The question appears again and again in church life and right now particularly with mainline denominations: should we just give up and split up? There is a way to divide and still thrive. Let’s pay attention to the lesson from … Continue reading The Crucial Difference Between Schism and Division: Lessons from the Garden
A man sits in a house of worship, struggling with despair, staring at his useless hand. He couldn’t harness an ox, hold a plow, slaughter an animal, or build a shelter. Total ruin for his family loomed. He’d beg, but … Continue reading Standing Up to Oppression: Will We Pay the Cost?
“Nothing, I would argue, is more effective at driving people away from religion than watching its most elite representatives—the whitest, malest, straightest, most educated, with the biggest platforms—devolve into kindergarteners, ganging up on others, bullying, preaching a Gospel of intractability … Continue reading The UMC At the Crossroads: Elitism or Inclusion–or Holy Love?
Battling the Systems Like just about everyone I know, I am in a constant battle with my body’s survival desire to put on weight. Vanity drives my battle. Cellular memory and human history drives my body. My body will ultimately win. … Continue reading Fighting the System: The Aging Body and the Aging UMC
I spent several hours recently perusing a couple of Facebook discussion groups primarily dominated by those who hold to a more conservative (read: no gays) theology than I do. I admit I don’t get the hatred spewed there–but I do believe … Continue reading When We Hate One Another and Ignore the Real Issues of Justice and Mercy
I am reaching a point where I think Gutenberg did not do the world a favor. And for the second time in these months in the Mystery Worship mode, I walked about of a service and said, “I need a drink.” … Continue reading Jehovah’s Witnesses Mystery Worship: Mind Control Warning–Visitors Beware
This man, Michael Megginson, is seriously mentally ill. He’s been in an out of mental hospitals since he was six years old. Although, according to his mother, he has moments of calm and then is enjoyable to be around, it … Continue reading Friday Morning Musings: What Constitutes Salvation for This Man?
We stood in a tight crowd, unable to move, barely able to breathe, waiting our turn. Security guards with high-powered automatic weapons had been charged with crowd control outside the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem on Good Friday. … Continue reading Baby as Battering Ram: Good Friday in Jerusalem
I am sure that many have heard of the exceedingly sad story of a family of Orthodox Jews whose seven children were killed in a house fire last Saturday. The fire was caused by a hot plate left on from … Continue reading Is it God’s Will that Innocent Children Die?
Below this commentary/rant are two articles I wrote on two recent church visits: the Church of Christ and the United Church of Christ. I felt that I’d just experienced the movie, “Pleasantville” in the move from the safe black-and-white, carefully managed world to one of chaotic color and the messiness of human emotions. One had only a finger snap and four people on microphones as musical accompaniment. The other a full orchestra and two choirs. One was full of older, heterosexual, pleasant, friendly, kind adults, primarily female, 99% caucasian, all dressed in more or less formal church clothes in passionless, … Continue reading Was this Pleasantville? Church of Christ vs United Church of Christ