The Common Good

God's Politics Blog

Friday Links Round Up: Monks. Al Franken. Oysters.

Monks. Al Franken. Oysters. Here's a little roundup of links from around the Web you may have missed this week:

+Continue Reading

Good Friday: Praying in the Abyss

In Christian confession, Good Friday is the day of loss and defeat; Sunday is the day of recovery and victory. Friday and Sunday summarize the drama of the gospel that continues to be re-performed, always again, in the life of faith. In the long gospel reading of the lectionary for this week (Matthew 27:11-54), we hear the Friday element of that drama: the moment when Jesus cries out to God in abandonment (Matthew 27: 46). This reading does not carry us, for this day, toward the Sunday victory, except for the anticipatory assertion of the Roman soldier who recognized that Jesus is the power of God for new life in the world (verse 54). Given that anticipation, the reading invites the church to walk into the deep loss in hope of walking into the new life that will come at the end of the drama.

+Continue Reading

The First Nonviolent Revolution? The Resurrection.

As Lent ends and the Holy Triduum begins, my mind turns to resurrection. Perhaps a bit too soon as the Good Friday death of Jesus and his descent into darkness is still impending.
+Continue Reading

10 Ways to Celebrate Earth Day as a Church

Here are 10 ways to make Earth Day a church day for your congregation, small group, or family.
+Continue Reading

Should Christians Celebrate Passover?

This evening I will lead a Passover Seder observance in my Christian community. We've done it for years and always find it inspiring to reflect on God's liberation from slavery. And it's the occasion for a delicious potluck feast.

This week I saw an article written last spring on Jews' concerns over Christians celebrating Passover. It seems that more Christian churches are using "Christianized" versions of the seder, reinterpreting the meal's symbols to reflect Christian beliefs. Said one rabbi, "They take our symbols, our holiday, our ritual and start investing them in Christian meaning."

+Continue Reading

Breaking the Fast, Building the Movement

On Easter weekend, I will break my fast. I will have spent almost four weeks drinking only liquids. But, as is often true of fasts, what has been gained is far greater than anything given up.
+Continue Reading

Reflections on the Gulf Oil Spill and a Prayer for Lost Lives

Last year, I was deeply troubled by the Gulf Oil Spill, having been born and raised on the Florida Gulf Coast.
+Continue Reading

Jesus Knows Sign Language

During my last year of college, my pastor lent me the book Living Gently in a Violent World, co-authored by Jean Vanier and Stanley Hauerwas. This book is an exploration on how followers of Christ ought to live in broken world.

The introduction of the book recounts the story of Jean Vanier teaching a course on pastoral care. During one class, Vanier asked the students to share some of their spiritual experiences. One of the students, Angela (who was deaf) began to share a dream she had where she met Jesus in heaven. She recalled talking with Jesus for some time and never experiencing so much joy and peace. "Jesus was everything I had hoped he would be," she said, "And his signing was amazing!" Vanier explains to the reader that "for Angela, heaven's perfection did not involve being 'healed' of her deafness. Rather, it was a place where the social, relational, and communication barriers that restricted her life in the present no longer existed."

+Continue Reading

Make Earth Day a Church Day

It is fitting that this year Earth Day falls on Good Friday and that three days later the greatest dawn since the beginning of time
+Continue Reading

Rediscovering Values For Lent: Risky Hope

[Editors' note: During the season of Lent we will be posting excerpts from the Rediscovering Values Lenten Study Guide. We invite you to study God's word with us through these posts.]
+Continue Reading