The Common Good
Banksy graffiti piece: 1000 Words / Shutterstock.com

It is time for the Christian church – indeed all people of faith – to explore, in a more sustained and sophisticated way than ever before in human history, what can be done nonviolently.

Pope Francis in October. giulio napolitano / Shutterstock.com

Pope Francis' frank imagery prompted a flurry of playfully creative headlines that ranged from mocking to woeful. And the byproduct? The continued misinformation on what Catholics currently practice and what the Catholic Church actually teaches.

Puzzle of the globe with pieces missing. Image courtesy Maxx-Studio/shutterstock

Pope Francis is calling on world leaders, and all Catholics and people of good will, to act on global warming by releasing a historic papal encyclical on the matter this summer.

Resistance might not be the word that comes to mind in response to human trafficking. Most often people speak of “combatting” or “fighting” human trafficking. But when we consider human trafficking as social sin, one in which ordinary persons are complicit and connected, then resistance emerges as an appropriate moral response.

Hearts together making a rainbow. Image courtesy Yulia Grigoryeva/shutterstock.c

That anyone, most especially evangelicals, questions God’s — and by extension, the Christian community's — love and friendship for and with my Christ-professed gay and lesbian sisters and brothers breaks my heart. Christ-like friendship is the heart of the gospel; the ultimate risk belongs to Christ alone.

Two working oil pumps are silhouetted against the sky. Photo via Kokhanchikov /

I have started the process of divesting my retirement fund and other savings from fossil fuel companies. Will it make a “Big Oil” company close its doors? No, but it is an opportunity for me to live out my values and witness to my deepest beliefs. This is not just a symbolic act but a step toward living with integrity as a Christian.

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On The Blog

  • In 2010, the book, The Boy Who Came Back From Heaven, was released. At the time, I believe I gave this news about 0.3 percent of my attention, and 0.1 percent was spent lamenting terrible theology prevalent in the popular Christian book market. It came as no surprise when last week The Boy Who Came Back From Heaven retracted his story.
  • The cell I was held in is part of an effort by faith groups and other prison reform advocates in Wisconsin to push the state to cut way back on the use of solitary confinement, both in terms of why prisoners are put there and how long they are kept there.
  • As long as we LGBTQ Christians are shoved into the shadows of this faith community, no evangelical parent with a closeted child is going to know of another way until it’s too late to take it. No LGBTQ child is going to have hope that there is place they belong. As long as we are unseen, families will continue to fall apart. Beautiful lives will continue to disappear.
  • It is not primarily American or European citizens who are losing their lives and livelihoods in the global terror epidemic.
  • The gospel message of Jesus is about love. God is love, and God wants us to reflect this reality to the world around us. But while Christians have been taught this simple reality for years, it’s easy to complicate the love of God. Here are five common ways we continually mess it up.
  • Whether it is described in the vocabulary of religion or more "secular" terms, violence — and in the case of torture, shockingly inhumane violence — is described as a necessary means for bringing about the good. This logic is at the heart of all religious violence, and it is a view that is alive and well today.

In The Magazine

Featured Blog Series

January is National Human Trafficking Awareness month. This series explores the nuances of the problem and features first-hand stories from survivors.