[Continued from part 1] I began to wonder what the TBN folks would think of me, a heavily tattooed Christian progressive from a liturgical denomination. How would people in their theological camp respond to my preaching? Would they think, as I do of them, that I misuse scripture?
Even though we don't often weigh in on local D.C. political issues, the Sojourners policy team made an exception on a new piece of legislation that would have a direct impact on gun violence in the District. We signed Sojourners on to a faith-group letter last week opposing the bill described in this [...]
The recent Georgia-Russia mini-war in and around South Ossetia was definitely not a religious war, but it serves as a reminder that religious identity doesn't even come in third place when issues of national identity are at issue. While the battle raged, the majority of participants -- and casualties -- were Christians on both sides.
In both countries, the Orthodox Church [...]
Seven years ago this morning, airplanes were flown into the World Trade Center Towers, the Pentagon, and a field in rural Pennsylvania. The next day I joined with a few others to draft the following statement. In a few weeks, more than 4,000 of America's religious leaders of all faiths had signed it and it was printed as an ad in The New York Times.
Seven years later, as we remember that day, it is appropriate to reflect on this statement and to wonder how the [...]
I saw a column this weekend in Time magazine by Amy Sullivan in which she asks, "Are Evangelicals Really Sold on Palin?" It's well worth reading.
I am going to preach this morning. Actually, in all probability I will be preaching by the time you read this. I will not be away from home in some alien pulpit, though, but at home in my own parish and among those whom I love. I won't preach, of course, [...]
Peace is a respectful, harmonious, and cooperative relationship between groups and nations. Peace is the serenity that comes from clarity, the assurance that the truth will reveal itself, even if only in part. Biblical wisdom teaches us that "there is nothing covered that shall not be revealed nor hid that shall not be known" (Luke 12:2). Violence arises from fear born of deception. Scratch a conflict and find a lie. Love rejoices in the truth and perfect love, complete, [...]
"Vote Out Poverty! Vote Out Poverty!" shouted the diverse group of clergy and faith leaders as they marched in downtown Cleveland, Ohio, at our ecumenical public witness event last October. That was the last time I saw Rep. Stephanie Tubbs Jones (D-Ohio) in person; she stood on the podium in the crisp October sunshine waiting for the crowd to arrive.
We had invited several [...]
Labor Day weekend is often a slow time for congregations. Members are attending family gatherings. Parents are getting children ready for school. Neglected summer projects are undertaken or (like my garden) abandoned until next summer. Aside from the occasional Labor Day parade, few Labor Day activities seem to have anything to do with honoring labor. Labor Day weekend nonetheless offers congregations an opportunity to lift up the values of work and reflect on our religious [...]
On Monday, I wrote that one of the things I would be looking for at the political conventions was "whether the people of faith who are here are able to offer that prophetic role that faithfulness requires, that would hold politics accountable to real moral values, and would offer the best hope of social change."
I'm happy to report that is indeed the case. The first indication of how prophetic [...]
Excerpt from Bishop Charles Blake’s remarks at the Interfaith Forum, Sunday, August 24, 2008, Denver, Colorado:
“Our children have sacred value, and every child is equally valuable.
May I observe, as a Pro-Life Democrat, that some of us have philosophic, humanitarian and theological differences with those who put forth abortion as an appropriate, routine and acceptable birth control procedure. There are millions of us [...]
If you're among the growing number of voters who are disenchanted with both major parties, you may be considering a move to a third party. You're not alone. Some minor parties have seen significant growth in recent years; Oregon's Independent Party likely holds the record, with nearly 24,000 registered members since its inception a mere 18 months ago.
But before you make the leap to any third party, here are some questions you need to think about:
How important is winning to [...]
I'm not much for talismans or religious tokens in the usual sense of those things. I wear around my neck every day of my life a chain with four emblems or medals on it. One is a Celtic cross given me on my 65th birthday by my favorite college chum from more than a half-century ago. One is [...]
The meaning of evangelism is the proclamation of good news to the world. How can we continue to exclude and avoid those with whom we are not comfortable and live into our evangelical calling at the same time? If we do not shed this primitive tendency, and yet heed the call to be evangelical, do we not risk exporting our ecclesial tribalism far and wide? How can [...]