Not THAT kind of church

Last night I had dinner with a high-ranking naval officer and her wife who works in an optometrist’s office–a mixed race couple–and heard about the challenges of working at Guantanamo Bay from a woman’s perspective. This morning I had breakfast with a teacher and her wife who’s a drummer–also a mixed race couple–who discussed PauloContinue reading “Not THAT kind of church”

What courage looks like

I can’t believe it was two years ago that I went, a little nervous about what my role was, to support a few kitchen crew members who had been locked out of the Castlewood Country Club for holding on to their right to health benefits. I didn’t yet know that in the previous year, managementContinue reading “What courage looks like”

Finding home (or, A million different Occupies)

I attended my very first Occupy the Hood meeting tonight. It’s not like I was unaware of the movement–my co-pastor and I expressed enthusiasm and concern about Occupy Oakland almost simultaneously almost from the beginning, and when we read this article in October, we were pretty sure this was where we belonged. But thenContinue reading “Finding home (or, A million different Occupies)”

Where we locate ourselves

It’s probably no surprise that I’m starting out this series of blog posts with a reflection by Malcolm Gladwell, on whom I have a semi-secret crush. (As an aside, this crush really irritated my ex-boyfriend, who bore a striking resemblance to Gladwell when his hair grew out.) Gladwell wrote a piece over 15 years agoContinue reading “Where we locate ourselves”

Buenos Aires and Oakland…more similarities than expected

I took a free tour of Buenos Aires on my vacation the other day, and at one point the woman leading the tour said, “Argentina has been free of military rule for 28 years. Our democracy is like a teenager–confused, in love and unstable.” Buenos Aires has 3-5 political marches a day, and the womanContinue reading “Buenos Aires and Oakland…more similarities than expected”

Does it get better?

This week on Glee, one of the main characters overcomes his fear of being beaten up for being different in order to show up at Prom. And he’s not beaten up. But he’s publicly humiliated, the same way he would have been at my own high school 17 years ago. And as I watched the show, knowing that most of the youth in our region were watching it, too, I found myself wondering, “Does it? Does it get better?”

Let us turn our thoughts today to Martin Luther King

Shed a Little Light Whenever I sing “We Shall Overcome,” I choke up. You may be thinking, “Don’t we all?” Probably it’s hard to be progressive in America and not be moved by it. And I couldn’t tell you all the reasons, but here are a few that have surfaced for me over the pastContinue reading “Let us turn our thoughts today to Martin Luther King”

LONG overdue India reflection

This is actually a devotional I wrote for the e-news of my denomination’s regional church (on which I serve as staff). I wrote it upon my return because they had generously given me sabbatical time and paid my salary while I was away. Bengalis are not popular in Assam. That barely sounds like English, doesContinue reading “LONG overdue India reflection”