Ecclesial longings

 

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 […]

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 […]

A Compromised Evangelical Witness: A review of Vote Your Conscience

If you are an evangelical thinking of voting for Trump for President and if you are a progressive Christian scratching your head about evangelical support for Trump you need to read Brain Kaylor’s current book Vote Your Conscience: Party must not Trump Principles. The book is part an evangelical Baptist wrestling with evangelical support for […]

Listening to the Mind of Christ In Time of Crisis: Nothing is Hidden that will not be revealed, Part 2

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 […]

Review of Tom Sine’s Live Like You Give a Damn!

Tom Sine’s Live Like You Give a Damn!:  Join the Change Making Celebration is an introduction to social entrepreneurship and community empowerment for the moribund congregation unaware of these things.  The book is not for anyone already aware and involved.  Sine believes these movements are in differing ways expressions of God’s reign. Yet for a […]

Listening for the Mind of Christ in Time of Crisis: An hypocrisy that is like yeast, Part 1

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 […]

Innovating Tradition (Traditional Innovation)

“Scribes trained in the way of the Kingdom Heaven are like a householder who brings out from the treasury things both new and old.”  Matthew 13:52 New and old, innovation and tradition, generally  in opposition to one another.  Yet , new and old are two momentary experiences.  New and old are how we experience things in certain moments: the […]

Signs and wonders of Pentecost as material effects of God’s work on the earth.

If we focus on what is seen, heard, touched and is located on the earth in Luke’s account of Pentecost (Acts 2:1-21), we can gain a sense of what are the material effects of the incarnation and the descent of the Spirit. If we’ve encountered the reality of God come in Jesus of Nazareth, the […]

Excitement and Boredom in the Easter Vigil

Tripp Hudgins and David Hansen argued about boredom and worship on Twitter and in dueling blog posts.  David says boring proclamation is a sin. Tripp sings the praises of boredom.  The dispute started with a Tweet out of UNCO 2016 that wondered why people are more excited about Star Wars than worship.  David says the […]

A Sonic Meditation for Holy Saturday

I didn’t come up with much of verbal reflection on this third playlist for the Triduum.  If you missed the other two sonic meditations, here’s the one for Maundy Thursday and here’s the one for Good Friday. On Holy Saturday, Jesus Christ, God incarnate, is in the grave and descends to hell.  This is the Harrowing […]

A Sonic Meditation for Good Friday

That this day should be called “good” isn’t obvious or clear.  If this day is good it is not in the events commemorated, but in what God is doing, and the pulling aside the veil of te systems of power and domination.  But also,  it is that the events commemorated on this day don’t stand alone. […]

A Sonic Meditation for Maundy Thursday

What is Maundy Thursday?  The term comes from the Latin for commandment because according the Gospel of John at the Last Supper Jesus gives his disciples a new commandment, “Love one another, as I have loved you.” The command is symbolically and really shown in Jesus’ taking the position of a slave and washing the […]

Reconciliation and “the disgrace of Egypt”

I recently preached a sermon where I wove together God’s assurance to the Israelites, as they entered Canaan, that the disgrace of Egypt* had been rolled away, with Paul’s reflection on not seeing anyone or anything from a human point of view, with the attitude and space of the father in Jesus’ parable of The […]

A Peculiar Household In Ephesians

This is the third post in  On a way Toward an Ecclesial and Trinitarian Exploration of Sexuality and Gender. If you haven’t read that intro or the first post on the Household in Ephesians 1 this post may not make much sense. Go read those first. Our exploration into the trinitarian and ecclesial dimensions of gender and […]

“Racial Tensions” or an affront to the Gospel?: White Christians against Martin Luther King Jr.

Rachel Held Evans has a post on white forgetfulness (She says Christian but she means white Christian) when it comes to our honoring of Martin Luther King Jr. As we come to the close of this Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, I won’t focus on the above mentioned forgetfulness but seek to do what Rachel […]

Baptism, Gun Control, and the Power of Death

What is my response as a member of the Body of Christ to gun violence?  Some fellow Christians know definitively what we should do, others know with equal assertion what isn’t the solution.  Are either informed, truly by the mind of Christ the crucified one, God Father Son and Holy Spirit.  Is my response to […]

The Necessity of White American Christian Repentance

 At Personal musings I wrote a sober (perhaps depressing) account of our situation as citizens of the U.S.A, as a country and nation that is racist, has committed genocide and war crimes as it has attempted to bring its ideal of democracy and freedom across a contentment and as a beacon of democracy to the […]

The Peculiar Household of God, Father Son and Holy Spirit

This reflection is a riff on Ephesians 1:1-14, and is the first post in a series of blog posts whose introduction  can be found here Ephesians shows us what has been revealed about God’s will. Paul is an apostle within this will of God.  God’s will is that we are in Jesus Christ, joined with God, Father, […]

Re-imagining the Tradition in the face of White Distortions

Transmission of the Tradition and incorporating new groups and peoples into the Body of Christ is a complex process. The second chapter of Ephesians uses a number of mixed metaphors in giving an account of this process, which is ultimately bringing together Jew and Gentile as the church, a living temple.  This process builds a […]

Church, (Sex), Family and Tradition

This is an interlude in the series of blog posts on Ecclesiology and human sexuality begun here. Peter J Leithart recent essay at First Things Sex and Tradition, illustrates my frustration with much conservative thought on sex, sexuality and the family:  it clings tenaciously to Aristotelian/Thomistic metaphysics to critique modern and contemporary metaphysics and does […]

NPTS Symposium Race and Racism , Ecclesiology, and a Confession

The opening session of the Symposium for the Theological Interpretation of Scripture, Race and Racism Dr. Love L. Sechrest of Fuller Theological Seminary presented the paper “Enemies, Romans, Pigs, and, Dogs: Loving the Other in the Gospel of Matthew”.  The paper is synthetic drawing together critical race theory “research into the identity and ways of […]

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

Since writing this post I’ve written three more posts moving toward an ecclesial and trinitarian understanding of sexuality and gender: An excursus on Tradition The Peculiar Household of God an interpretation of the first 14 verses of the Epistle to the Ephesians Continued thoughts on the Peculiar Household of God Rowan Williams, in his essay […]

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 […]

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 […]

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 […]

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 […]

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 […]

Phil Kline, Gungor, the Liturgists, and the Revelator

This post is turning out to be the second post in a larger line of thinking that began with Cultural Identity and Expression in Worship and, another post on Phil Kline and The Liturgists, The House and the Smoothie: John the Revelator and The Liturgists. LEK, 3/13/15 Gungor and the Liturgists at first glance speak my language. […]

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 […]

The Remnants of Christendom among Revivalists and Pietists

Recently it has come to light that Holly Hobby Lobby who posed in a photo with automatic riffle in one hand and the bible in the other, proclaiming her love of God, country, guns, and “family values,” had an adulterous affair with a video editor fo the Tea Party News.  I’m not surprised.  Not because I […]

Icon of the Epiphany

Yesterday was the feast of the  Epiphany.  In the west this feast is the celebration of the arrival  of the Magi and their adoration of the infant Jesus of Nazareth presenting him with gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh.  In the east the Epiphany is the feast of the baptism of Christ in the river Jordan, […]

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. […]

Words of Comfort and Call to Repentance #StayWokeAdvent

There was no manuscript for my sermon at the Oratory on Sunday December 7th, what follows is my own continuing reflection on a sermon for the Second Sunday of Advent. Edited 12/15/2014 for clarity and grammar Scriptures for the Second Sunday of Advent were Isaiah, 2 Peter and the Gospel of Mark.  These Scriptures include words of comfort (from Isaiah) , a […]

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. […]

Social Media, Denominations, and Ecclesiology

Last week Drescher in The Narthex  analyzed the recent GTS conflict and possible resolution in terms of social media, its use by the GTS8 and the possible implications for denominational power dynamics and ecclesiology. The way the conflict has played out certainly has a great deal to do with social media and how the  GTS8 used it. […]

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 […]

Church, Race and the Nation State: Prolegomena

I’m embarking on a series of posts in which I want to look at what it means to be church in light of Ferguson, Missouri and the killing of Michael Brown at the hand of a police officer (and that this sort of incident is a far too common.)  This inquiry assumes much that I’ve […]

Minorities and the meaning of Christian, Christendom, and Church

Not long ago I was talking with a colleague in leadership in an African-American congregation.  We were swapping stories of our relationships and encounters with those who don’t attend church.  Our perceptions and experiences had some overlap but also were quite different.  The overlap was that we each of us knew and met those who […]

12 Chapters on Listening and Being Right

Ed. note: after publishing this I recognized  the genre .  It’s the ancient Christian genre of writing on the spiritual life in “chapters”: short paragraphs over which one is too linger in contemplation as one reads but which together form a sustained reflection on a topic.  I’ve now numbered the paragraphs and revised the title of the […]

Christians Embrace Death and the Particularity and Physicality Of the Gospel

We Christians are anxious about the state of our institutions.  We at the same time want to believe someone has the fix.  So, we make pronouncements.  A number of people including Tony Jones and Brian McLaren have suggested that we are seeing possible end of denominations, others are talking about the decline of particular denominations (such as […]

Are Christian trends the trends of the Church?: Christian, Christendom and Church, once again.

David Hayward, the Nakedpastor, reflected upon Ed Stetzer’s post on current trends around the term Christian and the statistics of the identity. Stetzer is concerned that congregations (churches/denominations?) don’t see the decrease in self identification as Christian as an indication of the death of the church.  Hayward’s concern is for how this explanation of the decline […]

Spiritual Gifts, the Holy Spirit and our Abilities

For Pentecost I preached this sermon.  The sermon emphasizes a certain aspect of Spiritual gifts: namely that they aren’t equivalent to things we do well or like to do.  For instance you don’t have the Spiritual gift of Hospitality because you like to and are good at throwing parties.  To put it another way, having a […]

Evangelicalism, the Bowe Bergdahl Affair, and the Church

The Bowe Bergdahl affair(I’ve been watching Sherlock Holmes) raises once again the question of the nature and character of evangelical Christianity.    Christianity Today published an interview with the former pastor of Bob and Jani Bergdahl, Phil Proctor, who has also remained a friend of the Bergdahl over the years.  As an Orthodox Presbyterian pastor […]

The Ecclesial Longing of Pope Francis and Patriarch Bartholomew

Pope Francis and Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew met in Jerusalem, to commemorate the meeting of Pope Paul IV and Ecumenical Patriarch Athenagoras 50 years ago.  The Ecumenical Patriarch (confirmed by the Vatican) mentioned that in this meeting the bishops want to move forward in ecumenical relations and decided to plan some form of meeting/gathering on the 1700 […]

A dying Church? or is it Christendom or Christianity? (Part 2)

I left off in part 1 with a discovery.  At 5 almost 6 years old by asking if a friend wanted to come t a VBS I discovered there were people that not only went to church infrequently (this was so in my own extended family), but for whom church had no place at all […]

A dying Church? or is it Christendom or Christianity? (Part 1)

The Anglobaptist brought to my attention the Sojourners blog series “Letter’s to a dying Church”(I  haven’t read all of them but I’ve read a few).  At Tripp’s blog, I’ve said that I agree with those that are saying (some of them in their “letters”, that it’s not the church that is dying but Christendom or […]

The Great Emergence and the problem of periodization

Ed. note: I’ve edited this from a blog post on my personal blog back in 2009.  I’m in the process of reposting here some posts that fit with the themes and projects related to what I’m doing here at Priestly Goth.  I recently re-read The Great Emergence.  My opinion of the work hasn’t changed. When […]

Oh wait, I’m not alone(sort of), others are talking about the Church

I’m working up some reflections on David Fitch‘s End of Evangelicalism.  I have some questions about why one would continue with a particular identity like evangelical, when ones theology is so clearly drawn from such an ecumenical place as David Fitch seems to be coming from.  Also, I feel that what the book addresses cuts […]

“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 […]

Velvet Elvis and the Mystery of the Church

In my current research I’m reading Rob Bell. I began with Velvet Elvis. When Rob Bell published Velvet Elvis and was talking about repainting Christianity I was quite literally painting: writing icons.  He was questioning what he had received. He was “repainting”  his understanding of the Christian tradition. I was seeking to receive a tradition […]

Progress, Emergence, Christianity, and the Church

I’m on a search to find my place in our current landscape and to tell a certain story about how I believe I have found my self in this moment and place.    In doing so I’m finding that there are many ways to tell the story of our current “crisis”.  I feel though that […]

Sermons on the way to an ecumenical ecclesial longing

Today is the Second day in the Octave of Prayer for Christian Unity.  I’ve reviewed some recent sermons as I’ve been thinking and praying these past few days.  These I think are some steps along the way to where I am at right now, and what I’m trying to work out in this space called […]

Follower of Jesus or member of the Body of Christ?

I have begun work on a book, at the moment theological and philosophical reflections on ministry at the edges of denominational and institutional Christianity.  I’m not against denominational and institutional Christianity (I’m deliberately avoiding the word “church”, ecclesia).  The marginal path I have followed (in relationship to denomination and institutions) wasn’t calculated.  However, it also […]

Privilege, Whiteness, Alienation, Renunciation, and Gospel

At the third session of the Symposium for the Theological Interpretation of Scripture: Urban Ministry, I responded to a presentation on Raymon and Henry Emerson Fosdick’s relationship to Rockerfeller, I spoke of renunciation (of privilege and whiteness) and  voluntary poverty (drawing on the Monastic Tradition) as an answer to the problem presented.  I spoke deliberately […]

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 […]

Philemon and Christendom

Lectionary texts For this Sunday, September 8 proper 18(23), juxtaposes Philemon with Jesus’ hard sayings about hating family and life, taking up the cross, and giving up possessions. More to the point the juxtaposition comes from the story we are able to tease out from this short Epistle of the Apostle Paul to the leaders of […]

Review- Keeping the Feast: Metaphors for the Meal

Milton Brasher-Cunningham’s book Keeping the Feast: Metaphors for the Meal is a feast packed into a small book.  It is a book to savor, and to return to again and again.  A mixture of prose, poems, and recipes creates a delightful read, and a sense of sitting around Milton’s table or sitting with him in his kitchen […]

Review of The Shack Revisited

I begin this review with a confession. I’ve never read The Shack.  I remember when it rose in popularity, but I didn’t read it.  I didn’t read it because, I must confess, I have a deep bias against popular spirituality and the books and the book industry around said spirituality.  The Shack Revisited: There Is […]

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 […]

Ecclesiology, Barth, and Scripture

Things are dovetailing in my mind today.  I have started reading Karl Barth’s Church Dogmatics, with two others, one a friend and one a new acquaintance.  We are taking our time so we are now through his discussion of proclamation and its relation to the Word of God and to dogmatics. As we discussed this portion […]

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 […]

Church and “Ecumenical Protestants”

Recently the Christian Century interviewed David Holinger, about his work in American intellectual history specifically his thoughts on “Ecumenical Protestants”.  “Ecumenical Protestant” is his prefered term from what is sometimes called, the Mainline, liberal, or Modernist.  Thanks to the Anglobaptist I was part of a Facebook conversation around the meaning of Holinger’s account of the success of […]

The Circus Is Eternal: Fashion Liturgy

Kate Setzer Kamphausen’s  fashion Show “The Circus is Eternal” Friday night (March 2) at Nocturna was a great time.  Kate’s garments looked amazing on each of the models (who weren’t professional models, but various people for the goth scene).   The preparation was a little halting as neither Kate nor I had produced a fashion show before.  Things […]

In Defense of J. K. A. Smith, Praise Bands, and Critique – pt. 2

Part 1 is found here Do praise bands have to be loud and the center of a worship service?  If the band simply, with no frills, leads singing in a congregation does it cease to be a praise band? I am puzzled that  James Smith’s  critique (“encouragement to think about the what of worship”) was taken as […]

In Defense of J. K. A. Smith, Praise Bands, and Critique- pt. 1

Over at Fors Clavigera, James K. A. Smith‘s “Open Letter to Praise Bands” has caused a bit of a stir I think.  At least it has among the group of  Evangelical Covenant worship leader, worship pastors, and pastors (who like me plan worship each Sunday).   The stir relates to another conversation that has been […]

Following Jesus: Ecumenism Crisis and Leaving Our Nets

This sermon was preached at Church of Jesus Christ, Reconciler’s service for Ecumenical Sunday in the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity.  It is a sermon about the church. Jonah 3:1-5, 10 • Psalm 62:5-12 • 1 Corinthians 7:29-31 • Mark 1:14-20 There is a tone of urgency in all the Scriptures we have just […]

Exploring Church with Catapult – Journeying through the American Ecclesial Landscape

Most of the articles in Catpult Magazine Church isssue, VOL. 10, NUM. 21 :: 2011.11.25 — 2011.12.08, looked at church from the perspective of those who have journeyed and wandered through the American Protestant world.  With the exception of Kirstin’s Editorial and Eric Kuiper’s article, each article came at church from perspective journeyed through various […]

Exploring Church with Catapult – Ears or Bodies?

In The Ear of the Other, Derrida begins with the passage from Nietzsche’s Thus Spake Zarathustra where Zarathustra tells of meeting a man who was all ear, attached to a tiny stalk of a human, who was said to be a genius.  This parable of Nietzsche’s and Derrida’s treatment of it came to mind as I read […]

Exploring Church with Catapult Magazine – Intro

The most recent  issue of Catapult Magazine explores  Church, through 5 articles and Kirstin Vander Giessen-Reitsma’s editorial.  The articles look at the struggles of church from perspectives of both clergy and the laity.  Since a main purpose of Priestly Goth is the exploration of ecclesiology and the nature and reality of church, I wish to […]

The Church and “Ministering to the whole Universe” (or at lest pitching a tent in a corner of it)

The Feast of all Saints is the Anglobaptist’s  anniversary of his ordination.  This All Saints He reflected on that day and the sermon preached at his ordination.  I was there and heard Trevor Bechtel preach. At the time we were still in the last stages of starting Church of Jesus Christ, Reconciler, a month after his […]

Church- What is it?

What is being explored here in Ecclesial Longings? What is the ecclesia, the church?  In part this whole project is seeking an answer to that question.   As I have said elsewhere in part this question is raised by two competing claims to be the Church, by the church centered in Rome and the churches […]

Follower of Jesus and the Church

Came accross the vedeo bellow from Carl Medearis  the other day thanks to Mike Morrell(I hadn’t heard of him before, and except for this video I’m completely unfamiliar with his theology, Mike I think said he’s an “evangelical”). I find the video fascinating for two reason: 1) That he conceives of an ability to follow Jesus without […]

Fellowship of Believers

From an Evangelical Covenant perspective, as I understand it, defining the Church as a fellowship of believers  stems from our experience of the Pietist revivals in the Lutheran State Church of Sweden.  Before the Pietist revivals the experience was  that Lutheran Church was coextensive withe the people of the Nation State of Sweden.  Every Swede simply was baptized as […]

Where is the Church in the labels and identities of Emerging Church and American Christianities

It has been a little over a week since,Thanks to Emerging Pensees, I came across this guest post by “Brandon Morgan”*, over at  Roger E. Olson’s blog.  Tony Jones had his reply, and then reflects on the labels evangelical liberal and progressive. And Austin Roberts at Imago*futura calls it  an identity crisis, and then gives an  account […]

The Problem of “On this Rock I will build my Church”

Recently when the Evangelical Covenant Church (ECC)  has  denominational gatherings we have been using as themes phrases from our doctrinal commitments we call “Affirmations.”  The affirmation taken as the theme around the Annual Meeting was  “the Church as fellowship of believers.”  This is basically it for our ecclesiological affirmations.   I have felt since seminary […]

Beginning with Eccelsial longing

(Edited on 7/6/2011-LEK) The impetus for revamping my web presence through Priestly Goth, was realizing that I wanted to blog about my thinking and my questions about the Una Sancta, the Church.  I see Ecclesial Longings as  a space where I can expand upon questions I was asking in seminary in two papers: one exploring the effect […]

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  • Bealtown

    Hi Pastor Larry. I found this blog of your by accident. I am an Orthodox priest in LA and was wondering what thoughts you have about the original Church as established and instituted by Christ Himself and his Holy Apostles and the Orthodox Church’s historical claim to be that very Church. 
    I serve a small ethnic parish – which is where the Church is in LA. 
    Have you ever considered the claims of Orthodoxy? Or would gothic ecclecticism forbid that? (wink).
    BTW, I like ‘darkwave’ and synthpunk/pop music myself; LA is a good place for that scene. My favorite DJ is KXLU’s Michael Stock with his Part Time Punks radio show and live Sunday eves at the Echo in nearby Echo Park. I never was ‘goth’ but it’s sort of my literary/art metier (SFAI BfA ’91). Let’s chat later – big services of Pentecost coming up this even and tomorrow.
    Fr. John
    LA

    • Larry Kamphausen

      Fr. John, 
      Thanks for engaging me on this.  I lived  in LA for years ( Torrance, San Pedro, Redondo Beach area, attend Fuller Theological Seminary).  I know an Orthodox  priest in a mission in Culver City, Fr. John Tomasi ,  You don’t happen to be the same Father John,  Though I don’t think so since you say your parish is an ethnic parish, and not a mission parish.  Funny a Greek Orthodox parish I and my wife from time to time here in Chicago also has a priest named Fr. John.  What is it with Orthodox priets and the name “John”? 😉
      so, you see I am familiar with Orthodox Christianity. I am also familiar with its claims of continuity with Jesus and the Apostles. Many make claim to this continuity. I don’t so much discount the claims as I am unsure how to evaluate it in light of counter claims, say from the Bishop of Rome. I know the Patristic arguments and citations that can be made on both sides of the issue. I have considered and am drawn to Orthodoxy, but the claims have not be fully compelling, (obviously, or else I’d be Orthodox 🙂 ) I think if you read what I have written here in Ecclesial Longing beginning with the post “Beginning with Ecclesial Longing” you will get some sense of where I am at with the claims of Orthodoxy. in short though there is the protestant claims of theological and spiritual continuity, which I can’t wholy discount as I believe that I have experienced and encountered in the Protestant church’es of my up bringing the life of the Holy Spirit. Also, there is the claims of Rome, and the Bishop of Rome, years ago (crica 1990) I nearly became Roman Catholic, but had questions about the doctrines of the Virgin Mary at the time and found catholic teachings in the Early Luther that fit with the teachings of the denomination I was raised in and am now an ordained minister in. I have as said studied and considered the claims of Orthodoxy, have worshiped in its churches, and have been drawn close enough to write icons, but questions remain as its claims do not fully answer those of Rome and the life of its members does not always in my experience reflect the life of the Spirit. Yet, there is something there, and I’m finding that Protestant faith and practice itself is lacking in some many ways. That will do for now as intro.
      LA is a good place for the “darkwave/sythpoink/pop/Goth music, and I remember well KXLU’s radio show, glad to know it’s still going. I discovered Goth in LA and my friend who introduced me to the scene still lives there. Blessings on your celebrations of Pentecost, look forward to chatting more.

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