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Wild Goose reflections > 2011 (originally posted on Facebook)

July 5, 2011

So I have some things to say about the Wild Goose Festival. Some of these things are positive, some are challenges, some are personal and some more general.


First, I want to express appreciation to all the organizers, presenters, artists, musicians and behind the scenes volunteers who gave a tremendous amount of energy and time to this event. There must have been great personal sacrifices to even get the Wild Goose off the ground and in flight. I’ve worked behind the scenes before to pull off large events and the work involved is absolutely astounding and usually way under appreciated. May your efforts find great reward now and beyond!


Secondly, it was nothing short of wonderful for me to re-connect with many friends after a long absence, see many of my personal heroes on stage (Wallis, Campolo (parents and son), Tickle, B-mac etc) mingle with authors I admire and hang out with the great folks of Lemonade International at their booth. I even got a few minutes (and even a stage shout out!) with my dear friends Linford, Karin and crew of Over the Rhine. So great to re-connect with some old friends (Hey Lilly Lewin!!), make some new ones (Summer aka Sunny with LI) and just be around such amazing talent, intelligence, and spiritual honesty and fervor.


Third, I have deep concerns about some of the content i heard as well. And I say this not in judgement of those who are personally wrestling with many questions about the orthodox, historic and Christ-centered Christianity… I am keenly aware that we (not Christ) have made many messes and mistakes over the last 2000+ years… however, that’s my family and I can get a little defensive when it comes to family. I think many of us in this tribe of emerging-trying-to-figure-out-a-faithful-and-relevant-way-forward-in-this-generation are in danger of throwing out the baby with the bath water…. again, I’m all for honesty and asking hard questions and leaving room for doubt and not having everything figured out but what worries me is when things get unhinged from our deep roots of Christ centered theology, (healthy) tradition, and biblical authority… at that point what is left? What you end up with is less than “Christian.” Again, I have doubts. I have questions. I have wrestled with the Bible and changed my mind on many issues that I thought I had settled years before… in other words I’m not some whack job, unreflective, repressed fundy… but I’m also not willing to wipe the slate completely clean and arrogantly think I know more than apostles, church fathers and mothers of the first centuries, and the shining saints in every generation since then. However, I also want to honestly engage in conversations related to GLBTQ concerns, theological questions about universalism, Christology, and where we locate authority when solo-scriptura is no longer cutting it for many of us. I think Wild Goose erred on the side of giving voice to more doubt than faith (in some of the workshops and overall tone) and what the church and world most need (and even desire?) is hope, and faith, and love. There’s plenty of doubt already.


On a deeply personal note can I express a fear and sense of loss I feel? I alluded to this above but I’m starting to fear the loss of ‘my tribe.’ If the tribe I once identified with is going the way of a shallow Christology and disregard for Scripture I can’t go there with them…. on the other hand I no longer fit with the highly conservative, entrenched neo-fundys or hyper charismatic ‘Jesus Camp’ nut jobs… I guess I’m mourning the potential loss of tribe and the inherent loneliness in that. Thankfully this loss is not as bad as it might sound since I have such great, enduring friendships locally (and even regionally)… and also even some of the people i disagree with the most I count as deep personal friends who have shaped and influenced me deeply and I hope to stay connected to… yes, Bart, that is you!


Lastly C Marsh: you are a great traveling companion and a kingodm co-conspirator that I hope to grow very old with. Much love buddy! The vast majority of my highlights of this trip were our conversations…


Much love and appreciation to all the attenders & contributors who helped the Goose fest take flight… peace of Christ be with you!

3 Comments leave one →
  1. July 6, 2011 12:04 pm

    I think your tribe should be concerned and mourning the potential loss of you my friend!

  2. D.G. Hollums permalink
    July 7, 2011 2:38 am

    We need to talk! Blessings and peace be yours!

  3. July 28, 2011 4:58 am

    Hi Kevin – as someone who has known you digitally for a decade now, I appreciate your words here. And as someone who is an organizer for ye olde Wild Goose Festival, I appreciate your words here. Like Phyllis, I hope you don’t bow out of this conversation! We need your voice!

    (And…I’m SUPER-bummed that we didn’t %(@# get to meet face-to-face at the Goose! WTF is up with that?!)

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