“Might the authority of those who suffer bring the diverse cultural and social worlds together?” –Johann Baptist Metz
For the past six months I’ve had something of a passion project on my heart. Over the past eight days it’s become a reality (you can read the whole story in the About section of the site). I hope that it will be and do and morph into “immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine” (Eph 3:20). And now, click here to join the #jesusinqueens celebration!
Taize has been on my mind a lot lately. I’ve been thinking about new services, for a variety of churches and small groups around the country. When I noticed that someone had looked this piece up today—a blog I had written nearly 4 years ago—I thought I’d share it anew. Pax
Me neither. But the sanctuary at Taize may just be the closest thing to it. The walls soar to cathedral heights, but there’s nothing old or gray or obsolete about the beauty here: everything is orange and glowing and rendered with an eye to simplicity. We approach in silence, pick up a songbook and enter the otherwordly space. There are no pews in Taize. All the pilgrims sit on the floor, or on a handful of freestanding wooden kneelers which people learn to arrive early to snag. The center aisle is partitioned off from the two sides by a small row of dried greens that form a divide between the visitors and the brothers, who sat in an order that appeared to be by age, or seniority, in simple wooden chairs along the edges or in kneelers down the center.
In their white robes they entered, one by one, from…
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This old Advent post is actually a wonderful preparation for Lent…
I find inspiration in many unlikely places. This morning on Facebook there was a quote by the playwright John Patrick Shanley. It was posted by an actress who is deeply committed to teaching theater in New York. I met her this year at a reading: she brought a wonderful short, short story and I read some passages from my new book, Elijah & the SAT. I smiled when I saw that the quote was from Shanley because my daughter has been assigned one of his scenes for her acting class. I’ve been trying to track down an old copy of Moonstruck all week so she can see how his gift of language plays out in a larger work.
I don’t know if it was his intention but Shanley has, in this short verse, captured the essence of Advent. In theological lingo, we would say it is a conversational way of…
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An Advent favorite from seasons past…
Five years ago at Christmas, my son Graham gave me a book by Parker J. Palmer called Let your Life Speak. He didn’t know anything about it, found it on a table in the spiritual books section of Barnes & Noble, thought I might like it. It has, over these past five years, become one of the touchstones of my life, key words about who we are, who we were meant to be, and how we are to listen for the voice of vocation. If I could, I’d buy you all a copy. Instead, I’ll share the opening page or two and trust it will begin to open doors for you as it did for me.
He begins with a poem by William Stafford, Ask Me:
Some time when the river is ice ask me
mistakes I have made. Ask me whether
what I have done is my…
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