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Five Things We Wish the Church Knew

I am one of five writers to contribute open letters to the Church. I also did a bit of editing for the article. This piece was written for Neue Magazine and recently cross-posted on the website of Relevant Magazine.

Good Friday, Holy Saturday and Easter Sunday represent the hinge of human history. We celebrate Good Friday and Easter Sunday because they make everything else possible. But I think it’s a mistake to miss Holy Saturday altogether. Since sentences are my stock-in-trade, I sometimes think of Good Friday as an exclamation point (full-stop), Easter Sunday as a colon (momentum) and Holy Saturday as the important ellipsis between them. Good Friday and Easter Sunday are dramatic answers; Holy Saturday is about as-yet-unanswered questions. This is why I relate so much to Holy Saturday. It’s also the reason I’m writing to you: because I think you should know I’m living with more questions than answers.

I bring this up because I don’t want you to assume—and I doubt you do—that everyone in the congregation is in the same theological place. I was raised in a conservative evangelical church, converted to Catholicism in my late 20s, lapsed, helped start a couple house churches in Portland and somehow ended up (happily) at our Evangelical Quaker church in rural Oregon. I read books by acceptable theologians, read exactly four Christian magazines and listen to one or two Christian podcasts. But I read the unacceptable theologians, too. My faith has been challenged by art and inspired by science. I have found wisdom studying Judaism, Buddhism and Confucianism. And I can be just as swayed by pop theology compressed into 140 very powerful characters.

Continue reading at Relevant’s website… (My contribution starts on page three.)

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