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Priestly goth is a space for the exploration and working out of being a Christian who is in the World but not of the world.  This exploration is a bit eclectic, like the goth aesthetic itself.

Here are reflections on the Church, the Spiritual life and the gothic subculture as a Christian who identifies as a goth.  Since I am a pastor and spiritual director I wanted to create a space to explore and struggle with issues of church and pastoral care in an age of post-Christendom. 

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Here are also found portfolios of my iconographic work.

I invite the reader to explore with me the world of the priestly goth.

On a Way Toward an Ecclesial and Trinitarian Exploration of Sexuality and Gender

Rowan Williams, in his essay The Body’s Grace , proposes a way forward in thinking about human sexuality that can both hold to the Tradition of the Church and at the same time be open to and affirming of the diversity of human sexuality and gender expression and identity. As I read The Body’s Grace, […]

The Intellectual Life of Bonhoeffer: A review of Strange Glory

A Strange Glory: A Life of Dietrich Bonhoeffer by Charles Marsh brings to Dietrich Bonhoeffer’s biography some previously unknown tidbits, and a well-documented and academic account of Dietrich Bonhoeffer the theologian.  The work is thoroughly documented and has extensive footnotes and bibliography.  If one is looking for a place to begin some research into the […]

Weaving One’s life with Christ’s: review of Sight in a Sandstorm

Sight in Sandstorm is a book difficult to categorize: part devotional, part creative retelling of the four Gospels, part historical Jesus scholarship and part devotional.  Ann Temkin creatively weaves her own story into the Gospel and Gospels.  Her story telling  both engages the reader and is informed by Historical Jesus scholarship and intimate knowledge of […]

Theoldicy and Atonement theories out flanked: A More Christ Like God

Bradley Jersak’s A More Chirstlike God: A More Beautiful Gospel, is an excellent reflection of God’s self-revelation in Jesus Christ and its meaning for our salvation.  Jersak  sees that we have come to some misunderstandings of God.  The source of this misunderstanding for Jersak is that we’ve been distracted, by a belief that God controls everything […]

Fragments of posts in progress

Lately I’ve been posting more at Personal Musings than here.  This space is theological, pastoral, and iconogrpahic.  The three most recent posts at Personal Musings almost fit in this space, yet I felt they were still too bound up in either too bound up in individual opinion, or still too unformed to for solid theological […]

Sacramental Politics: A Review

In Sacramental Politics: Religious worship as political action, Brian Kaylor explores the various ways religion and politics commingle, focusing on acts of worship and political activism.   The book presents a problem: Two things that don’t go together and we think of as separate and radically different things do in fact often come together, religion and […]

God Forever Physical: Mystery of the Feast of the Ascension of Christ

Today we celebrate the feast of the Ascension of Jesus of Nazareth, the Christ, into heaven.  As this feast is on a Thursday, it is at times transferred to the 7th Sunday of Easter or passed over altogether. This feast may also seem superfluous, or merely a marking of one last event in the Gospel […]

The Mystagogy of Easter: Abiding in Christ

In the Gospel for the Sixth Sunday of Easter, Christ encourages us to abide in him. This is perhaps the most difficult thing for us humans to do; abide in the love of God known to us in Jesus Christ.  And it at times seems the most difficult for the leaders and those whose identity […]

Mystagogy of Easter: Vine and Branches

If you are like me raised in Sunday School the Gospel for the 5th Sunday of Easter may be very familiar to you: I am the vine you are the branches. This familiarity shouldn’t render impotent this rich and deeply mystical analogical reflection. Part of what this analogy convey’s is our dependence upon Christ.  Yet, […]

Easter Mystagogy Week 4: Good Shepherd.

How are we to hear the parabolic speech of Christ and God as our shepherd?  “The Lord is my shepherd…” and “I am the Good Shepherd…”?  In these passages of the third week of Easter and in the image of the Good Shepherd we are directed to attend to hearing and speech: “…they will listen to […]

The Mystagogy of Easter: According to what Reality Do We Live?

Mystagogy for the Third Week of Easter: The Meaning of God’s Union with Humanity (For the first in this Easter mystagogy series see The Doubt of Thomas the Twin) We are encouraged in the texts for the third Sunday of Easter to revel in the joyful astonishment of the Resurrection and to ecstatically contemplate the […]

The Mystagogy of Easter : The Doubt of Thomas the Twin

The lectionary each season of Easter brings us back to the same texts. Lent has a similar structure but there is a little more variation between each year in the three year cycle, while for Easter we read the same  passages from the Book of Acts and the Gospel of John. This all is related […]

Good Friday: Just another day in Post-Christendom

Yesterday, I had an appointment with someone, in the conversation my being pastor came up (it wasn’t about anything church or religiously affiliated), but that we met on Maundy Thursday, nor that today was Good Friday came up in the conversation.  The person whom I met seemed to have no sense that I as a […]

The House and the Smoothie: John the Revelator and The Liturgist

This is the third post in what seems to be the beginning of series of posts on Liturgy and Worship. The first in this series can be found here, the second is mentioned in the first paragraph below. LEK 3/13/05. In my previous post on liturgy and the Liturgists and Phil Kline, I was feeling […]

Icons of Enlightenment and Wisdom

I recently completed to miniature icons one of Jesus Christ as  Sophia/Wisdom known as the Holy Silence or blessed silence. and the icon of Saint Mary Magdalene Apostle to the Apostles both icons are related to enlightenment and wisdom. The icon of the Holy Silence represents Jesus Christ as Wisdom, or as Paul says the Wisdom […]

Cultural Identity and Expression in Worship

My Covenant Colleague Josef Rasheed‘s recent post about worship and cultural identity beautifully and gracefully articulates the role cultural expression plays in worship as well as its dynamic complexity.  However, I am aware a white pastor saying some of the same things would come off very differently (this isn’t a complaint, there are very legitimate reasons […]

Lets Talk Sin and Systems

For a time, as a child in the 1970’s, I lived on or near my grandparents farm.  The farm was forty acres of fruit trees and grapevines in which I, with my sister and cousins, freely roamed and played in.  There were few rules, one of them was that we weren’t to bother or speak to the farm workers. […]

The Meaning of Decline: Christianity, Religion, and Spirituality

Recently discussion of Lillian Daniel’s essay in 2011 and subsequent book on the Spiritual but not Religious (SBNR) and the need for institutional religious community, has been appearing in my social media streams and in a few blog posts.  This has dovetailed with two books I’d picked up recently. I wasn’t surprised but, I’m finding that […]

Suffering and Joy on the Dance Floor: or Dancing to Joy Division

My friend Tripp recently published a brief musing on suffering and death: it’s kind of goth. I’ve sat with the musing.  Part of what he’s wrestling with are the ways many Christians often make suffering trite by attempting to make God responsible for it ( in some way) or at least responsible for making it meaningful. […]

“Going to Church” and the Church as Body of Christ.

I mentioned in my reflection on intimacy and public worship that I had some more ecclesiological thoughts in response to Donald Miller.  Instead of putting Donald Miller’s ecclesiology to the question,  I will simply explore how we are talking about church attendance and how we may approach that from asking questions of what sort of thing we are […]

Georges Florovsky, Ecumenism, and Writing Icons.

I was introduced to the work of Georges Florovsky in seminary.  I was discussing Eastern Orthodoxy with my History professor Phil Anderson.  Something in what I said clued him into that I was missing something about Orthodoxy and its history.  He asked if I had read (knowing I hadn’t) Georges Florovsky. I immediately found his […]

Beauty, Truth, and Cathedrals

I’ve gathered From my Twitter feed the role of beauty and cathedrals was addressed at Emergence Christianity – A National Convention( #EC13 #BigTickle) .  This Luther quote was thrown out there as an answer to the problem (though it is only a problem for a certain mindset admittedly dominant among Protestants):  “The people need beauty as well […]

Deserts and the Parish

This past Sunday our closing hymn at Reconciler’s service, was “Your Kingdom Come, O Father”, the final verse reads “The desert, as you promised,  Shall blossom far and near; and through earth’s mist and shadows the sun ‘mild rays appear.  For that blest day we wait, Lord, when doubt and darkness gone, we witness earth’s redemption , and summer morn shall dawn.”  That […]

Justice, Righteousness, Occupy and the Cure of souls.

A couple of Weeks ago over at Anglobaptist.org,  A photo for the D.C. Occupy Church and a quote from a post by Micah Bales was the catalyst for a dispute over the relationship of justice to the Gospel, and the role of the Church in political systems and movements. On one level the above conversation […]