5 Priorities as We Vote

A number of years ago, I invited a New Testament scholar to speak at the Cathedral in Washington. I picked him up at Reagan – National – Airport - in Washington – by God – DC. We drove up the tidal basin past the Jefferson Memorial, Arlington National Cemetery, west of the Lincoln Memorial, the Reflecting Pool, the Washington Monument, and the Capitol, and then traveled up Rock Creek Parkway, past the Kennedy Center.“You, know,” he said, “I began my work as an archaeologist and I’ve often tho … [Read more...]

7 Ways to Prepare Spiritually to Vote

The election of a new President comes into sharper focus next week with the primaries.We’ve been polled, encouraged, recruited, and berated.   We have been told that we are better than we are and we’ve been told that we worse than we are.Now it’s time to begin weighing the real-world consequences of our vote.It is also time to consider our spiritual obligations.So, how do we make a decision about voting marked by thoughtful, deliberative, and spiritual preparation?Here are som … [Read more...]

5 Spiritual Truths that Won’t Change with the Election of a New President

Some time ago, Ben Myers, a systematics professor at United Theological College in Sydney, Australia, summarized the Bible, book by book, using Twitter.  He did an admirable job of capturing the themes of First and Second Kings: 1 Kings: So, you really want a monarchy huh? Don't say I didn't warn you.2 Kings: I told you so. Read together, the message of those two books could be understood as an endorsement of theocracy (i.e., the direct rule of God).  But they are much better read – as the … [Read more...]

3 Things Francis Taught Us Today about Politics

The address that Pope Francis gave this morning before Congress was holistic and pro-life.  He spoke to the needs of the poor, the dreams of the common man and woman, the preservation of the creation, the devastating impact of violence, the danger of fundamentalism, the fragile nature of the modern family, the death penalty, and the need to protect the unborn.  He pointed us to the contemplative, Thomas Merton, and the activist, Dorothy Day.  He spoke to the example of Martin Luther King.  In sho … [Read more...]

The One Reason a Global Church Matters

Earlier this week The Guardian declared, “Justin Welby’s plan to split the Anglican Church tells us a lot about religion and politics.”  As English Bishop Nick Baines observed, the headline also told us a lot about the journalistic talent of some of the folks at The Guardian.  Baines tweeted, "Can't they read?" Evidently not. Clearly, the Archbishop of Canterbury is not trying to split the Anglican Communion by calling for a global meeting of the church’s leaders.  What he is trying to do, I s … [Read more...]

Beyond Partisanship

I've had it. Don't spin me. Don't lie to me. Don't bury me in a mountain of legalize and tell me I'm ignorant. Don't exploit my tax dollars. Don't sell my country to special interests foreign and domestic. Don't tell me you are for a champion of the poor and squire around DC in limos, fly across the country in government-provided transportation, and dine at DC's finest restaurants. Don't tell me you are a champion of the people and focus on getting re-elected over and over again. Don't poor … [Read more...]

Prejudice and the Partisan Future

 The lasting concern over the hacking of email at Sony Pictures will no doubt revolve around the question of what the perpetrators do with an early script from the James Bond franchise.But what we should be paying attention to is the evidence of prejudice that thrives behind closed doors among the Sony leadership elite.  Co-chair Amy Pascal and Producer Scot Rudin are, it seems, capable of the same childish, mean-spirited prejudice that some would have us believe thrives only on the … [Read more...]

Who is my brother? Who is my sister?

Here we go again.  The ill-considered words of a public servant will fuel public fears about Christianity’s influence and embarrass no small number of us who are Christians.Moments into his new administrative responsibilities the governor of Alabama told a congregation that those who are not Christians are not his brothers and sisters.  As Anne Lamott once observed in a different connection, it is the kind of statement that would drive Jesus to drink gin from the cat’s dish.There are at least … [Read more...]


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