...]


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