The hope of NEXT Church and the writers of the Sarasota Statement is this: We encourage groups of Presbyterians, in a rich and colorful diversity of relationships, both within and beyond congregations, to conceive and declare their own faith statements, proclaiming the light of Christ.
About Linda Kurtz
This author has yet to write their bio.Meanwhile lets just say that we are proud Linda Kurtz contributed a whooping 254 entries.
Entries by Linda Kurtz
Through Friedman’s colorful and thorough research, I’ve learned what many of us knew but could not put into words. The institution of the church needs to teach her leaders, people in the pews, and potential community members how to develop their adaptability skills.
It is important to name and fight for what we see as right, and against what we see as wrong. But when we engage in shaming — dehumanizing others by declaring them, rather than their positions or actions, to be wrong or bad — we create what Thompson refers to as “states of aloneness within us and between us, and most substantially between us and God.”
At the 2017 National Gathering, Tom Charles will share some of his experience leading the refugee resettlement program of Nassau Presbyterian Church in Princeton, NJ. Here is the guide he created for churches and individuals interested in creating such resettlement programs.
While it is false (I hope) to say that the present climate in the U.S. is exactly parallel to what happened in Nazi Germany (though there are eerie similarities), the church can be informed by what happened then as it seeks to be faithful today. Bonhoeffer witnessed a swift increase in authoritarianism, xenophobia, aggression toward the feminine, populism, and the dangerous conflation of religion, politics, and belief in an illusory national myth.
Baldwin himself, who began writing essays and novels in the 1950’s, perhaps never imagined the lasting mark he would leave. But today he is constantly quoted when race relations boil over and a relevant voice is needed.
Are we all Hindu now? That’s what a Newsweek magazine claimed in 2009 when it observed the burgeoning world of the “nones.” Are we seeing a “turn to the East” among those people unaffiliated with any particular organized religion, especially those who self-identify as “spiritual but not religious?”
The book that is providing theological perspective and inspiration for me these days is “Spirit in the Dark: A Religious History of Racial Aesthetics” by Josef Sorett. This work is exciting because it puts religion in conversation with the secular and in doing so allows the church/religion to erase the divide between what is inside and what is outside of the church walls, or the boundaries of religious life.
Voices from around the PCUSA and beyond will follow throughout the coming weeks. Each will identify their context for ministry and call, a book they recommend, what the book is about, and why they believe it is critical reading today. My prayer is that these will become timely and descriptive “meditations of the heart,” so to speak, for a holy pilgrimage into God’s imagined future: the NEXT Church.
Last September, the Presbytery of Detroit decided to take a plunge with me. Together, we created a new role for ordained ministry. I am the first community chaplain in the presbytery. More specifically, I am a Community Chaplain for Nones and Dones.