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Hand Painted Icon of Jesus Christ preexistent Logos of God among Seraphim and Cherubim
Icon of IX XC Logos among the Seraphim and Cherubim
Priestly goth began as a space to bring together my theological and pastoral musings along with reflections on art and the Gothic subculture. You will still find these eclectic elements here, but the focus is upon how Church and Tradition relate to human sexuality and racism. 
Priestly goth is now focused on exploring the distinct reality of the Church but said reality isn’t sacred or secular.  Or it is that in the church what we understand as sacred and secular permeates each and intermingle with each other. Tradition orders but doesn’t entirely delineate where theophanies may take place. The installation pictured to the right represents  this view of church tradition and the relationship of the Sacred and the secular

I invite the reader to explore with me the world of

the priestly goth.

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Building Upon a Foundation: Practicing the Sermon on the Mount

The sermon on the mount (Matthew 5-7) concludes with the parable the wise and foolish builders. The wise builder builds on a rock for the foundation of his house. This builder who builds upon a firm foundation is the one who hears Jesus’ teaching and practices what Jesus teaches. Putting Jesus’ teaching into practice is […]

Unbounded Love As Resistance: Standing against Sin and Evil, Part 2

Part 1: Love command as interpretive framework for the Sermon on the Mount Part 2  Love command as Standing against Sin and Evil A careful reading of Matthew’s version of Jesus saying reveals a humanizing act both for the one being struck and for the one striking the other. one that counters the received interpretation […]

Unbounded Love as Resistance: The Sermon on the Mount (part 1)

There is an extremism in Jesus’ teaching in the Sermon on the Mount (Matthew 5-7, parallel in Luke 6 as the Sermon on the Plain). Many in the history of the church have attempted to soften and or restrict the application of these teachings to certain class. Part of this radicalism, is Jesus Christ getting […]

On the Edge of Enlightenment: The Epiphany

Even on this day, as when we were waiting for God’s transformation of the world, we can miss the illumination. As often as not the illumination we seek is obvious and at the center while the epiphany we get is on the periphery just out of sight. The Epiphany comes to us as odd foreigners […]

The Veil Over the Holy Nativity

The icon of the Holy Nativity has something that eludes us.  I return, again and again, to its contemplation because it is a rich image but also because it challenges me. I don’t see it completely. The meaning eludes us, there is a veil over the icon. One layer of this veil is the familiar […]

When God-with-Us is no Comfort: Feast of Holy Innocents

Scriptures Readings: Holy Innocents: Jeremiah 31:15-17 Revelation 21:1-7 Matthew 2:13-18 Psalm 124 The sound track for this post: : What are we to make of the feast of the Holy Innocents? What is happening as we remember and celebrate these innocents, the unknown number of infants and toddlers who are martyrs? To what do these innocents witness? In […]

Torn Heavens and Shattered Earth: Advent Vexation

O that you would tear open the heavens and come down, so that the mountains would quake at your presence–as when fire kindles brushwood and the fire causes water to boil– to make your name known to your adversaries, so that the nations might tremble at your presence!  (Isaiah 64:1, 2) This is a longing […]

Hope as Virtue and Discipline: “The arc of the moral universe is long but bends towards Justice.”

What follows is an essay written from my notes for recent Theology on tap for the Oratory of Jesus Christ Reconciler, written after the discussion. another version  was posted on the Oratory’s website. “The arc of the moral universe is long but bends towards Justice.” Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. used this aphorism in […]

Repentance as the Path to Decolonization: Confessing my family’s role in Manifest Destiny

Recently I ran across an interview with Ann Coulter on the View. In that interview Coulter made a claim that her family wasn’t originally immigrants but were settlers. While I disagree with how Coulter uses this assertion, the truth is that during the period of U.S. expansion and conquest White Europeans were settlers of that expansion […]

Feeling Safe and Secure without Grief or Lament

Alas for those who are at ease in Zion, and for those who feel secure on Mount Samaria. Alas for those who lie on beds of ivory, and lounge on their couches, and eat lambs from the flock, and calves from the stall; who sing idle songs to the sound of the harp, and like […]

Listening for the Mind of Christ in Time of Crisis: Do not be afraid, Part 3

12 Meanwhile, when many thousands of the crowd had gathered so that they were trampling on one another, Jesus began to speak first to his disciples, “Be on your guard against the yeast of the Pharisees, which is hypocrisy. 2 Nothing is hidden that will not be revealed, and nothing is secret that will not be made known. 3 So […]

The Joy of Transformation

Texts for contemplation: Matthew 3:1-17; Mark 1:1-11; Luke 3:1-21; John 1:19-34; John 2:1-11 Although we have left behind the celebration of Christmas, liturgically we are still basking in the light of God manifest in human flesh.   This is also the time of Carnival and Mardi Gras. We tend not to give much thought to this […]

Love as insight : The Epiphany

Yesterday was the Epiphany. In the western liturgical calendar we focus on the adoration of the magi. Historically though, two other Gospel events are also celebrated, the Baptism of Jesus of Nazareth in the Jordan by John the Forerunner and the Wedding at Cana, where Jesus turned water into wine.  Among the Eastern Orthodox the feast […]

The Discomforting Joy of the Holy Nativity

Back in December as the refugee Crisis in the Middle East and Europe was in our                                    news cycles a meme went around that had a few iterations and said something like “if only there was a seasonal story […]

Celebrating the Holy Nativity, #StayWoke

A friend of mine in a Facebook post comment thread mentioned that the Christmas story is often told as a children’s story.  I think there are several layers to this characterization.  One the Holy Nativity is often seen as a cute and comforting story, a G movie  safe for the viewing pleasure of the entire family. […]

Longing for Justice in Absence: #StayWokeAdvent

O that you would tear open the heavens and come down, so that the mountains would quake at your presence– as when fire kindles brushwood and the fire causes water to boil– to make your name known to your adversaries, so that the nations might tremble at your presence!  (Isaiah 64:1, 2) This cry for […]

Wake up and Keep Awake: #StayWokeAdvent

I’ve kept mostly silent about the grand jury’s decision not to indict Darren Wilson for the killing of Michael Brown.  On Social media I’ve attempted to direct people’s attention to Black and other voices from the margins around what happened and the continued unrest in the wake of the announcement of the grand jury’s decision. […]

Privilege, Privileged, Privileging

Once again this year at the North Park Theological Seminary Symposium on the Theological Interpretation of Scripture (this years theme The Human Response to God) I have found my thoughts turning to privilege.  Some of the presenters have directly or indirectly addressed the problems of privileging certain aspects of the human over others which then […]

Theophany – Baptism of Christ Icon

Stages of the Nearly completed Theophany icon.  If interested in this icon it will be available in my  Priestly Goth Icons Etsy shop in September.