Florida synagogue challenges state’s abortion ban on religious grounds for mandating theological doctrine

*** UPDATE (June 24) *** I posted this last night, hours before the Supreme Court handed down its opinion overthrowing Roe v. Wade. But I think the reasoning behind the Florida lawsuit won't be affected, since it challenges a state law in the state courts. Nor should the religious freedom issue be affected, since it … Continue reading Florida synagogue challenges state’s abortion ban on religious grounds for mandating theological doctrine

Proclaiming the ‘E Word’ on the Z App — walking the talk as the SARS-CoV-2 variants shape an uneasy new normal

Debi and I recently finished co-facilitating a six-week book study on evangelism for our parish church -- over Zoom no less -- and it was a pleasant surprise. The book, Reclaiming the 'E' Word: Waking Up to Our Evangelical Identity, is by Kelly Fryer, an ordained minister in the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America who … Continue reading Proclaiming the ‘E Word’ on the Z App — walking the talk as the SARS-CoV-2 variants shape an uneasy new normal

Learning to pray from George Burns and a young adult novel by Judy Blume

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6x0i-FfeA44 I know how hard it is in these times to have faith. But maybe if you could have the faith to start with, maybe the times would change. You could change them. Think about it. Try. And try not to hurt each other. There's been enough of that. It really gets in the way. … Continue reading Learning to pray from George Burns and a young adult novel by Judy Blume

Uneasy with St. John’s bias against ‘the Jews’ in an age of religious pluralism? Here are a couple of ways to deal with it

Christ Before Pilate, Hans Holbein the Younger, ca. 1538-40 (Wikimedia Commons) Now comes Jim McDermott SJ, associate editor of the Jesuit magazine America, and suggests -- in the headline, no less -- "The Gospel of John has been used to justify anti-Semitism—so we should stop reading it on Good Friday." To which I say: Amen, … Continue reading Uneasy with St. John’s bias against ‘the Jews’ in an age of religious pluralism? Here are a couple of ways to deal with it

‘Here am I’: Isaiah’s call to prophesy in the year King Uzziah died; also, nibbling around the edges of today’s apocalypse

The Prophet Isaiah, Giovanni Battista Tiepolo, ca. 1725 (Wikimedia Commons). Isaiah 6 (NRSV). In the year that King Uzziah died, I saw the Lord sitting on a throne, high and lofty; and the hem of his robe filled the temple. 2 Seraphs were in attendance above him; each had six wings: with two they covered their faces, … Continue reading ‘Here am I’: Isaiah’s call to prophesy in the year King Uzziah died; also, nibbling around the edges of today’s apocalypse

Spiritual direction, March 2022

d r a f t Editor’s (admin’s) note: Lightly edited copy of email I wrote in advance of this month’s appointment with my spiritual director, giving her a heads-up on what I’d been journaling on since our last meeting and, more to the point, helping me focus over time by archiving the emails with my journals … Continue reading Spiritual direction, March 2022

Thoughts, prayers, wisdom from the Talmud and acting against ‘the enormity of the world’s grief’ in wartime

Screen grab of meme shared to my Facebook news feed, Oct. 29, 2021. For several months I've been wanting to jumpstart my prayer life, but until last week I never would have thought it would involve the heartache of praying for peace in Ukraine in the face of a failed World War II-style blitzkrieg that … Continue reading Thoughts, prayers, wisdom from the Talmud and acting against ‘the enormity of the world’s grief’ in wartime

‘Words of Life’ — blast email for a parish bible study on the 10 Commandments (also numbering and Luther’s catechism)

d r a f t https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J3Xxhupj_6Q&list=PLFcbGPrXfjC0FA8pvDscNH6dnfNFbvXs3 Week 2 - Do Not Make an Image for Yourself Editor’s (admin’s) note: Lightly edited email sent to participants in a Sunday evening adult faith formation Zoom discussion that Debi and I are co-facilitating at our Lutheran church in Springfield, Illinois. It follows Words of Life: Jesus and the Promise of … Continue reading ‘Words of Life’ — blast email for a parish bible study on the 10 Commandments (also numbering and Luther’s catechism)

‘Words of Life’ — emails for first faith formation class on the 10 Commandments, held online due to the pandemic

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WppMKwpXsQs&t=9s Editor's (admin's) note: Excerpts from emails sent to participants in a Sunday evening adult faith formation Zoom discussion that Debi and I are co-facilitating at our Lutheran church in Springfield, Illinois. It follows Words of Life: Jesus and the Promise of the Ten Commandments Today, a book with supplemental material by the Rev. Adam … Continue reading ‘Words of Life’ — emails for first faith formation class on the 10 Commandments, held online due to the pandemic

Link to Biblical Archaeology Society article on the 10 Commandments

Article by Shawna Dolansky, a religious studies professor at Carleton University in Canada who won a faculty award for "translating abstract biblical texts to digestible university-level content," has a very good overview (imho) of the 10 Commandments. In addition to  biblicalarchaeology.org, she is a frequent contributor to thetorah.com. This article, in Bible History Today, is a … Continue reading Link to Biblical Archaeology Society article on the 10 Commandments