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Showing posts from October, 2012

How Religious Liberalism does: (1)

What does a Religious Liberal do, or not do?

A Religious liberal doesn't demonize...

When a big storm comes along and governmental officials tell people evacuate a neighborhood or a community, some people won't go.  Maybe they had a good reason, maybe not.  Maybe they had no other choice, or no way to get anywhere else, or nowhere to go.  Or no cash to get there.  Maybe they screwed up.  Maybe they were screwed up at the time when they should have been thinking straight.

They may end up needing help, or rescue, or assistance, any of which cost money, and may place others in danger.

Public officials will need to point the objective and necessary actions over and over again.  The media will need to reinforce this message.

But a religious liberal doesn't demonize people who need help, even if they are not blameless.  They don't call them "jerks" or "stupid" or "ignorant" or "show-offs" or any of the other things that are thrown ar…

The Imaginative Leap -- Sermon October 14th

Oh My Gosh!  Last week was Columbus Day weekend, and I didn’t say anything about Columbus Day.  
By the time you get through the traditional Christian holidays-- Advent, Christmas, Epiphany, Lent, Palm Sunday, Easter and Pentecost -- and you add in the National Holidays -- Columbus Day, Veterans Day, Thanksgiving, Martin Luther King;s Birthday, Abraham Lincoln and/or George Washington’s Birthday, Memorial Day, Flag Day, 4th of July and Labor Day, and then throw in Mother and Father’s Day -- you got a lot of the church year blocked out for you.  And don’t forget some of the newer days of observation that folks promote:  National Coming Out Day, Day of Transgender Remembrance, the Association Sunday, and don’t forget Pledge Sunday.  There are people emotionally attached to every one of these.
But do not fear, I will get to Columbus day today, which actually fell on October 12th -- Friday.  It is also the National Day of Solidarity with Indigenous Peoples.   A counter holiday.  You have pe…

Sting Like a Bee

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Reawakenings (Sermon October 7, 2012)

Scripture:  Psalm 100 1Make a joyful noise to the Lord, all the earth. 2Worship the Lord with gladness; come into his presence with singing. 3Know that the Lord is God. It is he that made us, and we are his; we are his people, and the sheep of his pasture. 4Enter his gates with thanksgiving, and his courts with praise. Give thanks to him, bless his name. 5For the Lord is good; his steadfast love endures forever, and his faithfulness to all generations.
Modern Reading:
Pure Beauty, benediction: you are all I gathered From a life that was bitter and confused, In which I learned about evil, my own and not my own. Wonder kept seizing me, and I recall only wonder, Risings of the sun over endless green, a universe Of grasses, and flowers opening to the first light, Blue outlines of the mountains and a hosanna shout. I asked, how many times, is this the truth of the earth? How can laments and curses be turned into hymns? What makes you need to pretend, when you know better? But the lips praised on their own, …

Thoughts on Freedom of the Pulpit Day

I have been talking about the conservative's Freedom of the Pulpit Day on Facebook.  Here are some of those posts. 



I may be the only religious liberal who supports Freedom of the Pulpit Day. The IRS regulation that prevents churches from direct involvement in the democratic process of the country is a violation of the rights of every person. Since when does receiving a tax preference preclude a person or institution from expressing their political views? 

Corporations can tell people how to vote and contribute to campaigns, but churches cannot? What are the tax breaks we are threatened with losing? Most churches do not make a profit. The real thing we would lose is our exemption from real estate taxes, which finance the communities that support us, and which we say we serve. 

Everybody has a price at which they will give up their freedom. Is the church's that low?

Colleagues discuss some of the tax implications of the IRS rulings and ways that 

Another way to do it is for the gove…

A Polarized Politics: A Good Thing -- Get Used to It.

It’s a very polarized country.  Get over it.  In many ways, it is a sign of our growing political maturity.
Two very large political movements are contesting for political power right now.  I don't have to explain who they are.
It used to be that two political coalitions, in the forms of political parties, confronted each other.  Each party was a coalition of disparate elements; each contained both liberal and conservative wings.  There was some overlap.  In places in the country where the parties overlapped on policy, it was possible for a citizen “to vote the man, not the party.”    And it was possible for Congress to be governed by a bi-partisan majority.  In the old days, an independent was a moderate and a moderate was an independent.  The news media tried to occupy a middle moderate space.  There was this space above politics where the wise and educated looked down on the noisy propaganda of political factions, and determined what the best policy would be.  All of the powerful…