October 14, 2019

About Chaplain Mike

Chaplain Mike works with a hospice organization in central Indiana. He has been in pastoral ministry since 1978, serving in churches in Maryland, Vermont, Illinois, and Indiana before moving into chaplaincy work. He is married to a wonderful gifted wife, Gail, and they have four children and three grandchildren. He thinks baseball is the greatest game ever invented, suffers annually as a Chicago Cubs fan, and is looking forward to putting on a cap again this spring to coach his grandson's Little League team. He loves a wide variety of music, spends way too much money on books, is happy to live in a place where there are four seasons, and is a "true believer" in Apple computers, having used them since 1988. Luther is his favorite theologian, Bach his favorite composer, James Taylor his favorite singer-songwriter, Chicago his favorite city, and hiking his favorite form of exercise. He would love to do more with photography and dreams of having a place in the mountains of Arizona some day. His heart has been captured by the grace of God in Jesus Christ and considers himself a post-evangelical disciple seeking a Jesus-shaped life and hoping to help the church do the same. He is forever grateful to his friend, Michael Spencer, for giving him an opportunity to write for Internet Monk.

Fr. Freeman: What kind of community fosters virtue in its members?

Father Stephen Freeman is doing a timely series of posts on “virtue” at his blog, Glory to God for All Things. In one piece, “A Crisis of Virtue — The Good that We Need,” he reflects upon lessons from C.S. Lewis, J.R.R. Tolkien, the early church, and experiences in his own family to remind us […]

Sunday with Walter Brueggemann: The holiness of the baptized community

Sunday with Walter Brueggemann The holiness of the baptized community The holiness of the church does not consist in true doctrine that everyone accepts. It does not consist in true morality that everyone embraces. We know of course that the church has often specialized in doctrine and morality. But the truth is that the holiness […]

The IM Saturday Monks Brunch: August 24, 2019

The IM Saturday Monks Brunch: August 24, 2019 Greetings from Fort Wayne, Indiana, where I am with my young grandson for a weekend of soccer games. The weather is supposed to be ideal — highs in the 70s, with bright blue sunny skies. Last night my other grandson’s team had their first game of the […]

Conversation is Difficult — Let’s Do Better

Conversation is Difficult — Let’s Do Better In his book Disagreeing Virtuously, Olli-Pekka Vainio names three specific virtues that keep communities in conversation even when they disagree: open-mindedness, humility, and courage. • C. Christopher Smith. How the Body of Christ Talks • • • I’ve been getting more criticism lately about the moderation of our […]

Our Moral Impulses — And Appreciating Our Neighbors’

Peaceable Kingdom (1846) Hicks Note from CM: Sorry folks, but I see I’ve lost the battle today. I feel like the substitute teacher who has no hope of bringing order to the class. Please, either start responding to the points the post makes, or I will close comments for today. Here’s my summary of what […]

Sermon: Are We Living at a Turning Point in History? (Luke 12:49-56)

Sermon: Are We Living at a Turning Point in History? (Luke 12:49-56) “I came to bring fire to the earth, and how I wish it were already kindled! I have a baptism with which to be baptized, and what stress I am under until it is completed! Do you think that I have come to […]

Sunday with Walter Brueggemann: The Involved Life

Sunday with Walter Brueggemann The Involved Life We are called to put on love for the world, the world we have been taught deep in our bones to fear and hate and resist. But we did not learn so from Christ, rather we learned God so loved the world. So in our maturing we need […]

The IM Saturday Monks Brunch: August 17, 2019 — Hometown Edition

The IM Saturday Monks Brunch: August 17, 2019 Hometown Edition The closest I have to a “hometown” is Dixon, Illinois, on the Rock River in north central Illinois. It’s really my dad’s hometown, but I spent enough time there as a child, and lived there for a few years too, that it’s where most of […]

Romans 5-8: The Gospel for Weak and Strong

It is right and good to finish reading Romans with chapters 5 through 8, because these chapters are not only the high point of the letter but the solution to the problems vexing the Weak and Strong relations in Rome’s house churches. • Reading Romans Backwards, p. 141 • • • Romans 5-8: The Gospel […]

Another Look: I Am a Pastor

I wrote this many years ago, while on a mission trip in India. I used it to teach children about what a pastor is and does. Over the years, I’ve come back to it many times. Its simple words remind me of and refresh me in God’s calling. Perhaps, today, it can be of encouragement […]