Pastor’s Approach: Praising God, Honoring Country

I’ve been writing monthly newsletter articles about my approach to various aspects of congregational ministry – worship, sacraments, weddings, funerals, and so forth. This month, I wrote about the intersection of patriotism and Christian worship. It is a variant on pieces I’ve written on this blog in the past. Below is what appeared in myContinue reading “Pastor’s Approach: Praising God, Honoring Country”

Christian Worship on the 4th of July

This newsletter article, a reworking of a past blogpost, appeared in my congregation's July newsletter.  My sermon for the 4th of July also touches on church/state issues. The 4th of July this year falls on a Sunday.  Though there will be flags waving outside of houses, and parades with red, white, and blue processions, andContinue reading “Christian Worship on the 4th of July”

Religious Groups on Campus: Christian Legal Society vs. Martinez

Earlier today the Supreme Court heard arguments in Christian Legal Society vs. Martinez, testing whether a school's nondiscrimination policy can result in barring a student religious group – which, by definition, is limited to people who share that faith – from receiving official campus recognition.  The case involved a student organization at Hastings College ofContinue reading “Religious Groups on Campus: Christian Legal Society vs. Martinez”

Moment of Silence in Virginia Schools

According to Virginia law, a school pupil's free exercise of religion within the schools is guaranteed by one minute of silence in the school day.  I'm no lawyer, but I am a pastor and a person of at least ordinary intelligence.  I have a hard time seeing how a minute of silence provides such aContinue reading “Moment of Silence in Virginia Schools”

The Unfortunate Scheduling of Spring Break Over Holy Week

Spring Break in the Arlington Public Schools, and in many school districts around the country, coincides with Holy Week, the week stretching from Palm Sunday to Easter Sunday which includes the observances of Holy Thursday, Good Friday, and the Vigil of Easter.  Though Holy Week moves from year to year depending on the dating ofContinue reading “The Unfortunate Scheduling of Spring Break Over Holy Week”