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Category: The Magazine

Loree Penner: Speaking Frankly

I weep because hatred wears many costumes. Most of those we are familiar with: racism, sexism, homophobia. But one of the costumes hate wears is righteousness. It is a costume, trust me – it is not the real thing. However, that costume is worn with the belief that the wearer is in the right. We saw it in the Capitol that day – the righteous costume on a person changing out our flag. People calling themselves Christian and doing unchristian acts.  People thinking they were doing the right thing by scaling the walls of a government building.

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The Daily Sip: Resilience

Beauty comes from hardships.  Blemishes to body and spirit. I wish it were not so. Grace comes from letting it all happen the way a pot lets me chip it when I carelessly knock it during my own life-tantrums. Grace comes from us letting others hit us in their tantrums. 

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Fragments on Fragments #28: Being Human in a Pandemic

We all need rest. Not just now, but in the rhythm of our lives. The pandemic seems to have only accentuated the division in our society, between those who are over-busy, in even more demand than ever, and those who suddenly find that they’re not needed, that they’re surplus to requirements. That was always a great evil, and if it gets worse, it may end up creating a dangerous chasm through the middle of our communities to the extent that we are no longer aware of our unity.

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Fragments on Fragments #27: Being Human in a Pandemic

The absence of touch has only occasionally been spoken of, but I am sure that it has been one of the most painful and demoralising aspects of the pandemic for very many. Touch is intimate and powerful, which is why inappropriate forms of touch can be so damaging. But equally, touch which affirms and expresses love is an extraordinarily important way of maintaining our health, psychologically, physically and spiritually.

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The Daily Sip: Delightful Darkness

Now, we are in another such time of transition. And the effect on the church is pronounced. Long before the COVID-19 pandemic, Generations X, Y and Z have been quietly leaving the church.  By 2000 and, for the first time in the 2000 years of the Church, three generations in a row were staying home to their grandparent’s annoyance and the tithe dependent church’s confusion.

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Nathan LeRud Opinion: In the Name of Jesus?

President Trump is a symptom, not a cause: focusing this moment on him and his maneuvers is precisely what he wants, and risks dulling each of us to the real danger we are in and blinding us to its true source. Many Christians (I count myself among them) have tended to try to get along with our “right-wing” siblings of varying stripes. They are not our enemies, easily dismissed as “crazy people” out there who take to the streets and wield the signs—they are our fathers and mothers, our grandparents, our crazy Uncle Bills, our police officers, our Sunday School teachers and our friends.

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Fragments on Fragments #26: Being Human in a Pandemic

Still more is it impossible to grasp the wholeness of a human being in their manifold complexity. Yes, we can understand some parts pretty well, and Western science has come an extraordinarily long way in understanding how bodies work, but each individual’s uniqueness means that even where we know the most, there is a vast amount more to discover. Faiths and philosophies around the world have explored the deep spiritual waters of the human soul, without any signs as yet of plumbing the depths.

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Ron Beathard: Holy Simplicity

A farmer once told me that, when plowing a field, he can both feel and hear differences when the plow crosses an old, forgotten, unmarked grave.  Perhaps, like the farmer’s knowing plow, differences can be felt here sitting on the ground in a Shaker cemetery.  Should I be kneeling?

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Dr. David C. McDuffie: We the People of the Episcopal Church

While the Gospel is not a political platform, it is a radical message of inclusion with political implications.  For example, women’s equality, racial justice, LGBTQ rights, protections for the poor and marginalized are all important political issues, but they are also at the heart of the Gospel. The Good News of Jesus that has been passed down to us through our tradition is thoroughly progressive, not in terms of lining up perfectly with a political platform but in seeking to ever expand the circle of community and equality.  In the United States, a move toward greater equality in all of these vital issues has been achieved either directly through the voting process or through legislative and judicial decisions built upon a foundational commitment to democratic elections.  

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The Episcopal Café seeks to be an independent voice, reporting and reflecting on the Episcopal Church and the Anglican tradition.  The Café is not a platform of advocacy, but it does aim to tell the story of the church from the perspective of Progressive Christianity.  Our collective sympathy, as the Café, lies with the project of widening the circle of inclusion within the church and empowering all the baptized for the role to which they have been called as followers of Christ.

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