Exaltation of the Holy Cross

crossOn September 14, we celebrate the Feast of the Exaltation of the Cross, or Holy Cross Day, to commemorate the dedication of the Church of the Holy Sepulchre and the exposition of the True Cross, which had been found by Helena, the mother of Emperor Constantine. Now I won’t go into whether or not she actually found the cross on which Jesus was crucified or whether all current pieces of it could build a large boat. Instead, the main importance of the feast today is the importance of the Cross as one of the central symbols of the Christian faith.

Now I’ll be the first to admit that we’ve sometimes overdone the Cross. At least in the sense of relishing a bit too much in the gore and in God’s wrath (such as in The Passion of the Christ, or as I sometimes call it, “Hamburger Jesus.”) Penal substitution might be a major theory of the Atonement, esp. in Reformed and evangelical Protestant circles, but historically, it’s not the only one (or even necessarily the best). I won’t go into all of it now, but I can in a future post.  Continue reading

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Thankful for the many years

This past weekend I went down to Mississippi to celebrate my parents’ 50th wedding anniversary. YES, I know, 50 years! Who the heck stays married that long anymore? Unfortunately, all too few.  😦
They, however, did. 🙂

Anyway, it really was a pleasure to spend time with them and my brother and other family members I don’t get to see often. Saturday lunch was a nice bowl (err, two) of homemade gumbo, and that evening we had a wonderful dinner at Anjou. (Great restaurant. I highly recommend the shrimp linguine.) We ate. We talked. We laughed. We even sang. (See below for that one.) Continue reading

Evangelicals and Trump

President Donald Trump stands with Liberty University President Jerry Falwell Jr. in Lynchburg, Va. on May 13. (Steve Helber / AssociatedPress)

Early this morning, an op-ed was posted on the LA Times website titled “Under Trump, evangelicals show their true racist colors,” by Randall Balmer, a professor of American religious history at Dartmouth College (and an Episcopal priest, btw).

Back in November, around 81% of white evangelicals who voted for President did so for Trump. While white evangelical support for Republican candidates has been sky-high for quite a while, there are a number of factors that make their support for Trump especially odd. Continue reading

“Unite the Right”? Absolutely Wrong

Image result for charlottesville rally I’m glad I didn’t have to preach yesterday. I’d have been working all week on a sermon only to redo it on Saturday. However, I can’t go without speaking to what happened in Charlottesville, and I will say it in no uncertain terms. White supremacy, anti-Semitism, bigotry, xenophobia, etc. have had a place in this country since the beginning. However, they have no place in where this country should be, no place in the ideals that make America great. Continue reading

Giving thanks

Image result for wanderI know it’s been a while since the last post. I’ve had a lot going on, including trying to get a new blog off the ground, Political Wandering. (As you can tell, I do a lot of wandering.)

However, I now have an excuse to write something here. Anyone who knows me and/or who follows this blog knows that I’ve had trouble for a while (okay, long while) finding some direction. Even getting a full-time job has been difficult. Yesterday, though, I got some good news. The law firm I’ve been working at is going to hire me on directly (instead of through a staffing agency), and I’ll be working full-time. It’s not exactly a dream job or a high-paying one, but it is a job that’s stable and has benefits. Plus, I like it here. I like the people, and they like me and appreciate my work. There are a LOT of people out there who can’t say that. Continue reading

Eucharistic Bunnies

downloadYes, bunnies and Eucharist. No, I’m not going crazy . . . well, not any crazier . . . I hope. And no, it’s not about the Easter Bunny either.

Actually, let me go back several years. Picture it, Scotland, 1999. I was studying abroad for a semester at St. Andrews, and there was this field near my residence hall. I was walking through it one day on my way to the computer lab. Then I saw a pair of little baby rabbits next to their warren. Cute would be an understatement. However, something odd happened next. For a brief moment, I was overcome with wonder. It was almost as if eternity opened up and blossomed before me. I’m not really sure how to describe it except that everything seemed to just fit together.  Continue reading

My Trinity Sunday Sermon from 2016

Last year I preached on Trinity Sunday at my parish, St. Thomas’, Washington, DC. The text of it is below, but you can also listen to it online.


389px-Andrej_Rublëv_001

Andrei Rublev’s icon of the Trinity

Believe it or not, but Trinity Sunday can be one of the trickier Sundays to preach on. It’s sometimes joked that this is the Sunday that’s often given to seminarians. Some sort of hazing, I’m sure. Personally, I love it. The Trinity is such a fundamental part of the Christian faith and of my own personal understanding of God, that I get excited learning about it and talking about it.

I know what you’re thinking, and you’re right, I am nuts. You’re also right that it’s not an easy thing to grasp. Three persons: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. But one God. On the surface, it doesn’t seem to make sense. Now some people might try to prove how this is so or explain how they all relate. If they can do that well, great. I’m not going to try. What I’m going to ask you right now is for the time being just to say yes to it and go from there while I talk with you about why it’s important.  Continue reading