I wasn’t raised in the evangelical church or the Catholic Church, and nobody did anything nasty to me in those settings when I was young. Nobody did anything nasty to my childhood friends in those settings either. Of course, most of them, like me, had their church in the pool, the beach and the sun, … More I do not have your hang-ups
This issue keeps popping up. First, I told a story of interaction with former friends from my former denomination, after reaching out to see if they were up for reconciliation. The response was somewhat remarkable, and required some follow up. Then, a few people questioned whether I was speaking out my pain through bitterness or … More From Victimization to the Seat of Power: responding to betrayal from church leaders
Over the last few days of telling stories of church abuse and/or poor leadership, I have been asked about the issue of the experience of pain a handful of times. The stories I have been telling happened between 2005 and 2010. A significant amount of time has passed, and someone can legitimately ask if I … More Stories of Betrayal: Speaking about Your Pain Without Speaking Out of Your Pain
I was completely surprised by the response to my last post “Leaders Do Not Have the Right to Pretend it Didn’t Happen.” Hundreds of people responded to my simple story of email posts and responses from a former friend who was part of a team of abusive leaders that shafted our little church, and more … More Their Light is Their Darkness: exposing shallowness of leaders who don’t get it
Leaders Do Not Have the Right to Pretend it Didn’t Happen It has been a little over 10 years since I was falsely accused of being a heretic by my former denomination, followed by the apparently more heinous sin of questioning the actions of that same “authority,” that made the accusations against me. There were … More Leaders Do Not Have the Right to Pretend it Didn’t Happen
Happy Birthday Jesus! This year, we are giving you a pile of coal. Yes, it’s your 2,015th Birthday (or 2,016th or 2009th or whatever some scholar is going to tell us), but this year the best we could scrape up for a gift is some low grade extra smoky coal. Not even a good hard chunk … More Happy Birthday Jesus! – Larycia Hawkins & Mark Driscoll
This is not the first mass exodus from the LDS Church. It has been happening yearly for a number of years. This was better organized than most of the previous resignations. The last number of mass resignations have been organized by the Utah Atheists. This event was organized around the issues of prejudice, primarily against … More Mormon Mass Exodus: what does it say?
“You’re effeminate! You’re going to Hell. You need to repent, you effeminate man!” The street preacher kept yelling in my face at a distance of about 6 inches. I occasionally broke in with questions, or responses challenging his presuppositions. I don’t remember ever meeting this man before, but he seemed to know who I was, … More Damned Long Hair: Cursed by a Street Preacher
Dear Pastor Stephen Brock, In 2010, you moved from North Carolina with your family to start True Gospel Baptist Church here in Salem, MA. I first came across you, when you were preaching on the street in October. That first year, your North Carolinian accent was so thick I could barely understand you when you … More An Open Letter to Stephen Brock (and the visiting Street Preachers)
One man’s culture is another man’s cult. At least that has been my experience. This is the mildly famous sign from in front of our church’s former location at The Vault in downtown Salem. I say “mildly famous,” because every tourist season people from around the world would stop, and stare at the sign. Many … More One Man’s Culture is Another Man’s Cult
This reading comes from one of many tall tales called The Adventures of Gwyn Dee. These tales form a small book within a book, which are designed to model a contemporary version of the absurd medieval works of Cervantes or Rabelais, in which Mikhail Bakhtin saw an ambivalent mocking humor turning the world upside down. Along with … More Burning Religion Reading #7: The Inquisition
As I peruse some of the text of Burning Religion, I am reminded of how much I love the work of Fr. Pontifex. He is one serious hip hop priest. In Burning Religion, I contrast the arguments over defining “religion” using two videos: Jefferson Bethke’s Why I hate religion but love Jesus, and Fr. Pontifex’s Why … More Bethke vs. Pontifex revisited
This book project, which is the beginning of a series of theoretical works, is now in the pre-sale, fundraising stage. 24 hours ago, the Kickstarter project went live. Already over 25 books (both hard copy and ebook) have been sold and the minimum for this funding project is 43% completed. I had a publisher interested … More Burning Religion is live!
As I am finishing up final drafts of Burning Religion, I came across the section on witchcraft allegations in Africa, particularly by the famous Nigerian lady apostle Helen Ukpabio. The website of her Liberty Foundation Gospel Ministries is no longer live, but back in November 2013, I pulled this advertisement from the page when it … More Witches on the Run?
This is a guest post from my friend Benjamin Ady. Benjamin lives in Australia. He is an atheist. He is an honest, caring and extremely intelligent guy. He also spearheaded the campaign to remove Mark Driscoll from the Hillsong Conference, which is something concerned Christians should have done. The campaign worked, that is, until the … More My experience of being deceived by Australia’s most powerful celebrity pastor