A New Day in the PCUSA

The Presbyterian Church (USA) or PCUSA has been in the news more this past week than any time this year.  The denomination officially amended its constitution earlier this year to allow gays and lesbians to serve as ministers and lay leaders. Last Saturday, the Rev. Scott Anderson was ordained as the denomination's first openly gay pastor.  He told CNN: "It's an exciting time for me personally to be the first openly gay person ordained in the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), and it's a big moment Read More …

Review of Dilemma: A Priest’s Struggle with Faith and Love

Meet the Author Father Albert Cutié served as a Roman Catholic priest from his ordination in 1995 until 2009.  During those years he served several parishes, but was best known for his work in media, which earned him the nickname "Padre Oprah."  He was the first clergy-person to host a daily talk-show on a major network on international secular television. After his relationship with a woman was made public, he left the Roman Catholic church, married, and was ordained as an Episcopal Read More …

Review of A Public Faith

Meet the Author Miroslav Volf is the Director of the Yale Center for Faith and Culture and Henry B. Wright Professor of Systematic Theology at Yale Divinity School.  He was born in Croatia, and studied at Evangelical-Theological, Osijek, Fuller Theological Seminary and received his doctoral degree from the University of Tübingen, where he studied under Jürgen Moltmann. As “a member of the Episcopal Church in the U.S.A. and the Evangelical Church in Croatia, Professor Volf was involved in Read More …

Is Christianity on a Path Toward Extinction?

John Shelby Spong served as bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Newark for 24 years before his retirement in 2001.  In retirement, he has been a prolific writer and speaker.   He concluded a recent essay outlining his thoughts on the future of Christianity with these words: The problems facing institutional Christianity today in the Western world cannot be addressed by tinkering around the edges of our theological formularies or structures . . . We are not today in a temporary status of watching Read More …

Radical Inclusivity

Christian leaders make news headlines on a daily basis, but are rarely portrayed as open minded or inclusive.   Jonathan Devin's "Radical Preachers Buck Mainstream Christianity" tells the story of a growing  interdenominational group of pastors known as Outlaw Preachers who are bound together by their shared belief in radical inclusivity.   Founded in 2008, the group has grown to 300 members and recently held their first conference, which was attended by persons representing "eight states from Read More …

Lead by Letting Go

The Reverend Canon Dr. Frederick W. Schmidt, Jr. is an Episcopal Priest, Director of Spiritual Formation and Anglican Studies and Associate Professor of Christian Spirituality at Perkins School of Theology at Southern Methodist University.  Previously he served as Canon Educator, Director of Programs in Spirituality and Religious Education, and Acting Program Area Manager at Washington National Cathedral.  He is the author of seven books as well as numerous scholarly articles and book chapters. Read More …