This is the first time Easter has been on April Fool’s Day since 1956. In fact, this is only the 15th time Easter has been on April Fool’s Day since the advent of the King James Version of the Bible. A little known fact, is that the year Jesus rose from the dead, it was … More The Importance of the April 1st Easter Resurrection
Phil and Priscilla arrived in Dayton, TX at the home of Paul and Joy Burwell at the end of February. The plan was to stay a month in Texas. First stop was north of Houston with the Burwells. The second stop would be Austin, and the final stop would be Brownwood with the Browns, but … More Adventures with Priscilla in Texas
After leaving the Ocala, Florida Rainbow Gathering, I was told to watch out going through Mississippi. The hippies told me that Mississippi was known for Missing Hippies. To the contrary, I am still here, and having a great time. Don and Amy Rylander have a Thursday evening gathering in a Coffee House in Brandon, MS, … More No Missing Hippie in Mississippi!
The above video is a clip of the Brown family from Brownwood, TX. Below, Sandi and the girls share their stories about being involved in festival ministry in Salem, and at the Stonehenge Solstice. From Sandi: I have been involved in several different streams of Christianity, from Baptist to Charismatic, to now not really affiliating with … More Thoughts from the Browns about Festival Outreach
The English word “weird” comes down to us from an Anglo-Saxon and Germanic etymology. The Anglo-Saxon word “wyrd” was defined as destiny, and in the 15th century the English word “weird” was still defined as “destiny”, or “having the power to control fate.” Today the word “wyrd” is used among the Nordic heathenry. They consider … More I am Looking for Wyrdos
“God never asks you to do anything you are capable of doing.” I first heard these words a long time ago. It was at a Pastor’s Conference in Portland, Oregon. Roy Hicks Jr. was speaking. These words were the main focus of his message, but before he could describe the paradoxical nature of their meaning, … More Called to the Impossible: Navigating the Impossible #1
I am catching up on things I did not have time to do this October, even as I close up the last little loose ends of a busy, busy month. The things that happen in October embody some of the dreams I have for the rest of the world. A growing group of my friends and … More A Jew and a Gentile walk into a Cigar Shop…
I gave a primer on ministering in festival settings, more specifically in Salem, MA in October with a touch of information on the changing face of Neo-Paganism as it is expressed currently. Lauren Hallee recorded it onto Facebook Live. Thanks Lauren! And so I thought I’d share it with the wider world of Phillowers (those are Phil … More Lessons on Ministering in Salem, MA in October – video
I am coming to the 10th anniversary of being splattered onto the front page of the Wall Street Journal. The article was entitled, “Befriending Witches Still a Problem in Salem, Mass.” Those were difficult days, and the next four years would be filled with even greater difficulty, but looking back, I can say, I would not … More Befriending Witches Still a Problem: Looking Back, Looking Forward
“Truly I say to you, unless you are converted and become like children, you will not enter the kingdom of heaven.” (Matthew 18:3) Growing up and becoming serious about life may be the step just before death. Certainly, it is the death of much of life’s vibrancy. Watching children play, watching them express wonder in … More Our Clown Fears: Wildness, Weirdness, and Wrongness are NOT the Same Thing
I have been in Salem, MA pastoring The Gathering since June 1999. Over the years, we have been at the center of creating events, and helping Christian ministers to act like regular people when they come to the city of Salem in October, and now the monthlong outreach has expanded to over a dozen events, … More Announcing the Big Transition: from Salem to the World
This recent article in the Religion News Service outlines the recent findings by a study from the Public Religion Research Institute. The study suggests that most of those who have been leaving churches in recent years have done so because they simply stopped believing. My experience is an inversion on these statistics. I go to … More I know – I go where those who “stopped believing” go
A week away. We put up the stage. We get ready for the first weekend of October in Salem, Massachusetts. It’s not anything you’ve ever seen before, if you’ve not been here. Costume witches, real witches. bullhorn street preachers, live music on the streets, crowds of tourists, barking vendors, and families here for the Halloween … More Deep Fun: where the Gospel meets festival culture
Thomas Hobbes seemed to believe that “mainspring of all laughter” was the “sudden glory at the sight of an inferior.”* On one hand that seems to be a pretty solid definition for much of today’s laughter. On the other hand, if Hobbes is correct, this is an obscene observation about the nature of humanity. I … More Sudden Glory at the Sight of an Inferior?
Churches and Halloween have had a tenuous relationship since the 70’s, but that is changing, and churches realize that this is a perfect day to engage our culture, and be creative. Help spread the word that Christians can be smart, not only in the workplace, but in the festival play place too. Here you will … More Churches and Halloween