False Economies and False Gods

Bull

This morning I was re-reading my favorite Wendell Berry essay, "Discipline and Hope," which has become an essential text for me in trying to understand the meaning and implications of Slow Church. I was struck today by a short passage on the ways we have come to idolize the present economy. Berry writes:   "If the Golden Rule were generally observed among us, the economy would not last a week. We have made our false economy a false god, and it has made blasphemy of the truth. So I have met the economy in the road, and am expected to yield it right of way. But I will not get over. My reason is … [Read more...]

Chick-fil-A: Are boycotts (and anti-boycott appreciations) faithful politics?

Chicken

Facebook is abuzz today (as it has been for over a week) with people showing their support or their distaste for Chick-Fil-A and president Dan Cathy's recent statement of opposition to gay marriage.  I'm not going to take sides here, but I do want to challenge those who identify as Christians with the question of whether boycotts are ways of engaging those with whom we disagree that fit with our call to follow in the way of Jesus?A boycott is, in essence, returning evil for evil; you have said or done something that has hurt me, so I will retaliate at your economic existence by … [Read more...]

Walter Brueggemann Cuts to the Heart of Slow Church.

brueggemann

Was getting ready to starting writing the chapter on Abundance for the Slow Church book, by reading an article by Walter Brueggemann entitled "The Liturgy of Abundance, The Myth of Scarcity" when I stumbled on the following words, which I just had to stop everything and share, as they so elegantly name what Slow Church is about:Wouldn't it be wonderful if liberal and conservative church people, who love to quarrel with each other, came to a common realization that the real issue confronting us is whether the news of God's abundance can be trusted in the face of the story of … [Read more...]

Slow Church and the Mainline Churches.

Mainline

Had a fabulous time over the last few days at the Academy of Parish Clergy annual gathering in Dayton, Ohio.  I found the diverse group of mostly mainline pastors to be extraordinarily hospitable, specifically in inviting me to represent The Englewood Review of Books there (Thanks, Bob Cornwall for the invitation!) and in allowing me to share bits of our story here at Englewood Christian Church (briefly recounted in my recent ebook, The Virtue of Dialogue).  Also, it was wonderful to meet Carol Howard Merritt, who was the main conference speaker, and chat with her about some of the challenges f … [Read more...]

Plotting an Advent Conspiracy

Advent Conspiracy

Whether your costume is back in storage or still crumpled up on the floor, whether or not you're still coming down from your sugar high, Halloween is over and so begins the unofficial start to the holiday season. (Hey, Costco has been selling Christmas ornaments since at least September.) This is the time of year we re-connect with family and friends, take time to acknowledge our many blessings, and of course celebrate Emmanuel, God with us. It's also a season characterized by hyper-stress, hyper-consumerism, and, absurdly, department store stampedes.It is helpful for me to pause at the … [Read more...]


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