Doubt

Everyone has doubts. Everyone has questions. It used to be a sign of “faith” to suppress one’s doubts and questions, but no more.

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Easter Prayer

Christos Aneste! Christ is risen! The response is Alithos Aneste! He is risen indeed! Whether your interpretation of the resurrection is literal or metaphorical, Easter morning is always welcome.

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Palm Sunday

Palm Sunday is like a little glimpse of Easter, a bit of celebration after the somber tone of Lent.

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Spring

The signs of Spring are everywhere… Lent has begun, Daylight Savings Time is back (that was quick), and the Spring equinox is imminent.

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New Images

Sharing an understanding of that which is beyond description calls us to constantly find new images, new metaphors, yet another word for the wordless.

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Following Jesus

One of the great contributions of progressive Christianity’s embrace of the quest for the historical Jesus is the renewed focus on the humanity of Jesus.

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Spirit Within

So many metaphors for describing the experience that there is more to us than just our bodies and our minds…

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Images of Nature

To be out in nature, re-confirming our connection to that which we did not make, is a form of worship for many people.

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Ash Wednesday

Observance of Ash Wednesday in progressive communities marks the beginning of a time of introspection and turning back to our connection with the Sacred.

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Farewells

Memorial services or life celebrations offer an opportunity to share our grief, to remember treasured times, even to calm our own fears about what lies ahead. Despite the best efforts of every religion, what follows death is still a mystery.

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Up from the Waters

“Up from the waters into life.” However you interpret the sacrament of baptism in your tradition, the ritual almost always involves water.

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Light

Light in the darkness. In every culture, in every religion, in every wisdom tradition, light is a metaphor for knowledge, sight, understanding, consciousness, awakening, birth and rebirth.

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Farewell

Memorial services in progressive communities are often in need of new words to express the emotions surrounding death. The comfort of the 23rd Psalm is pretty universal, but after that it varies widely.

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Transfiguration

In the traditional story of the Transfiguration, three disciples go with Jesus to the top of a mountain where they see a vision. Moses and Elijah appear and talk with Jesus, who appears radiant.

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God Views

So many conceptions of God… and each carefully described in words, which are by definition inadequate to capture that which they are trying to describe.

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New Beginnings

We make a new beginning every morning, indeed in every moment, but there is something about the yearly start in January that captures the imagination.

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Christmas Day

As Henry Van Dyke wrote nearly a century ago, “There is a better thing than the observance of Christmas day, and that is, keeping Christmas…

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The Visit of the Magi

The story of the visit of the three wise men from the East has inspired countless retellings.

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Christmas Carols

No time during the year is more perilous for the progressive church musician than Advent and Christmas!

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Advent Again

Can it be Advent again, already? I’m not ready… But then, are we ever “ready” for Advent? Perhaps that’s the point: Advent is the time to get ready.

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Giving Thanks

Thanksgiving is an American holiday, but giving thanks is a practice for everyone, around the world, at all times.

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Veterans’ Day

We can be opposed to war in principle, and opposed to war in all its ugly specificities, and still express our gratitude and love for those who fight on our behalf.

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Global Community

It is easy for progressive Christians and their churches to feel isolated, as if they alone have stumbled on a great secret about living by the wisdom that originally inspired Christianity, and no one else seems to understand.

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Sacred Energy

Sacred Energy (Mass of the Universe) is a narrated musical exploration of the mystical sense of oneness and sacredness of all that is.

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William Blake

William Blake (1757-1827) was an astonishingly creative person. We know him for his mystical poetry, his unusual paintings and his printmaking inventions.

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Sing a New Song

Tell the old story with new words, sing the old song with new meaning, find a new interpretation of the old metaphor… We are comforted by our traditions even as we refuse to be bound by them.

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From the Heart

All wisdom traditions understand what it means to speak from the heart. But with the veneration of science and technology that exists today, it is increasingly difficult to hear one’s heart-voice.

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Time

“Time, like an ever rolling stream, bears all its sons away; they fly, forgotten, as a dream dies at the opening day.” (Isaac Watts)

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Preparation

Transition into a time of worship can take many forms: a quiet moment of deep breathing and centering, a poem, a responsive invocation, gathering music…

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Praise and Gratitude

Praise and gratitude go hand-in-hand. Both are a natural response to our recognition that, as the old saying goes, “God is God. You are not.”

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Food for Thought

The inspirational power of a good idea is constantly amazing. Consider the case of California organic farmer Michael O’Gorman, who put together two seemly-unrelated trends: the aging of American farmers and the high unemployment among returning military veterans.

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The Way Ahead

When the way ahead seems uncertain, when the news is mostly negative, when we feel powerless to effect change, it is good to remember that we are hardly alone.

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Discovery

We are each walking up the mountain of spiritual enlightenment, each on our own path, each discovering the same ancient truths in our own way and in our own words.

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Getting to Peace

Getting to peace begins at home and extends out to neighborhoods, cities, states, countries and across the world. The challenge always is to stand for peace without using violence to accomplish it.

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Ritual

All cultures have rituals. One of the liberating outcomes of worshipping in a progressive faith community is the freedom to create new rituals as well as adapt old ones.

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Mental Models

To be on a spiritual journey is to be constantly evolving our “mental models” about how the world works, how we fit into it, who or what God is (or isn’t) and how God works in the world. Scientists use mental models all the time.

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