Sharing our Values: Parenting and Sexuality Education

For local Shoreline Connecticut folks. Join me . . . Monday, April 20th 7:15-9:00pm,  Griswold Hall First Congregational Church Guilford (Corner of Church and Broad St.) Parenting in today’s world is a complex and courageous task, especially when it comes to issues of sexuality. As parents, it can be an uphill battle to share your values when we talk about relationships, body image, technology, and so on. Exactly when and how do we start talking Read more…

It Takes More than One Talk: Continuing the Conversation After Chris Herren Speaks

On March 23rd, the town I live in joined Chris Herren, former NBA player turned advocate for youth substance abuse prevention, in Project Purple. The event was a success by measure of attendance and sponsored by a group called It’s Worth It, D.A.Y of Guilford (Developmental Assets for Youth). Most impressive was the youth leadership that worked incredibly hard to spread the word and bring together local businesses, churches, and organizations in support of this Read more…

Talking about Violence: A Lenten Response

On Ash Wednesday, I was serving as the choir parent volunteer. The parent brings the snack, serves as the second adult in the room, and helps out as needed. With 10 minutes left in practice, the Junior Choir Director stops and informs the children (3rd – 8th grade) that they can attend the Ash Wednesday prayer service upstairs and receive ashes if they so choose. One young girl raises her hand and says “what for?” Read more…

Gift-giving as Christian Practice

I love giving and getting presents. I am the person who wears or uses a gift immediately after receiving it. I put time and effort into choosing gifts for close friends and family. That said, I am uncomfortable with a Christmas season that inspires economic excess. As a parent, this discomfort raises the question of emphasizing Santa Claus versus Christ’s birth. Now, I’m not about to put a bumper sticker on my car that says Read more…

From Thanksgiving Tables to Ferguson Streets

As a white parent, I struggle with how to talk about the racialized history of our society with my white children. From the history of Thanksgiving to the events in Ferguson (and so many other cities), I wonder what I can say to my children that won’t be yet another soundbyte or value free explanation of the facts. In an effort to respond to racism, white children are often taught to celebrate other racial groups Read more…

Laughing in Church

Just yesterday in Sunday Service, as the Cherub Choir began to sing, a few of the singers “got the giggles” after a small mistake was made.  To my delight, as a member of our congregation, no one tried to quiet them, rather we all laughed along in good measure and worship integrated not only the joys of their singing, but also their laughter.  Not more than a few moments later, my daughter and her classmate Read more…

Using Sex + Faith as a Parent and Teen Sunday School Curriculum

Recently a colleague contacted me with some delightful news.  New to her congregation and in her first call, she had met with the parents and youth and proposed that they use my Sex + Faith book as a springboard for Sunday School conversations.  To her surprise (and I will admit, mine too) they embraced the idea! Then came the question: How do we use the book for a conversation that engaged parents and youth over Read more…

Stephen Colbert is an Ask-able Adult

Many sexuality educators emphasize to parents and other care-givers that kids need “ask-able” adults. Hopefully as parents many of us are working toward being an ask-able adult that our child can turn to with difficult, embarrassing or even mundane questions. As a faith-based sexuality educator and parent, I have found the most importantly qualities needed to be an askable adult are being present and willingness to admit we don’t have all the answers but will accompany the Read more…