We’re pretty much the same in any language

Despite taking Spanish in high school and Greek in seminary, I only speak English. One day this summer, however, I’m pretty sure I understood Italian, because I know youth. One afternoon during the two weeks I had the privilege of attending the Wesley Pilgrimage in England (I wrote several blogs about it), I was on my […]


A 1964 issue of Fact magazine led to an APA ethical standard known as the Goldwater rule.

Clergy need a Goldwater rule

This week I learned about the Goldwater Rule from John Dickerson’s chatter on Slate’s Political Gabfest podcast, one of my favorites. Dickerson shared that in the 1964 election, a magazine called Fact published an issue with this provocative title on the cover, “1,189 Psychiatrists Say Goldwater is Psychologically Unfit to be […]

The aroma of love

“The house was filled with the aroma of the perfume.” (John 12:3) Devotion on John 12:1-11 I wrote this for Providence United Methodist Church for the Monday of Holy Week.  They say our sense of smell is deeply connected to memory and emotion. I guess that’s how we can say […]

Peter Paul Rubens [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons


Fleeting beauty: A lesson from a saxophone

The other night a saxophone solo from one of my playlists broke through the din of noise and routine of driving on a darkened road. I know I have listened to this song dozens of times before, but I had never really heard this solo. It was hauntingly beautiful. It was perfect. Those […]

Before I die, I want to… : A meditation for Ash Wednesday

I shared this meditation during Ash Wednesday worship at United Methodist Communications today.  One day, not far from her home in New Orleans, artist Candy Chang noticed a large abandoned building. “I thought about how I could make this a nicer space for my neighborhood,” she said during her TED […]

Some answers from the New Orleans wall.


Keep Pounding: More than football game motivation

Keep pounding. The Carolina Panthers, playing in the Super Bowl against the Denver Broncos, adopted this motto several years ago, and it is literally part of the fabric of the team. Before home games they bring out a large, bass drum decorated in team colors and have a fan or team […]

A 9/11 reflection

This post originally appeared on September 11, 2011, but the sentiment remains today. I am praying today for the people of Middletown, New Jersey, a community I had the privilege of being part of from 1994 to 2005. On September 11, 2001 I was in my office at Middletown United Methodist Church […]

Middletown NJ World Trade Center Memorial Gardens

The time people give for meetings is a generous donation. 
Image by clker.com (http://www.clker.com/clipart-13595.html) [Copyrighted free use], via Wikimedia Commons

Do we need a meeting? Respecting others’ time

Some six months ago, I began living the life of a layperson while remaining clergy. After more than 20 years as an associate pastor, I now work a desk job in an office. While there are similarities to my previous life, it has been a season of adjustment. One of […]

Bunnies, Baseball, and Being Stuck

I love my morning bicycle rides on the walk-run-bike trail near my house. By the lake I might see a heron or a few ducks. Smaller birds flit in the trees and land in the path in front of me. In one section of the trail I have recently noticed […]

A heron by the lake.