Image: The Rylands Haggadah, detail, 14th century
by Mike Kreutzer
Churches have to deal, at least at times, with shortages: shortages of money, of time, of volunteers. But one shortage that they never seem to have is a shortage of people who want to give their opinion on what “somebody” in the church should be doing – not themselves of course, but somebody else, or maybe just the generic “they.” (more…)
Alen Kanfer seems to be a somewhat mysterious figure. Born in Russia in 1905, he spent most of his life teaching English at Grover Cleveland High School in Queens. A prolific poet, he was published in the Kenyon Review, Harper’s, Poetry magazine and the Sewanee Review. And that is all the internet seems to know about him. But his poems are lovely, and this is among the loveliest: (more…)
This week Karl Stevens and Daniel Bogart dive into Ch. 2 of Exodus during their Chevruta Bible Study. You can subscribe to the podcast through iTunes or other fine podcast distributors, or listen to it using the player below. Show notes are also below. (more…)
Painting: Pharaoh’s Daughter & Moses by Marc Chagall
As we go deep into the story of Exodus, and learn more about Jewish midrash from Karl Stevens and Daniel Bogard’s “Lost in the Wilderness” podcast, it makes sense to explore some of the “cultural midrash” that have been drawn out of the biblical narrative by both Christian and secular artists and writers. A beautiful example of this is Eleanor Wilner’s poem Epitaph. Wilner teaches in the Warren Wilson MFA program, and has received the Juniper Prize, two Pushcart Prizes, and fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and the MacArthur Foundation. In describing her own poetic vision, she writes: (more…)
This week Karl and Daniel plunge into Exodus Ch. 1 for their Chevruta Bible Study. You can find the podcast in the iTunes Store, or listen to it right here. The show notes are below the web player.
Daniel directed us to Sefaria: A Living Library of Jewish Texts Online.
Karl is using Robert Alter’s The Five Books of Moses for this study.
by The Rev. George Glazier
During the 3rd to 6th centuries in the deserts of Egypt, Syria, Palestine, and Arabia, a movement of spiritual seekers was happening. Christian monasticism was beginning to flower. Some of these men and women lived as hermits while others lived in communities. Either way they learned from the silence, from the desert, from the intentional time with God and sometimes from each other. This story comes from that time and speaks to something implied in our story from Exodus today. (more…)
by Karl Stevens
In the 5th century, one of Christianity’s strangest saints became famous in Syria. His name was Simeon, and his fame derived from his decision to spend his life standing on top of a pillar. People began to come to him to learn spiritual wisdom and marvel at his asceticism. But they also came to him to settle land disputes, because he had proven himself so indifferent to worldly affairs that they knew he’d be an entirely impartial judge. This may seem like a strange beginning to a blog post about Moses, but Moses and Simeon Stylites held this in common – they were strange, and because of their strangeness people trusted and listened to them.