By Hillary Asbury

“To appropriate: to take for oneself; take possession of; to steal.”

While at the theological symposium in Saint Louis last week, I had the rare pleasure of meeting a fellow liturgical artist. Kelly Schumacher is the founder of Agnus Dei Liturgical Arts in Saint Louis, Missouri. She is a talented creative with a theological foundation for her work that is as elegant as it is intelligent. Her passion for what she does is unwavering, and her enthusiasm is infectious.

By Hillary Asbury

I think I may have mentioned this before, but traveling with my artwork is nerve-racking.

I’m a bit of a type “A” personality, which I’m often told is odd for an artist. I have high anxiety. I like things to be just so. I don’t want to be on time; I want to be five minutes early and perfectly presented. People sometimes comment that I am a skilled artist. I often answer that I am a perfectionist who happens to make art.

By Paul Koch

I was a Vicar at Peace Lutheran Church in Bremerton Washington 17 years ago. I remember, with astonishing clarity, driving down to church early in the morning and listening to some bewildering news on the radio. An airplane, no, make that two airplanes, had struck buildings in New York. Upon arriving at the church Day School office for morning devotions I found all the teachers and staff huddled around the computer watching the news as it was unfolding. It was a bit sketchy and disjointed as the reports came in but the picture began to develop; this was no accident but an attack.

By Tim Winterstein

Memory is a strange thing. Last week I wrote that I had seen The Machinist during my second summer at college, the first that I did not return home between classes. In one of my periods of sleeplessness last night, I realized that couldn’t be true. As clearly as I seemed to remember picking up that movie at a video place and watching it then, it couldn’t have happened then because I was in college from 1998-2002. The Machinist came out in 2004, which means that if I saw it soon after it came out, I couldn’t have seen it before my third year at the seminary (my vicarage, or internship).

By Paul Koch

Do you confess the Unaltered Augsburg Confession to be a true exposition of Holy Scripture and a correct exhibition of the doctrine of the Evangelical Lutheran Church? And do you confess that the Apology of the Augsburg Confession, the Small and Large Catechisms of Martin Luther, the Smalcald Articles, the Treatise on the Power and Primacy of the Pope, and the Formula of Concord—as these are contained in the Book of Concord—are also in agreement with this one scriptural faith?

By Tim Winterstein

If Hitchcock remade Fight Club, it would probably look a lot like The Machinist (2004). If you haven’t seen it, but you’ve seen Fight Club, then I probably gave away the major plot twist. But even if you know the major twist, this is a devastating film about the destructive power of buried guilt. I had seen The Machinist before, but I honestly didn’t remember much except that he works in a machine shop and is struggling with something. I probably watched it on a VHS rented from a Blockbuster (RIP) in Washougal, Washington during a summer when I worked the night shift at a Safeway and then in a hot, dusty, stifling concrete plant in Portland. Not much else to do during my first summer not returning home from college.

By Tim Winterstein

[SPOILERS, BUT YOU CAN PROBABLY GUESS THEM ANYWAY]

That seems like far too important a title for thoughts about a dinosaur movie, but underneath the fantastic and seamless CGI, Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom is claiming to be far more than simply an adventure movie with dangerous animals. The tired part of the movie is that people always do stupid things when it comes to dangerous animals about which they really know nothing. Yeah, we get it: If you’re ever in a room with a caged dinosaur, do not open the cage, no matter how much you want a trophy or a closer look. Don’t pretend to be Chris Pratt if you’re not.