Posts by Pastor Bo


I am not a big fan of formulas normally. They are too prescriptive and too … formulaic ?  I found a formula recently that I really liked. It connected with me so I decided to share it with Sunday School, Church Council, a pastor’s group and a seminary class. Is this a formula for success? Not everyone thinks so! Focused Intensity – over Time – multiplied by the ‘God’ factor I always pay...

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Something funny has happened in the past month. I have been told by somebody that each element of our Sunday gatherings is their favorite … and somebody else’s least favorite. Passing of the Peace Music and Singing Prayer Sermon Conversation Communion Videos This is fascinating to me – and I love that we can talk about it! This is part of our life together. This is how community works. Each aspect or element connects...

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The early churches developed a saying: The rule of prayer is the rule of faith As we have moved through the centuries, things have changed. Our worship communities have moved from being centered on prayer, to sacrament, to preaching … and now many are centered on music. I am proposing that now, the rule of worship is the rule of faith. Watch this 5 minute video and let me know what you think. you can also check out...

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A short video (5 min) about how progressives and liberals not only believe different things than conservatives and evangelicals … but they believe them differently. From Missions to Eschatology -they both believe different things and they hold those beliefs differently. Let me know your...

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One tradition I really like surrounding communion, is that you never throw the bread in the trash or pour the cup down the drain. Once the bread and cup have been blessed, you are supposed to return them to earth from which they came. I love this imagery. It helps me to think about the grain that became the flour for the loaf and to think about the vines rooted in the earth that brought forth the grapes. I do this, not in a...

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Here is a short encouragement that I shared with a seminary class recently. Be brave. Be bold. Be daring. … it probably won’t work anyway. The systems is so powerful and so dominating that it can absorb, adapt to, and even appropriate any protest or critique. Parables, by the way, are not earthly stories with heavenly meanings. Parables are earthy stories with heavy meaning. Parables come in underneath your radar when your...

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In the past weeks I have been on two fun podcasts. Religionless Church with Mason Mennenga has a fun and fast format. I had so much fun recording it and we cover a variety of topics. my religious migration academic interests interactive church religious but not spiritual nerdy takes on Bonhoeffer and ‘the world come of age’ He also has a wonderful style for his podcast where he features the music of a different artist...

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I had the opportunity to be on the UMC podcast Get Your Spirit In Shape. My interview is Ep. 43 called Disagreeing Well. It’s no secret that people disagree, sometimes vehemently. When our opinions match, it is easy to have a conversation. When we are on opposite sides of an issue, talking can be far more challenging, but often more fruitful. In a time when opinions are strong in both our public and church lives, learning to disagree...

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I had the opportunity earlier this week to be with leaders who are doing innovative things in their communities and ministry settings. I got to talk about ‘why we do church this way’. I love to think through how to do and be church in the 21st century. I like to call it ‘a liturgy of listening and learning’. Interactive church brings together the best of constructive approaches, emergent thought, church 2.0,...

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This past week, we started into a new series about Practicing Faith. The first week’s topic is “Times of Yearning” and I took the opportunity to have some fun talking about different ways of talking about desire. Here are 4 ways that I have heard desire talked about: God Shaped Vacuum You may be familiar with the famous quote by Pascal: “There is a God-shaped vacuum in the heart of each man which cannot be satisfied...

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