December 22, 2014

About Chaplain Mike

Chaplain Mike works with a hospice organization in central Indiana. He has been in pastoral ministry since 1978, serving in churches in Maryland, Vermont, Illinois, and Indiana before moving into chaplaincy work. He is married to a wonderful gifted wife, Gail, and they have four children and three grandchildren. He thinks baseball is the greatest game ever invented, suffers annually as a Chicago Cubs fan, and is looking forward to putting on a cap again this spring to coach his grandson's Little League team. He loves a wide variety of music, spends way too much money on books, is happy to live in a place where there are four seasons, and is a "true believer" in Apple computers, having used them since 1988. Luther is his favorite theologian, Bach his favorite composer, James Taylor his favorite singer-songwriter, Chicago his favorite city, and hiking his favorite form of exercise. He would love to do more with photography and dreams of having a place in the mountains of Arizona some day. His heart has been captured by the grace of God in Jesus Christ and considers himself a post-evangelical disciple seeking a Jesus-shaped life and hoping to help the church do the same. He is forever grateful to his friend, Michael Spencer, for giving him an opportunity to write for Internet Monk.

Music in Sepia

The Harrow & The Harvest Gillian Welch You know some girls are bright as the morning And some girls are blessed with a dark turn of mind • • • Though it was released in June, I’ve been listening lately to Gillian Welch’s first new album in eight years and have found it to be […]

How the Lutheran Tradition Answers Many Post-Evangelical Concerns (1)

Last week I wrote about how I have come to peace with my place in the tradition of the Church. My new personal statement of identity is: “I am a Christian, and I practice my faith in the Lutheran tradition.” I am the first to admit that I have a long way to go in […]

The Cruelest Month

Yesterday, the wind blew strong from the west, colder and more piercing as the day went by. The sky was a wild migration of stampeding clouds, many dark as slate and angry. Leaves blew everywhere. Color is thinning and soon the treetops will be as bare as an old man’s pate. All will be brown, […]

Real Presence?

Comments now closed. My apologies to those who hold the following view. I don’t think your voice was fairly represented in our discussion earlier this week on the Lord’s Supper. I hope you were not offended, and that you will continue to participate in our ongoing conversation about this matter. Because I think your perspective […]

What Is This Parable About?

On Monday, my pastor asked if I would like to preach this coming Sunday. I accepted his kind invitation, and have been thinking about the day’s Gospel text ever since. Would you be willing to help me in my preparation? If so, I’ll give you some information here, and then you can join in the […]

N.T. Wright’s “The Kingdom New Testament”

Tom Wright has now given us a fresh translation of the New Testament: The Kingdom New Testament: A Contemporary Translation. In the preface, Wright explains that this is a translation, not a paraphrase. However, he also explains that, since “Greek often goes quite easily into English, but not always,” translators must make decisions about how […]

Creation Wars Update

Today, your faithful iMonk correspondent reports from the front lines of the “Creation Wars” about recent articles on issues related to science and Biblical interpretation. Duck and cover. • • • 1. October saw Peter Enns move his blog to the Patheos evangelical portal. Enns dived right in and wrote about the ongoing debate on […]

Let’s Discuss…Open or Closed Communion?

Comments now closed. One of the differences between Christian groups with respect to the Lord’s Supper involves who is invited to participate in the meal. I have experienced many different practices in this regard. I have attended churches in which communion is completely open. “Everyone in this room is welcome to the Lord’s Table,” is […]

The Genius of an Art Full of Spiritual Vitality

Monday Merton Musings, Nov 7, 2011 The Genius of an Art Full of Spiritual Vitality All quotes are from The Seven Storey Mountain, by Thomas Merton One turning point in Thomas Merton’s life came at age 18, when he visited Rome. In The Seven Storey Mountain, he tells how he began touring churches throughout the […]

Let the Saints Teach Us to Be Children

Today is the day many Christian traditions celebrate All Saints’ Day (some celebrated earlier last week). On the first page of our church bulletin this morning were these words: “All Saints celebrates the baptized people of God, living and dead, who are the body of Christ. As November heralds the dying of the landscape in […]