What Role Do Outdoor Ministries Play In The UCC Today?

In the nearly 20 years I’ve been in and around the United Church of Christ, no topic I’ve heard discussed has elicited more passion, argument, dissent, delight, and anguish than Outdoor Ministries, especially our camps and conference centers. The discussions I’ve heard have made even the most controversial votes at General Synod feel tame by…

To Whom Does a Pastor’s Body Belong?

Martin Luther King, Jr. was many things to many people, but in his own mind, he was first and foremost a pastor. And although he was born 39 years before he was assassinated, his body implied a different story. An autopsy on King revealed that despite his youth, he had the heart of a 60-year-old-man. My understanding…

“Where are the Monks and Nuns in the UCC?”

I heard it, but I couldn’t believe it. “Where are the monks and nuns in the UCC?” The question struck me to my core. This question came up in April of this year, as the national leadership of the United Church of Christ hosted a theological formation summit in Cleveland. Entitled “From the Ground Up,”…

What Difference Does the UCC Make?

This article is dedicated to Kristina Lizardy-Hajbi, in gratitude for her faithful service to the UCC’s Center for Analytics, Research, and Data. As a pastor in the United Church of Christ, I believe that the UCC makes a real difference in the world. But what difference, exactly, is that? And how do I (or any…

The UCC vs. the Nazis

Well, it’s come to this. It’s the United Church of Christ versus the Nazis. After the events in Charlottesville, I don’t know how else to describe the fight in which we now find ourselves as a denomination. The current struggle about white supremacy is much larger than just two groups, of course. We have ecumenical…