We Do What Jesus Did

Photo by Chris Burke

I preached this sermon on Sunday at the 4:00 jazz service at Fourth Church. It is a reflection on Jesus’ baptism and the notion that changing one’s heart and life is a more appropriate understanding of metanoia than the traditional connotations of repentance. It also suggests that what young people experience in confirmation is a […]

Borg on Christmas

Every year my confirmation curriculum focuses on Jesus during Advent. While our reflections on Jesus’ message and the meaning of his death sometimes seem out of place when juxtaposed with the themes of Advent—it’d be better, I suppose, to do this during Lent—it is definitely meaningful to study Jesus with our confirmands during this season […]

Eighth Grade Faith Questions

Photo by Oberazzi

For me, faith is as much (or more) about the questions than it is about the answers. Each year at the beginning of their confirmation experience, I ask our 8th graders to list their biggest faith questions. Each year these questions are a good reminder of what our young people are thinking about faith. The […]

Sacred Conversations


There was a time, not so long ago, when confirmation within mainline Protestant churches was a primarily dogmatic exercise. Students were expected to memorize and recite creeds and catechisms. These catechisms defined faith by asking questions and providing answers, answers that are scripted and learned by catechumens or confirmands. While there was surely some attention […]

God is Not an Idea

Photo by Hey Paul Studios

Today I am beginning the series of one-on-one meetings I have each year with confirmands during the two weeks leading up to our confirmation Sunday. I love this time with our young people, asking them big questions about faith and hearing how they respond in their own unique ways. I’ve written before about the series […]