“Nothing, I would argue, is more effective at driving people away from religion than watching its most elite representatives—the whitest, malest, straightest, most educated, with the biggest platforms—devolve into kindergarteners, ganging up on others, bullying, preaching a Gospel of intractability … Continue reading The UMC At the Crossroads: Elitism or Inclusion–or Holy Love?
Most of us can agree on major goals. For the church, it is “Love God with all your heart, mind, strength and soul and love your neighbor as yourself” and “Make disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the … Continue reading To Trust in The Lord
Orthodoxy–authorized or generally accepted theory, doctrine, or practice. Many claim it for themselves. But I ask: who really gets to own this word? Timothy Tennent, President of Asbury Theological Seminary, wrote last year claiming “orthodoxy” for the conservative arm of the … Continue reading Who Owns the Title to Orthodoxy?
The Problem with Unity This past Sunday, while sitting in the Sunday morning session at the Unity Spiritual Center of Denton, I had a powerful flash of insight: This is the religious conservative’s worst nightmare and is one of the … Continue reading Unity: The Conservative’s Worst Nightmare or Our Best Hope?
I sat in a giant, rich Baptist church on Sunday, and heard the pastor say, “Just trust me on this one,” as he pronounced with authority the demise of the US and the rise of the Antichrist over the issue of same-sex marriages. Baptist churches are all independent–none has to answer to another. They can and do teach anything they want and all make their appeal to the Bible as their ultimate authority. I spent about 25 years in the independent church world. There the Bible is the ultimate authority. Disagreements are rampant; cult-like churches common. Indoctrination serves as the main … Continue reading Appeal to Scripture as the Ultimate Authority Leads to Schism
Like millions of others, I shall board an airplane tomorrow. First a reasonably quick flight to Philadelphia and then an overnight flight to Tel Aviv. Every step of this journey is an exercise in trust. We trust the competence and … Continue reading Airplanes, Life, Church: It’s A Matter of Trust
When the theology says, “You are a totally depraved human being. Nothing good can happen to you unless the sovereign God decides to grant you a blessing,” then those who are “blessed” find perfect justification to believe that the poor … Continue reading The Seduction of Young Men and Destruction of Compassion by the Neo-Calvinist Church Planting Movement
The article below ran in the November 14, 2014 edition of the Denton Record Chronicle as part of the series I am doing for them different types of worship services. I loved the service, as you can see when you read it, … Continue reading Society of Friends Mystery Worship: The Holy Conference Experienced
The “Father of the Pill” is quoted in an article as saying that “he believes that the Pill will become obsolete because men and women will choose to freeze their eggs and sperm when young before being sterilised [sic].” He … Continue reading The Separation of Sex and Procreation: What Can Separate Us from the Love of God?
I have just read John Lomperis extensive post on how The United Methodist Church is to move forward. It is a strong call to doctrinal purity, and, should it be adopted, will mean that any who don’t agree with the IRD (The Institute on Religion and Democracy, a heavily funded right wing political group that has been trying for at least 20 years to destroy the UMC) will have to leave. As I wrote several months ago, “The Inquisition Cometh!” Yes, indeed it will under this proposal. I was discussing this with a friend who has been highly successful in … Continue reading Either My Way or the Highway #UMC: The Parable of the Spotted Sheep