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This past Monday I had the opportunity to attend the Student Peace Conference at OSU.  It was a really nice event, and it was exciting to see so many young people interested in learning about peacemaking.  There was not much sustained conversation about any one topic, but I thought I would pass along some of the various intriguing ideas I took away from the event:

  • During a workshop on conflict resolution, the presenter offered a framework for understanding how we make decisions during times of conflict.  This framework used a graph with one axis labeled “Concern for Goal”
  • ...

So you’ve been talking with or saying hello to that person at church for months, or years, and you appreciate the relationship.  There’s just one thing slightly uncomfortable about it.  You have no clue what their name is, and now it’s to the point where it’s embarrassing to ask.  I know this about you because many of you have mentioned to me that you regularly have this experience.

We put a high value on being community for each other, and we are blessed with enough of us hanging around in this congregation that it’s hard to remember names of more than just a close circle of...

Yesterday was St. Patrick’s day.  I forgot to wear green, but no one pinched me.  Like St. Valentine’s Day, or Christmas and Saint Nicholas, the lives of these saints are something akin to the background radiation from the big bang – still there if you really look for it, but certainly not the first thing you think of when you look around at what things have become.  Green beer, for example.

St. Patrick lived in fifth century Britain and served as a slave in Ireland for six years, returning later in life to be the first bring the gospel to Ireland.  Two cool things about the Irish...

Today I am in the Bluffton/Pandora area for a CDC pastors meeting and some work with the Ministerial Committee.  On the drive up here I listened to the TED Radio Hour episode “The Money Paradox.”  One of the featured speakers, Keith Chen, talked about his research on the relationship between financial savings practices and language.  As it turns out, people whose primary language does not differentiate between the present and future tense have a much higher (consistently 20-30%) savings rate than those...

Since being called to serve as a “Pastor of Christian Formation,” I often find myself thinking about the notion of formation.  How are we formed?  Who are we being formed to be?  In what ways is our formation either conscious or unconscious, explicit or implicit?  What does Christian formation look like? 

In the academic world, formation is often talked about in conjunction with something called habitus.  Habitus is a concept that goes all the way back as early as Aristotle but is often associated with the French Sociologist Pierre Bourdieu.  Different writers describe habitus with...

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