JPUSA: A Tragic History of Sexual Abuse

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Although I heard awhile back that that this documentary on the sexual abuse of minors at the Jesus People USA (JPUSA) Community in Chicago was in the works, I happened to see this article on the Christianity Today website this afternoon and saw that it was released today.  I knew that it would be one that I needed to watch, so I plunked down my ten bucks and downloaded the movie.  You see, I have been acquainted with JPUSA for over 20 years; I have visited their community a couple of times and have friends who are members or former members.  There was a block of 5 or 6 years -- before my wife a … [Read more...]

Remembering Mr. Rogers.

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  Today marks the 11th anniversary of the death of Fred Rogers (aka, PBS's Mr. Rogers).   John and I have made no secret of the fact that we are big fans of Mr. Rogers, and even refer to him in the Slow Church book -- in reference to his ideas about the formative power of dinner table conversation.We love that his work is situated in a neighborhood, that it is fundamentally about friendship, being attentive always and welcoming everyone as a gift.  Our churches would do well to learn from his example. In memory of Fred Rogers today, I thought it would be appropriate to share a few … [Read more...]

Slow Church: Embodying Justice, Peace and Love [Video]

Last Saturday, I had the opportunity to do a brief talk (between broadcast sessions) at The Justice Conference Indianapolis. I gave a short description of Slow Church that focused on our call to embody justice, peace and love in our local congregations. I also read part of one of my favorite poems by Wendell Berry and highlighted four themes in it that are essential to Slow Church: 1) Stability / Rootedness 2) Listening to our neighbors and the land in our place 3) Imagining flourishing futures for church and neighborhood 4) Working  with and for others, so that they can do these same … [Read more...]

Why I Don’t Go To Church

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There has been a lot of buzz online in recent days about the value of church attendance.  Initiated by a pair of posts by Donald Miller, ( The initial post... and the followup.), who bravely confessed that he rarely goes to church, Miller's posts were followed up by this piece on Christianity Today's PARSE blog, which dug a little deeper but had more of the feel of an expose, and didn't get to the heart of what seems (to me anyway) to be the crucial issues about church.I appreciate Donald's honesty -- and Brian McLaren's as well, in response to the PARSE piece -- and I have no interest … [Read more...]

Steven Furtick and the ‘Disneyfication’ of Baptism

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A Story About What Slow Church is NOT... Steven Furtick offers much fodder for critique -- the multi-million dollar house, etc. -- but this new story of Elevation's practice of "Spontaneous Baptism" highlighted many of the criticisms of industrialized Christianity that we are raising in the Slow Church book.I was alerted to this story through a report on the WCNC-TV (Charlotte) website: How Elevation Church, Pastor Furtick produce 'spontaneous' baptismsThe whole article is worth reading, but here are some crucial clips:"Elevation Church keeps an exact count of its thousands of … [Read more...]

A Dark Side to Slow Church?

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 I have been reading a bunch of articles today on the legacy of John Howard Yoder (what his well-documented incidents of sexual harassment mean for how we interpret his theology).  Lots of good important questions being asked, and many of them related to Slow Church.  For those interested, I started here and was eventually led to this superb two-part article. The most challenging question is: Does the slowness of Slow Church just serve to prop up existing power structures, such as patriarchy, whiteness and heterosexuality?  Is this a dark side to Slow Church? Pa … [Read more...]

Willie Jennings – New Keynote Speaker for the Slow Church Conference!

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I'm very excited to announce that Willie Jennings of Duke Divinity School has been added as a keynote speaker for the Slow Church Conference here at Englewood Christian Church, April 3-5.[ Have you registered yet?  Our Early Bird Registration price of $99 is good through this Friday Feb 7... Register now and save!] Read my review of Prof. Jennings important book The Christian Imagination...The Christian Imagination: Theology and the Origins of Race.  Yale UP, 2010.  Buy now:  [ Amazon ]  [ Kindle ]  Here is a superb interview that highlights the key themes of the … [Read more...]


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