Tuesday, August 22, 2017


Ten years ago, my friend Amy Butler was the pastor of the Baptist church down the street from my home.  In DC, the Baptist brand has been dinked pretty badly by its association with right wing American politics, so Amy's church adopted a tagline: A Different Kind of Baptist.  A decade later, a lot of United Methodists are sensing a need for such a tagline to distance their congregations from an unending food-right over human sexuality as our denominational nightmare unfolds in slow-mo.  Then, last week, two and one half pages (not column inches, but full pages) of USA Today were devoted to the total breakdown of the Roman Catholic Church in Guam in protecting pedophile priests, reminding us of the similar sagas that have been unearthed in all corners of America in the Catholic Church.  And now, post Charlottesville, we are left with two bastions of support within President Trump's political base, who will not budge even after unending moral failures of the current administration: the two groups being neo-Nazis and evangelical Christian pastors.  One of the latter (a not-so-different kind of Baptist?) let us all know last week that it is perfectly and divinely justified to rain down nuclear bombs on North Korea.

Wednesday, August 2, 2017


In all the years that I have written this monthly column, I have never before pitched another pastor's book.  But I have run across one so outstanding that I am going to break that tradition.