Social Gospel through Universalist Eyes

I recently studied American Theological Liberalism with Gary Dorrien, and was quite taken by a chapter (from Dorrien’s The Making of American Liberal Theology, Volume 1) on the social gospelers. As I read the chapter, I found myself saying “amen” to Walter Rauschenbusch’s understanding of Christianity, that Jesus’s message was that the personal and the political …

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Inspired by Brigid

There is a moment In every undertaking There is a moment When everything is still… too still. There is a moment When nothing, nothing, NOTHING comes… When the mind is frozen. It is a scary moment It is a frustrating moment It is a moment where you doubt every part of yourself Why can’t I …

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Making Meaning

I love words. I love their power to evoke emotions, actions, ideas, images. I love how a carefully crafted phrase can roll gracefully and deliciously like a warm cinnamon bun, or jar us like an unexpectedly bitter orange. And more, I love that as Unitarian Universalists, we delight in words, and all that they can …

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With Childlike Wonder

Let’s imagine together. It is a cold night as you bundle up in a winter coat, or maybe a thick comforter, with layers of socks under your shoes, and mittens on your hands. You may be alone, or you may be with someone else; let’s imagine your favorite person is also bundling up like you …

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Candidacy!

Holy cow, y’all, I am a candidate for ministry in the Unitarian Universalist Association! Feeling proud and excited. I still have a long way to go, but I have crossed a major hurdle in the process.  

Eat More Pie

About twelve years ago, I spent a long January weekend on Topsail Island, North Carolina, at a spiritual retreat. Twelve relative strangers came together in a large beach house to listen, pray, meditate, share, and explore our connections to the Divine.  One of our leaders, Donald Engstrom, was a big bear of a guy with …

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Standing On Our Heads

Betina was exhausted. As a beat cop in a small town, she had spent her day answering a series of difficult calls – domestic disturbances, a bar fight, and a car chase over a broken tail light. All she wanted to do was go home, take a bath, snuggle her kids, and watch American Idol. …

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Participating in the Universe

After the service Sunday, we had a small group conversation – what some congregations call a talkback but which Saratoga calls “church chat.” It was a lively discussion about the series of sermons I just wrapped up on God – over three weeks, I talked about the transcendent, the immanent, and the creating-creator aspects of the Divine …

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Singing About God: Part Two – The Immanent

 Listen here. Last week, we started cobbling together our own universal translators. Unlike the Star Trek universe that Gene Roddenberry created, we aren’t equipped to automatically understand the many different languages of many cultures, and even if we were, we wouldn’t always know what people really meant. What we know is that real communication relies …

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Moving Forward

I am pretty sure I was not the only person headed for a pulpit this morning who let out an extra moan after hearing the verdict in the Zimmerman trial. In the midst of weeping for the Martin family, for our young black men, and the failed justice system…and after a while weeping also for …

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Struggling with Certainty

Whenever I encounter an article, photo album, site, or video I don’t have time or ability to view at the moment, I email the link to myself and shove them into a folder called “internet for later.” I always intend to go to the folder as soon as I can to see what I saved …

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