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Author: John Pavlovitz

Maybe one day people of faith will actually love other living people as much as they do embryos

Conservatives tell us all the time how much they love embryos. They speak effusively about them in conversation, publicly revere them, shed crocodile tears over them, accost strangers entering clinics over them, viciously troll people on social media over them, sermonize on street corners about them. They even claim to have voted for an otherwise reprehensible monster they would never otherwise tolerate to lead them—solely because of them. Republican people of faith regularly fall all over themselves, carry on wildly, and tear their garments in showy grief over embryos; unleashing all manner of histrionics at those they deem a...

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MAGA Christians cast a terribly tiny God in their own image of hate

I feel sorry for professed Christians who support this President. They have a profound and fundamental spiritual problem: their God is too small. They passionately worship a deity made in their own image: white, American, Republican, male—and perpetually terrified of just about everything: Muslims, immigrants, gay children, Special Counsel reports, mandalas, Harry Potter, Starbuck holiday cups, yoga, wind turbines, Science — everything. Their God is so laughably minuscule, so fully neutered of power, so completely devoid of functioning vertebrae that “He” cannot protect them from the encroaching monsters they are certain lurk around every corner to overwhelm them. MAGA...

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Monkey See, Monkey Do Not: Calling yourself a Christian when you avoid emulating Christ

Everyone but white Evangelicals understand the message and teachings of Jesus. I love my Atheist and Agnostic friends. I love my Muslim friends and Jewish friends, my Buddhist and my Hindu friends, my backsliding, formerly Christian friends, my self-admitted heathen friends, my “I’m definitely going to Hell” friends. I love the way they all emulate Jesus. I love how Christlike they are. Not in flowery prayers, effusive social media posts, or showy Sunday sermons; not in brazen bumper stickers, self-righteous public protests, or finger-wagging table side lectures — but in their very lives. Where the rubber meets the road,...

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Even being afraid of the “Other” cannot stop White Nationalists from cultural cannibalism

I have always despised bullies. Ever since I was a young boy I could see them clearly; on the playground and in the hallways and on the street corners – the way they terrorized people while being themselves internally terrified. Even as they brutalized the other kids with words and fists, I heard the shaking of their voices and noticed their quivering hands, and I knew how petrified they were. I almost pitied them. Almost. I watched them prey upon those who were vulnerable or alone or different — not because these people posed any true threat to them,...

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Hate over Faith: Our growing poverty of empathy for the welfare of other human beings

America is facing a growing poverty in these days. We are going broke an alarming rate, and we need to do something quickly to change our corporate fortunes. This is a national paucity of the gravest kind: a base level lack of compassion for the welfare of other human beings. It is trickle-down cruelty flowing from the top; an unapologetic callousness that revels in its contempt for people who are hurting or hungry or vulnerable—and it is changing us. Though they claim to embrace both the Golden Rule and the command by Jesus to love others as they love...

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Empty Hearts, Closed Minds, Shut Doors: United Methodists face church split over LGBTQ ban

The United Methodist Church is currently in the midst of potentially Denomination-splitting discussions over the Church’s official stance on LGBTQ inclusion. As someone who has served in the UMC for 17 years, nearly a decade of those in one of the 100 largest churches in the country, it’s about time. This should be a pass-fail deal breaker for people who claim to love LGBTQ human beings. Traveling this country and engaging thousands of Christians every month, I encounter local faith communities, both inside and outside the United Methodist Church — who claim to be LGBTQ-affirming or LGBTQ-inclusive, but who...

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