A Year in Summary In the last year, I attended worship services in more than 50 different places. They ranged from a Spanish Roman Catholic service in Costa Rica, to a New York City Reform Jewish service sung primarily in … Continue reading The Year of Fifty Different Churches: Time to “Ask the Thoughtful Pastor”
One week I visited a Unitarian Universalist gathering. The next week I went to a Seventh Day Adventist church. The descriptions of the two churches are below the general comments. Further commentary may be found here. General Comments Similarities: both … Continue reading Mystery Worships: Unitarian Universalists and Seventh Day Adventists
People Want Tight Boundaries In this year of visiting churches, I have become increasingly aware that people are very much drawn to church groups with tight doctrinal standards. As many have noted, these are the ones that still show growth … Continue reading It’s Not Easy to Follow Jesus
Orthodoxy–authorized or generally accepted theory, doctrine, or practice. Many claim it for themselves. But I ask: who really gets to own this word? Timothy Tennent, President of Asbury Theological Seminary, wrote last year claiming “orthodoxy” for the conservative arm of the … Continue reading Who Owns the Title to Orthodoxy?
[Note: this article is slated to run in the Denton Record Chronicle on Friday, July 24, 2015. Further commentary on the nature of “orthodoxy” can be found here.] The liturgy is confusing, unfamiliar, mostly chanted or sung without recognizable tunes … Continue reading Mystery Worship: Greek Orthodox
The Problem with Unity This past Sunday, while sitting in the Sunday morning session at the Unity Spiritual Center of Denton, I had a powerful flash of insight: This is the religious conservative’s worst nightmare and is one of the … Continue reading Unity: The Conservative’s Worst Nightmare or Our Best Hope?
[Note: commentary on this particular day of worship can be found here. Below is a version of the article that is slated to run in the July 17, 2015 edition of the Denton Record Chronicle.] On this past hot Sunday … Continue reading Mystery Worship: Unity Spiritual Center of Denton
I originally wrote this a number of years ago, but with the recent post by blogger John Murdock, I decided to post it again. Murdock writes eloquently of the problems smaller churches face with the frequent rotation of clergy. Here’s … Continue reading Ponderings on Itinerancy and Appointability
After I wrote of my support of the recent SCOTUS decision that affirms marriage for all citizens, one commentator wrote of his agreement for certain civil rights for gay couples and then added this caveat, “Marriage is a contract between two … Continue reading The Return of the Seven Month Full-Term Baby
The first amendment to the Constitution of the United States reads this way: “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or … Continue reading Get Over it, Christian Pastors: You are NOT Being Persecuted