Faith Palm Banners Go Viral

Until a few days ago I had never heard anyone use the term "faith palm."  Thanks to a tweet by Daniel Dale, a Washington D.C. correspondent for the Toronto star I not only learned the term, but also was introduced to a unique marketing campaign by a progressive Episcopal congregation in D.C. The President Said What? The image at right is one of four banners on a chain link fence outside of a construction area on the campus of St. Thomas' Parish Episcopal Church.  Each banner contains the Read More …

Did I Reach My Goals for 2017?

After many years of making calendar year resolutions (or in some years resolving not to make these annual goals), this past year I opted for goals based on the church year rather than the calendar year. This means that my 2017 goals actually started in November of 2016 and end this week. My Goals As I first shared a year ago, my goals follow: Join (and be actively involved in) a local community of faith Labor to make real on earth God’s realm of justice and peace Write about Read More …

A Common Dream

Imagine a common dream capable of uniting people of varying faiths and perhaps also people who do not frame the experience of life through faith lens. I am not aware of many attempts to craft such a vision, however, I find much wisdom worthy of consideration in a benediction written by the Unitarian Universalist minister and author Gary Kowalski.  The benediction proposes that our common dream is Homes and schools where children thrive, Neighborhoods that are safe and clean, A city rich in Read More …

Living the Jesus Ethic

Robin Meyers is the type of pastor and teacher who makes good teaching great by incorporating a strong call to action.  In a recent video interview on being a follower of Jesus he explained that being a follower of Jesus is always about getting out of heads and into our whole beings - so that when we are doing things in the world people see that we've integrated the thoughts that we have about the Jesus' ethic, and that we are practicing it in the world. So What? Authenticity.  Read More …

World Communion Sunday

Today is World Communion Sunday. Over the years, taking Communion / Lord's Supper / Eucharist on this day has been especially meaningful to me. Rather than seek to say something novel or new, I have collected some wisdom from posts I have written over the years. 2010: I wrote a series of blog posts sharing one big lesson I learned from each of the many denominations that have played a major role in my faith journey.  In my post on the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), I wrote, "The Read More …

Connecting with Historic Congregations

A year ago I was in Connecticut preaching and leading a Day of Discovery for leaders of  Westchester Congregational Church (founded in 1728) .  Yesterday I was in Grand Prairie, Texas preaching at West Fork Presbyterian (PCUSA) Church (founded in 1870).  Fifteen years ago I was preaching or assisting in leading worship at Central Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), which claims to be the oldest continually meeting Protestant congregation in Dallas, Texas (founded in 1863). These three Read More …

An Update on My 2017 Religious Resolutions

In November of 2016, I established 5 religious goals for the 2017 church year (Advent 2016 until the arrival of Advent 2017).  Four months later I shared my progress.  With Advent now just 14 weeks away, I offer a final check-in. Original Goals During this church year I resolve to Join (and be actively involved in) a local community of faith Labor to make real on earth God’s realm of justice and peace Write about matters of faith that matter (primarily here on this Read More …

Churches Should Stop Saying ______

A few days ago a colleague shared an article with me titled "Ten Things Churches Should Stop Saying." Written by Paul Miller - Support Minister for Waterloo Presbytery of the United Church of Canada - the piece lists 10 problematic statements that are frequently used in church life followed by a positive response to each. Overcoming this often pervasive form of negativity is key to building a healthy congregational culture.  Toward that end, I share two items from Miller's list before Read More …

The Hardest Part of Being a Christian

Being a student is often a way of life. At times, it can be hard work.  Some courses are especially challenging. A few days ago I asked my Facebook friends to share the most challenging and/or difficult course they had ever taken.   In less than 24 hours, 60 people had named a course.  The most popular challenging courses were those in science, mathematics, and languages. Science - 12 responses (top course: chemistry) Mathematics - 18 responses (top course: statistics) Languages - 11 Read More …

Be Who You Are

Who are you? Sibling Parent Spouse Neighbor Friend How do you introduce yourself to others when you have only a brief time to do so? Do you begin with one or more of the above or jump right to sharing your name and your primary professional role? Human Being Today, many people spend so much of their time working in a role that they forget they are separate from that role and also more than that role.  Christian filmmaker Phil Cooke recently warned his readers not to find Read More …