March 21, 2019

In the wake of a horrific act of gun violence that took the lives of 50 people—including children—New Zealand did this crazy thing. They banned the types of assault rifles that can destroy hundreds of lives in a matter of seconds. Knowing that the solution is imperfect, they took a step towards preventing this sort of carnage in the future. Also recognizing that racially motivated violence is on the rise, they made a move that will hopefully keep weapons of… Read more

March 14, 2019

The college admissions scandal—involving several prominent families, including a few famous actresses—might be just about squeezed of all discussion. It’s really just about all I’ve seen in the newsfeed the last few days, from the actual reporting to the think pieces wondering, “Why are we surprised?” Why are we surprised, indeed? What aspect of our culture should lead us to believe that privileged white folks would draw some ethical line around higher education, when time has shown again and again… Read more

March 13, 2019

It’s a sick-out day in our school district. Again. This is our fifth day out in three weeks. That means a day when the teachers—who are contractually not allowed to go on strike—have called in sick, en masse, so they can go to the state capitol and protest. There is much to protest. Over the past few years, the Kentucky government has “borrowed” funds from teacher pensions and then refused to give it back. To be clear, this is money… Read more

March 12, 2019

Stop me if you’ve heard it: A Catholic school in a suburb of Kansas City (about five minutes from where I lived previously) denied entrance to a KINDERGARTNER because the student’s parents were gay. I mean, they love all the babies and they want all the babies and please bring them all the babies—as long as the babies are fetuses. But they’ll not suffer a child with two dads. Nah. Need not apply. The good news is that the community… Read more

March 7, 2019

Maybe he knew what he was doing When he got himself put close to the ground No legs? No problem No arms? Hands? Opposable thumbs? Who cares. Shunned for all time Over that whole fruit thing Maybe, but whatever. Who actually gives damn. Because what he’s got That we don’t got Is a whole skin that can be crawled out of And left behind. Just a husk on the ground A wisp of the life that was Like a peel… Read more

March 6, 2019

In years past, I’ve gone vegetarian for Lent. My daughter is one already, so it makes the whole food-prep-and-shopping thing a little easier. But it is more than a token gesture. While the spiritual practices of Lent are meant to promote mindfulness, I balk at the idea of self-deprivation for its own sake. For my money, that amounts to a sanctimonious gesture—something that Jesus frequently warned against in his instructions about how to pray. If I’m going to give up… Read more

February 27, 2019

this rusty relic when it has finally good and washed away on the waves of its children leaving its last hope of resurrection spent on an overhead projector and a damned outside consultant with a damned good vision plan … we will remember the big churchy words wrapped around the marching orders. we will remember the days when we loved being right more than we loved loving.   this crumbling ark of a thing that we’ve half-worshipped and over-mortgaged finally… Read more

February 26, 2019

Elecia R. Dexter of Auburn, Alabama, is the new publisher and editor of the Democrat-Reporter, a small town newspaper in West Alabama. “According to the Democrat-Reporter, Dexter holds a bachelor’s degree in speech communication from Eastern Illinois University and two master’s degrees: one in human services from Spertus Institute of Jewish Studies and another in counseling from Argosy University. Over the past 10 years, she has been a strategic leader with expertise in human resources, operations and change management.” This introduction… Read more

February 5, 2019

A big move always means a reckoning with your stuff. Sifting through years (whether four or 40) of everyday life accumulated in drawers, boxes, bags, cabinets, closets, garage bins … mercy. The things we carry. You have to fess up to owning too much, it’s almost an inevitability. You recognize that nearly half the stuff in your living space is garbage. Some of us may even realize that, I don’t know, we can fill an entire box with nothing but… Read more

February 1, 2019

The concept of “worshipful living” is an underrated Christian practice. Most of us worship once a week (if we’re having a good week,) and while we try to model our faith every day, our usual routine doesn’t always bring us into something we would call ‘worship.’ But the way of worshipful life was a fundamental concept of the early church. It was a call to carry the life of prayer out into the community and world. Beyond a “practice what… Read more

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