The 21st Century Church: an Exciting Place to Be

The grave of Johannes Bugenhagen If you were fortunate enough to either be watching or attending [virtually] the NE Iowa Synod assembly, then you were treated to a wonderful opening presentation on Johannes Bugenhagen and church leadership by Wartburg Seminary professor Martin Lohrmann. The NE Iowa Synod is my new synod of roster, and this…… Continue reading The 21st Century Church: an Exciting Place to Be

Henri Nouwen on Christian Leadership

Have you read In the Name of Jesus: Reflections on Christian Leadership, by Henri Nouwen? I just finished it, and I thought it was fabulous, so I wanted to share some thoughts about it here. Since beginning my new role at Wartburg Seminary, I have been reading different books on leadership, and so when I…… Continue reading Henri Nouwen on Christian Leadership

“Stranger Fruit”

If you get National Geographic, you saw this compelling article, which came out in the October 2020 issue. It highlighted a new art installation called “Stranger Fruit,” in which “black mothers pose with the sons they fear losing to violence.” Here are the opening sentences of the article: “There is a demand put upon you…… Continue reading “Stranger Fruit”

Revisiting “Mere Christianity”

This year at Gettysburg College, I am working with several first-year seminars as a Student Success Advocate (a new program this fall). All of the these seminars are very interesting and very engaging: one of them, which is about the history of tea, has started me doing Japanese calligraphy and practicing the Japanese tea ceremony;…… Continue reading Revisiting “Mere Christianity”

Keep Calm and Breathe Peace

On Wednesday’s edition of “The Writer’s Almanac,” Garrison Keillor informed us that on Wednesday, March 11th, 1918, the first cases of what would become the influenza pandemic were reported in the US—107 soldiers at Fort Riley, Kansas got sick. As we have been reminded multiple times in the past weeks, that was the worst pandemic…… Continue reading Keep Calm and Breathe Peace

Remembering Martin Luther King, Jr. and his Calling

Today in the United States we are honoring Martin Luther King, Jr., commemorating his extraordinary life and way he changed US society for the better.  We have by no means realized the “dream” for which King is so famous, nor have we realized the beautiful community he envisioned, but because of the lingering power of…… Continue reading Remembering Martin Luther King, Jr. and his Calling

Targeting Cultural Sites for Destruction

  Remember the Buddhas of Bamiyan?  These were two 6th century enormous statues of the Buddha that were carved into giant niches in Central Afghanistan, in the Bamiyan valley.  They became national news when they were destroyed  by dynamite by the Taliban in 2001, and while there continue to be talks about possible rebuilding, currently…… Continue reading Targeting Cultural Sites for Destruction