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2019 Mbird Tyler Recordings: The Future of Grace

2019 Mbird Tyler Recordings: The Future of Grace

A Texas-sized thank you to everyone who helped put on our conference in Tyler earlier this month, especially the fabulous–and ridiculously ecumenical–steering committee, led by the indefatigable Matt Magill. Huge thanks to all the sponsors as well: B3 Ministries, Bethel Bible, Christ Episcopal, Redeemer Pres Tyler, Moon River Naturals, Porch...
ANNOUNCING: <i>The Youngest Day</i>, by Robert Capon!

ANNOUNCING: The Youngest Day, by Robert Capon!

When it comes to grace, no one writes with more elegance, humor, and well, grace, than Robert Farrar Capon. Since his first publication hit shelves in 1963, Robert’s voice has served as one of the guiding lights for the Christian faith from generation to generation. Now, in this final book...
Mission: Difficult

Mission: Difficult

The following was excerpted from Nick Lannon’s fantastic new book Life Is Impossible: And That’s Good News—a fundamental distillation of the law and the gospel in everyday life. This comes from the third chapter “Mission: Difficult.” I have heard the Christian life described in many different ways. Some have compared...
Don't Ruin Brunch: A Mother's Day Primer for the Church

Don’t Ruin Brunch: A Mother’s Day Primer for the Church

I’ve got an idea for churches this upcoming Sunday. Please just ignore Mother’s Day. I do not know why we started to attach the church to this secular holiday, but for the love of all that is sacred and holy, she wants us to stop. I got a desperate note...
<i>Seculosity</i> Has Landed!!

Seculosity Has Landed!!

Beyond excited to announce that my new book Seculosity: How Career, Parenting, Technology, Food, Politics, and Romance Became Our New Religion and What To Do About It is officially out today! So excited, in fact, that we made another video to celebrate #markbabikowisagenius: A few ways to support the cause...
NOW AVAILABLE: StoryMakers - Adventure One: Creation

NOW AVAILABLE: StoryMakers – Adventure One: Creation

Pleased to announce that StoryMakers’ first kidzine has landed and is available through our online shop and StoryMakersNYC.com! When we give kids stories that spark the imagination, we aren’t giving them distractions to tide them over until they can handle “the big stuff.” Stories ARE the big stuff. And the...
Camp: Notes on Grace

Camp: Notes on Grace

What does grace look like? If it made a movie or wore a dress, how would you describe it, aesthetically? It might be twee or kitsch, since the Gospel is such a personal message that, in our self-absorption, we often sentimentalize, then mass-produce. It could be sublime, as the drama...
Announcing: "Grace, Peace, and Personal Survival for the Preacher": A Mockingbird Conference in Lancaster, PA

Announcing: “Grace, Peace, and Personal Survival for the Preacher”: A Mockingbird Conference in Lancaster, PA

Excited to announce our (fast!) approaching Mockingbird conference in Lancaster, PA, hosted at the historic Holy Trinity Lutheran Church. With its theme—“Grace, Peace, and Personal Survival for the Preacher”—this intimate, impromptu conference aims to minister to those who minister. But of course all are welcome, not only preachers. Topics may...
I Am No Jean Vanier

I Am No Jean Vanier

Jean Vanier, the Canadian naval officer turned philosopher and founder of the L’Arche Communities, died yesterday morning. News of his death hit me harder than I imagined it would. I have read plenty of his books and followed the work of L’Arche for many years. It was only after his...
Latest entries

The Youngest, Freshest Day of the World: An Exploration of Springtime and Eschatology

The Youngest, Freshest Day of the World: An Exploration of Springtime and Eschatology

The following is a timely excerpt from Robert Farrar Capon’s The Youngest Day, a collection of musings on the four seasons in the light of grace. In this passage, from a section titled “Spring: Judgment,” the author takes a morning run around his home on Shelter Island, NY. One of the pleasures of running, at […]

Father of the Bride(groom): Winning and Losing with Vampire Weekend

Father of the Bride(groom): Winning and Losing with Vampire Weekend

This one was written by Ryan Stevenson-Cosgrove. The members of band Vampire Weekend have always been winners. Only on their latest album, “Father of the Bride,” they no longer sound like it. At least, not in the way we tend to think. Vampire Weekend’s star began to rise at a time in the music industry […]

<i>Fleabag</i> Season Two: The Healing of the Fourth Wall

Fleabag Season Two: The Healing of the Fourth Wall

If you have not seen Season 2 of Fleabag then watch it first. Then come back and dish with me in the comments section about that caliente priest. Full disclosure, I enjoyed the first season of Fleabag but did not adore it. But the second season contains more incredible moments than should be allowed in […]

At the Bottom of Your Vanilla Life

At the Bottom of Your Vanilla Life

For me, this could not have come at a better time—the opportunity to sit down and read the newest publication by Chad Bird. Chad is a writer/speaker (and frequent Mockingbird contributor), and the book is the friendly-looking Upside-Down Spirituality: The 9 Essential Failures of a Faithful Life. What a title! Keep your eyes on this […]

The Only Places on the Streets That Understand

The Only Places on the Streets That Understand

Way back on Christmas Eve of 2013, The Guardian ran a piece by photographer Chris Arnade under the provocative title, “The People Who Challenged My Atheism Most Were Drug Addicts and Prostitutes.” It remains one of the best and most heartening things I’ve read on that intersection. Arnade recounts how thoroughly his unbelief was challenged […]

Devotion (Tyler, TX) - Aaron Zimmerman

This short devotion, from our recent conference in Tyler, TX, features Aaron Zimmerman discussing this verse from Romans: “So it depends not on human will or exertion, but on God who shows mercy.” Topics include: gold stars, summer jobs, a manual transmission, and God’s grace.

Devotional – Aaron Zimmerman Tyler Texas 2019 from Mockingbird on Vimeo.

Be My Safe Space

Be My Safe Space

I can’t explain it, but here goes anyway: I’ve been consuming all things Madeleine McCann lately, and by all things I mean two specifically: an Australian podcast called Maddie, and the recent (critically lambasted) documentary on Netflix, The Disappearance of Madeleine McCann. This obsession is inexplicable because, since being pregnant with my first son eight […]

The Sunday Scaries: Reclaiming Our Day of Rest

The Sunday Scaries: Reclaiming Our Day of Rest

We love to hate our alarms. There you are — peacefully lounging in a meadow, surrounded by friendly grizzly bears munching on grass. And then, just as Alan Jackson and Jimmy Buffett finish a rendition of “It’s Five O’Clock Somewhere”…BAM! A Soviet-era nuclear submarine surfaces in the middle of the meadow, uprooting trees and sounding […]

Another Week Ends: Breakfast of Lutherans, Celebrity Prayer Candles, Junkyard Playgrounds, All the Correct Opinions, and the X-Men Family

Another Week Ends: Breakfast of Lutherans, Celebrity Prayer Candles, Junkyard Playgrounds, All the Correct Opinions, and the X-Men Family

1. On this week’s Killing Eve, the morally obscure mastermind Carolyn Martens (Fiona Shaw) refused to eat breakfast, instead taking a pull from a water pipe and saying, “I can’t stand breakfast. It’s just constant eggs. Why? Who decided?” The woman has a point. Whether yogurt, cereal, waffles, or bacon, our breakfast items of choice […]

The Wheel in the Sky Keeps On Turning: Penultimate Thoughts on <i>Game of Thrones</i>' Penultimate Episode

The Wheel in the Sky Keeps On Turning: Penultimate Thoughts on Game of Thrones' Penultimate Episode

Spoilers ahoy for Game of Thrones fans. Sadly, with the finale arriving Sunday, you are pretty much out of time to jump in and watch all 72 episodes before the show concludes, but there’s something here for the non-GoT community too. Also, like the caveats provided by the AV Club, this is post from a […]

What Do We Say to the God of Death? When Ministry Forces Us to Answer “Today”: A Conference Preview

Below is a preview for our fast-approaching Mockingbird conference in Lancaster, PA (June 11-13). This particular conference aims to minister to those who minister—though all are welcome. Do register promptly so we can be sure to know you’re coming! The following sneak-peek comes from speaker Tasha Genck Morton:

For those who don’t speak Game of Thrones, the answer to the question, “What do we say to the God of death?” is a very inspiring, “Not today!” But ministry and life force us to say “today” over and over again as parishioners, family, and friends die. Facing death on a regular basis seems to demand that we who are left live better and fuller lives than those who went before. Every death whispers “earn it” to the living. In this session, we will explore what the Gospel has to say to us in the face of the impossible demands of “near death experiences.” Heads up: major spoilers will be discussed for perennial Mockingbird favorite TV show The Good Place, so what are you waiting for? Watch it!

Register today for Mockingbird in Lancaster, PA!

When Your Friends Are the Devil

When Your Friends Are the Devil

Do you ever dread meeting with a friend? Do you involuntarily find yourself imagining the ways this is going to go all wrong? Do you feel a knot in your guts when you receive a text message asking to “connect” later (why that word?) and zero elaboration is given? You feel the foreboding circulate through […]