When a group of graduates from the European Union School in Culham near Oxford, England, invited him to a reunion for former students and teachers, Colin was greeted with a surprising and career-affirming challenge to write a series of essays to appear on Facebook to “tell the world what you taught us in your classroom.” What more genuine and humbling words could a teacher ever hope to hear than these?
What you are about to read is the faithful product of many long hours and many restless nights devoted to meeting the challenge laid down by his students. What could he say of significance about how to help the children of the world defuse the explosive dynamite of the absolute certainties held and defended by religions and governments and societies the world over that threaten, in the end, to be our collective undoing?read more
One of my reasons for writing my blog is to share what I’ve learned and am learning spiritually with other progressive Christians. It’s not a “gay blog” (though there’d be nothing wrong with that!) but the blog of a progressive Christian.read more
Who is our neighbor? That’s the question:
Who is this person we’re to love?
The one across the street? Or next door?
Or in the apartment up above?
For the freedom of the air
that absorbs the smoke of hand-rolled cigs
What’s interesting is that, unlike their predecessors in previous civil rights battles, they don’t appear to be leading the protestors or generating an organizational network to create a larger movement.read more
An important and respected voice for liberal American Christianity for the past twenty years, Bishop John Shelby Spong integrates his often controversial stands on the Bible, Jesus, theism, and morality into an intelligible creed that speaks to today’s thinking Christian. In this compelling and heartfelt book, he sounds a rousing call for a Christianity based on critical thought rather than blind faith, on love rather than judgment, and that focuses on life more than religion.read more
Michael Brown should not have been shot dead by police in Ferguson, Missouri. His hands were up. He was unarmed. It doesn’t make any difference whether or not he had stolen earlier something that day. If he had committed such a crime, he should have been given appropriate justice, not a volley of bullets. At the time he was shot, there was simply no excuse for what happened to him. Somebody else had his life stolen from him, too: a man named Jesus, killed for no good reason. Jesus also died with his hands up. He had been ethnically profiled by the Roman occupying army in Jerusalem, and was brutally murdered on a cross.read more
Thunder lags behind lightning beyond an outcrop of stone slabs framed by clusters of Joshua trees with spikes shivering in the wind. A dark gauzy curtain descends from a boiling mass of cloud. Scattered spits of rain puff dust out of tiny craters they form on impact in the fine dirt. The cooling air fills with the overwhelming scent of wet creosote.read more
This book articulates a progressive faith that represents a true marriage of the academic work of the modern biblical critical movement and the historical Jesus work of the Jesus Seminar applied within the life of an active parish.read more
“Bread for me is a material question. Bread for my neighbor is a spiritual one,” wrote Nikolai Berdyaev, a 19th-20th c. Russian philosopher and theologian. Is there a more important spiritual question than this one? Today may be a particularly good time to ask it in America.read more
Finding ways to be a blessing to others is the best way to avoid doing harm. The idea of non-injury or harmlessness extends beyond our actions to our words and thoughts as well. We don’t want to burden children with guilt about their thoughts, but we want to offer opportunities to infuse their hearts and minds with thoughts of blessing and peace toward others.read more
Through service we find love and truth in action. When we serve with love and compassion, those whom we serve become brothers and sisters, not the others.read more