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Progressive Christian Podcast Party: An Interview with Irenicast’s Jeff Manildi

Posted with permission
Jeff Manildi, Rev. Allen O’Brien, and Melody loved a good party. At family gatherings, they’d find each other, forming a little group.
Regardless of the type of party, these three would always keep their pastoral thinking caps on. Every time, they’d talk about theology as if they were teens engrossed in the latest gossip. Jeff particularly liked expressing his doubts to Allen, while both men enjoyed being challenged by Melody’s female perspective.
Often enough, it didn’t take long for them to realize they weren’t the only ones in the conversation anymore. Other guests would be drawn to the conversation and chime in their thoughts. Before they knew it, the group was made up of several more people, all actively participating in a dialogue that easily connected serious material and just another good time.
It’s exactly this kind of vibe that Jeff, Allen, and Melody tried to create when they founded Irenicast.
Irenicast is a Progressive Christian podcast stemmed fr…

The Gender Factor: An Interview with Writer Catherine Tinker

Posted with subject's permission
Catherine Tinker was thrilled to receive a contract to publish. As excited as she was, though, she was also under a considerable amount of pressure. There were deadlines for drafts, edits, revisions, and more, that she still had to meet. Simply finishing her book – while a great milestone – was not the end-all and be all.
One Sunday morning, Tinker decided to vent to a fellow churchgoer.
“I’ve just been very stressed,” she admitted, “about getting my edits in to my editor on time.”
“Did you say editor?” a voice interjected. Tinker turned to address a male church attendee who had nothing to do with the conversation.
Tinker attempted to respond politely. “Yes, I have a book deal milling and I’m just kind of stressed to get my revisions sent in on time.”
The man then proceeded to explain the writing process to Tinker, step by step, commenting on “how it’s so much effort” and “so much trial and error”. To top it all off, he spoke in a condescending to…

An Earth Loving God: 5 Reasons to be an Eco-Friendly Christian and How to Become One

Photo by Skitterphoto from Pexels
Denying global climate change. The flat Earth movement. Anti-evolutionists.
There are several scientific debates that have not shed a positive light on some very conservative folk out there. I suppose that shouldn’t be that big a deal. We’re all allowed to think what we want so long as we’re not hurting anyone, right?
That’s the thing, though. We absolutely are.
First, we’re clearly hurting the planet. Even NASA (n.d.) has spoken up about global climate change, explaining that the Earth’s temperature is rising, which leads to warmer oceans and melting icecaps, which leads to rising sea levels and extreme weather events, which doesn’t help since we’re polluting the oceans, and etc., and etc.
Second, we’re also hurting ourselves. For example, Center for Biological Diversity (n.d.) declares that plastic pollution in our oceans is a global crisis, with tragic results such as sickening sea life and giant gyres of trash like the Great Pacific Garbage Patch…

Come to Jesus: How the Way We Portray Jesus as a Partner – and God as a Parent – Can be Spiritual Abuse

Photo by Alexas_Fotos from Pixabay

Let me tell you about a new phrase I learned.
There’s a student at the school I work at who’s been a handful. He's consistently absent/late, misses assignments, pays little attention in class, and maintains little to no communication with faculty/staff. As much as we’ve tried to help, his attendance and grades are almost to the point of no return. While he says he wants to stay, his actions are working him out of the program.
Now, there was one last chance the Director of Education came up with to help him stay. He could pay to retake a course he failed. If he paid and passed, he'd barely have the hours and grades to stay a while longer. If not, then he’d have to be withdrawn immediately.
Here’s where the new phrase comes into play.
His Program Director and I were preparing to sit down with the student to present that plan. As we headed out of the office to find him, she said we were going to have a “come to Jesus meeting.”
Excuse me…a what?
I’m not…