Tikkun Olam

For years, at the conclusion of public worship, I have used words that come from St. Paul, written 2,000 years ago. “Go into the world in peace and courage. Hold to the Good. Honor all God’s children. Love and serve the Lord, Rejoicing in the power of the Spirit.” Last Sunday, as a guest preacher […]

A Celebratory Dance of Gratitude

I cannot remember being this concerned about my nation and its immediate future. An American political party, which began with the election of Abraham Lincoln and stood for staunch anti-communism, a robust international American leadership, a commitment to democratic values–freedom of speech, freedom of the press, open participation in self-government, free trade, and above all, […]

The Little Ones Among Us

In a recent family conversation about the Trump phenomenon which quickly turned into what Biblical scholars call a “communal lament”, we concluded that the best, most effective thing we can do is ignore him: stop listening to his every word, stop fixating on his television appearances, stop searching the newspaper for the most recent ridiculously […]

Building Walls instead of Bridges

I simply do not know what to say about Donald Trump. I grew up in a home where what was going on in the world and in the nation was talked about regularly at the dinner table. Politics was often a spirited discussion between my father, a dyed-in-the-wool Republican and conservative in almost all his […]

Community in a Time of Radical Individualism

It is intriguing that the Republican Presidential candidate who is leading in most polls at the moment, and the Democratic candidate very close to tying the front-runner are both outliers. Malcolm Gladwell wrote a bestseller by that title and defines outlier as “something that is situated away from or classed differently from a main or […]

How Did We Lose Our Democracy?

I don’t think I have ever been as sick of negative political campaign advertising as I was this year. The Illinois gubernatorial election was important. The state is in dreadful shape economically with huge debt and under-funded pension liabilities. The candidates had very different ideas about how to address the economic situation. Bruce Rauner won. […]