This is what Union Seminary in New York tweeted out yesterday.
Today in chapel, we confessed to plants. Together, we held our grief, joy, regret, hope, guilt and sorrow in prayer; offering them to the beings who sustain us but whose gift we too often fail to honor.
What do you confess to the plants in your life? pic.twitter.com/tEs3Vm8oU4
— Union Seminary (@UnionSeminary) September 17, 2019
I’m not concerning myself with the obvious idiocy of confessing sins to vegetation. Lots of folks beat me to it, anyway.
So do you apologize to the weed before you roll it and smoke it?
— Nate (@FatimaAtelier) September 18, 2019
My confession: I am judgmental toward Larry the cucumber for exercising green privilege over Bob the tomato. pic.twitter.com/bowb2RoX4q
— Ray Meiers (@IPATT1) September 17, 2019
I confess that I like them best with a nice Russian dressing.
— Daniel Lee (@RealDanLee) September 18, 2019
Did they make a public stamen?
— Dinkledash (@Dinkeldash) September 18, 2019
Oh Kale naw!
— tdb6494 (@bonnertd) September 18, 2019
— Adam Hunter (@adamhunteratc) September 18, 2019
Not the kind of church plant I was thinking of.
— Allen Corbin (@allencorbin) September 18, 2019
I confess that some of them are delicious. Not you kale but some of the others.— Irish Subway Alumnus (@HezekiahYedaiah) September 18, 2019
I’m sorry you’re dead , I competely forgot to water you . Bad me
— Diane B (@dmb1031) September 18, 2019
I confess that they taste good when sprinkled on nachos. pic.twitter.com/5VFkg5KrdR
— PrezBrianArnold (@PrezArnold) September 18, 2019
Boiling kale & collards with an onion & nice juicy ham hock can result in something akin to a religious experience �
— Bill (@BillinWV) September 18, 2019
That I’m going to weed whack the bejesus out of them.
— honey-badger (@Belindahenry18) September 18, 2019
Over the past five years or so, I’ve spent a good deal of time and effort in calling out the scandal of evangelical worship on this blog. Its gluttonous consumption of entertainment, the obvious emotionalism, and the self-referential pseudo-liturgies have disfigured the movement beyond recognition.
And here is the other side of the post-Reformation coin. Confessing their sins against plants, for God’s sake. Both the bloated evangelicals on the one side and the gaunt mainline Protestants on the other are showing how malnourished they are.
If you want to have a healthy church, you need a liturgy that loudly and boldly preaches the gospel of Christ and him crucified. The kind of justice to which the church is called must flow from that wellspring, not gutter runoff from the kooky whims of hipster cultural outrage.
These ad hoc liturgical preoccupations of mainline Protestantism, though most not as blatantly stupid as this one, are pointless, banal barkings of a church that has hopelessly lost its way. This isn’t Christian worship in any sense, and coming from an institution pumping out fresh mainline clergy, I think we will be calling time of death pretty soon.
With the narcissistic theological bankruptcy on one side, and the Christ-less weirdness on the other, the population in the middle ground is growing sparser. Who in their right mind would want to be a Christian these days? And what’s a hard-lining moderate like me to do?
Almighty God, please show us a middle way.