The Gospel is God’s Spell

The origin of the word “gospel” is just like it sounds. The Gospel is “God’s spell.” In Old English, before it took on it’s more magical connotations, “spell” meant simply “story.” In my experience the Gospel has not failed to correspond with its later enchanted associations. This is probably because stories are, in their essence,Continue reading “The Gospel is God’s Spell”

I refuse to know everything!

It seems that if I am going to care about anything, I have to care about everything. The message that has flooded the basement and whole house of my imagination is “all or nothing.” How did this happen? We (maybe humans; definitely North Americans) have a fascination with technique and expertise. Everyone could be anContinue reading “I refuse to know everything!”

Making a splash in my neighborhood (You can too!)

Putting Circle of Hope on the Map in OUR Neighborhoods This month, Circle of Hope sponsored the West Collingswood Extension Civic Association newsletter. That’s my neighborhood. It’s a wonderful, weird little slice of South Jersey. It is part of Haddon Township, but separated from the largest chunk of this patchwork township by Collingswood. AND myContinue reading “Making a splash in my neighborhood (You can too!)”

A Christian Pledge of Allegiance

  I wrote this prayer for our Sunday meetings. I started with this image I found around Memorial Day and kept going from there. It helps me put the holiday in perspective. I’ll be raising money for my local civic association and watching fireworks (my favorite fourth of July activities), but I will not beContinue reading “A Christian Pledge of Allegiance”

Unpatriotic Reflections on Immigration for Memorial Day

As we head into Memorial Day, let us consider our stories When my ancestors immigrated to North America they were called pilgrims, settlers, pioneers. When immigrants today come to North America the most common names are refugee, asylum seeker, alien. Why did the narrative change? My ancestors are heroes, today they would be from anotherContinue reading “Unpatriotic Reflections on Immigration for Memorial Day”

Caring About Climate Catastrophe, Like a Chump

Paper or Plastic? I walked  into my local coffee roaster on Earth Day and discovered that they had switched their bean packaging from paper to plastic. I know and love these people so I did not hold back my protest with the barista who rang me up.  “Yo, tell the owner [name redacted because thisContinue reading “Caring About Climate Catastrophe, Like a Chump”


ALL CAPS! SHARING OUR RESOURCES BRINGS FREEDOM AND UNLEASHES POWER!!! I’m excited to FEEL how true this is once again after spending 90 minutes with my Circle of Hope partners last night at a Gifts for Growing event I organized with Jane and Scott Clinton. We had a simple plan: make a space where itContinue reading “SHARING OUR RESOURCES BRINGS FREEDOM AND UNLEASHES POWER!”

We need your shininess! Tell Your Story

Shine Bright! I wrote this up for but I thought you should see it, too. It was a lot of fun and I am still glowing. >>>>>>>>>>> It is Martin Luther King’s Birthday today, January, 15th. So last night was Martin Luther King’s Birthday Eve! We got together to celebrate by sharing stories aboutContinue reading “We need your shininess! Tell Your Story”

We need better imaginations for our social justice movements

Advent is coming It’s Advent Eve, Eve (this year Advent starts on November 29, four sundays before Christmas Day). I find myself more ready than ever to enter into the yearly practice of communal waiting. I need time to ponder and space to consider. This year turns up all the questions and the tension isContinue reading “We need better imaginations for our social justice movements”

How Will We Love Through the Election?

“Unreliable Allies” Karl Barth, a German Theologian who helped organize the Confessing Church in opposition to the Nazi regime, once said that the church ought to be an “unreliable ally” to any and every political system. That is to say that our primary allegiance to Jesus and his kingdom will often come into tension withContinue reading “How Will We Love Through the Election?”

Don’t Forget, Jesus is the Lord of History

Is the Church Just Following Culture? Try as we might, we cannot separate ourselves from the influences that have shaped us personally and the greater forces that have shaped our context. Our ongoing, and longstanding dialogue about antiracism in Circle of Hope has been dialed up in recent months in the wake of police killingsContinue reading “Don’t Forget, Jesus is the Lord of History”

How does a Christian Celebrate the Fourth of July?

Happy Fourth of July? How does a Christian celebrate the beginning of a nation with such a shaky foundation? Thomas Jefferson wrote about self-evident truths that were so abstract they excluded women and black people from their universality. The land the American Revolutionaries fought for was stolen from the First Nations people. But I don’tContinue reading “How does a Christian Celebrate the Fourth of July?”

Hey (!), White People (!), We Get to Repent!

What an extraordinary moment in American History! A bunch of my friends are getting the day off for Juneteenth. There’s talk of making it a national holiday and I don’t think that sounds far-fetched.  Confederate monuments are coming down. Christopher Columbus statues are coming down. It seems like the last vestiges of racism in AmericaContinue reading “Hey (!), White People (!), We Get to Repent!”

How Does a Christian Celebrate Memorial Day?

During the Covid 19 pandemic should we hit the boardwalk or stay at home? Are the CDC and the government our only authorities? What does Jesus say? And in any Memorial Day, how do we relate to those who died in war and their families while also resolving to decry the existence of war? JesusContinue reading “How Does a Christian Celebrate Memorial Day?”

How do Christians work? Is that even a thing anymore?

This blog post was co-written by Ben White and Jonny Rashid after our church hosted a meeting for theological thinkers and seminarians on developing a theology of work. The problem of work in the 21st Century United States France has a law that prohibits an employer from Emailing her employees after hours. They are enforcingContinue reading “How do Christians work? Is that even a thing anymore?”

Epiphany Means Christmas Ain’t Over Yet

My Parents Invented an Alternative Ritual When I was in first grade my parents dropped a major bomb: No gifts on Christmas! I don’t remember it being too devastating because they made the alternative so fun. Instead of getting gifts form Mom and Dad on December 25th, stacked under the Christmas Tree in a perfectContinue reading “Epiphany Means Christmas Ain’t Over Yet”