Wild Lectionary: Trembling Birds

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 Pigeon Pair by Hal Trachenberg, Creative Commons

Proper 13(18) C

Hosea 11:1-11

By Laurel Dykstra

Today’s lectionary passage from Hosea is a potent cocktail that mixes parental love and anger with political violence and nature imagery. More broadly and more problematically, the prophet’s oracles:

  • imagine religious fidelity and commitment to justice, as sexual fidelity within patriarchy
  • conflate non-monogamy and sex commerce
  • assume that sexual violence (reparative rape) is a husband’s prerogative
  • equate military violence and invasion with divine judgement.

Continue reading

Pastoral Letter

8699828939_8a53b785ab_bBy Laurel Dykstra

in those days before the flood
they were eating and drinking,
marrying and giving in marriage

My scarred and raging
weary-eyed beloveds

ordinary defiant
with your teaching-outfit selfies
purple hair
fancy waistcoats
songs in a new range
carpentry projects
surfboards
magic card tricks
raspberry canes

You are magnificent Continue reading

Mary and Martha

Mary-Martha-Lazarus.jpgBy Laurel Dykstra, on Luke 10:38-42

*Note: this Radical Discipleship classic was originally posted in July 2016.

I don’t like the story of Mary and Martha.

Most of us already know if we are more like Mary, who sits at Jesus’ feet, or more like Martha, who is distracted by her many tasks. And it seems to me that no matter how nice they try to be about it, most of the sermons and commentaries on this passage seem to say, “Yay Mary and Boo Martha” Continue reading

Wild Lectionary: Sheep, Gazelle and Rock

45073825842_789e1c317b_bActs 9:36-43
Psalm 23

By Laurel Dykstra

On this Good Shepherd Sunday, our annual engagement with the repeated biblical assertion that both kingship and divine-human relations resemble sheep husbandry, the lectionary illuminates two key aspects of the emerging Wild Church Movement. Connected to both Watershed Discipleship and Contemplative Ecology, Wild Church is nothing more than Christians who intentionally worship, or seek to experience holiness, outside of buildings. In forests, deserts, city parks, beaches, urban vacant lots we reassert the strand of our tradition where wilderness is the place of divine encounter. Continue reading

Wild Lectionary: Thomas, Bodies, Touch, and Violence

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Hold Fast by Thor (Creative Commons License)

Easter 2(B)
John 20:19-31

By Laurel Dykstra

“Doubting Thomas” it’s the name we call someone who demands hard evidence, who won’t accept what we say or who doesn’t share our beliefs.

There are all kinds opportunities in the church use that name against someone. All sorts of differences in the beliefs of faithful Christians: angels, auras, miracles, marriage, dinosaurs, women disciples, Adam and Eve, Noah, what prayer is, what happens during a sacrament, what salvation means, what parts of the creeds we say with confidence and, perhaps most pertinent here, how we understand the resurrection. Continue reading

Wild Lectionary: Like Rain

48389000_10155980490816146_6934145010568790016_o(1)Epiphany C

Psalm 72
Matthew 2:1-12

By Laurel Dykstra

For Christians, and perhaps preachers especially, there is immense pressure to approach scripture with a foregone conclusion, to find and preach some Good News, whatever contortions to the integrity of self or text that might require. Continue reading

Wild Lectionary: From the Heavens and Earth

First Sunday after Christmas C
Psalm 148

By Laurel Dykstra

Salal + Cedar is the church that hosts and curates Wild Lectionary. We are in the middle of our fourth year as a community and this post marks the two-year anniversary of Wild Lectionary. Psalm 148, the praise hymn of all creation, is read every year on the first Sunday after Christmas and for Salal + Cedar it is an opportunity to reflect on the previous year. In 2018 we worked on restoring wildlife habitat on a trout and salmon stream, ran an environmental justice camp for youth, helped to midwife some emerging Wild Church projects, and continued in our resistance to the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion project.

Praise the Lord!

Praise the Lord from the heavens;
praise him in the heights!
Praise him, all his angels;
praise him, all his host! Continue reading