What is this?

This is honestly, the secret public journal of a progressive pastor in the not-really-post-pandemic mainline church.

My name is Chris Marlin-Warfield, and I am the pastor at First Congregational United Church of Christ in DeWitt, Iowa. I started my time there in 2018, and in 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic came on the scene. Like a lot of clergy, I pivoted to crisis mode, thinking that the pandemic would last for a few weeks. And then I just kind of stayed there.

In 2022, I realized that I was not okay. Two-and-a-half years of crisis mode, with other crises occasionally stacked on top of it, was not sustainable. So I took some time to recalibrate and reorient. And this is one of the results: a place where I can talk—as honestly as possible—about being a progressive pastor in this deeply weird time. If you want to see inside the life of a pastor who is committing to his committing to his own mental, emotional, and spiritual health, this is the place for you.

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Christopher Marlin-Warfield
Pastor in the United Church of Christ. Author of Radical Charity: How Generosity Can Save the World (And the Church). Working on being better.