February 27, 2019

Today is a hard day. I have been trying to figure out how to channel the weight of the grief I feel about United Methodism into something productive. And God keeps on reminding me that I can use my platform to support some of the most valuable work going on in the world right now. The Universal Love Alliance is a grassroots, entirely African-led movement to support human rights for women, children, and sexual minorities in Uganda and throughout Africa…. Read more

February 26, 2019

I just spent a three-day Cursillo retreat with mostly older, conservative small-town United Methodists in our very conservative annual conference of Louisiana. It was an incredibly beautiful, life-giving experience, much of which I can’t share. What I can share is that it rekindled my love for actual orthodox Wesleyan theology, which could be summarized in two words: practical holiness. I wish that every General Conference delegate had to go on a Methodist Cursillo or Emmaus retreat immediately before General Conference… Read more

February 19, 2019

As United Methodists enter the final week before our called General Conference on queer sexuality, I wanted to ask some questions of my traditionalist counterparts with as much sincerity and humility as I can muster. I’m not trying to land zingers and create a spectacle, but rather to engage in dialogue as respectfully as possible. So here are my questions. 1. Do you feel as ambivalent and confused as I do? I know that most of you are not like… Read more

February 5, 2019

“Saul, why do you persecute me?” “What God has made clean, you must not call profane.” The central plot of the story of the early church in Acts hinges around these two sentences. They both involve God telling very devout religious men that very reasonable boundaries they had set based on a straightforward interpretation of the holy scriptures their people had received were wrong. They’re actually in back to back chapters. In Acts 9, Saul of Tarsus sees a blinding… Read more

February 2, 2019

Jason Micheli is my closest frenemy who isn’t openly Calvinist. I love Jason, but sometimes he writes blog posts that provoke me to send him virulently profane text messages. More than once, it’s happened in the middle of my son’s Saturday soccer games which usually put me in an extra salty mood. The vast majority of Jason’s theology is similar to mine; he’s been a tremendous influence on me. But his most recent take on our denomination’s sexuality debate compels… Read more

February 2, 2019

Jason Micheli is my closest frenemy who isn’t openly Calvinist. I love Jason, but sometimes he writes blog posts that provoke me to send him virulently profane text messages. More than once, it’s happened in the middle of my son’s Saturday soccer games which usually put me in an extra salty mood. The vast majority of Jason’s theology is similar to mine; he’s been a tremendous influence on me. But his most recent take on our denomination’s sexuality debate compels… Read more

January 31, 2019

I denied Christ, just like Simon Peter when the cock crowed. It was a couple of years ago. A lesbian couple who were active in a progressive, inclusive post-evangelical church pastored by a good friend had told their pastor they wanted to do a destination wedding in New Orleans and they wanted the names of trusted inclusive pastors in the area whom they could ask to marry them. So he gave them my name. And I told them no. I… Read more

January 25, 2019

The pro-life movement is all over social media up in arms over the new New York law allowing for abortions to occur in limited circumstances after 24 weeks of gestation. The New York law previously had said that abortions can happen after 24 weeks if the mother and baby will both die otherwise. Now the New York law states that abortion can happen if the fetus is non-viable and if the mother’s “health” (rather than “life”) is at risk. What… Read more

January 22, 2019

I sinned. I reacted impulsively and opportunistically to the Covington Catholic drama with my hot take on how disrespect for other cultures is rooted in an understanding of truth as the exclusive purview of Christianity. It was also a sin for the Covington Catholic kids to make fake tomahawk chops and chant “Heyah! Heyah!” when Omaha elder Nathan Phillips was beating his drum. It was also a sin for the Black Hebrew Israelite sidewalk preachers to taunt the Catholic kids… Read more

January 20, 2019

The boys of Covington Catholic High School stole the show at this weekend’s March for Life in Washington, DC when they surrounded and mocked Vietnam Veteran and indigenous elder Nathan Phillips while he was in the midst of a sacred ceremony. What stuck out in my mind was the response from the Cincinnati Diocese, who called the incident “unfortunate and regrettable.” That’s the kind of language that public relations officials use when they don’t want to concede fault but they… Read more

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