Welcoming Strangers | Advent #1 Mid-week

This is part of my Strangers At Strange Tables series In truth, the story of Christ’s coming loses much of its value when we tuck the figures away in a manger and ignore the interruption of hospitality which is evident everywhere. Like most other nativity scenes, our manger sits in storage for 11 months of [...]

6 Ways Your Church Can Make a Difference in Anti-Trafficking

The Blue Bird Cafe is tucked into Budapest’s historic Jewish Quarter. It is Euro-whimsical with spirally staircases and bird-infused wallpaper percolating caffeinated warmth. Tourists like its vibe. Locals like its roast. The beat of old-school music can almost erase the memory of the 1940’s when the place of this cafe was a hole of death. [...]

Nobody. The Girl Who Was Thrown Away

For Freedom Sunday | September 22, 2019 Nobody picks me up and swings me around as soon as she sees me. I ask, ‘Are we dancing?’ And she laughs at my question. There is joy in her eyes and I know that she has been waiting for me to come out. I know, because she [...]

HAPPY HOUR JESUS

“Where ideas have sex.” It’s one of the myriad of edgy stickers on the window, but it grabs my attention as we step through the door. Just inches into this world, I’m breathing different air and wondering what Jesus is saying to me here. Jay and I are visiting a co-working space in the heart [...]

Syrian Refugees Pastor Churches in Poland

Syrian Refugees Pastor Churches in Poland

The media and the politicians weave a story much different than the one that I will tell you here. Where fear has cunningly colored words like 'refugee' and 'Syria', we have long stopped believing that good people cross borders in search of safe homes. We wonder at their motives. We believe the worst. In the [...]

The Ashes of our Journey || Lenten Wanderings

Today, across the globe, many Christ followers will line up at altars to be marked on the forehead or the hand with ashes. It is Ash Wednesday. It is the first day of Lent - this plodding and sometimes painful wandering towards the brokenness of the cross that culminates in the miracle of the resurrection. [...]

That Innkeeper | Advent Thoughts

That Innkeeper | Advent Thoughts

Unfortunately, the story of the advent of Christ into planet Earth is a problematic script in these days of fearing the stranger.

Pregnant Mary | Advent Thoughts

Pregnant Mary | Advent Thoughts

This advent thought is based upon Luke 1:26-38 We belly laugh as we wind through the cobbled streets of Budapest and settle into a little Cajun spot called Soul Food. My colleague who is also an ordained woman has just come from a Christian meeting where she identified as a minister. A man from the [...]

When Hospitality Gets In The Way

Our understanding of true hospitality requires a theological shift: Hospitality is not what we do for people, it is how we choose to perceive them and how we frame our attitudes towards them. True hospitality, ancient-church hospitality, Jesus-hospitality is about creating space — at our tables, in our lives, in our hearts — in such a way that people know that ‘this is a place where I belong and where I have value.’

Mothers On Borders

Mothers On Borders

My crisscrossing of nations these last 25 years have yielded more than one story of interesting border crossings, but, one night on a foreign border holds a traumatic place of precedence. In my mind’s eye, I am highlighted by bright lights, spread-eagle against a van while a female guard roughly pats down my body. She [...]