November 4, 2015

In November, the Pew Research Center released its findings of 35,000 surveyed Americans. It found a slight drop in religious affiliation and belief in a higher power. The decline in daily prayer, church going, and belief in a divine creator “declined modestly in recent years”, according to the report. The 266 page study noted Millennials are the driving factor who “do not belong to any organized faith”. Overall, Americans unaffiliated with a religion rose to 23%, an increase of seven points in... Read more

October 10, 2015

On Thursday, October 8, I stepped outside a healthcare center in upstate New York where I do ethics and compliance work. The center primarily serves the economically disadvantaged. An older man had pushed to the center’s front door a grocery cart with his homeless friend sitting inside. A torn, soiled seat cushion provided some comfort to his back against the thin metal spokes that pressed against him. George the maintenance person was there and immediately offered to get a wheel... Read more

September 25, 2015

Tax-exempt status for churches is “an evil” and “if permitted to continue, will probably lead to great trouble.” No, that’s not from a recent commentary by satirist John Oliver who created a stir when he criticized the IRS for not providing oversight of churches and unscrupulous fundraising tactics. President Ulysses Grant said it. Oliver is right to spotlight the numerous scams that take advantage of the hopeless, the frightened, and the superstitious. Yet, that’s only part of a larger issue... Read more

September 24, 2015

The head of a healthcare organization where I do ethics and compliance work asked me shortly after a meeting, “What would you say to the Pope, if given the opportunity?” The CEO and a few members of his family will attend Mass celebrated by the Holy Father at Madison Square Garden in New York City. There’s a slight chance he could meet briefly with His Holiness backstage. Regardless of your faith tradition, what do you ask a world-recognized spiritual leader?... Read more

September 5, 2015

Human nature fascinates me. Every one of us does things, for good or ill, because of past experiences. Kim Davis, the Kentucky clerk refusing to issue marriage licenses to same-gender couples is no different. She’s allowed herself to be arrested for her religious convictions, though it was avoidable had Davis permitted deputy clerks to issue licenses instead. She’s now being blasted as a bigot, a hater, and now a hypocrite in light of infidelity and several failed marriages. Yet the... Read more

August 29, 2015

Whether speaking in pulpits, lobbying lawmakers, organizing rallies, or discussing the issue in the media to elevate awareness, Christian activists must expand the definition of economic justice to include usury and credit scores. How is squeezing more money from someone with a compromised credit score stemming from illness, divorce, unemployment, identity theft, or one of life’s other misfortunes just? Usury and credit scores are a civil rights crisis undermining the family and human dignity. The US economy isn’t working for... Read more

February 4, 2015

Recently, an interviewer asked actor and spirited atheist Stephen Fry what if he was wrong and God existed. What would he say? Fry responded, “Bone cancer in children, what’s that about? How dare you, how dare you create a world where there is such misery that’s not our fault? It’s utterly, utterly evil.” If there is a source of divine life he would not “respect a capricious, mean-minded, stupid god who creates a world which is so full of injustice... Read more

January 22, 2015

In January, the US Supreme Court decided to hear arguments on expanding the definition of secular marriage. One issue before the court will determine whether states without same-sex marriage may prohibit them, but be required to recognize such unions for residents who had them legally performed elsewhere. The other is more encompassing and pertains to whether states still opposed to them should be required to allow same-sex couples to marry within the jurisdiction. Regardless of the “legal” outcome, issues surrounding... Read more

December 20, 2014

Often when as Corporate Chaplain or personal Spiritual Director I conduct a workshop, speak before a civic group, or receive an email inquiry about inner wellbeing there is a direct or inferred question about the meaning of life, or lack thereof. It’s understandable when you think about the injustice surrounding us whether poverty, homelessness, inequality, domestic violence, civil rights abuses, or some other social tragedy. There’s also the lack of inner or spiritual fulfillment people experience despite obtaining social and... Read more

November 22, 2014

There is something holy, divine and inherently spiritual about your being. It’s one of the many things for which to offer thanks on Thursday. Earlier this month, I gave a workshop on integrating spiritual care with mind and body health. One of the questions explored involved meaning and purpose. Finding relevance in a cold, complicated world is a very personal matter that only can be explored by crafting questions unique to one’s sojourn. Crafting them and living those questions can... Read more

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