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Archived Webinar: "Roots of Radical Discipleship"

Ched Myers - Mon, 02/23/2015 - 4:23pm

(Recorded February 17, 2015). View this recorded webinar at your convenience.

In this “live look-in” to the 2015 Kinsler Institute: A Festival of Radical Discipleship, Ched interviewed John (right), Carol, Sierra and Sydney Hirt, who joined us from Sydney, Australia. 


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"Thomas Merton on Mahatma Gandhi," by Art Laffin and Rasoul Sorkhabi

Ched Myers - Fri, 01/30/2015 - 9:32am

Note:  Today is the anniversary of Gandhi's assassination and tomorrow marks the 100th birthday of Thomas Merton.  I came across this compelling article about Merton's reflection's on Gandhi which is an important and insightful read.  These two men have greatly influenced countless people, including me, to follow the way of nonviolence, to live in accordance with the truth of God's commands and to be rooted in the Gospel of Jesus. They are among the holy cloud of witnesses now advocating for us!  --Art Laffin


"Thomas Merton’s Reflections on Mahatma Gandhi," by Rasoul Sorkhabi (November 5, 2008), www.gandhifoundation.org


Mahatma Gandhi was assassinated in New Delhi 1948 (now sixty years ago) and Thomas Merton, a renowned Trappist monk and author, was killed in a tragic accident in 1968 (forty years ago). These anniversaries are valuable opportunities to reflect on the legacies, works and teachings of these two great men of peace. Gandhi has influenced many minds and movements of the twentieth century. In this article, we review Merton’s impressions of Gandhi and how they are helpful for our century and generation as well.

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Archived Webinar: “Sun & Moon, Raven & Dove: A Conversation with Tevyn East and Jay Beck on Art, Politics and Faith.”

Ched Myers - Wed, 01/21/2015 - 9:47am

(Recorded January 20, 2015). View this recorded webinar at your convenience.

Ched talked with the founders of the amazing Carnival de Resistance about their vocation as performers/dancers/musicians, the ideals and history behind the Carnival, and their respective journeys that brought them together and inspired a whole community of ‘Carnivalistas’. 


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"Celebrating Dr. King Through Serving" by Marion Wright Edelman

Ched Myers - Tue, 01/20/2015 - 8:27am

“If you want to be important—wonderful. If you want to be recognized—wonderful. If you want to be great—wonderful. But recognize that he who is greatest among you shall be your servant. That’s a new definition of greatness. And this morning, the thing that I like about it: by giving that definition of greatness, it means that everybody can be great, because everybody can serve. You don’t have to have a college degree to serve. You don’t have to make your subject and your verb agree to serve. You don’t have to know about Plato and Aristotle to serve. You don’t have to know Einstein’s theory of relativity to serve. You don’t have to know the second theory of thermodynamics in physics to serve. You only need a heart full of grace, a soul generated by love.” 

These well-known words are from Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s sermon “The Drum Major Instinct,” delivered at Ebenezer Baptist Church on February 4, 1968. Dr. King was explaining that we all start out with the ingrained instinct to be “drum majors”: everyone wants to be important, to be first, to lead the parade. Watch a group of children try to form a line and right away you’ll see this instinct in action. But Dr. King said too many people never outgrow this instinct—and by constantly struggling to be the most powerful or famous or wealthiest or best-educated, we forget one of the Gospels’ and life’s largest truths: the real path to greatness is through service.  //more

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MLK Day 2015: Exhuming Dynamite by Ched Myers

Ched Myers - Mon, 01/19/2015 - 9:32am

It strikes me that having a national MLK holiday is a little like having Bibles in our church pews.  A lot of struggle and work went into preserving and making these sacred, transforming memories and stories available. But that doesn't mean that most folk actually bother to read, engage and understand them, much less enact them anew.  There's a certain comfort in having Bibles sitting around, or commemorating King--Google's front page simulating the Selma march today--that doesn't upset the status quo.  more//

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"Lessons from the Christmas Truce of 1914," by Gary G. Kohls, MD

Ched Myers - Fri, 12/26/2014 - 4:06pm

Note:  Because this is the centenary of the famous “Christmas Truce” during World War I, below is an abbreviated version of a piece by retired physician and activist Kohls, which appeared on Dec 18 in the Duluth Reader.  We urge you to take a moment this Christmastide to read about this amazing event (to learn more watch the resources listed at the end of the piece).

One hundred years ago this month one of the most unusual aberrations in the bloody history of the organized mass slaughter that is war occurred – never to be repeated again. “Christian” Europe was in the fifth month of the world war that finally ground to a halt four years later, with all sides exhausted and most sides financially and morally bankrupted.

British, Scottish, French, Belgian, Australian, New Zealand, Canadian, German, Austrian, Hungarian, Serbian and Russian church pulpits in those nations back home were doing their part in contributing to the patriotic fervor that would result in a holocaust that destroyed four empires, killed upwards of 20 million soldiers and civilians and resulted in the psychological and physical decimation of an entire generation of young men.

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"The History Behind the Headlines" by Ruby Sales

Ched Myers - Tue, 12/16/2014 - 10:20am

Note:  Ruby Sales (above) is a veteran of the Civil Rights movement past and present, who directs the Spirit House project.  I highly recommend following their "Breaking the Silence on Modern Day Lynching" Facebook page, where they are relentlessly documents police murders of young people of color.  Her thoughts on the deep history of this issue are below.  

Movement building is serious business that demands an understanding and knowledge of who are our friends and who are our foes.  The Movement is not a place for ahistorical thinking or emotional decisions that are devoid of hindsight, insight and foresight.  The powerbrokers build and maintain their power on the backs of our collective dis-memory and our uncritical acceptance of official narratives as well as our desire for a sound analysis of the world while refusing to read!

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From "Creation Care to "Watershed Discipleship": Re-Placing Ecological Theology and Practice

Ched Myers - Fri, 12/12/2014 - 3:36pm
$0.00 Date:  Friday, 12 December 2014

Published in the Conrad Grebel Review, Vol. 32, NO. 3 Fall 2014, pp 250-275.

26 pages.

In this article Ched explores how our theology might be re-placed in light of the arrival of glocbal ecological crisis:


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Archived webinar “The Story of Spiritus Christi: Myra Brown and Mary Ramerman.”

Ched Myers - Tue, 12/09/2014 - 1:18pm

(Recorded December 9, 2014). View this recorded webinar at your convenience.

In our Annual Advent webinar, Ched spoke with two priests, Myra Brown and Mary Ramerman about their journeys with the amazing “holey, roamin’ catholic” parish of Spiritus Christi in Rochester, NY.

Upon purchase you will be emailed a pdf with a link and directions on how to view the archived webinar.


Archived Webinar: “Celebrating Thomas Merton’s Peace Retreat of 1964"

Ched Myers - Wed, 11/19/2014 - 9:42am

(Recorded November 18, 2014). View this recorded webinar at your convenience.

Ched spoke with Mennonite author Gordon Oyer about his groundbreaking 2014 book Pursuing the Spiritual Roots of Protest (Wipf & Stock), and how all Christian activists are children of an amazing gathering at Gethsemane Abbey 50 years ago this month. The webinar also included a small audio clip of Merton discussing the retreat with his novices.

Upon purchase you will be emailed a pdf with a link and directions on how to view the archived webinar.


Bill McKibben on the China-U.S. Climate Deal

Ched Myers - Wed, 11/12/2014 - 1:55pm

Note: This is McKibben's response to this week's "climate deal" between the U.S. and China.  A good summary worth reading.  I'm happy to be on a panel with McKibben (pictured above) next week at the Society for Biblical Literature conference. 

Last night, just weeks after the largest climate mobilization ever, the world's two biggest polluters -- the United States and China -- announced their most ambitious climate action yet. That is not a coincidence: it's a sign that our pressure is working, and that we need to apply much more.  Here's my take on what the just-announced plan from President Obama and Premier Xi is, and isn't:

1) It is historic. John Kerry was right to use the phrase in his New York Times oped announcing the deal: for the first time a developing nation has agreed to eventually limit its emissions. This is a necessity for advancing international climate negotiations.

2) It isn't binding in any way. In effect President Obama is writing an IOU to be cashed by future presidents and Congresses (and Xi is doing the same for future Politburos). If they take the actions to meet the targets, then it's meaningful, but for now it's a paper promise. And since physics is uninterested in spin, all the hard work lies ahead.

3) It is proof -- if any more was needed -- that renewable energy is ready to go. The Chinese say they'll be using clean sources to get 20% of their energy by 2030 -- which is not just possible, it should be easy. Which they know because they've revolutionized the production of solar energy, driving down the cost of panels by 90% or more in the last decade.

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