Author Photo

I grew up on a hill in the middle of nowhere Northeast Ohio.

My words feel forged  there,  watching styrofoam cups melt at night in a burn barrel on a back 40 I imagine defending with a shotgun and my miniature Doberman pinscher.

(Disclaimers: It was the ’80s. We didn’t know any better than to burn styrofoam. It was more like an acre and a half, and my dog’s bark was much bigger than his bite. I also never owned a shotgun.)

From that  little piece of Appalachia, I’ve transplanted several times… Minneapolis, Cleveland, and now non metropolitan but magical Southern Oregon.

A writer, editor, and refugee of the Fourth Estate, I am also an ordained pastor puttering in the spiritual R&D department of wherever Jesus is taking us next.

My best guess? It won’t be so much in the “thin places,” but the thick ones, those dense moments of human existence that feel like banging your forehead against concrete block, where the chasm between what is and what should be gapes, as impossible to traverse as the canyon between Lazarus and Dives.

What I look for is Love showing up with skin on. Right here.


Bio: A newspaper and magazine reporter in my first career, more recent work has appeared in  Belt MagazineBearings OnlineGEEZ magazine, and The Christian Century. The proud pastor of a brief but exciting experiment in new faith community on the East Side of Cleveland, I’m part of the weird, wacky and often rhythmically challenged but lovable United Church of Christ. I currently serve a fun church in  the Shakespearean Center of Southern Oregon, but opinions expressed here are my own. You can find more churchy stuff and recent sermons there or on Facebook.


  1. elizabethbobrick

    Hi Rev…

    I really enjoyed the two pieces I’ve read this morning, “White LIke Me” and “Santa God.” I had a very similar experience with what you call “colorwise” vs. “colorblind” — GREAT phrase — when my kids were small. It sounds as though our towns and public schools have a similar demographic. The day my kindergartner came home and said, “Black kids are stupid, aren’t they, Mommy,” my heart dropped to the floor. This was not supposed to be the lesson of public education. (After some gentle probing, it turns out that the lesson came via her teacher.) “Santa God” was a big problem for me, too. I wrote a piece years ago on Salon called “Die, Santa, Die!” (It’s archived; if you want to see it, just go to Salon and search my name.)

    Let’s keep in touch… Oh, and I know what you’re saying about West Virginia and Ohio. I’m not your typical East coast denizen who thinks that Ohio is the midwest. Folks. Please. Look at a map.

    all best,

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.