I wish Donald Trump would clarify what he means by this.
I wish Americans,...
Very often, I get emails from strangers who have read one of the many things I've written over the years for the Huffington Post on the fate of the Church in America.
I got another email again yesterday. This time, the inquirer, himself a writer himself for a major religious...
I'll be attending and presenting at the upcoming Parliament of World Religions meeting this year in Salt Lake City, October 15 - 18, 2015.
I would never have guessed I'd be doing this: posting a reaction to Fox's Morning Show Hosts.
But, frankly, I can't help it.
Really? This is what it comes down to now? Pastors arming themselves with handguns in churches across this land?
Oh, for God's sake.
I seem to be having many "Oh, for God's sakes" reactions these days.
I've heard stupid things in my life. This ranks right up there among some of the stupid...est things I've EVER heard.
Two things here...
1. First of all, we do not know the facts yet about why this delusional, misguided young man decided to take up a firearm, enter the church, sit for some time, and then begin firing a weapon, killing innocent souls.
So, shouldn't we hesitate to jump to conclusions, as these morning show hosts do here?
They call it an "attack on faith." Is it? I don't know. I'm pretty sure nobody knows.
My own guess is, it is not. But I do not know this, maybe it is. This network seems convinced, however, as it has reported on other stories in a similar fashion, creating this myth that there is a widespread attack on faith in this country.
Really? I think not.
There is a widespread departure from faith. Scores who are leaving the Church and so it is true the Church and church leaders might feel as if they are under attack.
But a "real" attack?
I don't think so.
Christians persecuted in America? Give me a break.
I do not deny there are Christians in some places on the planet who suffer from real attacks and some are even killed, as we have seen ISIS engaging in real attacks and reported in the news over the last couple of years.
But an attack on faith in America? I think not.
Admittedly, we might learn this young man did in fact hate Christians or the Christian faith and, as a consequence, plotted to take the lives of as many as he could. I do not deny this possibility. My guess is, however, this will turn out to be race related. Now, that IS a problem in this country still, even after all these years.
But, in either instance, we do not know. My advice to these misguided television hosts, and to all of us, is that we reserve judgment until we know the facts.
2. Which leads me to my second concern. Pastor's arming themselves? Clearly, these unwise souls hosting this morning show think ministers ought to pack power to protect their flock.
Really? I don't think so.
If you do not yet know why I so seldom watch Fox News -- not that it really matters to anybody -- but this is clearly the reason why. I'm not too thrilled in fact with anything "journalistic" in the U.S. any longer and journalism was one of my principal studies in college.
I can remember feeling admiration for news reporters, as well as morning show hosts on major networks, not because they were perfect, but because they were mostly responsible. They attempted to display some measure of intelligence... even if they were not... they exercised caution at jumping to conclusions when stories broke across the world... and, generally speaking, they were persons of class, dignity, respect, and admiration.
I cannot say that about any of these broadcasters. They display no level of intelligence at all. Furthermore, they are completely irresponsible, misguided, and clearly unwise broadcasters. I don't care if they are "just morning show hosts" auditioning for ratings. They present themselves as spokespersons and intelligent-thinking people...
And, clearly, they're neither.
They certainly have no class... no wisdom... and no sense.
And, no, ministers don't need to pack. Ministers would do better to...
"The religious profile of the world is rapidly changing..." according to the recently released Pew Research Center report on world religions.
I sometimes think there is so much information coming at us these days, we miss many important things. I can...
YOUR GOD IS DEAD!
That's what the bumpersticker declared on the back of the 1970's VW van covered with colorful paint. I'm not sure which was holding the hippie van together, the duck tape or the bumper stickers. Maybe they both were.
But why would anyone leave? What explains the widespread departure?
"Separate the Christ experience from the Christ-explanations," suggests Bishop John Shelby Spong.
In other words, you and I may experience Christ but we could never explain Christ. When you try to explain what God has done in and through...
21st Century Church...
"Who is God?" I am often asked.
At the mere mention of "God" my next and almost immediate thought is of an old, benevolent, all-powerful, all-knowing, all-encompassing granddaddy-type located somewhere in the sky. This is the image that comes to my mind.
Or, used to come to my mind.
What does "being saved" really mean?
I am sometimes asked, "You frequently use the words 'conscious' or 'Divine consciousness' or 'higher states of consciousness' and, sometimes, 'awake' or 'awakening'. What do you mean by these words?"
What I mean by "Divine consciousness," or...
Given the title to Gushee's newest book, Changing Our Mind: A Call from America's Leading Evangelical Ethics Scholar for Full Acceptance of LGBT Christians in the Church, you might think that the distinguished and conservative Christian...