What I Did on My Blog Vacation

As you know, my blog’s been down and out for three months. But, as you might imagine, that hasn’t stopped me from blogging.

How, you say?

Well, the truth is that I’ve always cross-posted many of my blog entries to other sites, depending upon the content. So, that’s what I’ve been doing quite a bit of these past 90 days.

I’m not going to repost them all here. But I will provide you some links. Actually, some of these entries got a fair amount of comments at other sites, and just reading the dozens and dozens of comments to some of these posts might be worth your while.

I didn’t get bitter over Pennsylvania. I got bitter over Texas.

On the heels of the Texas primary, I found myself angry and, yes, bitter about the increasingly disturbing tone of the Clinton campaign. And I blogged about it at MySpace…you can read it
here.

Basically, I was asking, way back then, the kinds of questions people in the MSM are only asking about the Clinton campaign now. I’m not nearly as angry about it now as a I was then, because it seems to me that the fundamentals of my questions (“Why is She Still In This Race?”) have not changed.

In fact, not only have the fundamentals of my blog stayed the same, but the uphill battle she faced then has turned into an sheer mountain-face rock climb now.

Don’t believe me? Ask Chuck Todd.

Let me lift up this quote:

“…The pledged delegate count is basically over. If you could call an election based on the delegate count, and say ‘who’s gonna have the most delegates at the end of this process,’ it now appears as if it going to be impossible for Obama to lose his lead.”

‘If we called things like this, and we don’t call them, we would say ‘OK, the pledged delegate count is over.'”

So, I go back to the point I made then, which is even MORE true today: if she was any other candidate, with any other name besides “Clinton” she would have been asked privately to step aside MONTHS ago.

You’re right to think I had thoughts on Wright.

But, of course, the Democratic primary race kept right on going, and the world hear about Rev. Jeremiah Wright. What frustrated me most in the early days of that coverage was the clear assumption of the MSM that there was no defendable reason Obama should have stayed at Trinity Church.

Why didn’t he just leave?!!! screamed pundit after pundit.

As a pastor myself, I knew exactly why: because people don’t always choose their churches based on their pastor. They choose them on friendships, programs, Bible study connections, etc, etc…

And so, I turned the question around, and turned asked “Why did Barak Obama Stay at Trinity Church?” That first link is to Talking Points Memo, but I also reposted this at Daily Kos, and it got a TON of comments there.

After a few more days, I got to thinking about the sound byte of Rev. Wright “damning America.” And while I can’t condone using that kind of rhetoric –and think it’s irresponsible in a YouTube world– I had to ask the question “What Did Rev. Wright Mean Intend When He ‘Damned’ America?‘” Again, the repost at Daily Kos got a lot of comments too.

Support for Progressive Churches

All this led me to think about how a part of this controversy is that many people to do understand or get that there are “progressive” churches out there. Again, not to defend Rev. Wright’s sound-bytes, his church is clearly one that comes from a progressive theological background. However, in the broader culture, there is a lot of assumption that ALL churches are conservative, and perhaps even fundamentalist.

So, I put out a call to progressive people that they should support progressive religion. You can read it here. (Reposted here) It was not as warmly received as my other essays, which does not surprise me in the least, in that many progressive people falsely see the “fight” of modern society to be “ignorant religion” vs. “enlightened reason.” So, I was not expecting as many warm fuzzies for this blog, and they didn’t come my way.
I will probably follow up on this issue, somewhere down the road….

Rabbis for Obama

In
another post, I noted with interest the endorsement of Obama by a Rabbi he knows, and this Rabbi’s thoughts about how Obama would relate to the Jewish community.

The Fifth Anniversary of the Iraq War

Somewhere in the midst of all this, our church held a press conference, marking the five-year “Anniversary” of the War in Iraq. The press conference got some nice, er, press. The story ran all that day on KRLD Radio, and the DMN picked up the story the next morning, running
some nice quotes from the many ecumenical leaders who came to our church for the press event.

This story from the United Methodist Reporter also ran a few weeks later.

This is a blog entry, posting the complete text of my comments on that day.

What it means to be “lucky” in America.

Somewhere in the midst of all this, the Geraldine Ferrraro comments exploded onto the headlines too. What really stuck with me about what she said was when she called Obama “lucky to be who he is,” as if being a black man in America was akin to winning the lottery. I vented my frustration
here on a MySpace blog.

The Clinton’s as….Um….Who?!!

Finally, you knew it was getting to be silly season in politics when James Carville called Bill Richardson “Judas” during Holy Week. Then, instead of backtracking from the comments, he pretty much said, “No, I really did mean to draw
that analogy this week…”

So, I drew the metaphor out to its obvious, and silly conclusions…the Clinton’s as Jesus? It was originally posted at Street Prophets, and got reposted at Daily Kos…drawing some really funny comments.

Yes, what it proves more than anything is that we are in the height of “silly season.”

General Conference begins

So, that’s what I’ve been writing these past months, while my blog’s been broken. That brings us up to the present day, and the start of our United Methodist General Conference in Fort Worth, Texas. It’s a once-every-four-years gathering of Methodists from around the globe, and I was quoted about it in the DMN this week, right
here.

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Eric Folkerth is a minister, musician, author and blogger. He has been Senior Pastor of Northaven United Methodist Church in Dallas, Texas since 2001. During his tenure, church membership has grown almost 30 percent, and a completely new church facility (sanctuary and education building) has been constructed. Northaven is a leading progressive Christian congregation in the Southwest. Northaven is an eclectic collection of gay and straight families, artists, musicians, theater folks, academic theologians, lawyers and judges (go figure), socially conscious community activists, people who don't "check their brain at the door," and a wide array of others who either see it as their "last chance" inside the "institutional church," or their first trip back in decades. Eric is an avid blogger and published author.  Eric is also an award-winning singer-songwriter, who performs throughout Texas and the Southwest. He's an engaging live performer whose first CD was released in 2000. His songs have won honorable mention in both the Billboard and Great American song contests; and he's been a finalist in the 5th Street Festival and South Florida Folk Festival songwriter competitions. Eric is also a leader of Connections, a unique band comprised of United Methodist clergy and layfolk from throughout North Texas. Connections performs "cover shows" of artists like Dan Fogelberg, Chicago, Eagles, Doobie Brothers, Billy Joel, Stevie Wonder, James Taylor and others. Their shows draw crowds of between 300 and 1,000 fans, and they have raised more than $240,000 dollars for worthy charities. Eric has led or co-led hundreds of persons on mission trips around the globe, to places such as Mexico, Haiti, Russia, and Nepal. He has worked with lay persons to build ten homes, and one Community Center, in partnership with Habitat for Humanity of Dallas. He's a popular preacher, and often tackles challenging issues of social justice in his writings and sermons. His wife, Judge Dennise Garcia, is a State District Judge for Dallas, County. As judge of the 303rd Family District Court, she consistently gets high ratings from area lawyers, and was named "best judge" by The Dallas Observer. First elected in 2004, she was the first Latina ever elected to a county-wide bench in Dallas County. She was re-elected for a third term in 2010. They have the world's best daughter, Maria, and an incredible dog, Daisy. (As always, if you like this post, then "like" this on Facebook by clicking the box below, so others can see too...)

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