The Cognitive Dissonance of Southern Hospitality

The-Cognitive-Dissonance-of-Southern-Hospitality_674_476_90

Old Age Security Credit: Jeff M for Short

By Britney Winn Lee. Originally in Geez 56: Entertaining Angels.

Joe Marlon Lee had the same philosophy for his kitchen table as he did for his onion patch, as he did for his pond and pocketbook – what is it all for if not to be shared?

He passed that worldview down to my mother, and together with my father, she has maintained an open-backdoor, open-pantry policy for all of my life. My friends, throughout college and young adulthood and now parenthood, found a sense of place just as I found a sense of place on that piece of Louisiana acreage. An insult it almost was for someone not to make our home their home throughout my upbringing. This sentiment echoed throughout my childhood town’s pharmacy, and football stadium, and the sanctuary in which I was pruned for a world much different than the one responsible for my raising. Continue reading

o, woman

Water Transfer 3

Re-loading cases of water to deliver to victims of water shut-off.

By Jim Perkinson, on John 4:5-42, for the beloved community that meets at St. Peter’s Episcopal Church (right) at the corner of Trumbull and Michigan in Detroit.  

o, the waters, the waters, the waters

o jacob, my father
o leah, my mother
o rachel, crying after the lost ones Continue reading

The Naming Project

TNP_largeBy Logan Rimel

For seven summers in a row, I’ve gathered with the other directors and counselors of The Naming Project for a week at Bay Lake Camp in Deerwood, MN. Since summer 2012, I’ve been blessed to be a part of this faith-filled summer camp for youth ages 14-18 of all sexual orientations and gender identities, and a director there since 2017. Each summer, the counselors and directors work to create a space where LGBTQ+ and allied youth can explore the intersection and interaction of their faith, identity, and community. Continue reading

Let Us End Our Complicity in War

indexBy Bishop Tom Gumbleton. Shared from Common Dreams.

Once again, information has surfaced regarding United States governmental efforts to mislead and misinform people about disgraceful, cruel destruction caused by a United States war of choice against people who meant the U.S. no harm. In the Afghanistan Papers, the United States government officials acknowledged, privately, their own uncertainty about why they were going to war against Afghanistan in 2001. The trove of newly released documents about the 18-year war unmasked years of high-level deceit and deliberate efforts to obfuscate realities on the ground in Afghanistan. Continue reading

Yet You Do Not Receive Our Testimony

MLKBy Tommy Airey, a seven-minute sermon at Storydwelling, a community of belonging, ritual and resistance in Bend, Oregon

“Very truly, I tell you, we speak of what we know and testify to what we have seen; yet you do not receive our testimony.”–John 3:11

Nicodemus, like most powerful men, knows how to conduct a covert operation. He was a Pharisee from Jerusalem with a lot to lose if others saw him associating with Jesus of Nazareth, the radical Galilean rabbi. Nicodemus’ night call would be like the President of the United States secretly meeting with Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. in the 1960’s, when Dr. King’s approval rating hovered around 25% in white America. Continue reading

A Spirituality of Disconnection

CPIBy Mark Van Steenwyk, executive director of the Center for Prophetic Imagination

Any spirituality that nurtures abstracted love, generic unity, and vague justice is worse than useless.

A Jesus-shaped spirituality moves us to love specific people, to struggle for tangible solidarity, and challenges us to work for particular justice.

If your spirituality provides positive feels and comfort because it helps you cope with the pain of the world, without ever addressing that pain, then it is, ultimately, a spirituality of empire. Continue reading

Bread and Blessings

hands-mass-kitchen-flour-knead-bread

cc

By Lydia Wylie-Kellermann, reflection on the Beautitudes at Day House in February.

I’ve taken to making bread lately. I have a bread machine that makes great bread, but I found myself craving the act of kneading bread.

It feels like everyone around me these days are going through really painful times in their lives. While I am trying to walk beside them with love for them, I find that internally I am carrying a lot of the grief and anger inside of me—and I have turned to breadmaking. Continue reading