Social Issues, Theology

The intersection of faith and colonialism

I've been rereading Mark Noll's The Civil War as a Theological Crisis. It's a relatively short book, but packed with information that all Christians should be educated about. The "theological crisis" in the title that led to civil war was, obviously, about slavery -- and whether or not the Bible justified the slave trade. Christians… Continue reading The intersection of faith and colonialism

Social Issues, Theology

Racism and the importance of communal repentance

One Jewish concept that carried over into Christianity is that of communal repentance. In ancient times, the sins of a community were atoned for with blood sacrifices. Today, communal repentance takes place one day a year on Yom Kippur, where Jews gather in synagogue to recognize the sins that were committed during the past year.… Continue reading Racism and the importance of communal repentance

Social Issues, Theology

The one sin we can’t fess up to

For Black History Month, I'm making more of an effort to read books by people of color (something I should be doing more of anyway). In rereading I'm Still Here by Austin Channing Brown (because it's just that good), this passage stood out to me: White people desperately want to believe that only the lonely,… Continue reading The one sin we can’t fess up to

Social Issues, Theology

They should know us by our love, not our dismissal of black suffering

You've probably seen the viral video by now, or at least heard about it: white police officer Amber Guyger being hugged by the brother of the black man she killed when she entered his apartment, claiming it was her own. Brandt Jean told her, "If you are truly sorry, I know I can speak for… Continue reading They should know us by our love, not our dismissal of black suffering

Social Issues, Theology

The revolution needs dish washers

This may sound strange, but when I was growing up, I wanted to be Joan of Arc. Or rather, I wanted all the fame and glory that comes with being Joan of Arc (minus the arrest, trial, and tragic execution). Leading a revolution is complex business, to say the least, and I didn't have the… Continue reading The revolution needs dish washers

Social Issues, Theology

Hold fast to what is good

White Evangelicals Are the Most Fragile of all White People is a bitingly brilliant article by Brandi Miller, which I highly recommend. Linked within the piece is an older article by Miller, published on The Salt Collective: The Chasm Between White Theology and Black Liberation. As I read the first article, I couldn’t help thinking,… Continue reading Hold fast to what is good

Social Issues, Theology

On cultural appropriation: how much do intentions matter?

I read with interest a Washington Post article about a white teenager who wore a traditional Chinese dress to her prom: Like many other teenagers preparing for prom, Utah senior Keziah Daum wanted to find a dress that would stand out, “something that would be more unique and bold and had some sort of meaning to it,”… Continue reading On cultural appropriation: how much do intentions matter?

Social Issues

How my Jewish background opened my eyes to racism

I often wonder what my life would be like if I had been raised in a Christian home. Would I be the same person I am today? Would I still prioritize understanding different viewpoints – even those (or especially those) I disagree with? It’s easy for me to resent my Jewish background sometimes. It’s the… Continue reading How my Jewish background opened my eyes to racism

Social Issues, Theology

Christian anti-Semitism, politics, and me

A few years ago a Lutheran friend invited me to her weekly bible study when she heard I was shopping for a new church. The denomination’s founder, Martin Luther, was only a name to me at that point; someone who came up in my Elizabethan history books, but was nothing more than an interesting footnote.… Continue reading Christian anti-Semitism, politics, and me