Theocrats to the Right of Me, Theocrats to the Left of Me

Southern Baptist blogger Jonathan Merritt has a pretty good article about his denomination as it deals with a decline that is not unfamiliar to mainline Protestants.  He offers a few ideas on how to stem the decline and the one that gets the most attention is where the he faults the SBC for mixing religion and politics or more specifically, conservative politics: Tony Campolo once said that mixing the church with government is “like mixing ice cream with horse manure: You will not ruin the horse manure, but it will ruin the ice cream.” I’ll let you determine which one … Continue reading Theocrats to the Right of Me, Theocrats to the Left of Me

On Holy Friendships

My thoughts these days are drifting towards relationships, or the lack thereof in churches. I’ve been thinking about this in light of a recent blog post on CivilPolitics.org on the dearth of cross-party friendships.  The post linked to a longer article in the Chronicle of Higher Education on the issue.  The author, Neil Gross notes that such friendships have benefits for the whole of society: President Obama last month took a group of Republican senators to dinner at the Jefferson Hotel, in Washington, to discuss the sequestration crisis and a wide range of other policy matters. The next day he … Continue reading On Holy Friendships

QMTD*

This summer the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) will gather for its biennial General Assembly in Orlando.  One of the items to be considered is a resolution proclaiming the denomination Open and Affirming to lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender persons. A resolution is for the most part a sense of the Assembly and carries no legislative power.  That said it does carry some importance in making some kind of a statement at a specific time and place.  I know some of the people who came up with the resolution and after much revision it looks good. It resolves that  “the … Continue reading QMTD*

Birth Control And The Sham of Theological Diversity

One of the things that Progressive Christians like to say about themselves is how welcoming and tolerant they are.  Compared to their more conservative cousins, progressives can pride themselves in being able to think for themselves and to have a place where all ideas and beliefs can be shared without fear. Why, your progressive church even welcomes Republicans! But in reality, all of this talk of diversity is a complete shame.  We are no more tolerant of other viewpoints than our conservative relatives.  What we are good at is lying to ourselves about how good we are. Case in point … Continue reading Birth Control And The Sham of Theological Diversity

On Getting With the Program

Since I work for the Presbyterians, I spent some time this summer watching the live feed from the 220th General Assembly in Pittsburgh.  On the penultimate day of the Assembly there was discussion on allowing ministers to be able to marry same-sex couples.  It was not a surprise to see conservatives quoting scripture.  In fact, one young delegate opened her Bible on the Assembly floor and started reading a verse.  As bothersome as that was, what really bothered me was my own side.  I wasn’t bothered that they were advocating for marriage equality, but I was bothered by how they … Continue reading On Getting With the Program

Our Hope Is Built on Nothing Less…

A few thoughts on the election… -My candidate for President didn’t win, but the constitutional amendment to ban same-sex marriage in Minnesota was defeated.  Three other states, Maine, Maryland and Washington all voted in favor of legalizing same sex marriage.  Personally, I think it’s a great move forward in gay rights.  That said, I think we need to be mindful of those in our neighborhood and moreso in our pews who faithfully disagree on this issue.  As much as I disagree with him, Rod Dreher’s blog post this morning should be read as how social conservatives feel about the changing … Continue reading Our Hope Is Built on Nothing Less…