post-traumatic church syndrome is Real (and worthy of a capital letter)

kathyescobar church stuff, faith shifts, healing 48 Comments

there’s a new book coming out later this year by reba riley called “post-traumatic church syndrome: a humorous memoir of healing, hope, and 30 religions before 30″. i don’t know much about the book yet, but i am really looking forward to reading it. i do know that the facebook group called “post-traumatic church syndrome” has over 1,800 members & growing. that’s because church trauma is real. Real (and worthy of a capital letter here). i love her term and think it’s so accurate. since i’ve been …

when easter’s hard.

kathyescobar church stuff, faith shifts, healing 77 Comments

most of you already all know that i love easter because i’m always rambling about it. i’m definitely not alone on this one. it’s the most popular christian holiday & many more people-who-don’t-identify-with-the-Jesusy-part-of-easter love it, too, with all its chocolate & springtime & fun. we already celebrated last night at the refuge (we get resurrection sunday about 12 hours earlier than everyone else because we gather on saturday nights). it was sweet & wild & fun, with one of my favorite songs ever and lovely stories …

10 ways churches jack people up

kathyescobar church stuff, faith shifts, healing, injustice 52 Comments

i do not think church systems wake up in the morning and think “i’m going to hurt a lot of people today.”  intentions are often good.  stirrings from God seem clear.  visions and strategies make total sense.  the desire to make a difference “for the kingdom” is strong. for all kinds of reasons, though, many church systems are really unhealthy.  often our basic insecurity as christians is a flaw that crops up all over the place in the way we interact with the world.   our …

the underground railroad

kathyescobar church stuff, equality, faith shifts, healing, incarnational, injustice 26 Comments

“if i could have convinced more slaves they were slaves, i could have freed thousands more” – harriet tubman this past weekend i was in portland for a women’s gathering called convergence.  it is not a typical conference; there are no speakers, no people getting paid, no flash.  just a sacred safe space for a bunch of women leaders to share & learn & soak & be challenged & encourage & grieve & grow. i went to see dear & inspiring friends and get a little …

experimenting with new venues for healing

kathyescobar church stuff, healing, spiritual formation 6 Comments

i love safe containers for healing and change.  there is something that always seems to happen when a space is created for openness, honesty & challenge.  my most favorite thing to do is facilitate these kinds of groups in some way, shape or form, and i am so thankful that a big piece of my day-to-day at the refuge is to create different types of sacred spaces. in this upcoming year i am hoping to experiment with a few new venues for healing.  we all know …

never quite right

kathyescobar church stuff, faith shifts, healing 35 Comments

this weekend’s walking wounded: hope for those hurt by the church was a really sweet & beautiful time for me.  it was hard, too, because the reality of so much pain & loss in what’s-supposed-to-be-the-safest-place-on-earth really gets under my skin. i will never be able to recreate what happened there but i will try over time to share some of what it stirred up for me.  i’m so behind on this blog, with unfinished posts here & there so i’ve got a feeling they won’t come …

walking wounded: hope for those hurt by church

kathyescobar church stuff, crazy making, faith shifts, healing, the refuge 6 Comments

have you… been asked to leave a church or told you’re not a “good fit”? felt forced to conform or remain consistently overlooked? been told that you are loved but not your sin? questioned leadership or theology and found yourself on the outside? felt sad, angry, afraid, lost, or disoriented after painful church experiences? i’m guessing some of you might have answered yes to one (or all!) of these questions!  if you haven’t, you probably know someone who has.  unfortunately, there’s a lot of church carnage …