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by Bil Aulenbach

Latest Posts from What Bil Is Saying

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A Prayer for More Violence

This is a special prayer I have written for those who believe in a “divine plan”; think that God lives in a mansion above a flat earth; love to say “God bless America” and “We send our thoughts and prayers” after horrendous mass killings; call themselves evangelicals; and love what’s happening under this administration:

O God of Great Violence, we thank you for making us such a violent country.

Read more >

Silence Is Not the Answer

My wife and I met George and Vivian Johnson at Irvine United Congregational Church ten years ago. George was a retired progressive Lutheran pastor who had an exciting, challenging ministry but wanted to continue sharing his gifts with our church family.

About four years ago, George began to suffer liver problems, diminished eyesight and hearing, and some memory loss, but he still wanted to share his gifts with the world.… Read more >

What Do I Say?

I was the worship leader at my church recently, which meant I started the service, made announcements, read the scriptures, and sat up front looking saintly. I like doing that, but I am always stymied when introducing and ending the lessons.

I like to start the lessons by giving a little background on the reading because jumping into the middle of a biblical book can be confusing.… Read more >

Scary!

I am a fan and supporter of Americans United for Separation of Church and State (AU). This separation is one of the foundation stones of a true democracy where all people can practice their religion (or not) without interference from the government. Our First Amendment allows religious groups to criticize the government without being penalized.… Read more >

Senseless Sayings

To me, there are some commonly used sayings that sound good at first but make no sense once you think deeply about them.

For example, I recently heard someone (a fundamentalist) speak about the gay community. I always cringe and bristle when somebody says, “I love the sinner but hate the sin.”

That’s terribly judgmental.… Read more >

Don’t Split—Educate

When I grew up during the 1930s and 1940s, I had no understanding of the terms lesbian, nonbinary, transgender, gay (back then, it meant “happy”), bisexual, or undecided (pertaining to sexuality). I did know the words homo, fag, and queer.

I don’t think I knew anyone who was any of the above, and I only used those words in a pejorative way.… Read more >

My Pal, Pastor Paul

In 2008, Annie and I decided to leave the Episcopal church in southern California, which was most unwelcoming. We returned to the more welcoming St. Mattress.

One day, I was talking with a United Congregational pastor friend, and he asked what church I served. I answered, “St. Mattress.” He smiled but suggested that when Annie and I got too many bedsores, we might try Irvine United Congregational Church.… Read more >

Come See John’s Heart

I was reading the Los Angeles Times on Sunday, April 7, 2019, and this article caught my eye: “150-Year-Old Priestly Heart Tours the U.S.” I had to read the title again. Yes, that’s what it said.

Unbelievable!

It seems the real heart of a Roman Catholic priest, John Vianney, has been set in a little glass box with a cross on top and is touring the United States.… Read more >

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