Categories
Worship and Preaching

The Monster at the Manger (Revelation 12)

Image: https://wellcomecollection.org/works/kan65hpg I’m convinced, among the other words it has to offer us, Revelation 12 has a powerful word to speak to us about “the Christmas story.” This year, I revisited John’s vision of a woman, her son, and a dragon for the third time. (I preached on this text for Marple Presbyterian Church a […]

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Books Star Wars

Book Review: Secrets of the Force

The first movie I ever saw in a theater was Star Wars, at some point during its original, nearly year-long run (in some places, even longer). My parents took me for what might have been my fifth but what was more likely my sixth birthday, and I’ve been a fan ever since. Though my attention […]

Categories
Movies Star Trek

Star Trek II Minutes 4-7

I remember reading, in one of those old Best of Trek paperback volumes, a fan expressing his or her displeasure with the martial atmosphere of Star Trek II. “What terrible disasters must have happened,” this fan asked, “to have caused Starfleet to become so militaristic overnight?” I’m paraphrasing the question (my Best of Trek books […]

Categories
Movies Star Trek

“We Encoded Four Minutes” – Star Trek II, Four Minutes at a Time

In 2012, I blogged a short series for The Sci-Fi Christian called “Thirty Things to Love About Star Trek II.” It “counted down” to the 30th anniversary of the release of Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan, still my favorite Star Trek film and one of my favorite movies overall. Next year, a decade […]

Categories
Books Mythology

Ariadne by Jennifer Saint

Everything I remember about the myth of Theseus and the Minotaur comes from the hours I spent in middle school playing the board game By Jove (apparently long out of print and, when in nicer condition than the set I still own, worth quite a bit of money).  In that game, the Labyrinth is a […]

Categories
Loki

God of Mischief and the God Who Knows: Loki 1.1, “Glorious Purpose”

Loki wants—as we all do, to some degree—to believe he has a “glorious purpose” he determines for himself.

Categories
Worship and Preaching

Living as Snakebitten People in a Snakebitten World

I was glad to serve as guest preacher and worship leader today at Advent Lutheran Church in West Chester, Pennsylvania. My recent interest in biblical storytelling drew me to focus on today’s Old Testament lection, Numbers 21.4-9. As I said in my sermon, it’s a strange story, but it’s not for nothing God’s people have […]

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Superheroes Television WandaVision

What a Mess! WandaVisionEpisode 5 and the Doctrine of Sin

Episode 5 of WandaVision not only hints at exciting changes for the Marvel universe but also captures the complicated nature of sin.

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Superheroes WandaVision

Sharing the Stage with “Real Persons,” Not “Characters”: Reflections on WandaVision, Episode 4

WandaVision goes mega-meta with its fourth episode, “We Interrupt This Program,” and raises questions about empathy’s importance.

Categories
Arthuriana Liturgical Year

The Monk Who Forgave King Arthur for Murder? (Feast of Gildas the Wise, January 29)

While my Presbyterian tradition offers many riches, our liturgical calendar is pretty scarce when it comes to weekday feasts and festivals. Growing up, the only weekdays on which I went to church were Maundy Thursday and Christmas Eve (when not a Saturday or Sunday, of course). I don’t recall ever attending a Good Friday service […]