Posts in Piloting Faith

We Dare Not

Each of us has days when we are hopeful about the world that might emerge from this pandemic. Then we have days when we are heartbroken with grief over all that has changed and what we have lost. Today, I am heartbroken. I am heartbroken that we live in a world where a 25-year-old black man named Ahmaud Arbery goes out for a jog. Two white men, a father and son, believed he looked like a person responsible for a series of home invasions in the community. They call the… Read More

What History Can Teach Us

I’ve spent the last few days reading and researching extensively about the social impact of plagues over the course of history. I’ve needed to do this as part of a larger writing project. It’s not something I recommend for most of us. But let me tell you some highlights of what I have learned: These kinds of cataclysmic events fundamentally reshape human culture, often for the better. Those with wealth always fair better than those without it. NOTE: We should not repeat history this time around. We know better; now… Read More

Imaginal Cells

The amazing part of the transformation from the caterpillar to the butterfly is that you have this middle space, the cocooning season, where your body literally becomes mush. You disintegrate. You lose shape. You lose everything that defined you as a caterpillar. You become goo. In meaningful ways, you die to what you were. But here is the miracle: inside that deathly mush are imaginal cells. These cells hold the vision of a future within them. When all seems lost and nothing that was known can be known as it… Read More

Why Would We Open GA Too Soon?

I should write in celebration of Earth Day. I could highlight so many inspiring stories about how the earth is healing and how wonderful it is to see the world coming back to life. The fog is lifting. Hundreds of sea turtles are nesting in Spain. The dolphins are swimming in the canals in Venice. The Himalayas are showing off now that they can be seen. I should focus on that.  But I live in Georgia.   I am embarrassed to say that I live in the state where our governor,… Read More

The World Has Changed

Over the past month, we have all been adjusting to a new normal for our congregations. When we learned that we would need to close our sanctuaries and stop meeting in person, many of you bravely jumped into the world of online church through social media platforms and private Zoom rooms. Maybe the first Sunday was a bit rocky for you and your members, but after a few tries, everyone seemed to get the technology figured out. Some of you even started getting creative with it and have connected with… Read More

Lessons from Living Systems

We are beginning to see the narrative shift from “everyone stay home” to “let’s figure out how we get back to normal.” Like most sane people, I am not eager to rush back out to public spaces too soon. I don’t want to risk us going through such a traumatic cycle again. I also realize as we talk about “getting back to normal,” that I don’t want that either. I don’t want to go back.  Now that we have had some time to distance ourselves and find a different pace, I… Read More

A Better World Is Waiting

This week is going to be rough for so many of us. This week we will continue to lose jobs, lose security, lose the illusion of independence. More states, towns, and counties will issue lockdowns. More people will be diagnosed with COVID-19 and more people will die. We are living in critical and difficult days.  First, I want to remind you that we are in this together. We always have been, but now we need that conscious awareness so that we work together, hold together and heal together. We are interdependent.  Second,… Read More

Yes, There is Fear

A Poem by Fr. Richard Hendrick, OFM Lock down Yes there is fear. Yes there is isolation. Yes there is panic buying. Yes there is sickness. Yes there is even death. But, They say that in Wuhan (China) after so many years of noise You can hear the birds again. They say that after just a few weeks of quiet The sky is no longer thick with fumes But blue and grey and clear. They say that in the streets of Assisi (Italy) People are singing to each other across… Read More

We Are All Doing Strange Things

The farther one goes,The less one knows.-Tao Te Ching Now many days into this global pandemic, it’s occurring to us that we are in this for the long haul. We don’t fully see where this is headed, but it feels scary and unsettling. Some of us have lost our jobs and have no income. Many of us are leading fragile companies, NGOs or churches who may go out of existence if this goes on as long as we fear. Our world is fundamentally changed. In times of deep uncertainty, we… Read More

What the Trees Can Teach Us

I recently saw a beautiful reflection from Nichola Torrbett about these strange times in which we live:  Yesterday, walking in the redwoods with a dog, I decided to ask the trees about COVID-19. (This was a direct suggestion from Adrienne Maree Brown). Basically, what I heard from the trees is that even this virus has a message for us if we are willing to hear it. No, they were not saying that “God created a virus to punish us”–trust me, I checked, because I have not forgotten the 1980s. But they… Read More