Reflections on Les Miserables

Why does Les Miserables move me so much? This past weekend, I watched an incredible Broadway performance of that famous musical. At the end, as I stood cheering and applauding, I was also weeping openly. Why? I don’t cry that easily–and I know the story extremely well. I’ve even read the book from upon which…

The Biblical Basis for the Rape-Marriage #UMC

I just read this powerful, compelling, heart-rendering article  by the Rev. Wil(da) Gafney, Ph.D., associate professor of Hebrew and Old Testament at the Lutheran Theological Seminary at Philadelphia, reminding us that the horror of the Nigerian girls being abducted into these “rape-marriages” has a sound biblical basis. – See more at: http://um-insight.net/the-biblical-basis-for-the-rape-marriage-%23umc/#sthash.hfixNpvf.dpuf The author is…

Jazz and The Church

Today, the increasingly famous Denton Arts and Jazz Festival kicks off.  I can hardly wait. Several years ago, I offered a message comparing the church to several different kinds of musical groups. I showed video snips ranging from genuinely awful beginner bands to superb choral/professional orchestra combinations. When we watched the jazz band, we found…

Joy Spills Over

It is Easter Day. I find joy spilling out of my soul, rolling with waves of delight, sparkling in sunshine. This Easter is the first I have not worked in many years. It is the first I have not approached in some tiredness after the rigor of Holy Week services.  It is the first in…

The Inquisition Cometh #UMC

I just read the heartbreaking report that some 60 (unnamed at this point) conservative pastors and theologians in the United Methodist Church have held a phone conversation about the deepening divisions within this denomination. From the news report: The group said that they were forming a smaller working group to bring suggestions to the larger…