Category Archives: Uncategorized

Mother Theresa is a Servant

And a hero.  And a saint.  You never hear anything bad about Mother Theresa. [1] And if you were waiting for me to say that I am going to stand up and start criticizing, you will wait for a long … Continue reading

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Karl Barth and Ergophobia

I want to think today about ergophobia. [1] I mean by this term not the familiar “fear of work,” (illustrated by the man hiding under the desk, below) but more a “fear of works righteousness.” The mainstay of Christian theology … Continue reading

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Back to Burgundy

I know scarcely any French at all and most of what I do know, I learned from movies or jokes. [1] I was curious, of course, when I saw a movie about French siblings coming to grips with their lapsed … Continue reading

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“Wartime moral clarity and passion”

I had never heard of Nitsuh Abebe before he wrote this piece. In fact, I had failed to notice that the New York Times Magazine carried a feature every week called “First Words.” Since “First Words” is about language and … Continue reading

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Turning the other cheek

When you come up against a vividly described ethical rule like this, you really need to decide what to do with it. This famous dictum is part of the famous Sermon on the Mount in Matthew 5. “…but I say … Continue reading

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Being “snakebit”

I gave a small lecture recently to a Lenten class at our church. It was more a rant, really, but they seemed to be a tolerant mood. I called some scripture texts “flat” in the way a Pepsi might get … Continue reading

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How to thrive while living

In May of last year, Carol Marat wrote a piece called “How to Thrive While Living Alone.” Nearly everything in my response to this lovely piece could be construed as criticism of it, so I want to take the time … Continue reading

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