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

January 11, 2019

Make us your flesh; let your love drip down like oil that is messy & smelly so that every inch of our skin will be touched, and we will know your love is sticky and sweet and cannot be wiped off by shame or fear or all the verbal spears of the enemy. Cover us with your wings; be our blanket; be our lover, for you kiss better than we know how, and you know where we need to be… Read more

January 9, 2019

Holiness is one of the most important and controversial aspects of John Wesley’s 300 year old movement that United Methodism is a part of. I think it would be fair and accurate to say that conservative United Methodists cannot accept the legitimacy of gay marriage because of their understanding of holiness. I would further posit that our real debate is about the nature and purpose of holiness. And I would contend that any account of Wesleyan holiness must deal principally… Read more

January 8, 2019

Donald Trump would not be fixated on building a wall on the southern border of the United States if this were not the issue that won him the presidency and gave him the most visceral connection to his supporter base of which the most predominant demographic bloc are white evangelicals. So it doesn’t seem far-fetched to ponder how white evangelical theology builds walls. A wall expresses a commitment to an uncomplicated view of reality. The innocence on one side of… Read more

January 2, 2019

No, I’m not going to say Donald Trump is the anti-Christ. Because I don’t believe that the Bible’s role when it speaks about an anti-Christ is to predict future events. But I think the term can still be useful. I would use it to signify the greatest adversary the church faces in a particular age. And I think the ideology Jerry Falwell Jr. laid out in a recent quote captures that adversary quite perfectly. Why have Americans been able to… Read more

December 30, 2018

We took a risk when NOLA Wesley started the Labyrinth cafe. Meaning we did something that involved a high likelihood of failure. That’s what a risk is. And that’s what all the higher-ups in the church encouraged us to do. Risk-taking mission is one of the five practices of fruitful congregations according to Bishop Robert Schnase. Dr. Elaine Heath told our Louisiana Conference to “fail our way forward.” The greatest risk is that our funding will dry up before we… Read more

December 28, 2018

Fred Hartley’s Dare to Be Different was one of the books that defined my evangelical teenager years. It indoctrinated me with the idea that that the most important thing about being a Christian is to be different from non-believers. And to be fired up about that difference. The gist of the book and others I read like it by people like Michael W. Smith was that there were three basic ways I was supposed to be different: no drugs or… Read more

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