race & ferguson & what might be swirling around in our heads and hearts

kathyescobar dreams, equality, incarnational, injustice, leadership 11 Comments

It’s been an interesting paradox of a Thanksgiving week. The joy of having our kids all home for the holiday and not wanting to think of anything other than being together, contrasted with the reality of the painful events in Ferguson and what it means for all of us.    As a white woman of privilege, I’ve been thinking about some of the thoughts, feelings, actions or non-actions a lot of us seem to be wrestling with right now. I’m wondering who might relate to some …

power & transformation.

kathyescobar church stuff, equality, faith shifts, incarnational, injustice, leadership, spiritual formation 11 Comments

This month’s Synchroblog was centered on spiritual abuse & redemption. I didn’t have time to write earlier but it is a topic near and dear to my heart. At the Denver Faith and Justice Conference two weekends ago my friend Ryan Taylor shared about 5 stages of power, a blend of Janet Hagberg and Richard Rohr’s work on power. Respecting and understanding these stages is important and something I wish we would talk about more openly, more honestly, more reflectively in small and big pockets. As we get …

listening in on some faith shift conversations.

kathyescobar church stuff, down we go, faith shifts, healing, incarnational, leadership, spiritual formation, video convos 9 Comments

Some of you may already know about The Work of the People and the interesting and beautiful material they have.  Interviews, visual liturgies, and all kinds of other awesomeness abound on their site. If you don’t subscribe yet, it’s so worth it.  There is so much beauty and hope packed in there! My personal favorites are the Jean Vanier pieces, and we’ve used the visual liturgies for different Refuge gatherings over the years. As I mentioned a few weeks ago on Facebook, in September I spent some time gabbing …

survival of the fittest church

kathyescobar church stuff, equality, incarnational, injustice, jesus is cool, leadership, rants 38 Comments

A few months ago I made a big plate of nachos for all of the kids. Within 10 minutes, they were devoured and I made a joke about how life around here is like “survival of the fittest.” The strongest and most-able-to-elbow-everyone-out-to-get-the-guacamole wins. The past few weeks, I also talked to some amazing pastors & leaders who are some of the most humble and kind and dedicated people I know but are struggling with what it looks like to lead in their contexts. Their communities are …

women, men & church: what hurts, what helps

kathyescobar church stuff, co-pastoring, equality, ex good christian women, leadership, women in ministry 14 Comments

Two fridays ago The Refuge hosted our first “Beyond Seminary: Moving Theology into Practice” gathering. Our amazing friend and seminary professor Dr. Deborah Loyd facilitated and we were challenged, encouraged, inspired in all kinds of ways. There were 25 of us there, 21 women and 4 men. Yep. That was a little hard for me but probably tells the real story. Oh, we have to figure out how to get these conversations more balanced! Real, lasting change will happen when both genders are equally committed to learning and …

all roads lead to power.

kathyescobar church stuff, faith shifts, injustice, leadership 16 Comments

I don’t usually wake up thinking of the word “power”, but I do often wake up thinking about: My friends living on the fringe. Those who are trying to leave or heal from abusive relationships. People I know from all over the place who are healing from “church”. The realities of mental illness. The women I intersect with who are meant to lead in church but probably never will have a chance. How to keep The Refuge alive financially. Rising violence in the world and how powerless …

shame, systems, and spiritual abuse.

kathyescobar faith shifts, fundamentalism, healing, leadership 10 Comments

I have been fringe-following the whole Mark Driscoll thing for years.  In fact, over 8 years ago when we were starting The Refuge, some random person told my partner-in-this-crazy-endeavor about the Acts 29 Network and that “we should consider joining because they might have planting money for us.” He had no idea what Acts 29 was and neither did I. I told him I’d look it up. As I was reading their website, my stomach started getting sicker and sicker as the words “he” and “him” …

third way practices.

kathyescobar church stuff, crazy making, faith shifts, fundamentalism, incarnational, jesus is cool, leadership, the refuge 28 Comments

once in a while i click on a facebook link that i sort of know i shouldn’t read but do anyway (you know that feeling?) and yeah, i usually end up groaning.  sure enough, i clicked on the “there’s no third way” post by al mohler, who agrees with tony jones that when it comes to the issue of same-sex marriage there’s no third way for the christians.  their premise is that people are going to have to choose. churches are going to have to split.  …