The Christian Faith & Many Faiths: On the Great Commandments and the Great Commission, Part I

The-One-and-the-Many[1] (2)

What does it look like to live out the Christian faith in a multi-faith society? My recent Leadership Journal article titled "The One and the Many: Ministry that's clearly Christian in a multi-faith world" begins with the following words: We now minister in a multi-faith society. Our congregants are living and working in a multi-faith world.Our congregants of Asian-American heritage may very well attend funeral services of Buddhist family members where incense is burned.Our church … [Read more...]

The One and the Many

130801 The One and the Many

This is an excerpt of a recent essay I was invited to write for Leadership Journal. Click on over for the full article. We now minister in a multi-faith society. Our congregants are living and working in a multi-faith world.Our congregants of Asian-American heritage may very well attend funeral services of Buddhist family members where incense is burned.Our church members will probably be asked during a coffee break what they make of the Dalai Lama as a spiritual guide, or what they … [Read more...]

Going Home

The historic Kawaiaha'o Church

I was invited to speak at the historic Hawaiian church, Kawaiaha'o Church, on July 7. It was an honor to be with their congregation and share this message. You can listen to me deliver the sermon or read it below.Where do you belong? To whom do you belong? These are the kinds of questions with which we live all our days—from childhood to our elder years.Back in 1998, when my son (our oldest) was 3, we were in Japan, hoping to land a job, after finishing my course of doctoral studies. To m … [Read more...]

Hawaiian Theology, Part III

Where Coconuts Grow

This is part of a series of posts on the topic of Hawaiian theology. Start with part 1 and part 2.Listen to this piece.Some may fear the loss of authoritative control when considering the possibility of how orality may shape textuality and theology generally. Whether we are aware of it or not, orality and other forces shape our approach to texts. Those we deem authoritative shape our readings of texts. Schools of thought develop around those who are deemed authoritative.Take for e … [Read more...]

Hawaiian Theology, Part II

Where Coconuts Grow

This is part of a series of posts on the topic of Hawaiian theology. Start with part 1.Listen to this piece.The study of Hawaiian theology is a very intricate and fragile affair. The intricacies are bound up in part with the multi-ethnic reality of Hawaii. One must also account for the oral nature of communication historically and presently. One scholar here in Hawaii shared with me how difficult it is to study Hawaiian theology since Native Hawaiians have so often resorted to oral means … [Read more...]

Hawaiian Theology, Part I

Where Coconuts Grow

Listen to this piece.What is Hawaiian theology, and what goes into the making of it? The answers to these questions are far beyond my comprehension because there are so many facets to them. Still, they are worth exploring. This post begins to explore them. Along these lines, it is worth addressing questions of cultural preservation as well as transformation and the contextualization of the gospel in the Hawaiian culture, as with any culture. Not that one ever answers fully such questions, … [Read more...]

White Theology, Part III

This is part of a series of posts on the topic of racialized theology. Start with part 1 and part 2.Mention was made in my previous post that many people see Black Theology as contextual, but fail to comprehend that all theology is contextual. While I do not share Adolf von Harnack’s view set forth in the History of Dogma that Christian theology or dogma was intellectualized and Hellenized in such a way as to distort or cover the essential gospel, nonetheless, Western theology as h … [Read more...]


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