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The Way Forward

There can be no peace, their can be no beloved community, the kingdom of God will not be realized on earth until we are all convinced that every person, whatever one’s faith or religious affiliation, whatever one’s ethnic origin, culture, or social state, whatever one’s mental or physical abilities or disabilities, is a child of God, precious and loved, and that every person—wherever they live, or whatever they believe—has access to God.

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From The Backporch Of The Church

A Jungian psychoanalyst and former Presbyterian minister offers a perspective on Christianity and the Church from Jungian psychological perspective.

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Children Praying a New Story – A Resource for Parents, Grandparents, and Teachers

Morwood’s books have been especially insightful and helpful to adults struggling with prayer and ritual while radically reconstructing their Christian faith.  This book is for adult Christians engaged in this shift, now asking the vital questions: How do we educate children into this new faith perspective?  How do we pray with them if prayer is not about addressing an external, listening Deity?

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God Talk

Over the last few weeks I have had the opportunity and the privilege to meet with two different groups made up of people who are all in their own way searching for new ways to tell the Christian story.

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Lots of Love

Gary’s third and final book – Lots Of Love – is an urgent and loving testimonial to the simple but fundamental building blocks of our human and spiritual DNA – that “love is the beginning and the end of our journey.” Each day physical life may conspire to ebb out of Gary’s body but his spirit flows through his pen and his glorious fight to bring us all a message of hope at the holiday season. Lots of Love is an ornament to be hung on every tree, a candle to be lit on the last night of Hanukkah, an Eid prayer at Ramadan and a strand of lights at the new moon of Diwali.

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Progressive Christians and God Talk

But we keep pruning away, and as we prune, domino after domino falls, whether it be connected with revelation, the person and role of Jesus, the meaning of salvation, doctrine, worship, prayer, death and afterlife.

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Christmas

Christmas both mutes and heightens this impression that something under the sun is ferhoodled. On the one hand, people are often more civil and decent to each other. On the other, anything painful or ugly stands out more glaringly against the festive background, even taking on a tint of moral injustice. If people die in June, it’s sad; if they die in late December, it’s “a shame.”

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The Christmas Myth is the Story of the Human Family

From Living Waters: if one is to pass beyond the childish and the external to the core of what Christmas is all about, it’s an essential step. What one has to realize first of all is that the story of the birth of Jesus is a myth. No, not a fairy tale, not a legend, not a piece of fiction to be seen through and dropped at puberty or before, but a spiritual myth-in other words, a truth so vast and so important to our human condition that it can only be told in the most profound language of all, the language of symbolism, allegory and metaphor.

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The Leap of Advent

By: Chuck Queen,  The “Advent” of God in the person of Jesus not only challenged old ways of thinking about God and old patterns of relating to God, Jesus’ Advent marked the beginning of a spiritual revolution, a conspiracy of love.

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What Gift Will You Give?

I trust it will come as news to very few that the canonical gospels offer us two Christmas stories, and to those who have actually read the accounts it is clear that the two bear little resemblance to one another.  To be sure, the names of the infant, his mother, his nominal father, and the place of birth are the same; but nearly all the other details stand in striking and irreconcilable conflict.  Does this mean that Matthew’s narrative or Luke’s—or both—are simply to be rejected as wildly unreliable? Not if we adopt the strategy of understanding the two tales not as failed attempts at history, but as brilliantly conceived and wonderfully effective parables.

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Religion is Not about Belief: Karen Armstrong’s The Case for God

Until well into the modern period, Armstrong contends, Jews and Christians both insisted that it was neither possible nor desirable to read the Bible literally, that it gives us no single, orthodox message and demands constant reinterpretation. Myths were symbolic, often therapeutic, teaching stories and were never understood literally or historically. But that all changed with the advent of modernity.

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Love the Hell Out of Each Other

Hell is a religious myth intended to hold you captive to fear and the church’s teachings. Stand up to the myth and pull its beard. You will find that it comes off in your hand. You can not be denied. You are an adventurer, storming the gates of hell and fear.  The good news- There is no reason to believe there is an actual place of eternal suffering after life called hell.

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Myth and the Genesis Stories

It is impossible for us today to fathom the world view that the ancients who created these stories must have had. We really cannot grasp what it was like to look out in the stars, to travel, to watch the days get shorter with no obvious reason, to deal with the seasons, watch babies be born without an understanding of basic biology, science, without airplanes, space ships, Hubble telescopes, physicists, calendars, let alone computers and GPS. These were people, after all, who believed that the earth was flat and covered with a dome that had holes in it. For them, the stars were God’s or the god’s light shining through those holes.

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On Knowledge and Faith

It seems to me there are two kinds of knowledge. The most common being a knowledge ‘about’, which comes from study whether scientific or personal experimentation. With it one can spend a life time studying religion or even birds for that matter and know all there is recorded to know about God through religion or birds through study and observation of birds without really ever truly knowing either.

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November 6-8, 2009: TCPC President to Lead Regional Event in Lafayette, CA

Guiding your Church through Change in Our Changing Times:Guiding congregational change requires a healthy sensitivity to the various dimensions of change that are taking place within the life of your community. Fred Plumer, TCPC President, will share a multilayered approach to guiding change within the vibrant life of your congregation that harnesses current cultural trends and the emerging spirit of Progressive Christianity.

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On Using Religious Language in Public, Right and Left

That is why I’ve gone on at such length on the subject. It occurs to me that using religious language as a gloss to indicate moral seriousness doesn’t take faith seriously. For that matter, it doesn’t take seriously the idea that there are competing worldviews at work in our political discourse, let alone offer a meaningful alternative.

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Are Labels really Necessary?

This short article was written as a post on the TCPC forum by Derek Ward who goes by the name Tariki on our discussion board concerning labels.

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