Sunday Afternoon Book Review: SEEING TREES.

[There have been a multitude of books that have been helpful for John and I in fleshing out the concept of Slow Church.  We will regularly feature a review of one such book every Sunday afternoon. ] One discipline necessary for resisting the speed and inattentiveness of Western culture is seeing.  Although the following book takes trees as its object, it is really about recovering practices of seeing and attention. And given that trees of some sort are pretty much… Read more

The Deeper and Richer Life of Gratitude.

I wrote the following piece earlier this week for the lectionary blog of the Ekklesia Project.  Thought I’d re-post it here as gratitude is a key virtue of a Slow Church, and because the text will be one used tomorrow in many churches that follow the Revised Common Lectionary. (Also, the Ekklesia Project’s annual gathering next summer in Chicago –dates in early July, TBA soon — is on the theme of “Slow Church: Abiding Together in the Patient Work of… Read more

VIDEO: Becoming the Liturgy – Ian Morgan Cron on the Slow Work of God.

This is a lovely clip from The Work of the People of Ian Morgan Cron talking about the Slow work of God… (HT: Scott Emery)     CLICK HERE for another related and excellent clip from Cron, on the bread and the wine… Read more

Eating, Talking, and Plotting Goodness Together: An Interview with Dee Dee Risher

Conspire! magazine is a project of The Simple Way and a growing number of “co-conspiring communities” around the country. Each themed issue includes great writing and visual art, all with an eye toward building relationships and exploring “the questions of faith that arise from living for justice and as part of the body.” The current issue is about “Food, Feast, and Table,” and it includes, among other features, an essay by Jonathan Wilson-Hartgrove, an interview with Wendell Berry, an article… Read more

Scot McKnight on the centrality of the local church.

Our fellow Patheos blogger has been stirring up some intense conversation with his recent post “Kingdom Work, Social Justice” (Be sure to read the comments).  Here’s the heart of the post: I’m all for “social” justice. I’m fighting the trend I see today of equating “kingdom work” with public sector social justice work. As if “kingdom” is something done outside the church. As I read the Gospels, Jesus’ uses “kingdom” for himself/God as King, for his followers who enter into… Read more

VIDEO: Stanley Hauerwas: The local church as alternative to a culture of violence

I recently finished reviewing Stanley Hauerwas’s newest book War and the American Difference: Theological Reflections on Violence and National Identity for Sojourners magazine.  I won’t rehash my whole review here, as it will be available in due time, but I will say that the most striking thing about the book was his turn toward the local church congregation in the third and final part, a direction in which his work has made gestures in the past, but has never gone… Read more

“God Does Not Hurry”

“All revolutionaries have one basic problem: they are all short of time” – Gerhard Lohfink, Does God Need the Church? One of the most basic theological convictions in our understanding of Slow Church is the slowness of God.  Kelly Johnson does a wonderful job of explaining this slowness in her essay “God Does Not Hurry” from the recent book God Does Not…: Entertain, Play “Matchmaker,” Hurry, Demand Blood, Cure Every Illness (Baker Books, 2009, Brent Laytham, Editor). Read a good… Read more

Keep in Touch

A bit of housekeeping: Both in the book and on the blog, Chris and I want to do more than write about “Slow Church” as an abstract ideal. Slow Church is rooted in the human, natural, and spiritual cultures of particular places and particular people in a particular time. Chris and I want to lay out the key concepts of Slow Church, while also telling the stories of faith communities around the country (heck, around the world) who are actually… Read more

CCDA Recap. (Or, May our means fit our ends).

I spent the bulk of last week at the Christian Community Development Association’s annual conference, which was held here in Indianapolis this year.  The CCDA conference is always a great opportunity to see old friends from around the country who are engaged in good, reconciling work in their places, and I was excited to be a part of the host team for this year’s gathering. For the vast majority of the week, I was hunkered down in the CCDA bookstore,… Read more

Gather ‘Round

[vimeo]http://vimeo.com/29906293[/vimeo] Here is an event you should know about. The folks over at CONSPIRE Magazine are celebrating the release of their “Food, Feast, and Table” issue by inviting people to participate in “Gather ‘Round” events throughout the month of November. These are nights of “food and celebration and drawing together.” CONSPIRE is at its best when we come face to face. Breathing together in real and tangible ways is at the core of who we are. This special night embraces… Read more