We are deeply distressed with the values being infused into American society by our current president, his administration, and the entire religious system that made his ascension possible. We find it antithetical to the way of Jesus. We believe in the future, however, and we are coming out.
We stand for a new kind of spirituality, a new kind of Christianity, which is really just the original, uncomplicated, uncorrupted kind that we think Jesus intended: To love God with all our hearts and humankind just like ourselves. When love conflicts with belief, love must win. Every. Single. Time.
As the Spanish philosopher, Miguel de Unamuno, pleaded, “Warmth, warmth, more warmth. For we are dying of cold and not darkness. It is not the night that kills, but the frost.”
COMMON GOOD CHRISTIANS INTENDS TO CREATE SPACE FOR COMMUNITY, CONVERSATION, AND ACTION ROOTED IN THE WAY JESUS SAW THE WORLD. WE SEEK TO AMPLIFY A VOICE OF JESUS-INSPIRED SELFLESSNESS, INCLUSIVENESS, AND DEVOTION TO THE COMMON GOOD THAT IS OFTEN PRESENT IN THE SAFETY OF OUR KITCHENS, NEIGHBORHOODS AND SOMETIMES PLACES OF WORSHIP, BUT ALL TOO RARELY IN THE PUBLIC SQUARE.
Come, let’s get to know one another, start a fire to warm our aching bodies and weary souls, and break some bread together. This is a new beginning and we are afraid no more. We want to converse with, learn from, and work with people from any tribe or community, Christian or not, to empower Christian influencers and affect political behavior for the common good, which we see as a core principle of our faith and a natural byproduct of love.
Our sense of urgency is expressed in these words from Wendell Berry:
"It may be that when we no longer know what to do we have come to our real work."
Wendell Berry, poet of the commons
What this Adventure will look like, we don’t know. Yet. But we’d love to have you join us on our sure-to-be wild ride in a way that is meaningful and exciting to you. Sign up for our next event below. And stay for the journey.
Doug Pagitt & Friends / an Online Event
"Greater things than these: Breaking bread party in new York City" (online)
Friday, October 27, 2017, 5pm PST/ 8pm EST
CGC Commons is a space to ask the hard questions about spirituality, religion, and politics. You’ll hear thinkers who are exploring what it means to be a Christian in America and engage in new conversations about faith that works for the common good. We will do individual interviews, dinner parties, and new forms that we will discover as we go.
We will start with a Greater Things Than These: Breaking Bread Party in New York City on October 27! The reason we party is the same reason Jesus partied all the time. Many church pews have been sad places and people are looking for Jesus elsewhere. When under religious or political dictatorship, one has to converse, sing, laugh, and cry together.
Join a diverse group of people for a stimulating conversations, encouragement, and new ideas about how to get involved in helping navigate American Christianity forward to the way of Jesus. Besides tuning in, you can bake bread, serve wine, and bring your friends over for an evening of courage, peace, and beauty.
WAIT, THERE IS MORE! UPCOMING CGC COMMONS ONLINE EVENTS:
November (date TBD) - Frank Schaeffer - Beauty and Daily Life: A Conversation About Resistance and Revolution in America
December 15 - Red Letter Christians - What does it mean to live as people (whether Christian or not) who take the teachings of Jesus seriously.
January 26 - Live From LA - The role of Common Good faith in the media and entertainment.
register today & join this ONLINE event
Join us on Facebook
HERE ARE SOME OF THE EXPERIENCES AND REALIZATIONS WE HAVE.
DO YOU RESONATE?
- We are done with sulking and eating large amounts of ice cream. Instead of avoiding the news, we are engaging to be a part of making the news. Real news.
- We believe that grace is brave. We are afraid no more. This is a full-immersion baptism and we cannot go back.
- The time for sitting in an armchair and talking is over for us now. We are up and migrating to where God is taking us next, moving, inexorably, the way our ancestors did since the beginning.
- We now know that we want a new kind of Christian faith, one that is open, grounded, and yes, worldly: just the way Jesus taught it and lived it.
- We know that there are many others who know how revolutions work and how real change takes place. We want to learn. God has instigated revolutions for his Kingdom (Kingdom is the 1st century word for commonwealth). We want to be next in line.
- Many of us have been complacent for a long time, relegating responsibility for the health of our national community to someone else, to the political class. Now we are done with staring at our smartphones in amazement and horror. We want to live fully and thus more responsibly.
- Politics is too small a tool to adequately respond to the present challenges we face as a society. We want to function and act on the level that includes politics but also transcends it.
- The Kingdom of God that Jesus spoke about is not made up of Christians. It is made up of humans. We are not interested in defending, advancing, or serving Christianity. We are interested in learning from Christ how to live and love, both ourselves and others, unconditionally.
STUFF TO BE DECLARED UP FRONT
- We see Jesus as a historical and/or divine force whose life and teachings inspire and transform our lives.
- We have a sense of urgency because we believe we are now at an historical inflection point for American Christianity and are committed to making a unique, decisive, and sustainable contribution to the American community.
- While our diverse responses to Jesus’ love drive us to differ widely in our beliefs and practices, it unites us in our sense of responsibility to practice and extend that love in our personal, public, and political lives.
- We are in a lifelong process of learning how to love like Christ loved. Ourselves, others, and the world. We are curious about what we can learn from other faiths, traditions, and philosophies. When it comes to learning, we ask “What would Jesus learn today?” And “What would he teach?
- We reject any special privilege, position, or influence accorded Christianity by the American nation in its principles, laws, or practice. We measure the value of our religion by the value it brings to the whole world.
- We see Christianity as one of the religions. It is and can be both a force for good and a force for evil. Like every other belief system, community, or institution, it has agency to bless or harm.
- We are done with relinquishing the Bible to its abusive users. The Bible has its own authority and is the nourishing ground of our faith. We are going to go farther and deeper into it.
we are AMERICAN CHRISTIANS
Common Good Christians intends to help create space for community, conversation, and action rooted in the way Jesus saw the world. We seek to amplify a voice that is constantly present in the safety of our kitchens, neighborhoods and, sometimes, places of worship, but all too rarely in the public square.
We will no longer be subsumed into an “American Christian” stereotype built by the Right, or be marginalized, due to our faith, by the Left. We will use our voices, wield our votes, grieve our losses, and celebrate our victories, as we together work towards the sort of community and commonwealth that Jesus invited us to imagine and embody.
By being attentive and outspoken versions of ourselves in our local communities and by carefully integrating our work with existing organizations and platforms, we intend to help reshape the political vision of the Christian Faith and help redefine what it means to be an American Christian.
OUR EXTRA-BIBLICAL INSPIRATION THESE DAYS
Silence in the face of evil is itself evil. Not to speak is to speak. Not to act is to act.
- Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Christian theologian and activist
We would rather be ruined than changed. We would rather die in our dread than climb the cross of the present and let our illusions die.
- W.H. Auden, poet of politics, morals, love, and religion
Argue not concerning God … Re-examine all you have been told in school or church or in any book, dismiss whatever insults your own soul.
- Walt Whitman, the American poet
Do not try to call them … to where you are, as beautiful as that place may seem to you. You must have the courage to go with them to a place that neither you nor they have ever been before.
- Vincent J. Donovan, Roman Catholic missionary