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What Did You Give Up for Lent? Everything.

After reading a recent CNN article titled, “Americans are asked for more sacrifices as coronavirus keeps spreading,” a thought suddenly popped into my head: “What are you giving up for Lent? Oh, everything.” The timing of this “sacrifice” has God’s timing written all over it. Here we are each year giving up what we think […]

I’m a Believer…But Not Yet

The anxieties of the week weighed on me until I could take no more. I parked the car on my lunch break and climbed to the top of an observation hill, a spot where you can get an almost panoramic view of the city. As I took in the picturesque vista of the skyline and […]

Join Us for Morning Prayer

For those whose churches aren’t meeting for worship this morning, we at Christ Church in Charlottesville taped our planned Morning Prayer service, which you can follow along with by downloading the service bulletin here. Paul Walker presided, I preached, Sam Bush did the music, and Amanda McMillen did the readings.

Christ Episcopal Church Sunday Prayer Service March 15th 2020 from Mockingbird on Vimeo.

People I Am Praying for Right Now

  • A pregnant friend who had to cancel her trip to Disney World.
  • My asthmatic dad.
  • All of the older people who are coming to church.
  • All of the older people who are not coming to church.
  • Children in the third ward of Houston who depend on school for food.
  • Their parents.
  • Anyone making decisions about whether or not to close schools.
  • Everyone in our city who just has allergies but believes that their spouse in a bathrobe might be the grim reaper.
  • The grim reaper. This is a tough season for her.
  • Teenagers who are in love. We need that kind of madness and hope right now. Keep it up, kids.

(c) Bob Eckstein:

  • The young woman who took a job at CVS to get herself through college. And now gets yelled at about the lack of Purell. Hourly.
  • My Asian doctor who told me how racist people have been to her.
  • Lonely people.
  • People who wanted to spend less time on social media and now are spending three times as much time on social media.
  • Flight attendants.
  • Anyone with OCD.
  • People who have recently been told they only have months left to live. I pray that they can take advantage of cheap cruises. Seriously.
  • People who are really scared.
  • People who feel the need to be critical of people who are scared.
  • Myself. That I can remember that God so loved the world that He gave us Jesus. And that He did not come to condemn the world but that He came to save it. He said so Himself.

A Few Key Takeaways from the Church of Workism (Plus One Gamechanger)

Several years ago we posted a short tongue-in-cheek guide to current colloquialisms, guessing at the emotional content behind ten phrases that had come into common usage. For example the tautology “It is what it is” translates more or less to “I can’t stand this particular situation I’m in. Actually, I hate it and don’t want […]

The Absurdity of Death: A Lenten Reflection on Camus

I both love and am unsettled by Lent. This season of the church calendar has always felt especially “real,” or maybe “lived-in” to me. I don’t really know the right language to describe it. But where Christmas and Advent quickly become enmeshed in joyful-but-confusing commercialization, and Easter culturally comes and goes over the course of […]

How to Do Less for Lent: A Triptych

1 There is a meme going around Episcopal Facebook™ about Lent. It is not surprising that this meme has found traction in the modern church that is more Pelagian than it realizes. With sermons and programs that focus on what you can do for God (note: it is always more than what you are currently doing), […]

A Disease Strengthened by Community

This one was written by Grant Wishard. As coronavirus continues its scary march around the world, it has been fascinating to watch how frequently the tragedy of the disease intersects with matters of faith. South Korea is now reporting hundreds of new cases, many of which originated from a single branch of the allegedly cultish […]

If You Sat in Front of Me at Church, I Apologize

If you sat in front of me at church this past week, I apologize. The song we were singing was “Hope Has a Name,” by River Valley Worship, but my version sounded more like this: Hope has a name, His name is Je… shhh, I’m trying to sing the song My Savior’s cross has set […]

Nothing New About Doubt: The Strange Familiarity of Medieval Unbelief

More wearying than the person who seems to have convictions about everything might be the person who speaks as if their lack of conviction were a stroke of pure genius. They may not know everything, but at least they know they don’t know everything! I kid. A little. Because we have all known, or have […]

I Really Want to Skip Church

I’m a Grade A, duly ordained, seminary educated, continuing-education-attending, prayerful, self-righteous, Professional Christian©. And sometimes—okay, a lot of times—I want to skip church. Time to back-peddle and tell you that it’s not all the time and that it’s usually for a good reason. But, as Maury Povich would announce to the world after I dramatically […]

The Mockingcast Goes to the Future (By Way of the Past)!

Hard to believe we’re closing in on two months out from our annual conference in New York City (4/23-25)! The details are coming together beautifully – the lineup is pretty much set (not including a couple surprises we can’t disclose until the event itself), and the menus should be up in the next few weeks.

Anyone who’s curious about why we asked author-not-actor Tom Holland to keynote this year should run not walk to the interview we got to do with him for the special new episode of The Mockingcast, devoted to The Future Issue of our magazine. You’re in for quite a treat! I’m not sure we’ve ever gotten so much feedback on a podcast so quickly, especially of the it-made-me-genuinely-excited-to-be-a-Christian variety. Oh and while you’re at it, grab a copy of his book Dominion.

Also on the episode, Ethan speaks with NY Times tech columnist Nellie Bowles, and once-and-future Mbird authority Will McDavid mines the fertile ground at the intersection of Marcel Proust and the Left Behind series. A goldmine!

You can listen to the episode here, and pre-register for the conference here.