On NOT being a Minister

It is Sunday morning, and I have no sermon to preach and no Bible Study to prepare.  I will attend church, but I will not be expected to serve Communion or set up mid-week pastoral appointments.  I have no mailbox to check in the church office.  I have nothing to print out, no copies to…

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Christian Theology and the Colorado Theater Shooting

Like you, I’ve been following the Colorado theater shooting news. I’m saddened and sickened and somewhat afraid. I watched The Today Show on NBC as broadcasters and commentators struggled to make sense of it. It’s a serious struggle indeed, but Christian theology seems to be uniquely equipped to enter into the difficulty and address the…

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Fact vs. Fiction

“Fact vs Fiction” had apparently been a teaching topic for my two oldest little kids at school. They were telling me about it… “Fact is, like, real.  But fiction is not real.  Fiction is stuff that’s not true.” I took offense. “You mean,” I asked, “fiction is not true at all?” “No, Dad, of course…

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(Re-) Forging a New Vocational Identity: the “Pastor-Theologian” (Part 1)

As soon as I read Douglas Sweeney’s article, “A Call and Agenda for Pastor-Theologians,” I shared it on Facebook wall with the comment: “Why I am doing a PhD.” What I meant is that the vocational vision of the “pastor-theologian” is one of the most compelling motivations for my current endeavors as a doctoral student…

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Captivated and Captured by Gospel Theology

I cannot get enough of it.  Theology.  I am willingly drowning in it.  I lose sleep over it.  I am sacrificing a great deal of money to learn more of it.  The “tolle lege” that rang in Augustine’s ear echoes in mine.  And the more I take up and read, the more intrigued, mystified, entranced…

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So Augustine, Calvin and Barth are at the Pearly Gates…

My pastor here in England told me a good theological joke (yes, there is such a thing). Augustine, Calvin and Karl Barth are standing before the Pearly Gates, awaiting entrance into heaven.  Augustine’s name is called and he goes in.  A half hour later he returns.  Overjoyed, he reports that he has conversed with God…

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