Parting with Tradition

Parting with Tradition

December has arrived, and with it the full onslaught of Christmas preparations. Our house is decorated; now I’m turning my attention to the holiday baking, gift-buying, and end-of-the-year and holiday events. Here in Australia, I’m soberly grateful that we are moving into a “COVID-normal” summer. Still, things are not the same as previous years—and I know that is even more true for many others around the world. Longing and lament fill my news feeds as people react to the many…

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The Cost of Stewardship: A review of Stewards of Eden

The Cost of Stewardship: A review of Stewards of Eden

As a transplant from the U.S.A. to Australia, I have spent the past three years trying to acclimate to my new home. In the process, I’ve felt increasingly convicted about my distance from the creation. Facing so many new plants, animals, and habitats that were unknown to me, I realized how little I had known of my previous home. Along with doing my best to know and name the world around me, I’ve also eagerly sought guides to understanding what…

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Thanksgiving Day Meditation

Thanksgiving Day Meditation

We usually talk about gratitude and thankfulness as mental practices: we call to mind the good things that we have received, and we try to see in our troubles good in disguise. Gratitude is a feeling and a mindset that we must intentionally cultivate. Yet, in a year when so much of our experiences have been physically limited as virtual events have replaced face-to-face activities, I wonder what the relationship is between gratitude and our bodies? Matthew Lee Anderson, in…

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No Better Gift: The Friendship of Dorothy L. Sayers and CS Lewis

No Better Gift: The Friendship of Dorothy L. Sayers and CS Lewis

In the past year, two writers who made a significant impression on my younger self have pushed back into view: C.S. Lewis and Dorothy L. Sayers. Through the excellent work of the Rabbit Room and the Anselm Society, I’ve been reminded of Lewis’ imagination and the crucial way it resists a modern and secular society shorn of transcendence. And through a friend who is diving into Sayer’s works, I’ve appreciated again her insistence on Christian art being worthy of the…

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The Posture of Surrender

The Posture of Surrender

This year, one marked by radically reshaped ministry, work, and everyday life, I’ve found myself in a near-constant stance of resistance. I’m resisting the changes that have descended on us so suddenly, the way we have been cut off from the people and the places we love, and forced to mediate much of our interactions through screens. You won’t find me at any protests against COVID restrictions, but my heart is protesting all the same — I do not want…

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Formed by Lament

Formed by Lament

“Out of the depths I cry to you, Lord;Lord, hear my voice.Let your ears be attentiveto my cry for mercy.” Psalm 130:1-2 What can we call the year 2020 if not a year of grief? So much heaviness and turmoil, so much to bring to God in prayer. America is not unique in its suffering; the pandemic has touched all inhabited continents and almost every country. Injustice and violence, which have boiled over in America this year, are a daily…

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Longing for the Embodied Church

Longing for the Embodied Church

Here in Victoria, we have reached five months of worshiping online. For a brief month, we were able to have a few other people over in our homes, and so we were able to worship with others not in our family. Still, we all sat on our couch in front of the TV screen. And now that we are in a season of the tightest restrictions yet, I sense the longing of so many to be together with others once…

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August 6: Feast of the Transfiguration

August 6: Feast of the Transfiguration

“The time of business does not with me differ from the time of prayer and in the noise and clatter of my kitchen…I possess God in as great tranquility as if I were upon my knees at the blessed sacrament” Brother Lawrence  My tile backsplash holds this quote on an index card. As I chop potatoes, knead dough, or prepare leftovers for the microwave, if I think to look up from my task, the index card catches my eye.  Really?…

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“Uyghurs for Sale”: ASPI Report

“Uyghurs for Sale”: ASPI Report

According to the Australian Strategic Policy Institute, “The Chinese government has facilitated the mass transfer of Uyghur and other ethnic minority citizens from the far west region of Xinjiang to factories across the country. Under conditions that strongly suggest forced labour, Uyghurs are working in factories that are in the supply chains of at least 83 well-known global brands in the technology, clothing and automotive sectors, including Apple, BMW, Gap, Huawei, Nike, Samsung, Sony and Volkswagen.” Given their research, the…

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