Looking for Enemies

Right and Left

The March 2015 issue of Charisma magazine includes an article entitled "Here's How the New Christian Left is Twisting the Gospel." Now, I'm not familiar enough with Charisma's digital reach to say whether or not this article went "viral," but I can tell you that the online version has been shared 676,000 times over the last nine days and that it popped up three times on my own Facebook feed. There is so much wrong with this article that it makes my head swirl. And yet I can't get over how predictable it is too. It’s a smorgasbord of familiar attacks. The author, Chelsen Vicari, decries “scare … [Read more...]

Alexander Schmemann – Lent is a Time of Slowing Down

Alexander Schmemann

 This passage by the renowned Orthodox theologian Alexander Schmemann resonated with me when I read it recently, an appropriate reflection for Ash Wednesday... Lent is a Time of Slowing Down Alexander Schmemann ( Read this passage in its larger context at The Englewood Review of Books )HOW CAN WE KEEP GREAT LENT?  It is obviously impossible for us to go to Church every day. And since we cannot keep the Lent liturgically, the question arises: what is our participation in Lent, how can we spiritually profit by it? The Church calls us to deepen our religious conscience, … [Read more...]

Ken Wytsma – The Grand Paradox [Patheos Book Club]

Wytsma

[ This post is part of the Patheos Book Club discussion of THE GRAND PARADOX ]The Grand Paradox: The Messiness of Life, the Mystery of God and the Necessity of Faith Ken Wytsma Hardback: Thomas Nelson, 2015.In my early years of college, I went through somewhat of a crisis of faith, questioning who God was and how God relates to humanity. It was a pretty bleak time, but eventually through long series of conversations with friends and through reading certain works of writers in the Christian tradition like C.S. Lewis, Madeleine L’Engle and Frederick Buechner, I eventually grew into a … [Read more...]

A Community of Simple Living [Economics of Church and Seminary #2]

RecreationMonksCellMuseumSGJalpan

 We’re delighted to have a guest post today (the second in a series of three) by Justin Barringer, who was featured in David Wheeler’s article in The Atlantic about the effects of seminary debt.  *** You can find the previous posts in this series here… ***  As the church has been caught up in this nightmare, we have, perhaps oddly, insisted that clergy are somehow supposed to be uniquely able and expected to avoid the snares of upward mobility. As folks were suggesting in the comments on the Atlantic article, clergy are not supposed to be in it for the money. In fact, it was … [Read more...]

Reimagining the Economics of Church and Seminary

Church-Image-BW

Several weeks ago, The Atlantic ran a much-discussed article on the high cost of seminary, amidst the struggling economy of churches.  The article reminded us of a question that John and I have been getting often as we are out on the road talking about Slow Church:How can our church afford to be guided by a Slow, "Small is beautiful" philosophy when the economic pressure -- either from denominations or from the personal load of debt that our pastors bear -- is driving us to take the tempting shortcuts of "fast church"?Let me begin by saying that we don't have any easy solutions to … [Read more...]

The Christology of Slow Church?

The_Crucifixion

My friend Tato Sumantri, of Church of the Servant King in Eugene, Oregon (which incidentally hosted one of the Slow Church events that John and I did in the Pacific Northwest in June) recently sent me an email with a couple of very thoughtful questions about the Slow Church book.  This is the second and final post in response to Tato:[ AND HERE is Tato's first question on Sin and Repentance ]  “What does Jesus have to do with any of this [in the Slow Church book]? What is preventing a slow church movement from being just another sociological phenomenon, like the slow food movement? We ar … [Read more...]

Slow Church, Sin and Repentance.

storm_clouds

My friend Tato Sumantri, of Church of the Servant King in Eugene, Oregon (which incidentally hosted one of the Slow Church events that John and I did in the Pacific Northwest last month) recently sent me an email with a couple of very thoughtful questions about the Slow Church book.  I will be answering these questions here over the next week.  Here is the first one:“[You] make scant reference to sin and repentance. On a whole, Slow Church: Cultivating Community in the Patient Way of Jesus reads as one option among many to live out life in Christ, but nothing is really at stake. In his Rom … [Read more...]


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