Ragan Sutterfield’s Farming as a Spiritual Discipline

Ragan-Cover

Food is central to the vision of Slow Church, in the practices of sharing food together and also caring about where our food comes from that God so graciously and abundantly provides food for us.One of the most helpful introductory books in thinking about food in the life of the church is our friend Ragan Suttterfield's book Farming As A Spiritual Discipline. This book was developed from three talks that Ragan gave here at Englewood Christian Church in 2008, at a conference that we hosted on the church and agriculture.For today (Monday July 16) and tomorrow (Tuesday July 17), this book … [Read more...]

Enter to win a copy of Reborn on the Fourth of July (Patheos Book Club)

Reborn4th

Nationalistic faith is one of the "sins of abstraction" that we push back against in the in Slow Church book because in preferring one nation over others, it fails to consider the whole of God's work in reconciling all creation.Thus, I was delighted to see that the current Patheos book club title is Logan Mehl-Laituri's Reborn on the Fourth of July...For decades now, the United States has proudly claimed the mantle of "the world's only superpower" based on military might and the scope of military interventions throughout the world. As a result, whole generations are growing up with the … [Read more...]

Following Christ in a World of Distractions (RIP, Ray Bradbury).

Ray_Bradbury_(1975)

As you probably have heard by now, Ray Bradbury, author of Fahrenheit 451 and other novels passed away yesterday. (NY TIMES obit)My friend Chase Roden, sent me the following reflection this morning, which I share here, since a key part of what we are calling Slow Church is vigilance and attentiveness to discerning together what is faithfulness and what is distraction.  Thank you, Chase. And R.I.P., Ray BradburyRay Bradbury died on Tuesday. I loved his books as a kid and never really returned to them after high school, but there's one scene -- from Fahrenheit 451 -- that has … [Read more...]

PregMANcy – Patheos Book Club.

pregmancy cover final

I was invited to share a few thoughts on Christian Piatt's new book Pregmancy: A Dad, A Little Dude and A Due Date, as part of the Patheos Book Club...[ Read an excerpt of the book on the Sojo blog - "The Pee Stick" ]I am so glad that I was invited to read this book, because frankly it's not the sort of book that I would have picked up on my own.  Memoirs are simply not a genre that I go out of my way to read. But, this one is different. Christian Piatt's uncensored account of the pregnancy and birth of their second child is absolutely hilarious!  Any dad, or any family, will get … [Read more...]

Reading for Conversation.

Bibliothek_St._Florian

John and I agree that the practice of reading is essential to our understanding of Slow Church. Indeed, it was a mutual love of books that connected us in the first place.  In the age of talking heads, the soundbite and the two-minute YouTube video, reading is a practice that can be useful for slowing churches down and guiding us into meaningful conversations.  Here at Englewood Christian Church, we are blessed to have many people who are deeply committed to the practice of reading, which continually energizes our on-going Sunday night conversation (I have told the story of this a … [Read more...]

Beds and Books: The Hospitality of Shakespeare and Company

Shakespeare and Company

Everything that rises must converge. Well, here is a fun convergence of interests.I am writing a chapter on hospitality for the Slow Church book. I have reference volumes stacked ten-high on my desk at home. But in the car to and from work I have been listening to audiobooks by Ernest Hemingway. The first audiobook I listened to is my favorite Hemingway book: A Moveable Feast, which is about Hemingway's time as a young writer in 1920s Paris. In fact, the Hemingway kick was inspired by Woody Allen's film Midnight in Paris - also partially set in the 1920s - a movie I compulsively rent and wa … [Read more...]

Eternal Beings Living in Time: On Wendell Berry’s “Jayber Crow”

wendell-berry

I have an unusually long commute these days, a burden I am taking steps to alleviate. The commute is redeemed somewhat by the opportunity to listen to audiobooks. If someone sets out to be a writer, the first piece of advice they get to is to keep writing. The second is to keep reading. I would append the second bit of advice to say "Keep reading. When possible, read out loud or be read to." There is something special about the way hearing a book, story, or poem read aloud can tune a writer's ear to the music of language and good storytelling.For the most part, I've been using the commute … [Read more...]


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