Love and Death

I’m trying to blog every day during Lent, but have already failed. So, here’s my micro-homily from Ash Wednesday instead: Ash Wednesday is, at a very basic level, the acknowledgement of our own mortality. Usually, this service is about the purgation of sin in preparation for death. But this year, we have the rare blessing that it falls on Valentine’s …

The Revolution of Repentance

Our reading from Martin Luther King on Sunday was an excerpt from a speech he gave at Riverside Church in Harlem on April 4, 1967. It was a speech about the Vietnam War, but, as he often does, he connected his opposition to the war to a broader moral context. He called not only for an end to the war, …

Easy Like Sunday Morning

The last few Sundays, we have started on time. I’m not sure if I’m bragging about that or not. Our stated start time is 11:15, but in the past few years we have slid back to 11:30 or so. We used to say 11 sharp, but when we said that, people showed up at 11 and wanted to chat and …

Creativity. Or maybe not.

Here’s what they won’t tell you about creativity: sometimes it doesn’t work out. I wrote all afternoon yesterday and then realized I hated it. I don’t have the same standards for a blog post that I might for an essay or a sermon; I generally just keep pulling a thread to see where it goes. Yesterday, it went nowhere. Scripture …

Sacred Space

I went to a training session on pastoral care for reproductive health and justice issues and it was auspicious that they worked to create what they called “brave space” because it was what I had planned to talk about on Sunday. It was good to see it in action, to see how it is created. Brave space is sort of …

All Are Welcome

Way back in October, we did a church planning retreat. One of the things we did was check in on our values. Many of the faces have changed at Church in the Cliff over the last few years, so I wanted to make sure we were on the same page in what we care about before we started planning where …

Have a Grateful New Year!

I used to be pretty compulsive about New Year’s resolutions. However, after years of failing, I found myself this year unsure of what to do. I could just change the date on last year’s and call it a day. Instead, I started thinking about why I failed and why it mattered. Fortunately, there are so many articles at this time …

Love in a Time of Need

I’ve been pushing “weak theology” recently. I’m not sure there’s a better example of it than the Christmas story. According to “strong theology,” God is this perfect, non-contingent being. That is, God relies on nothing, needs nothing. And yet, the story that Christians tell about God coming into the world has God showing up as a helpless little baby, the …