Empowering your Spiritual life

A talk given by Rabbi Brian at the Embrace Festival produced by Progressive Christianity. Portland, Oregon. May 5, 2017.

What is empowering? What is the spiritual life?

The definition of the word empower is to give someone the authority to do something and to make them stronger and more confident, especially in controlling their life and claiming their rights.

I am Rabbi Brian – an ordained rabbi on a mission from God – a rabbi with John Lennon’s inclusivity and a Blues Brothers mission. My mission, to empower people in their spiritual lives – so that they can feel the seat of their religious authority within them.

read more

Videos featuring four pioneers in Jewish-Christian dialogue

These short videos chronicle the contributions of four pioneers in Jewish-Christian dialogue efforts of the last several decades. Featured here are Dr. Edward Kessler (England), Sr. Charlotte Klein NDS (Germany), Dr. Victor Goldbloom (Canada) and Sr. Mary Boys SNJM (USA).

read more

An Online Course to Create Deep Dialogue

By way of this self-paced course, one can improve one’s capacity to:
Define dialogue, and apply it to one’s daily life.
Use critical thinking about an issue of importance.
Demonstrate increased knowledge of one’s own worldview and that of another person.
Recognize the difference between a stereotype and a generalization and learn to deconstruct a stereotype to defuse prejudice and construct useful, respectful generalizations.
Act with creativity and compassion.

read more

Practical pointers for interfaith dialogue – the United Kingdom experience

This handy interfaith toolkit is full of useful resources and provides a bird’s eye view of interfaith activity in the United Kingdom. Themes touched on include why dialogue?, dialogue practicalities, dialogue on difficult issues, dialogue over food, limits to dialogue and bi-lateral, tri-lateral & multi-lateral dialogue.

read more

Teaching Kids Life IS Good: An Interactive Book Designed to Build Children’s Self Esteem, Confidence, Character … and Lifelong Success!

Teaching Kids Life IS Good is what results when an experienced youth mentor and a distinguished elementary school teacher team up to help children dramatically enhance their character, confidence, attitude, and self esteem.

read more

Rescuing the Bible from Fundamentalism: A Bishop Rethinks the Meaning of Scripture

A controversial author brilliantly reclaims the Bible from the literal interpretation of fundamentalists

read more

Four tips on deepening engagement

It’s a long step from having one’s name on a church roster to being deeply engaged in that faith community.

An engagement rate of 100% is unreachable. But the current engagement rate of maybe 25% isn’t working out well – for constituents or for churches. Many people want more, but they find engagement elusive, especially when Sunday worship is the only avenue offered. They want significant relationships, or direct mission duty, or small group activity. Getting “fannies in the pew,” as one pastor put it, doesn’t accomplish such objectives, even over time.

read more

What is the Bible?

How an Ancient Library of Poems, Letters, and Stories Can Transform the Way You Think and Feel About Everything

New York Times bestselling author Rob Bell provides surprising insights and answers about how the Bible actually works as a source of inspiration, showcasing a brand new way of reading this sacred text.

Diving deep into scripture, Bell explains the worst question we can ask of a text (“Why did God…?”) and the best question to ask (“Why did people find this important to write down?”) to discover how the Good Book can best guide us today.

read more

Pluralism 101

  We have barely begun to deal with the fundamental changes that must be effected within our Christian faith. – John Cobb(1) So here we go! Understand that this is by no means the only way that …

read more

Hebrew Multifaith Golden Rule Poster

The Interreligious Coordinating Council in Israel and the Scarboro Missions Interfaith Department (Toronto, Canada) are pleased to announce the publication of a Hebrew-language poster featuring texts of the Golden Rule in 13 religions.

read more

Would Jesus Have an Immigration Policy?

Instead, we should be providing sanctuary for these refugees and immigrants who are fleeing persecution. Whether in our nation, churches, or our homes, we are to show loving-kindness, respect, and care for the well-being of all of our siblings. Isn’t this what we would want others to do for us if the circumstances were reversed? Honestly, isn’t this what Jesus would have us do?

read more

Oh My G-g-od!?

Setting aside the concern of how biblical scholars discern when to capitalize God, for me, there are certain differences in how I experience people using God versus god.

read more

Embrace Festival – Deshna Ubeda Interview on KBOO

Listen to ProgressiveChristianity.org’s Director Deshna Ubeda talk about their exciting Embrace Festival coming to Portland, OR May 4-6th, 2017.

read more

Join Us At Beloved Festival 2017, 10 year Anniversary

We’re celebrating 10 years this summer, and this stunning new video has us all sorts of sentimental. We are overwhelmed with gratitude for this family and can’t wait to reunite with you on August 11th-14th for the best Beloved yet.

read more

Watch the Film- Trophy, a Documentary about the killing of grizzly bears

In North America, hundreds of grizzly bears are killed for sport by trophy hunters every year. This “sport” is outdated, wasteful and inherently cruel. Trophy examines the effect that trophy hunting has on the people, land and animals. Can we truly justify killing these animals for sport?

read more

A Taste of Embrace Festival, 2017

In May 2017, people from all over the world will gather in Portland, Oregon to share knowledge and wisdom, learn from each other, celebrate, be inspired, and find the tools needed to create and enliven local movements within our communities. Together we will explore sacred oneness, Christ consciousness, eco-spirituality, social justice and the way of universal and personal transformation that honors the Divine in all.

read more

Extraordinary times call for extraordinary churches

Extraordinary times call for extraordinary churches.

In America and in much of Europe, right-wing politicians backed by screaming mobs of white nationalists are taking power. The anger, fear and hatred are so strong that democracy itself might not survive.

read more

A Joyful Path, Year Two – Unit 8: Lifelong Learning

Most young children are born with a sense of wonder and anticipate discovery around every corner. A shiny penny or a snowflake holds a world of delight. But perhaps because our culture tends to overstimulate and excite our children, boredom begins to seep in as children get older. It’s not uncommon to hear complaints of, “I’ve seen that” or “I know that already” from children who are already closing the doors to their sense of discovery.

read more