Re-Baptized Through Liberation

MVSA social media re-post from Mark Van Steenwyk, executive director of The Center for Prophetic Imagination (November 20, 2017):

Any anabaptist theology that isn’t re-baptized through liberation theology reinforces oppression.

Anabaptism, on its own, only makes sense as a religion of the oppressed. Just like the Gospels are unintelligible to the middle and owner classes apart from the experiences of the oppressed.

In other words: Any calls for pacifism, meekness, and simplicity that come insistently from the powerful are attempts to keep the oppressed docile and poor.

Nonviolence must be a tool of the oppressed in their struggle, with the aid and support of repentant allies. Otherwise, in the hands of the powerful it becomes an ideology of oppression.

To be clear: I’m a pacifist. But pacifism and nonviolence must be in service to liberation or they become a force for oppression. If you’re a pacifist that isn’t working alongside (and following the lead of) those who struggle for liberation, then your nonviolence is just the velvet pouch sheathing the hammer of oppression

Psalm 150: With What You Have

Mike

PC: Michael Smith

By Eric Martin

The pilgrim slept in with the gods

until Spring dripped from the fingers of every tree.
She leapt out hungry into the fields
and heard the hymns of sparrows in flight
and  children  in  chase

      and somewhere the bats upside down.

For a moment she thought she saw
the taxman  barefoot  and eating cherry popsicles.

The sun pressed itself upon her,
armpits swelling with sweat,
and the grass itched
and the buds gained confidence
and the sky shouted   “infinity!”   at everything. Continue reading

What Does it Mean that Jesus “Apprenticed” with John the Baptist?

Christ

Re-posting this Lectionary reflection from 3 years ago on radicaldiscipleship.net written by Ched Myers.

John the Baptist appeared in the wilderness, proclaiming a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins. 5And people from the whole Judean countryside and all the people of Jerusalem were going out to him, and were baptized by him in the river Jordan, confessing their sins.
Mark 1:4-5


Continue reading

Wild Lectionary: The Voice Crying, “Out in the Wilderness, Prepare the Way”

fire

Photo by Victoria Loorz, taken during the Thomas Fire near her home

December 10, 2017
Advent 2B

Isaiah 40:3

A voice cries out: “In the wilderness, prepare the way of the LORD…

2Peter 3:10-13

…and then the heavens will pass away with a loud noise, and the elements will be dissolved with fire, and the earth and everything that is done on it will be disclosed…waiting for the coming of the day of God, because of which the heavens will be set ablaze and dissolved, and the elements will melt with fire? … But, in accordance with his promise, we wait for new heavens and a new earth, where righteousness is at home. Continue reading

The Politics of Christmas in the Age of Trump

Republican Presidential Candidates Speak At Values Voter SummitBy Will O’Brien

Among the many manifestations of his project to “make America great again,” President Trump has frequently and pompously declared that “We will be able to say ‘Merry Christmas’ again!” When he spoke at last fall’s Values Voters Summit, this vow garnered the most boisterous applause. For many conservative Christians, Trump is the conquering hero who waged battle against secularism in the annual “war on Christmas” – and finally won the war. Like many Trumpisms, this would be simply pathetic were it not for the fact that it is part of a treacherous national vision. Continue reading