Monthly Archives: November 2013

The death of Thanksgiving

Macy’s has been taking some hard hits for announcing that it will open to shoppers on Thanksgiving Day for the first time ever. For some people, the announcement is being heralded as Thanksgiving’s death notice. Upon hearing of Macy’s plan, one observer told the Chicago Daily Herald, “Please write an obituary because I think this […]

On rebuilding the church, part 2

In my last ruminations I spoke about the need to rebuild the church, not the building that houses the church in this place, but the church, the community of people who have taken sacred vows to live faithfully in response to God in the spirit of the risen Christ. No one can seriously doubt that […]

On rebuilding the church

What must it feel like, I wonder, for my home church to be destroyed overnight? The members of our congregation in Brocton could tell me. Hours before they were to gather for worship last Sunday, fire completely gutted their sanctuary and fellowship hall. Now many of them must be walking around in what their pastor […]

On the making of poems

“My chief aim is to make a poem. You make it for yourself firstly, and then if other people want to join in then there we are.” —R.S. Thomas (1913-2000)

The hope of our calling

Whatever else we may have in common with the Wizard of Oz, we share at least this: If we want to be the best we can be, if we want to live into the fullness of the hope of our calling, we have got to stop aiming so high. In order to reach maturity, what […]

The sound of the genuine

“There is something in every one of you that waits and listens for the sound of the genuine in yourself. It is the only true guide you will ever have. And if you cannot hear it, you will all of your life spend your days on the ends of strings that somebody else pulls.” —Howard […]

On greatness

Pope Julius II chose this day in 1512 to display Michelangelo’s paintings on the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel for the first time. “We cannot know what a human being can achieve,” Goethe wrote, “until we have seen [the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel].” Calling Michelangelo’s work great is inadequate praise. Words don’t suffice; mute awe […]