Haunting Silence

Haunting Silence

Last night my husband and I previewed the Martin Scorsese film, Silence. This movie is scheduled to release in America on Friday. It’s a historical drama set in Nagasaki, Japan which recounts the faith story of two 17th century Jesuit priests. Early on during the beginning scenes, these young priests receive word in Portugal that their mentor/teacher has committed apostasy under torture in Japan. Convinced this news is slander they gain permission to travel from Portugal to Japan on a mission to find…

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Justice, Peace and the Church

Justice, Peace and the Church

No Justice. No Peace. A friend’s Facebook post has me thinking almost non-stop about this idea, no justice no peace. She didn’t state it that way. What she said was, “Calling for peace when there is no justice is not the solution.” Which sounds much more polite considering the slogan has acquired a reputation synonymous with fighting and a variety of unbecoming behaviors. My friend attached to her post and encouraged us to re-read Dr. King’s “Letter from Birmingham Jail.”…

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The Hard Work of Transformation

The Hard Work of Transformation

Our church celebrated its 100th birthday just a couple of years ago. For half of that century it has been located less than a mile from a local public housing neighborhood. Last year this housing community was named one of the most dangerous places to live in the U.S. Although the members of our church and the folks living in this community have been neighbors for about five decades, we have interacted surprisingly little. It’s kind of amazing to think…

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Breaking Down Barriers: Understanding the Needs of Single Parents

Breaking Down Barriers: Understanding the Needs of Single Parents

Spring is one of my favorite times of year. Winter is finally over. Flowers burst from the ground. The air fills with glorious perfume. It’s as if the whole earth celebrates redemption’s birthday. Easter Sunday is the pinnacle of spring delight with all of our traditions on full display. We romp around with a bounce in our step presenting our Easter best. This is precisely the scene on a recent Easter Sunday as our delightful Children’s pastor cheerfully roams our…

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The Importance of Building a Relational Foundation

The Importance of Building a Relational Foundation

I grew up in a traditionally conservative denomination, one that does not allow women to be leaders or pastors or even teach men who are not younger than they are. Sometime after my parents’ divorce when I was in grade school, my faith, studying the Word, and my relationship with God became the most important part of my life. It was around middle school that I stumbled upon Psalm 68:5 that talks about God being a father to the fatherless:…

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