November 9, 2018

Last weekend was the first-ever global legislative assembly for the Wesleyan Covenant Association, the United Methodist traditionalist caucus group. It was for all practical purposes, the inauguration of a new denomination. At their assembly, they adopted a resolution saying they would be “forced to leave” the United Methodist Church if the One Church Plan which allows for regional LGBTQ inclusion is adopted at the February 2019 General Conference. There has been talk from traditionalists for at least the past decade… Read more

November 2, 2018

I am Cain; And my altar doesn’t burn. Oh it burns some As long as I’m holding the lighter And scorching my thumb But it never catches on its own. I went with my brother Abel to the woods; We gathered the same sticks; We used the same amount of lighter fluid; And his offering caught fire and multiplied. Abel started a church in his living room With five of his friends And they prayed in circles around their neighborhood… Read more

October 31, 2018

The continuous meta-debate within the United Methodist debate is to ask: what are we really debating about? There are many ways to answer that question, some more deceitful and cynical than others. I would propose that one way to understand our disagreement is that it’s a question of whether John Wesley’s 18th century theological presuppositions are permanently normative for United Methodism. Does whatever the Methodist historians tell us about what John Wesley believed have to be what we believe also?… Read more

October 29, 2018

If anyone on the Internet remains blissfully unaware, the Babylon Bee is a Calvinist satire website that makes fun of gay people, transgender people, feminists, Joel Osteen, Jen Hatmaker, and other people they disdain. Sometimes they write things that are funny. But often, their satire is pretty mean-spirited and cruel. A whole lot of Christians share their stuff on the Internet. But this past week, they did something that is starting to get them in a lot of trouble. They… Read more

October 28, 2018

White supremacist in Charlottesville [Wikimedia C.C.]The gunman who killed 11 people this weekend at the Tree of Life Synagogue did what he did because he had been fed the narrative that Jewish people are somehow secretly funding the massive migration of Central Americans to our country. On the same weekend, our vice president Mike Pence announced at a rally that the Honduran refugee caravan was being secretly funded by “globalists.” If I were Mike Pence’s pastor, I would have a… Read more

October 16, 2018

First, I’m not sure whether you actually exist. You may be the invention of the same moderate pundits who have been writing all those feature pieces interviewing the same five working class white voters in the same mom and pop diner in Parkersburg, West Virginia. Supposedly according to a recent survey, 25% of our population self-identify as ardent conservatives and 5% as progressive activists, while the rest are an “exhausted majority” who are more opposed to political correctness than any… Read more

October 8, 2018

Today is the day our country celebrates the conquest and genocide of native Americans at the hand of Europeans signified by Christopher Columbus’ “discovery” of the “new world” in 1492. Within a few decades of Columbus’ initial contact, the original inhabitants of the island that Columbus named Hispaniola had been almost entirely wiped out through brutal slavery and genocide. What should bother us a great deal as Christians is the way that the brutality of European colonialism was completely intertwined… Read more

October 3, 2018

Swearing-in Ceremony for Brett Kavanaugh to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia. Oval. Rose Garden. A single line from a statement from one of Brett Kavanaugh’s former college friends has captivated me: “It is the truth that is at stake.” As I wrote a couple of posts ago, we are living through a crisis of truth. Though many other things disturbed me about Kavanaugh’s nomination hearing, it really bothered me that he couldn’t even concede that… Read more

October 1, 2018

Most of the people who read this blog post live in what we could call the world of the #blessed (a.k.a. the land of #firstworldproblems). We have very real, valid emotional experiences and suffer inconveniences and even infuriating injustices, but we do not usually have our lives crushed catastrophically by impersonal systems that are in the background of our awareness. Over the past four months that I have been supporting a refugee family, I have discovered first-hand a very different… Read more

September 27, 2018

I haven’t had the psychological tenacity to watch the Kavanaugh hearings today. But I have been spending the week supporting a refugee woman whose testimony wasn’t believed. In a world where truth is defined by institutional stamps that make things official or by rigorous scientific testing, personal testimony has no validity. For many Christians, truth is authoritarian by nature, because personal experience is fundamentally untrustworthy. This authoritarian definition of truth is the reason that institutions like the state and the… Read more

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