franciscan blessing

5 popular ways to shut down conversations about power.

kathyescobar crazy making, equality, incarnational, injustice, relationships 20 Comments

Years ago when I started speaking out against the powers-that-be about “church”, I noticed a pattern. Almost the minute something negative was shared, there would be an immediate defensiveness and responses like “be careful about being divisive”, “the church is made up of imperfect people”, “t’s not all bad”, or “I’ll pray for you.” The basic summary of the responses–“quit saying negative things, we don’t like it.” When the events in Ferguson broke out last year, I was appalled at the comments on Facebook when people from …

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 …

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 …

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 …

three things about one word: power

kathyescobar church stuff, leadership 23 Comments

power is a hard thing to talk about.  as Christ-followers, it is even trickier because Jesus was so anti-typical-power that talking about it can be misconstrued. i feel this sometimes when i am advocating for women’s empowerment (and others, too, who are underrepresented) because it can be perceived as being contrary to humility.  some also falsely think i believe in shifting power only toward women. nothing can be further from the truth. i am most passionate about diffused power–not minimized, not limited, not watered down—but rather …

power is not like pie.

kathyescobar church stuff, equality, leadership 25 Comments

friday night my amazing & wise & passionate friend pam hogeweide was at the refuge for a really fun event centered on her book unladylike: resisting the injustice of inequality in the church. a listening party, it was a chance for women & men to share stories and process some of these tough issues of the oppression of women in the church.  it was an amazing night & stirred up all kinds of loveliness.  over the next few weeks i’ll try to write a few things …

white privilege, male privilege, straight privilege, economic privilege

kathyescobar equality, healing, injustice 25 Comments

i will never know what it’s like to be a person of color.  i can only listen and learn from my friends & family who are. i will never know what it’s like to be gay.  i can only listen and learn from my friends & family who are. i will likely never know what it’s like to be poor and live in section 8 housing.  i can only listen and learn from my friends & family who are. but i do know what it’s like …