God Is Trans: Discovering the Divine Feminine

THIS PIECE WAS ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED ON STATE OF FORMATION, AN ONLINE PUBLICATION FOR EMERGING RELIGIOUS AND ETHICAL LEADERS WHICH WAS FOUNDED AS AN OFFSHOOT OF THE JOURNAL OF INTERRELIGIOUS STUDIES, HOUSED AT CIRCLE, A SHARED CENTER AT HEBREW COLLEGE AND ANDOVER NEWTON THEOLOGICAL SCHOOL.

It was my first year of college. Easter. Even though I hadn’t been to church since starting at Boston University–glad to be rid of the Southern Bible Belt I had left behind–I still felt a twinge of guilt. A need to go to church for Easter, if nothing else.

So I corralled one of my friends into adventuring into Trinity Church, the beautiful Episcopal parish in Copley Square in Boston. I’d seen it often in my forays to the Boston Public Library, which was my personal sanctuary in the city, and decided that if I was going to guiltily slink back into church for Easter Sunday, it might as well be in a visually stunning place.

And stunning it was. I gaped as we went inside, staring up at the soaring stained glass windows and the Easter lilies dripping from the balustrades. A full ensemble of woodwind and brass players sat at the front, producing fittingly angelic music.

All this was nothing, however, to what I felt when the service started. The minister came out to the podium and began to speak–and she was a woman.

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Vespers Sermon: “The Common Field”

Originally published on the Marsh Vocation Blog, a publication by the interns in the Marsh Associate internship program at Boston University’s March Chapel.

This past summer, I attended the Wild Goose Festival, a progressive Christian festival that happens in the mountains of rural North Carolina. There were many interesting things that happened, including cornbread communion, moonshine mass, and an event called “Beer ‘n’ Hymns.” But the one I want to talk about tonight was called “The Body and the Earth.”

It was a panel with speakers who do work with gardening and farming ministries. One woman was the leader of a farm called The Lord’s Acre. The Lord’s Acre is a community project where volunteers grow organic produce for those in need in the community–a beautiful concept.

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Biological Anthropology Theology

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED ON THE MARSH VOCATION BLOG, A PUBLICATION BY THE INTERNS IN THE MARSH ASSOCIATE INTERNSHIP PROGRAM AT BOSTON UNIVERSITY’S MARCH CHAPEL.

This semester, I’ve been taking biological anthropology, learning all about australopithecines, Homo habilis, Neanderthals, and our other hairy hominid ancestors. Now, you have to understand—this is a big deal for me.

I come from a Bible Belt public school upbringing, where my science teachers always prefaced the unit on evolution with, “Now, remember, this is just atheory…” and my middle school science teacher even went so far as to tell us, “I just want you to know, I don’t actually believe this. But they still force us to teach it to you.”

So you can imagine what kind of positive influence that had on our budding hunger to learn about human origins (none, exactly).

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In the Belly of the Buddha

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED ON THE MARSH VOCATION BLOG, A PUBLICATION BY THE INTERNS IN THE MARSH ASSOCIATE INTERNSHIP PROGRAM AT BOSTON UNIVERSITY’S MARCH CHAPEL.

There was a time when I thought I was Buddhist.

I suppose that fits me neatly into the New-Agey spiritual-seeker college student category (or should I say cliché?). But yes.

I discovered Buddhism my freshman year of college, when I decided last-minute to take “Buddhism in America” instead of a computer programming class (yes, I was a computer science minor once upon a time). In the class, we read Shunryu Suzuki, Kerouac, Ginsberg, Thich Nhat Hanh. We had to visit local Buddhist centers. And I was drawn to it, to this sense of calm and peace and serenity that I had never found in Bible Belt Christianity.

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Trinitarian Musings (from a Unitarian)

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED ON THE MARSH VOCATION BLOG, A PUBLICATION BY THE INTERNS IN THE MARSH ASSOCIATE INTERNSHIP PROGRAM AT BOSTON UNIVERSITY’S MARCH CHAPEL.

I’ve been thinking a lot about the Trinity this summer, especially after reading Forrest Church’s The Cathedral of the World, a moving and beautiful book on Unitarian Universalist theology.

One of the reasons I was first drawn to Unitarianism was the whole unity part. God is one. After a childhood growing up Baptist and Catholic, I was more than a little weary of high Christology.

I had been asked since I was small if I believed “Jesus had died for my sins” and if he was “my personal savior.” I’d been fed the images of Jesus on the cross, Jesus with the stigmata, even Rapture Jesus (yes, the Baptist youth group has us read the Left Behind for Kids series).

I’d parroted the lines of the catechism, read the Nicene Creed aloud at Mass in harmony with all the other voices. But I couldn’t believe it.

I couldn’t believe that Jesus had died and risen.

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UU Easter Musings

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED ON THE MARSH VOCATION BLOG, A PUBLICATION BY THE INTERNS IN THE MARSH ASSOCIATE INTERNSHIP PROGRAM AT BOSTON UNIVERSITY’S MARCH CHAPEL.

As I sit here in front of my computer, typing quickly before I head off to the slew of Easter services that Marsh Chapel is holding this morning, I think about all the things Easter has meant to me.

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