Revising the Story of the First Thanksgiving

how can we receive the gifts history offers and use them to practice moral reflection, rather than judgement? Here’s the story we read as part of our celebration of an American Thanksgiving with church family and strangers from other shores.

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The First Thanksgiving: Eight Lessons for Learning from History

This entry is part 2 of 2 in the series The First Thanksgiving

Putting together a coherent story from evidence is hard work. No wonder we reach for story first and evidence after, unless the discipline of History can teach us better habits!

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Politics After the Apocalypse

Cover of Plato's "Republic"

If all the libraries in the world were destroyed and you could save only two books of political theory, which would they be?

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Remebering Labor, Entering Rest

To truly make this a holiday, to truly rest in praise of the goodness, truth, & beauty of Labor Day, requires contemplation.

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Watching the Cubs from Bahgdad

Here is what Memorial Day means to me today: it means remembering the connections we have to those who are elsewhere, remembering that the small things we enjoy here at home exist in a larger system of past and present service, sacrifice and justice.

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Studs Terkel, 1912-2008

Studs Terkel, that great & generous soul, has passed on. For me, the voice of Studs Terkel will always symbolize a combination of passionate curiosity, prophetic conviction, and deeply generous, fatherly love. He delighted in the people of the world, and shared his delight with us.

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Family, Heroes, and History

This entry is part 3 of 3 in the series Reading Aldo Leopold

One thing that Aldo Leopold did to become great was find, and use, his voice. His family was in many ways similar to mine and to thousands of others here in Wisconsin; his famous shack seemed completely familiar to us–just like Grandad’s place up north. But he made a difference in the world by figuring out what he had to say that was worth saying, and saying it wisely and well.

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Reading the Foundations of Religious Freedom

Kenneth Jackson, writing in the New York Times, commemorates the 350th anniversary of the Flushing Remonstrance, written in 1657 by Edward Hart and his fellow Flushing, New York, citizens to protest the public torture of a Quaker preacher and the fining and imprisonment of non-Quakers who allowed them to meet in their homes. Jackson notes […]

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