When Jesus Returns, Will He Find Faith or Technology?

When Jesus returns to earth, will he find faith? Perhaps not, but he may find technology. I thought about this topic while listening to an interview where Martin Scorsese discusses his new movie Silence, his own personal story, and faith. Refer here for the interview.The film is based on Shusaku Endo’s book by the same title (I recently wrote about the movie in a post titled “Apostasy: Would You Ever Renounce Your Faith? Reflections on the Movie ‘Silence’”). The movie chronicles two Jesuit mi … [Read more...]

Jesus Is Like a Rich Oriental Tapestry—Marvel at His Pattern

Many Christians celebrate the Epiphany of the Lord as well as his Baptism today. There is so much to marvel at when considering Jesus’ worth and these two events.Technically speaking, the Feast of Epiphany falls on January 6th, the twelfth day of Christmas. And yet, as a few articles referenced in this blog post point out, some churches move the celebration to the closest Sunday (today—January 8th). Epiphany marks the occasion of the manifestation of God’s Son who became human as Jesus. Meani … [Read more...]

Apostasy: Would You Ever Renounce Your Faith? Reflections on the Film “Silence”

Have you ever experienced such trauma in your faith that you were tempted to renounce Jesus? Have you ever wondered what it might be like for Christians undergoing severe persecution in other countries, and how they might remain resilient? What if God does not rescue them, but is silent? The newly released movie Silence raised such questions for me.Based on the book Silence (Chinmoku) by Shusaku Endo, Martin Scorsese’s film version chronicles the journey of two Portuguese Jesuit missionaries … [Read more...]

You Get One Shot at Life. Invest Well this Year.

This is not an NRA ad advocating for more ammunition, or a stock broker commercial telling you how to invest your money. It is rather a reflection following a funeral service. What a bummer in the new year!Actually, a funeral can be a rather life-affirming rather than morbid thing to consider. Funerals, like weddings, offer us opportunities to reinvest in life and relationships with renewed vigor and purpose.Such was the case with my friend Clark Blakeman's funeral service yesterday, … [Read more...]

Mother Mary Stands at the Crossroads of the New Year

It is fitting that the Church celebrates Mary, the Mother of Jesus, on January 1st. While Catholics and Protestants have been divided over the significance of Mary for the Church’s life, she can and does serve as a point of connection, and not simply between the old and new year. I will develop this theme of connection in what follows.Today, the Roman Catholic Church celebrates the Solemnity of Mary, which involves honoring her as “the Holy Mother of God” (Refer here). While there are many fe … [Read more...]

Which Will It Be on New Year’s Eve and Day—Foolish Feasting or Joyful Solemnity?

No doubt, there will be a great deal of foolish behavior on display tonight as people welcome in the New Year. For others, a joyful solemnity will mark the occasion, as people prepare for the first Sunday of 2017.For some, the solemnity includes remembrance of Jesus’ circumcision. In the church calendar, obedience marks tomorrow, as various Christian communities celebrate The Feast of the Circumcision of the Lord.The biblical background for the Feast of the Circumcision of the Lord is t … [Read more...]

Well, At Least It Looks As If Keith Richards Will Survive 2016.

Well, at least it looks as if Rolling Stones guitarist Keith Richards will survive 2016. The Internet is full of memes on Richards' seeming invincibility. Many find it surprising given all Richards has been through—or put himself through—over the years.I'm glad Richards is still with us, regardless of whether or not he has some "Sympathy for the Devil" (the title of one of the Stones' songs). After all, God is the grand artist and musician. If someone has a gift for music, it comes from God, … [Read more...]