Liturgy As Individual Spiritual Practice of Embodiment – Part 1

Column by Kevin G. Thew Forrester, Ph.D. on December, 20 2018

In my last column, “Terrifying and Terrible Texts: Knowing the Difference between Study and Liturgy,” I offered a basic and broad and personal vision of liturgy as “essentially a spiritual practice wherein we gather together to experience becoming embodiments of Being in the present moment.” We gather as unique personal jewels of Life. This vision begins my response to Bishop Spong’s query in Unbelievable: can Christian liturgies be made to reflect “reality rather than nostalgia.” Let me now develop this further in three ways: liturgy as personal spiritual practice of the individual; a reformed liturgical church year; and examples of eucharistic prayers (personal practice in a communal context) informed by this new vision of liturgy. This column will focus on liturgy as personal spiritual practice of the individual, which is the foundation for the subsequent essay on church year and eucharistic prayers.

Terrifying & Terrible Texts: Knowing the Difference between Study and Liturgy

Column by Kevin G. Thew Forrester, Ph.D. on September, 13 2018

Quite recently, a dear friend and colleague within a spiritual group in which we both participate raised a question, a heartfelt concern, about a book we were asked to read. This particular text, written in the middle of the last century, is a psychotherapy book that explores an energetic understanding of how the mind and body are interconnected. The book has much to commend it. However, my friend was in pain over the blatant homophobia in this piece and was wondering how I and others were experiencing the text and whether it was even appropriate for our study.

Charting a New Reformation, Part XXXVII – Thesis #11, Life After Death (continued), Survival is the Essence of Life

Column by Bishop John Shelby Spong on September, 29 2016

It was in the Amazon rain forest that I first discovered just how deeply survival dominates every living thing. Sunlight and water are the prizes which guarantee the survival …

Re-Creating Easter VI: The Dawning of the Resurrection

Column by Bishop John Shelby Spong on October, 29 2015

We have now explored our sources, looking where we could beneath the literal words of the biblical texts. We have come to four conclusions. First, whatever the Easter moment …

Thoughts on Baptizing Chapman Thomas Brinegar

Column by Bishop John Shelby Spong on July, 30 2015

This past summer in a lovely chapel quite literally on the coast of Maine, I had the pleasure of baptizing Chapman Thomas Brinegar. A baptism is something I hardly …

Resurrection: A Reality or a Pious Dream, Part IX Luke: Physical, Non-Physical or Both?

Column by Bishop John Shelby Spong on June, 25 2015

Today, I want to focus on the ambiguity found in the conflicting aspects of Luke’s two resurrection stories in more detail and in more depth. It will help …

“Resurrection” A Reality or a Pious Dream? Part I

Column by Bishop John Shelby Spong on April, 23 2015

On Easter Sunday, a couple of weeks ago now, I was in my parish church, St. Peter’s in Morristown, New Jersey. I was not alone. Into that church, at …

Part XLVI Matthew – Other Minor Characters in the Passion Drama

Column by Bishop John Shelby Spong on April, 2 2015

Once we begin to see the Passion narrative not as history, but as liturgy that was created to interpret the meaning of Jesus, the literal imprisonment that has been …

William Maurice, i.e. Willie Mo, I Baptize You

Column by Bishop John Shelby Spong on March, 5 2015

It was a strangely emotional moment for me. I was in All Saint’s Church in Austin, Texas, holding in my arms a nine months old baby boy, preparing …

Part XXVIII Matthew: The Parable of the Loaves and the Fish

Column by Bishop John Shelby Spong on September, 18 2014

Sukkoth is complete. There will be six to eight Sabbaths to engage the synagogue before the next celebration, the festival called Dedication, arrives. In Aramaic the word for “Dedication” …