Click here for information and a registration form.
(Information about Adult Education can be found here. Let us know if you’d like to teach an online class.)
301 A Street, SE
Washington, DC 20003
Imagine growing up and living your whole life in a desert. How incredible, how amazing, how impossible would a rainforest seem to you? Or, imagine living in the tundra, well north of the arctic circle, your whole life. How incredible, how amazing, how impossible would downtown Manhattan be? Imaging living your whole life in darkness, in the abyss, in the emptiness. How incredible, how amazing, how impossible would even the tiniest flickering light be? More
Listen to what Jesus has to say about children. This is from the tenth chapter of the Gospel according to Mark: “it is to [children] that the kingdom of God belongs. Truly I tell you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God as a little child will never enter it.” Whoever does not receive the kingdom of God as a little child will never enter it. What does it mean to “receive the kingdom of God as a little child”? And what does it mean that the kingdom of God belongs to children? And what does it mean that God approaches us as a child? More
…I would always hurry down to the station. Now, nine times out of ten, not only was the train not early, it was late. Five, ten, fifteen, twenty minutes late. Those of you who ride Amtrak know that I’m not exaggerating (it’s not Amtrak’s fault, since freight trains get priority on rail lines, but it’s true nonetheless). So I would always hurry down to the station, but more often than not, I’d then have to wait for a late train.
I had to hurry up—and wait. More
So how does Jesus compare to this model of kingliness? Well: Jesus had no power, no wealth, no crown—at least not the kind you want—no palace, and no army. Indeed, Jesus knows that he does not fit human expectations of a king. He makes this clear in our passage from the Gospel of John this morning. More
One hundred-four years ago, there was a man who had to ask this same question for himself. His name was Adolf von Harnack. He was a German theologian. He had been teaching for decades as a leading voice of the “liberal theology” school of thought . . . In the summer of 1914, von Harnack would have known that war was on the horizon . . . For decades, von Harnack had been talking the talk about Jesus and his teachings. Von Harnack had spread the idea that modern Christians should figure out Jesus’s core message and try to live it in the modern world. Now he had a decision to make: was he going to walk the walk of being a peacemaker, as Jesus had instructed? More
Bartimaeus is seeking to regain his sight—but even more than that. He is seeking to regain his whole life back. And so, what I expected was for Bartimaeus to say, after regaining his sight: “Okie dokie Jesus, thanks! See ya later,” and return home so that he could rebuild his life and regain all that he had lost. But this is not what happens. More
Prayer is about quieting our minds and our hearts enough to hear that “still, small voice” speaking to us, that voice of sheer silence that is God speaking in our midst. Some Buddhists, when asked to describe meditation, use an analogy. They say the the mind is like a pond: if it is full of waves and ripples, its surface is confused. But if it is still, that surface becomes calm and it can reflect something beautiful and true. I think the Christian practice of prayer is similar. We have to still our hearts and minds enough to hear that quiet voice. More
…you know, hypocrisy is a funny thing. It’s easy to accuse others of hypocrisy. And it’s actually fun–delicious really–to accuse people I don’t like or don’t agree with of hypocrisy. But it’s not so easy or fun to look at myself and consider whether I’m a hypocrite. More
Jesus said: “those who eat my flesh and drink my blood abide in me, and I in them…the one who eats this bread will live forever.” This is the way Jesus starts his dialogue with some of his students this morning–and it’s important to note that the people he’s speaking to are his disciples, not his opponents. And yet look at the pushback he gets! And you can understand why–what is Jesus talking about? Is he telling us we should be cannibals? More
Bitterness, anger, malice, arrogance, greed: I don’t know about you, but those are things I find in myself more days than not. If I want to be an agent of change in this world, I might need to be prepared to be changed myself. You know, we can’t rebuild this building with crumbling, and cracked, and broken bricks. If we want a secure and steadfast structure, we need well-fired, hard bricks. Likewise, if we want to build a just society, we have to be struggling for justice not only out there in the world, but justice within ourselves too. If we are feeding on arrogance, and anger, and greed, what do we expect to reap out there? More