Christian witness

Broken By You

I remember attending the worship of a young pastor a few year’s ago who was presiding over his first communion.  He served a rural congregation, known far and wide for the ongoing conflicts within the small fellowship.  It was hoped he could bring peace to an embattled situation.  As he […]

First Impressions

I drove past a church sign last week (I am happy to say, NOT United Methodist) that proudly proclaimed, “Christ is Rised! Jesus is Load!”  Now, this might have been a mistake, though the church also has a banner outside advertising “Sevices 9 & 11.”  I don’t think these are […]

And He Loved Them Anyway

I cannot read the gospel passages of Jesus’ last week on earth without wondering what must have been running through his mind.  I realize that this is pure speculation — nothing more or less.  But I feel like it must have been a time of great agitation and ambiguity.  I […]

Ravings of an Angry Evangelical

Our country is being destroyed by ignorant, narrow-minded, arrogant, self-righteous Christians.  They call themselves evangelicals, but throughout history they have been known by other names: tyrants, despots, hate mongers, fools… David Carlsson, Message to America, 2009 Hold on.  I confess that there are ignorant, narrow-minded, arrogant, self-righteous Christians out there […]

A House Divided

Oh, man, time to go fishin’ cause I opened up a can of worms!  For ten straight days my Inbox has been full of emails concerning race relations in The United Methodist Church.  The emails are troubling on two separate levels — one, that people don’t feel safe airing their […]

Mad Methodists

A few years ago I stood up in a meeting at the General Board of Discipleship and asked, “Has anyone else noticed how many deeply angry people we have in The United Methodist Church?”  At first, a few puzzled folks asked what I meant, but I didn’t even have to […]

Changing the World

The United Methodist Church is issuing a challenge: “Change the World.”  Billed as a “worldwide event,” this April 24-25 threshold event will show where the values, heart and soul of the UMC really is.  I am not talking about participation in this two-day event.  I am talking about whether it […]

Via Negativa

I note with dismay that your blog is consistently critical of the church.  It doesn’t seem fair or balanced to continuously pick at flaws while ignoring the good.  While we certainly have problems, there is little benefit in dwelling on them all the time.  I don’t care to be made […]

My God Can Beat Up Your God

What is our problem?  How have we developed such a narrow-minded faith that we cannot interact with people who believe differently with any kind of tact, grace or kindness?  Why can we not “offer an invitation” to know our God without turning it into a defiant line in the sand?  […]