October 13, 2019

Today marks the beginning of the Jewish pilgrimage festival known as Sukkot, the Feast of Tabernacles. This feast lasts one week. It is one of three pilgrimage festivals in the Jewish tradition. The other two are Passover, which Christians honor at the time of Jesus’ death, and Shavuot, which is also known as the Feast of Weeks or Pentecost, which Christians associate with the Spirit’s descent. As Christians make their way through the church calendar, may we realize that the… Read more

October 6, 2019

The inquiry into whether President Trump should be subject to impeachment raises questions for many of us about the nature of truth and whether truth, like beauty, is in the eye of the beholder, albeit of a partisan kind. The question about the nature of truth reminds me of the trial of Jesus and his conversation with the Roman Governor, Pontius Pilate, who was stationed in Jerusalem. In no way am I equating or comparing the person of Jesus and… Read more

October 5, 2019

The Season of Creation ends every year with the Feast Day of Saint Francis of Assisi on October 4th. However, that does not mean our remembrance, celebration and care for the creation should come to an end until the month of September next year. May we honor and cherish the creation every day of the year in worship and service to Jesus our Lord. In the preceding entry for the Season of Creation, discussion centered on whether humanity functions well… Read more

September 30, 2019

Biblical scholar Nancy Erickson reflects on her colleague John Walton’s discussion of functions and functionaries in Genesis 1. Days 1-3 of the creation story deal with functions in Walton’s account (Days 1-3 are about time, weather and food respectively). Days 4-6 deal with functionaries. Humanity’s function is to operate in a “ godlike capacity in relationship to the rest of creation.” Here’s Erickson: Following the normal literary structure of Genesis 1, Walton now explains days four through six as describing… Read more

September 22, 2019

This past week, Union Theological Seminary students made public confession to plants during a chapel service. A Union Seminary tweet reads: 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? The tweet about confession drew strong reactions on Twitter, including the charge… Read more

September 19, 2019

Dr. Dave Kresta is a Christian, an engineer, and an urbanologist. You will see in this latest post dedicated to cultivating vibrant neighborhoods and communities for human flourishing how Dave weaves together his areas of passion and expertise to address the subject of gentrification and how churches often play a part. Paul Louis Metzger (PLM): Dave, please define for us urbanology and gentrification. Dave Kresta (DK): Urban Studies applies a variety of social science disciplines to understand and analyze neighborhoods,… Read more

September 15, 2019

This is the third reflection for the Season of Creation, which is part and parcel of church liturgy in many traditions. With this point on liturgy in mind, it is fitting that consideration be given to the creation narratives in Genesis 1 and 2 as liturgical texts. The creation as a whole, and specifically Eden, functions as God’s temple over which God rules and humanity serves as priest. We will discuss liturgy and temple in the context of addressing the… Read more

September 14, 2019

All too often, we look at those who are simply different as odd, perhaps dangerous, even dumb. So it is in the case of those experiencing hearing loss (hearing loss, deafness or hearing impairment has been defined as “the total or partial inability to hear sounds”). Perhaps you have heard of institutions “For the Deaf and Dumb.” We can easily look at those struggling with hearing loss as lacking mental faculties with which to understand, when all they really lack… Read more

September 11, 2019

By Paul Louis Metzger and John W. Morehead: Today marks eighteen years since the Twin Towers and Pentagon attacks of 9/11. In this post on this anniversary, we will explore how it has affected Evangelical Protestant Christians negatively and how we might respond positively. The trauma of 9/11 produced fear and anger in the days and months immediately after the events, but these many years later, how has it continued to shape us psychologically, and in turn, theologically? After some discussion… Read more

September 8, 2019

This is the second entry on the Season of Creation, which many ecclesial traditions celebrate every year. On September 1st, which marks the start of the Season of Creation, we honored World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation. Church liturgies for the Season of Creation vary from year to year in highlighting which aspects of creation to celebrate on particular Sundays (Refer here for an example of the Season of Creation liturgies for various years). In light of… Read more

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