Friday, January 29, 2016

uncertain spaces and declared spaces: an introduction (video)

A key video to watch if you and your church value and embrace diverse people:

I recommend watching full screen if possible, as the graphics are important.
(click here to watch video if your device does not show the video above)

Read the full article on uncertain spaces, with additional examples and stories.

Check out all "uncertain spaces" posts on this blog.

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

[the only place?]

Rachel Held Evans recently said this about the church:
You can get a cup of coffee with your friends anywhere, but church is the only place you can get ashes smudged on your forehead as a reminder of your mortality. You can be dazzled by a light show at a concert on any given weekend, but church is the only place that fills a sanctuary with candlelight and hymns on Christmas Eve. You can snag all sorts of free swag for brand loyalty online, but church is the only place where you are named a beloved child of God with a cold plunge into the water. You can share food with the hungry at any homeless shelter, but only the church teaches that a shared meal brings us into the very presence of God.

And I think, yes! and then, I think, hmmmm, maybe church isn't the only place where these things happen....

You get ashes smudged on your forehead while running to catch the subway ...

We sing 40 in a stadium to the light of phone screens...

Someone calls me beautiful in a chat window...

Friends share a meal with Jesus at the local pub....

Monday, January 25, 2016

jesus and "this lot"

How easy it is to ignore the way of Jesus and to find ways to hate people...

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

[why does god hate me? a short film]

Why Does God Hate Me? is a video of the experience of a boy growing up gay in a very conservative evangelical family.

I share it for a very specific 1 1/2 minute long segment: the part where Matt's parents take him along to protest at a gay pride parade and he wanders off for a few minutes. Watch the expression on his face, both when he talks with a man named Isaac and then when he is back at the edge of the parade a few minutes later.

Click Play on the video here and forward the video to the 8:37 time mark, or
click here to see video on YouTube, starting directly at the 8:37 mark.

The section of particular interest goes from 8:37 to 10:06. That having been said, it's a pretty good video overall.

What are your first impression? What does his expression communicate? How was this an important moment for him?

Monday, January 18, 2016

[key statement by presiding bishop michael b. curry]

“Many of us have committed ourselves and our church to being ‘a house of prayer for all people,’ as the Bible says, when all are truly welcome,” Curry said in remarks he later made available to Episcopal News Service.

Our commitment to be an inclusive church is not based on a social theory or capitulation to the ways of the culture, but on our belief that the outstretched arms of Jesus on the cross are a sign of the very love of God reaching out to us all. While I understand that many disagree with us, our decision regarding marriage is based on the belief that the words of the Apostle Paul to the Galatians are true for the church today: All who have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ. There is no longer Jew or Gentile, slave or free, male or female, for all are one in Christ.

“For so many who are committed to following Jesus in the way of love and being a church that lives that love, this decision will bring real pain,” he said. “For fellow disciples of Jesus in our church who are gay or lesbian, this will bring more pain. For many who have felt and been rejected by the church because of who they are, for many who have felt and been rejected by families and communities, our church opening itself in love was a sign of hope. And this will add pain on top of pain.”

Bishop Curry's statements were being made in the context of the Primates 2016 meeting at the end of last week, where it was later voted to put temporary sanctions against the Episcopal Church.
Read the entire article here.

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

key principles

The key principles page is a collection of principles for helping us live in ways that embrace others instead of excluding them.

Click here to access my page of key principles.

Note: because the page of key principles is a "page" and not a "post", this post is being added so that when you select "key" in the right-side list of categories, it will include the link to the key principles page.

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

coming soon...

... something even better than a lemon blueberry cake!

picture of a Lemon Blueberry Cake - baked by rob g.

Perhaps not as tasty, but definitely more challenging, I'm in the last stages of production for a short video introducing "uncertain spaces". Watch for it on this blog in the next week or two.