When Everything Becomes Sacred

Column by Rev. Lauren Van Ham on September, 10 2020

We could describe the pain we’re in right now as the colonial anesthesia wearing off.  In epic fashion, events of the past many months have connected all the threads of the story: white supremacy and racism, detention centers and prisons, militarism and policing, the wealth of a few at the expense of  essential workers, broken healthcare, hurricanes, derechos, and wildfires, and certainly others.

Befriending an Intruder

Column by Rev. Lauren Van Ham on April, 23 2020

Since early March, a poem[i] by Kristin Flyntz has been circulating widely wherein she imagines what the Covid-19 virus might be saying.  More than once it says, “Just stop. Be still. Listen. Ask us what we might teach you about illness and healing, about what might be required so that all may be well. We will help you, if you listen.”

Imagine That!

Column by Rev. Lauren Van Ham on December, 12 2019

Last Spring, Greta Thunberg’s statement to the European Parliament included the phrase, “Everyone and everything needs to change.”  It’s become a mantra for me: Everyone, Everything, Me, Changing.

And Like the Sun, Our Generosity Continues

Column by Rev. Lauren Van Ham on August, 8 2019

It has become so easy now to feel anxious, worried or irritable by the state of things, by the frantic commotion modeled all around us, focusing on just about everything except what’s actually important. 

Super Natural Sacraments of Spring

Column by Rev. Lauren Van Ham on March, 28 2019

The progressive Christian practice, I believe, is founded on my (our) willingness to listen for and co-create the new story. And let me be clear about this word, “new.” I don’t mean the next bright and shiny object that allows me to toss the frayed one into the landfill. I mean “new,” as in emerging, fertile, and arriving with a willingness to acknowledge what has been before now.

The Medicine of Intimacy: an Advent Challenge

Column by Rev. Lauren Van Ham on December, 13 2018

At the beginning of November, I dizzied myself in a dervish with 7500 participants at the Parliament of World Religions. In a series of keynote presentations spanning Peace & Reconciliation, Climate, Women, Indigenous Voices, and the Next Generation, one unifying message was consistently offered, “Humans have caused this.” Whatever the challenge before us, it is our species who has created the conditions for our current reality.

A Believable Conviction amidst the Trauma of Finitude

Column by Rev. Lauren Van Ham on September, 6 2018

Of the 12 theses Bishop Spong examines in his (maybe) last book, Unbelievable, Thesis 11 is, “Life After Death.” Still believable, he asks?

Ready, Set…RECEIVE!

Column by Rev. Lauren Van Ham on June, 7 2018

The June sun was shining, but the whipping wind had us under hats and hoods, huddled close to hear the Naturalist’s instructions, “These flowers just poked out of snow last week.  Up here, Summer turns to Fall by mid-August.  Tundra takes hundreds of years to grow and one sloppily-placed hiking boot can destroy it all.” Then, he pointed across the Alpine carpet, to a collection of immense boulders and we began – adults, grandparents, and children (I was one of those) – hopping rock to rock.  A few paused, using their telephoto lenses to capture the blooms mere centimeters wide; the athletic made it into a game of how quickly they could “gazelle” from one rock to the next; and others moved with deference to the altitude, reaching for each inhale of thin air.  Other species – marmots, elk, birds – might have been looking on quizzically, but we did all we could to not touch our feet to the strong, fragile life below.