the difference between cultivating communities and building churches.

kathyescobar church stuff, down we go, dreams, incarnational, leadership 2 Comments

Yesterday at The Refuge’s Sunday night gathering we had some cupcakes and sang happy 11th birthday to The Refuge. It’s hard for me to believe it’s been 11 years. When it started I was just wrapping up my 30’s and now, in 3 weeks, I will be turning 50 years old (more on that soon, yikes!). The Refuge is a Christian community and mission center, and I’m always reminded how that’s different from our typical view of “church.” I’ve written about this before in Down We Go and …

holy week 2017: turning over tables in the temple

kathyescobar advent & lent, church stuff, down we go, faith shifts, incarnational 1 Comment

This year I decided to blog through Holy Week. Yesterday we started with Palm Sunday and our love of a certain kind of king. I find it fascinating that the next thing Jesus did after he entered Jerusalem on a donkey to the cheers of “Hosanna!” was go straight to the temple and start turning over tables.  Matthew 21:12-15 describe it this way: “Jesus entered the Temple and began to drive out all the people buying and selling animals for sacrifice. He knocked over the tables …

holy week 2017: palm sunday, oh we love our kings

kathyescobar advent & lent, church stuff, down we go, incarnational, jesus is cool, leadership 4 Comments

Today is Palm Sunday, the beginning of Holy Week on the road toward Easter. I also call Holy week “It’s not what we think week.” I decided to blog every day this week, until the day after Easter Sunday as a spiritual practice for myself, to remember the story, to draw back on some thoughts I’ve written before, and most of all to reflect on Jesus through the lens of rocking the establishment in ways we continue to struggle with. Like Advent and the anticipation of …

who do we defer to?

kathyescobar church stuff, down we go, dreams, incarnational, injustice 14 Comments

Most anyone who knows me knows one important thing about me: I care deeply about folks on the margins. What that means is that people who are normally not in the main stream of power are my priority. This also means different things to different people, but on the whole, people on the margins are more vulnerable than others. For me, this includes: people of color, those living in poverty and consistently under-resourced financially, those struggling with mental health issues, people with a range of disabilities, single …

post-election faith renewal

kathyescobar down we go, faith and politics, faith shifts 7 Comments

Last week I wrote about the reality of the USA election and inauguration deeply affecting a lot of people’s faith. Some were already unraveling, deconstructing, finding-their-way-in-the-dark, and this was just another tumble down the slippery slope. Others have been doing pretty okay with church and faith, but the tangled web between Donald Trump and evangelicalism just did them in. My heart is always with anyone who experiences this deep pain and loss. The grief and can-never-get-the-old-feelings-back reality can be brutal. A radical faith shift is such a …

we’re all tangled in this together.

kathyescobar down we go, dreams, faith and politics, incarnational 1 Comment

Every day last week things in the USA got worse and worse. Executive orders right and left about all kinds of sweeping things rattled everyone, but the ones about refugees and Muslims rocked even many people who had a “wait and see” attitude toward Trump.  Then, this week begins with the reality that Steve Bannon, who I personally believe is one of the most dangerous people in this whole concoction, is now sitting on one of the most strategic councils in our country related to our …

strap in, dream making is a brutal bumpy road

kathyescobar down we go, dreams, equality, incarnational, injustice 0 Comments

Today is Martin Luther King, Jr. Day. I always love remembering Dr. King and the beautiful work he and so many others did and are doing on behalf of equality and justice. I’m a dreamer. A hopeful realist. A “we can do it” kind of person. I believe in MLK’s dream, and oh, I’ve written about dreams over all these years in so many different ways. Dreams Re-dux, Dreaming and Making What Could Be, Be, We Have a Dream, This Dream is so Possible, Dreamers, Lovers, …

sanctuary people.

kathyescobar down we go, equality, friendship, incarnational, injustice 1 Comment

I was happy to hear last week that Boulder, Colorado, which is just north of where we live, has declared itself a “sanctuary city” related to immigrants at risk. I’m attending another meeting next week about churches becoming “sanctuary churches,” safe places for individuals and families who could be deported (The Refuge can’t host overnight guests because of provisions in our lease but I’m looking forward to learning more at the meeting). Some of the definitions of “sanctuary” include: 1. a sacred or holy place. 2. the part of a church around the altar. 3. a church or other sacred place where fugitives were formerly entitled to immunity from arrest. 4. any place of refuge; asylum. It made me …