Children’s Church and Christian Narcissism



From Wikimedia Commons

Shortly before I was to appear on Ancient Faith Today with Fr. John Whiteford, I accepted his invitation to have a brief phone conversation. Telling me about his background, he made an offhanded remark that some decades ago kids began going to “Children’s Church,” and they never left. The more I think about that remark, the more disturbed I become (and not just because I actually agree with Fr. John about something). I think the well-intentioned efforts to meet the worship needs of children has contributed to an increasing trend toward a narcissistic faith. Continue reading “Children’s Church and Christian Narcissism”

Eastern Orthodox Consumerism



Today, I thought I would sum up some basic points from a paper I presented at the Wesleyan Theological Society Meeting a few years ago. What follows are a few thoughts on consumer culture and how liturgy might help you to live with it.

One of the things I love about the Eastern Orthodox Church is that we get consumption right. I am under no delusions that we are “perfect.” We have our problems, but I think our spiritual practice can help a person live more authentically in modern consumer culture. Continue reading “Eastern Orthodox Consumerism”

Against Thrift


James Livingston, Against Thrift: Why Consumer Culture is Good for the Economy, the Environment, and Your Soul

James Livingston has published a timely and provocative book in Against Thrift. He is not an economist but teaches history at Rutgers, and his argument is basically that everything you think you know about economic growth is wrong. Continue reading “Against Thrift”