Finding common ground in the din of debate

Debate divides this nation, and democracy is in disarray. On one hand, we enjoy light, good-natured disagreements: — Is the dress blue and black or white and gold? — Do you hear Yanny or Laurel? And then, there are the more serious debates; the ones that could be causing our civility to crumble. The latestContinue reading “Finding common ground in the din of debate”

Toward the fire

In 2002, during the months in which the The Boston Globe released the findings of its investigation into wrong doing on behalf of the Catholic clergy in the Diocese of Boston, I was a high school junior preparing for confirmation. The investigation exposed a widespread pattern of sexual abuse from several Catholic priests, five ofContinue reading “Toward the fire”

Being part of a Church broken by sex abuse and lies

Imagine you were violently attacked and dropped off a balcony into a dark alley, and somehow you survived. Your body is broken, bloody, mangled; you are twisted and contorted into a mess upon cracked asphalt. Your arms and legs are shattered. The most private parts of you have been violated. All of your muscles acheContinue reading “Being part of a Church broken by sex abuse and lies”

So naive

“It [grace] strikes us when, year after year, the longed-for perfection of life does not appear, when the old compulsions reign within us as they have for decades, when despair destroys all joy and courage.” ~ Paul Tillich, “You Are Accepted” You have to be pretty naive to be a Christian in today’s world. ThisContinue reading “So naive”

Messy Christian music playlist

Every ordinary day, I am reminded that I am weak and desperately need God. When I forget the birthday of someone dear to me, when I lose my keys, when irritation and anger bubble up in my heart–each experience of imperfection can block my trust in God. I am tempted to think I am worthlessContinue reading “Messy Christian music playlist”

The jail we are all in

Photo credit: http://www.freeimages.com/photo/prison-1201356 I spend most of time going through life assuming that I am basically a good person who is OK with God. But, every now and then, I notice ugly thoughts jumble around inside me: Give them what they deserve! Or, Lock them up and throw away the key! Or, Thank God they’reContinue reading “The jail we are all in”

The wounds of Christ and the inauguration of Donald Trump

Last Friday morning—the day of Donald Trump’s inauguration—two screens were in front of me; words and images flooding in. A glowing laptop sat upon my knees, my web browser opened to an online Bible, Psalm 34. It was there because I awoke with this song in my head, particularly the “The LORD hears the cry of theContinue reading “The wounds of Christ and the inauguration of Donald Trump”

Our hidden illness

My  daughter has asthma. People often express their condolences when the subject comes up but—the truth is—it’s really not a big deal. I grew up with asthma, so I was never intimidated by the diagnosis. Thankfully, my daughter’s asthma is well-controlled with daily medication and has (thus far) never caused her any serious issues. ThoughContinue reading “Our hidden illness”

The skin I didn’t ask for: Bemoaning my white privilege and the evil of racial violence

I am afraid this blog post is going to be a terrible, tangled mess: sorry about that. But considering the mess this is all about, a jumble might be the best I can give. My thoughts are tangled because so much has been stirring within me since last week when I learned about the killingsContinue reading “The skin I didn’t ask for: Bemoaning my white privilege and the evil of racial violence”

Good Friday: The crosses we create

Today, this high holy day, at liturgies worldwide, we will know no sacrifice at the banquet table. Communion will be different, stirring up spiritual hungers to remind us of the pain of our loss, the awfulness of the absence of Christ. On this solemn day, an unusual ritual will file us forward; all of us areContinue reading “Good Friday: The crosses we create”