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About R-J Heijmen

R-J Heijmen is the Senior Assistant Rector for Education, Stewardship and Student Ministries at St. Martin's Episcopal Church in Houston, TX. Previous to that, R-J lived in New York City for 10 years, where he led one of the largest youth ministries in Manhattan and planted a church. He and his wife Jaime have two boys, Jackson, 10 and Spencer 8.

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Author Archive

    The 21 Beheaded Egyptians Make Me Proud to Be a Christian

    From Cairo to Rome and beyond, the reaction to the beheading of 21 Coptic Christians by ISIS has been swift and profound: anger and condemnation, sadness and solidarity. Yet, as I have thought over this horrific event, another emotion has swelled within in me: pride. For while the Islamic State considers itself to be following in the footsteps […]

    Serial, Contradictions, and the Jesus Stories

    The Gospels are full of contradictions. There, I said it. Take, for example, the differing accounts of the resurrection. In Matthew, the two Marys – Magdelene and Jesus’ mom – are at the empty tomb, greeted by an earthquake and an angel. In Luke, Joanna and other unnamed females are added to the mix, and […]

    Ebola, “Friends” and the Reasons We Give

    Tim Keller has said that a Christian is someone who knows that they need to repent not only for the wrong things they do, but for the reasons they do the right things. That is to say, whatever we do, no matter how seemingly altruistic, almost always has some sort of selfish motivation mixed in […]

    The Power of Negative Thinking

    The 8am service on the Sunday before Labor Day was not well attended, and the rain didn’t help. Honestly, I was only there because I am paid to be. Then came the first reading, from the prophet Jeremiah: “I did not sit in the company of merrymakers, nor did I rejoice; under the weight of your […]

    Joan Rivers Fought the Law…

    If you’re like me (and I hope you’re not), then the name Joan Rivers meant little more to you than “that horribly plastic old woman who can’t think of anything better to do than provide red carpet snark for E!”. Which is why, as news of her passing spread last week (having occurred during a “minor elective […]

    NYC Preview: I’m New Here. I Don’t Know Anyone. And What the &%*! Is Going On?

    Recently, one of my current coworkers, whom we shall call Will, made a confession to me about his first Mockingbird Conference. A friend of mine, with whom Will worked at the time, had convinced him to come along, and so, after flying into LaGuardia, Will found himself in the backseat of my car on our […]

    Laughing in Church (But Apparently Not on Craigslist)

    Last weekend we bought my wife a new (used) car. Her old(er) one was getting a bit small for our growing boys, and was quickly approaching 100,000 miles (at which point it would become more difficult to sell), so we bit the bullet and took the plunge. Now we have a 12 year-old, 99k-mile car […]

    Andre Dubus III on Tragedy and Happiness in America

    From his interview yesterday on the Diane Rehm show, starting at about the 3:30 mark: AD3: “Frankly, I have this belief (that) if you scratch the surface of any human being, across the country, across the world, at any moment of any day, even right this moment, everybody’s in some kind of trouble. It’s normal. It’s […]

    Jesus (and TAL): Give Cash to Poor People

    “Give to everyone who asks you, and if anyone takes what belongs to you, do not demand it back” (Luke 6.30). Of all Jesus’ commandments which his followers expressly disobey (my personal fave being Matthew 6:1 where he instructs his audience “not to practice your righteousness in front of others to be seen by them”–ironically […]

    Jeremy Lin Crushed by the Law of Linsanity

    You gotta love Jeremy Lin, and I say that not only as a recently minted Houstonian who is looking forward to some serious Harden/Howard/Parsons beatdowns. In an article posted yesterday, ESPN reports on Lin’s unusual candor before a crowd of Taiwanese (presumably) Christian youth: Lin went as far to say that he experienced “emptiness, confusion […]

    From One Juliet to Another: Sufferers Comforting Sufferers

    One of the criticisms of Gospel preaching is that it can, at times, be gloomy. “Do we have to hear about sin again?”, the complaint goes, “Do you have to be so down on humanity?”, “Can’t we talk about how great life is sometimes?”, “Can’t you give me some self-improvement tools?” To these voices the […]

    Lenten Jams, Pt II: I Make the Same Mistakes

    From the Echo Friendly, a little tune about the bondage of the will.