Welcome, fearless readers

Welcome to Marian the Seminarian – a blog dedicated to raising real questions that regular schmucks ask about God, faith, the world, and each other but are either too polite or too scared to air publically.

About you

You have found this blog because a) whatever God you worship sent you here, b) your karma is seriously out of whack, or c) you spend way too much time surfing WordPress at random and really need to get a job, my friend.  Those qualities aside, my intended audience for these writings, in no particular order, are:

Christians weary of listless theologies and toxic double-speak that characterize far too much of our discourse – if you’re looking for clear cut answers to difficult moral or doctrinal questions, you need to keep surfing

Non-Christian adherents of other faiths who are weary of Christians – I think it’s important to show you the moderate, thoughtful side of our faith since the media never gives us any airtime*; you may be interested to see just how much we have in common

Atheists, agnostics, and other non-believers – if you’ve been pining for straight talk with a Christian who has no ulterior motive for conversing with you, you’ve come to the right place; no offense, but what other people believe…except possibly for Pat Robertson (see second point, above)…really isn’t any of my business

Generation X – you know who you are, my droogs; if you’ve ever considered commissioning a t-shirt that reads, “I’m Gen X…and I’m very disappointed,” may you find respite here for your cynical soul

About Marian

527492_10151334954409782_1315791536_nOver the years, I’ve been a pew-jumping Pentecostal, a wand-swinging Wiccan, an Ernest…I mean, earnest Religious Scientist, an atheist,** and a Presbyterian (PCUSA).  Not all at the same time, of course.  My varied religious experiences have left me perennially curious about how people of faith navigate our American culture of achievement, progress, and consumption.  I count among my close friends and warm acquaintances Catholics, Protestants, Jews, Mormons, agnostics, atheists, Buddhists, Religious Scientists, Hindus, Unitarians, and Wiccans representing varying degrees along the continuum of “practicing and non-practicing.”  

At present, I’m studying divinity at a higher education institution of considerable repute which will remain nameless in this blog just in case someone in a position of power over my academic career stumbles upon it and flips a widget over my sketchy theology or liberal use of the word “crap.”  When I grow up, I want to be a parish minister if I can find a congregation that wants frank, unconventional approaches to the oldest questions of our species:

Who is God?

Who are we in relation to God?

What does relationship with God look like?

Why does the Church miss the mark with so many people?

Where are the Bible’s hidden punchlines and how can we expose them for our own amusement and edification?

What would the Christian religion look like if we were forming it for the first time in our time?

What to expect from this blog

Because I love words, I use a lot of them.  My blogs are long, more like mini-sermons than true blog postings; consequently, I only post two or three times per month.  Some of you may find my use of the vernacular a bit more robust than you’d like.  To that I’d say that you cannot imagine how many times I pass up the Grand Trifecta of English Profanity every time I write.  Fortunately, there are reasonable alternatives.  Hence, I use “crap,” “frickin’,” and “damnable” a lot.   This is a way to keep the message real and I hope it works for you.

I’m happy you’re here.  Stay as long as you like and feel free to bring friends along.  Cheers!

*  I guess if you’re not spouting vitriol about who’s going to burn in hell for eternity and who’s declaring a war on religion, the networks figure you won’t sell enough of the sponsors’ toothpaste and Viagra.

**  I really did give atheism a try once when I was mad at God about something.  It lasted about two days.  Not because I got over being mad at God, but because I couldn’t make myself stop talking to God.  Oh, well. 

© Marian the Seminarian, 2012

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