Fellowship of Saints and Sinners

Fellowship of Saints and Sinners

July 2012 Archives

The Resurrection and The Life: A Sermon

This past Sunday I had the joy and privilege of joining in worship with the people of Old First Presbyterian in downtown San Francisco.  The following sermon belongs to our ongoing series, Jesus Epithets:  All the Names Jesus Gets Called […]

The Discipline of Vacation

If you hear less from me over the next ten days, it is because I’ll be mostly vacationing with family and friends first in Albuquerque and San Francisco, and then, sans children, in Napa Valley.  I’m still trying to figure […]

Why the Dearth of Women Emerging Evangelists? An Interview with Matt Brown of Thinke

Some of you probably recall that not long ago the Facebook page “Emerging Evangelists” gallery of exclusively male blogging evangelists (excepting a couple brave, smiling wives) elicited an outburst.  What was so “emerging” about an all-male club of evangelists in […]

Lessons from the Colorado Tragedy

The massacre at a movie cinema late Thursday night was a tragedy. It can be a lesson, too.  The question is, a lesson about what exactly?  As usual, the devil is in the details. In the days following a deranged […]

Prayers in Wake of Colorado Tragedy

I’m struck this morning by the prescience of yesterday’s poem, coming as it did (without my knowledge at the time of posting it) in the wake of the tragedy that struck  late Thursday night at a movie theater in Aurora, […]

The Poetics of Faith

Fellow saint and sinner Molly Nicholson has shared this wonderful, little piece by the poet Robert Francis, which comes untitled: Life the hound Equivocal Comes at a bound Either to rend me Or to befriend me. I cannot tell The hound’s […]

The Meaning of Tradition and Why Church Families Do Such Weird Stuff

This week some of my now very large, sprawling extended family took part in its annual “Robb Regatta” off of Shelter Island, an island off the eastern tip of Long Island, New York.  I regrettably couldn’t make it, but got […]

“Can Liberal Christianity Be Saved?” Is the Wrong Question

In an op-ed piece for The New York Times, titled “Can Liberal Christianity Be Saved?,” Ross Douthat makes the observation that last week, as the Episcopal Church was approving a rite to bless same-sex unions, Episcopalian church attendance figures for […]

Family unValues: Weird Jesus Sayings

“If any of you come to me…and don’t hate your father and your mother, your wife and your children, your brothers and your sisters- yes, and even your own life!- you can’t be my disciple.” – Luke 14:26 So much […]

Chicken Living Versus Freedom?

This weekend our family’s Friday movie night featured Chicken Run, an animated comedy directed by Peter Lord and Nick Park which tells the story of one group of cooped-up chickens and their relentless thirst for freedom from their soulless, money-grubbing overlords, […]

Previous Posts

Christian Purity: Is God's Mission Possible When Purity Rules?
I had a really weird, somewhat distressing interaction this week, and it is still on my mind days later. It's one of those uncomfortable encounters that you would like to press the "replay" butt

posted 1:40:13pm Sep. 20, 2014 | read full post »

Jesus and the Rich Man: A Sermon on the "Hitler" of Passages.
It's rare that I find myself thinking about Sunday's sermon midweek. This Sunday our pastor Drew Ditzel preached on the familiar story of Jesus and the rich man (Mark 10). The rich man, who says he has kept all the commandments perfectly and has lived a righteous life, comes to Jesus asking what mor

posted 10:40:08am Sep. 17, 2014 | read full post »

The Lie of Invulnerability
This last week has been insane. Family sickness, repairs, car issues, multiple calls from school nurses, including one in which the nurse expressed concern my 7-year-old son had been bitten by a brown recluse spider...and just when I thought it couldn't get worse...viral pinkeye. Two puffy, leaky, r

posted 11:00:49am Sep. 09, 2014 | read full post »

Humor Relief for Religious Extremism
Once again, humor and satire are coming to my aid this morning, this time in response to the twisted and evil extensions of religion that seeks to coerce and control with violence and worldly forms of power (best embodied these days in the form of ISIS and its affiliates). The Palestinian televis

posted 10:36:57am Sep. 03, 2014 | read full post »

"AA" Recovery Groups—Spirituality for the Non-Religious, Hope for the Church?
[caption id="attachment_5326" align="alignleft" width="271"] Bill Wilson co-founded Alcoholics Anonymous with Dr. Bob Smith in 1935. Their affectionately called "Big Book" is one of the best-selling books of all time, having sold more than 30 million copies since its publication. (Photo credit: Haze

posted 11:27:26am Sep. 02, 2014 | read full post »


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