Recorded Sunday January 8, 2012 at Pilgrim UCC in Carlsbad, CA.
Pilgrim UCC is an Open and Affirming member of the United Church of Christ.
Dear friends, The WSCF has had a historical relationship with the international ecumenical center of Agape in Northern Italy since its inception. WSCF helped build Agape right after World War II as a symbol of reconciliation among …read more
Yesterday evening, I was brutally beaten by my brothers on the Seattle Police force as I stood before an entrance to Pier 18 of the Seattle Port in my clergy garb bellowing, “Keep the Peace! Keep the Peace!” An officer pulled me down from behind and threw me to the asphalt. Between my cries of pain and shouts of “I’m a man of peace!” he pressed a knee to my spine and immobilized my arms behind my back, crushing me against the ground. With the right side of my face pressed to the street, he repeatedly punched the left side of my face for long enough that I had time to pray that the crunching sounds I heard were not damaging my brain. I was cuffed and pulled off the ground by a different officer who seemed genuinely appalled when he saw my face and clerical collar. He asked who I was and why I was here, to which I replied, “I’m a minister of the gospel of Jesus Christ, I believe another world is possible.” He led me shaking to a police van where began a 12-hour journey of incarcerated misery.read more
From Tiger Woods’ marital infidelity to same-sex marriage to the ‘Octomom,’ when sexuality issues dominate the headlines, there never seems to be a shortage of religious commentary—most of it from the right. While conservative pastors preach against …read more
The necessary context of prophetic preaching, Walter Brueggemann argues, is “a contestation between narratives.” The dominant narrative of our time promotes self-sufficiency at the national level (through militarism) and the personal level (through consumerism).read more
In this informal and accessible survey, Spong will move book by book through the Scriptures, introducing their themes and messages by examining the sweep of history in which these books were originally written. What has history taught us? How should we read these stories today? What does it mean for how we live our lives? And why do people tenaciously hold on to so many myths associated with the Bible? For the vast audience of people eager for a meaningful journey into the Bible, Spong leads the way.read more
Saturday’s surge of Occupy actions around the globe could be a turning point, a hinge moment, as occupiers in over a hundred American cities feel the power of worldwide welcome and affirmation. There is obviously more to …read more
The question that I ask is, in this rapidly changing world, where has the church been and where will it be in the future? What we do know is that in the sixties, some clergy were in the streets, marching for civil rights but it was a small percentage. Many of them lost their churches as a result. More clergy preached about what they thought Jesus would want us to do about the Vietnam War, and their actions caused one of the largest exoduses in church history. Clergy learned that there were consequences in taking a conscientious stand. Today they are learning that lesson all over again when taking a stand for full inclusion for gays and lesbians in the life of the church. And, based on my limited survey, most of them are “tip-toeing” around the Occupiers protests. Denominations are once again being split by righteousness.read more
Many educated people shy away from the church because they cannot believe in these and other aspects of Christian tradition. And yet many of these same people search for what the church can offer: a caring community, supportive during people of grief and times of joy. James Adams reminds us that religious faith is not a matter of the mind, but of the heart.read more
Regarding Heaven and Hell; Ah, but a man’s reach should exceed his grasp, or what’s a heaven for? – Robert Browning. An evangelical pastor of a mega-church, Rob Bell, creates a stir when he writes a little book, suggesting when it comes to a place called heaven, there’s room for everyone. What the hell?read more
This statement was voted on and approved by the general assembly of protesters at Liberty Square: Declaration of the Occupation of New York Cityread more
The Pope’s War offers a provocative look at three decades of corruption in the Catholic Church, focusing on Joseph Ratzinger, Pope Benedict XVI.read more