I spent two weeks on a grand jury listening to stories that make it clear the world needs good churches.
The church has not just been on the wrong side of history, but on the wrong side of Christianity. Anti-Semitism is by definition a repudiation of Christianity as well as of Judaism, and an enemy of pluralism and democracy.
The law raises difficult questions for legislators concerned that hamburgers are not ham, hot dogs are not dogs, circus peanuts are not peanuts, Buffalo wings are not buffalo and refried beans are not fried twice. Churches could divert attention by pointing out a host of problems bigger than lentil burgers that lawmakers might have addressed.
The unpopularity of Trinity Sunday has to do with the incomprehensibility of the Trinity. We sing, confess our faith, and baptize with Trinitarian formulas, but you seldom hear someone in line at Starbucks say, “How ’bout that God in three persons?”
Noah’s ark is not a children’s story, a funny story or even a story concerned with history. This story is true even if it never happened. If you get past the strangeness, it sounds like recent events.
Many of President Trump’s actions are antithetical to the Gospel. But anger cannot be everything that Trump’s backers hear from us. Ministers would be better off, at times, asking the Spirit to help the president and his defenders understand that God loves all people.
The point of Pancake Tuesday is not to get the partying out of our system before Lent begins. Feast days remind us to live in gratitude. Celebration, reveling in the pleasures of life, helps us pay attention.
In middle school we debated the great theological question: which superpower – flight or invisibility? I secretly preferred a third option: stopping time. But today what I need is the ability to be alive in this moment, in what Paul Tillich called the “eternal now.”
Letting go of our desire to be famous could lead to better birthdays. Admiring people who do things worthy of our admiration – hard workers, loving parents, good listeners, caring teachers – could help us understand that anonymity is okay.