Public Witness

Speaking out is part of my work. In fact, that's how this site got started, with a workbook designed to teach citizens about green space issues.  Check it out:

Letters to the editor  

These were published in the Washington Post:

  • Fighting Nazis in the voting booth and beyond - I have a suggestion for a new home for the one outdoor statue of a Confederate general in Washington, DC. (18 Aug 2017)
  • Clergy can already opt out of performing same-sex weddings - The First Amendment already gives clergy full freedom to decide whose marriage ceremonies they will officiate, but District of Columbia law makes the matter crystal clear. (1 Apr 2016)
  • A Renewable Pride - America's optimistic spirit is rooted not a false abundance of unlimited resources, but the reality of boundless inventiveness, curiosity and drive. (19 Jul 2008)
  • The Registration Challenge -  Why does it take a 33-page form to tell Spanish-speaking citizens how to register to vote? (9 Aug 2004)

Other civic witness


Many on spiritual practices, these were preached at Universalist National Memorial Church in Washington, DC:

  • Outside the Tent - Just as rain falls on both the just and unjust, spiritual authority may fall on both the obedient and the rebellious. The nature of power and authority is one of the key issues of any age -- as is our response to it. (June 2017)
  • Perseverance and Encouragement -  It’s critical not to skip straight to action, even the most well intentioned action, without a grounding in the right attitude, which is acceptance of each other, in all our imperfections … encouragement from what has gone before … and, in the face of what is yet to come, the same confidence in God that Jesus had … through an awareness of the reality of the divine presence in our midst. (December 2016)
  • Who Is Minding the Gap? - There is so much that I don't need to know. (December 2014)
  • Wheels on Fire - On the occasion of the Winter Solstice of 2012 -- and the end of the Mayan Long Count calendar -- let's consider whether visionaries like Ezekiel saw the beginning of the end -- or the end of the beginning. (December 2012)
  • What Is This Thing Called Christ? - May ours be a Christology of recognition, and may that seeing be a blessing both to the one who is seen and to the one who sees. (June 2012)
  • Intervention: Risk, Folly, and Inner Healing - When should we step in to help - and what kind of help can we give? (January 2012)
  • Fed by Wilderness - Wilderness is a place in the heart, not just a remote location where a GPS comes in handy. The wilderness wanderings of the Israelites provide a number of lessons for the searching uncertainty in our own hearts. (May 2011)
  • Chanting a Curse - In the Psalms, sweet scenes of green pastures and running brooks alternate with dreadful images of anger and vengeance. Yet, for Jews and Christians, all are part of the sacred canon, the curses as well as the praises, with the capacity to stir our deepest fears and longings and become our own songs directed toward God. (January 2010)
  • Surrender Naturally - Surrender doesn't need to mean defeat at the hands of the divine will. It can be a process as natural as gravity, something we struggle against but which ultimately makes us stronger. (July 2009)
  • Remarks for Ash Wednesday 2009 (February 2009)
  • Ritual 101: Dry Bones - What we say and do can build a container to hold the unbearable, the unspeakable, and the unknowable as we explore together the mystery of life. (March 2008)
  • An Inner Garden - The special places that you have visited and cherished can form the foundation of an inner space for refuge, repose, and creativity. (October 2005)
  • Recoloration - Part of our work as spiritual people is to understand the meaning that religious and other symbols have, not just for ourselves but for others. (May 2005)
  • Holy Hospitality - The active practice of hospitality as a spiritual discipline can bring healing and richness to both guest and host. (January 2005)
  • The Yeast Factor - To learn where you might have your greatest effect on the world, begin where you are right now. (September 2004)
  • The Path to Joy -  Celebrating the simple, ordinary things in life may not always come naturally to us, but it can make us strong and give us joy. (May 2004)