Mourning practices are generations-old traditions of solidarity, honoring other family members, carrying out closely-held duties, and caring for our own spiritual wellness. If our instinct is to reject the practices so important to our neighbors, we will leave unaddressed pain to fester, decomposing our interdependence and trust.
This novel coronavirus and the continuing acts of racism don’t mark the first time nor the last time that our facade of flourishing will be disrupted by the reality of creation’s disintegration.
While I hope for the pandemic to end and for less lives to be put in danger, I also hope that the experience of quarantine, which has forcibly and suddenly shrunken our individual and collective freedoms and capacities, can be an opportunity for able-bodied folks to think about how this is, has always been, and will always be the “normal” that people with disabilities must live with.
COVID-19 patients are dying alone. They may die before their family members have had a chance to phone in or visit them. Families are no longer permitted to stay inside the room to watch over them or stay overnight with them, being physically present as they transition out of this life.
The time is now. We cannot be caught sitting on the sidelines. Solidarity statements, while symbolically valuable, ultimately miss the point. The Black struggle is our struggle. Everything we have collectively learned about race and capitalism tells us our struggles are inextricably connected.
The point of a public health crisis is that, like the wound of history, we are forced to pay attention to our bodies and what they feel. Doing so may save our lives as well as those around us.
I am reminded that a world anew, already in motion, is not a one-time transformation, but rather, enacted by living into an ethics that ... is part of an ongoing struggle for liberation, healing, and right relationship across ecosystems and injustices.
What tempts Christians to offer platitudes or unfounded reassurances? It is the same temptation that the loud, white, male pastors we see in the media are currently succumbing to during the coronavirus pandemic. It is the temptation to avoid the reality of suffering. And it stems from a gross misunderstanding of what faith in Jesus actually means.
While the media reports on and profits from interpersonal racist incidents that result from exogenous shocks, minor feelings and racial melancholia encompass the daily, interminable despondence of racism.
During this global pandemic, we’ve all had to bear overwhelming stress and devastating losses while also being cut off from the people, activities, and places that bring us joy and help us cope with distress in the day to day.
These days, I say The Lord’s Prayer with more urgency and more confusion than before. “On earth as it is in heaven” feels unimaginable, a single-minded plea in a maelstrom of distress.
As the job losses mounted, the number of tithes and offerings coming in each week dropped precipitously. Church budgets bled red ink and congregations began laying off staff and selling property in order to keep the lights on. But that was back in 2008 during the Great Recession.
I fear for my mother’s health every day that she goes to work. U.S. Postal Service workers like my mom and her 600,000 plus colleagues are in need of protection on the job, now more than ever. Despite precautions, almost 900 postal employees have tested positive for COVID-19 and 44 have died during the pandemic.
About three weeks ago, churches across America began to close their doors. In an unprecedented act, many pastors took the courageous stance to support national and local healthcare guidelines that encouraged physical social distancing, as the novel coronavirus began to spread widely across the United States.
I live a 15 minute drive from Life Care Center in Kirkland, WA, a nursing home where 81 of its 120 residents tested positive for COVID-19 and 35 people died.
I grew up learning that forgiveness was what you should offer someone when they said they were sorry. That it was how Jesus would respond and taught his followers to respond. There was no question that forgiveness was the right thing to do. It was a given.
I loved the film “Monsoon Wedding”. When it came out on video, I rented it for my parents to watch. When the movie was over, they both said they enjoyed it, but my father was troubled by one plot line.
Memories. Voices. Accusations. Family traumas tailed my life, casting shadows of pain and shame. I felt it when my mom raged. I felt it in her gaze of melancholy.
It’s Thanksgiving evening. I’m in the kitchen with my A-ma (grandma), standing over a pot of simmering Taiwanese braised pork belly while also preparing a batch of creamy mashed potatoes, my two identities melding togethe
I grew up with youth pastors preaching about how we should not say “jeez!” or “gosh!” because we were really saying “Jesus Christ!” and “God!” and thereby implicitly taking the Lord’s name in vain. As much as I wanted to honor God, that just seemed frivolous.
To the man who murdered my brother, I don’t expect you to read this right away. In fact, I would suggest that you wait and allow this letter to sit idle for several years until you are ready to hear what I have to say.
I grew up searching for family. When I found it in the corners that I did, they were like filters in a kaleidoscope phasing in and out of this endless placeholder.
This poem on the life of Peter was inspired by the moving final scene of John’s gospel. It is structured as a chiasmus—which, after the Greek letter χ (chi), uses inverted parallelism to highlight key concepts and create interplay between paired stanzas.
The universal Christian family cannot imagine its life and existence without forgiveness. As a force that restores and reconciles different persons and parties, forgiveness is intricately connected with personal as well as communal walks of life.
During the years of American involvement in World War II, from 1941 – 1945, 120,000 persons of Japanese ancestry (called Nikkei) were incarcerated in various remote areas of the U.S. without any due process or regard for constitutional rights.