Collect for Spy Wednesday

Last Supper, Church of Saint Martin

A prayer for today’s Community Holy Week service at which I am serving as the liturgist, based on the lectionary reading (John 13:21-32). It’s called Spy Wednesday to remember Judas conspiring to betray Jesus. Glorious God, in your Incarnate Word you name the truth of our existence, and through the cross, Christ Jesus emancipates the … Continue reading

On the Security of Appointment, the Judicial Council, & Being Clergy

I’m a lifelong United Methodist, an elder in my 8th year of service, and the new chair of my Conference Board of Ordained Ministry’s Conference Relations Committee. I spent a few days last week with other bright, passionate, warm, and capable conference BOM leaders at a training sponsored by GBHEM in Dallas where not a … Continue reading

Asking the Right Questions (6 of them)

As a pastor, I often get asked the question: “So how do I know what God wants me to do?” And the answer I give is pretty much the standard issue one: pray + read your Bible + listen to the wisdom of the people God gave you + use your own common sense. But … Continue reading

What the Church can learn from Star Trek

I admit it…I’m a nerd. I’ve loved Star Trek since before the “cool” reboot of this summer. It’s in my blood: my father was hooked as a star-gazing teenager. I thoroughly enjoyed the summer movie, though, and I began thinking about what made it an excellent movie, and what promises it made for revitalizing the … Continue reading

Why "Expatriate Minister?"

It seems like an odd handle or moniker to choose for my blog, now 4ish years after I started…and it’s trickled out to other places on the web, notably Twitter. Yet I still think it’s worthwhile to consider myself an emigre clergyperson. Here’s why. As I graduated from Candler School of Theology (Emory U., Atlanta) … Continue reading

Music for Pentecost

So one of the fun things I’m working on is having a decent playlist for all the liturgical seasons. Since Pentecost Sunday was yesterday, I’ve been digging through my music to find something that might relate to the Holy Spirit…and not having a lot of luck. Here’s what I’ve got so far: Oyaheya (Ricky Byars)Spirit … Continue reading

How Shall We Pray?

It isn’t as if we have a choice. Prayer is like breathing, or communicating with our fellow human beings. We do it, whether we want to or not. I doubt it will even cease after we take our last breath. The question, then, is “How shall we pray?” What will our prayers be like? For … Continue reading

40 Days of Prayer

I’ve been involved with conversations about what it means to be a young person called to ministry in the United Methodist Church for quite a while now…it’s become something of a career in and of itself! But I got hooked into the conversation that’s going on across our globe about a year ago at the … Continue reading

A Good Day

They don’t come as often as I would like, but I want to celebrate when they do: it was a good day today! I’m not saying it was perfect (or that I was!), but it was one of those days where you feel like you are doing the right thing. I was a pastor, priest, … Continue reading

Post-Ike Thoughts

Well here we are again after the storm. I thought I might offer a few thoughts on the presence of God in these difficult circumstances. First, I think God is present in the way that people prepared. Those who evacuated, the hospitals and nursing homes who arranged transport for those under their care, the emergency … Continue reading