Seven pieces of institutional clutter the UMC needs to leave behind

Right now, the UMC, bound by institutional clutter, is unfree, rigid, divisive and has regulated creativity out of the system. I’m a sucker for the “25 things you need to get rid of” article. Clutter drives me crazy. I used to watch those hoarding TV shows. In so doing, I became aware of the ease [Read More…]

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Ask the Thoughtful Pastor: Dan Patrick and the now infamous tweet

Dear Thoughtful Pastor: Can you tell me the background for Dan Patrick’s tweet? This verse comes from the New International Version (NIV) translation of the Greek Bible. The NIV is a male-centric interpretative translation so I am going to turn to the more accurately inclusive New Revised Standard Version where the verse reads: “Do not [Read More…]

Standing Up to Oppression: Will We Pay the Cost?

A man sits in a house of worship, struggling with despair, staring at his useless hand.  He couldn’t harness an ox, hold a plow, slaughter an animal, or build a shelter.  Total ruin for his family loomed.  He’d beg, but his wife and children would be sold into slavery. Others entered into the worship space, [Read More…]

When Theology Drives a Presidential Race, It is Time to be Scared

We passed a campaign sign for a local race that read “Protect Your Religious Liberties. Vote for  . . . ” I turn to my husband and said, “As one who has sought to live as Christianly as possible all my adult life, I am at a point where I refuse to vote for anyone [Read More…]

Shall We Just Call Them Mistakes?

The world is ever so much easier to deal with when everything divides into two neat categories. This is good, that is bad. This is heaven, this is hell. This is day, this is night.  This is right, this is wrong.  This is a wave; that is a particle, except we know matter can be [Read More…]

Biblical Ignorance and the Delegates to General Conference

I have been reading blog after blog about what is happening at General Conference, taking particular interest in the ones that supported the now dead legislation that would take language out of the Book of Discipline that condemns homosexual practices. I have numerous thoughts here. The thing that hits me the hardest here is the [Read More…]