Presbyterian Voices for Justice 

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Links to other groups & sites

While we'd love to claim that Witherspoon can tell you everything you need to know about progressive Presbyterians, we know that just ain't so.

So here are links to a variety of Web sites where you'll find much information and many opinions from groups within or on the edges of the Presbyterian Church (USA).

Can you suggest some new links?  Please send a note!

Please keep in mind that a listing here does not imply our recommendation, or a guarantee of the accuracy of everything you'll find on these sites.  This list is just to help you find a spectrum of views.

Enjoy your wanderings - but we hope you'll use your browser's "Back" button to come back to Witherspoon to explore a little more!

PC(USA) sites

The Presbyterian Church (USA) official web site offers a wealth of news and information.

The Presbyterian Washington Office provides our church with a voice in the political life of our nation -- and provides us with many resources for the expression of our faith in the political arena. 

The Presbyterian United Nations Office, located at the Church Center for the UN in New York City, was established in 1988, but carries on a long history of Presbyterian involvement in social justice and international affairs. It bears witness in the midst of the UN to our church's positions on international issues, and it organizes seminars, workshops and resources designed to help our church constituency learn about the UN.

The Presbyterian Peacemaking Program provides lots of good resources for study, worship, and action.

These new pages have recently been opened [in May 2002] on the PC(USA) site:

bulletWomen's Ministries
bulletPresbyterian Women
bulletPresbyterian Women's gathering
bulletNational Network of Presbyterian College Women
bulletWomen's Advocacy
bulletThere's also a new site for Spiritual Formation

Unofficial groups and publications related to the PC(USA)

The Presbyterian Peace Fellowship "is a national community of Presbyterians who trust in the nonviolent Jesus Christ. We call forth and celebrate prophetic action by individuals and by our denomination in the search for alternatives to violence, exploitation, militarism, and war."  (Check out their redesigned and beautiful and informative website!)

The Covenant Network is a coalition of congregations and individuals committed to a united and more inclusive Presbyterian Church.

The More Light Presbyterians network includes congregations and individuals working for the full inclusion of gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people within the life of the Presbyterian Church. 

Presbyterians for Restoring Creation is a faith community dedicated to environmental wholeness with social justice seeking to be a prophetic voice for substantive change in the church and in the world.

No2Torture, a great source for information and action against torture, was initiated by people who took part in the 2005 Peacemaking Conference at Ghost Ranch. They held an important conference and witness in Miami early in January.

Voices of Sophia is "a community of women and men in the larger community of the Presbyterian Church (USA) being reformed by God through the Spirit of the living Christ, and working toward the transformation of the church into a discipleship of equals."

The Shower of Stoles is a traveling exhibit of hundreds of liturgical stoles, given by or dedicated to those whose gifts are not welcomed by the Presbyterian Church because of their sexual orientation, or who must serve in silence. And click here to see Director Martha Juillerat's vivid story of the whole venture as an affirmation of the gifts of people whose gifts are not accepted by the PC(USA).

That All May Freely Serve (TAMFS) is "... a group of dedicated Christians, working within the boundaries of existing Presbyterian Church (USA) policy ... [to] open barriers in order to permit gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender (GLBT) people to serve openly as clergy, elders, and deacons within the denomination."

Presbyterian Parents of Gays and Lesbians (PPGL)  "provide[s] a support network of pastoral care and information about homosexuality to parents of gay and lesbian children in an environment of faith that is safe, nurturing and confidential so that parents may strive toward understanding, acceptance and affirmation of themselves and their sons and daughters."

Semper Reformanda (Always Being Reformed) is a group of Presbyterians working for the theological renewal of the church along the lines of classical "liberalism."  They have now merged with the Witherspoon Society, and their web site is now hosted here.

The Presbyterian Outlook is "an independent weekly serving the Presbyterian Church (USA)," and provides good news coverage from a fairly centrist position.

PresbyWeb offers an awesome array of links to Presbyterian-related web sites, plus updates on news relating to the church.  If the site seems to offer a somewhat conservative point of view, that may well be because the Presbyterian Right has thus far been more active on the Web than progressive groups.  Its creator, Hans Cornelder, has recently been named to membership on the board of the Presbyterian Coalition.

The Presbyterian Layman web site offers viewpoints almost totally in opposition to those held by the Witherspoon Society.  If you want to know what the Radical Right in the Presbyterian Church is thinking and saying, that's the place to start.  The site includes links to many other conservative sites.

The Presbyterian Coalition is a relatively new umbrella group for organizations on the Presbyterian Right.  Its web site offers articles from its newsletter and other items.

Groups beyond the Presbyterian Church

Some of our visitors have suggested that we provide links to groups and web sites of other denominations.  Believing that there really is a world beyond the PCUSA, we offer a few links here.  If you can suggest others, please send them to the Webmaster.

The National Council of Churches provides a variety of information - including the story of an alliance between NCC and Habitat for Humanity to build houses in Korea, and the latest ecumenical statements on the energy debate.

The Re-Imagining Community is a "global, ecumenical community of acceptance where exploration, discussion, study, and practice of the Christian faith are carried out freely and responsibly to seek justice, honor creation, and call the church into solidarity with all people of God."  [Note:  As of October 2005 this site seems to be inactive.]

The Interfaith Alliance is a nonpartisan, interfaith organization committed to three main goals: promoting the positive role of religion as a healing and constructive force in public life, encouraging the renewal of religious values within our families and neighborhoods, and providing people of faith with an alternative voice to that of the radical religious right.

Progressive, justice-oriented sites from other Protestant churches include:
bulletDisciples Justice Action Network (DJAN)
bulletMethodist Federation for Social Action (MFSA) 
bulletThe United Church of Christ web site includes a very good page on Justice and Peace, with a good file of action alerts and other documents.

Bread for the World is "a nationwide Christian citizens movement seeking justice for the world's hungry people by lobbying our nation's decision makers."  Their current focus is Jubilee 2000 and Project Debt Relief.

The Institute for Democracy Studies is a research and educational center that studies anti-democratic religious and political movements and organizations in the U.S and internationally. For information on their recent study of the "Religious Right" in the Presbyterian Church, click here.

The Center for Progressive Christianity an ecumenical coalition of progressive Christian congregations around the world which is "encouraging churches to care about people who find organized religion irrelevant, ineffectual, or repressive."

Reformed Online has been launched to promote unity among the 700+ denominations in the Reformed tradition about the world. The site provides information and news about these churches, coming events, and a virtual library of documents, books and papers related to the Reformed tradition.

BeliefNet began as a very ambitious web site, offering religious news covering a broad spectrum of religions and nations. It currently (early 2008) seems to reflect American popular-evangelical patterns of belief, but is certainly not exclusively that.  There are voices of other faith traditions as well, and it's a place worth visiting now and then.

Moving Ideas: The electronic policy network, offers a quick look at lots of material - news items, analysis, opinion. This is a project of The American Prospect magazine, and like the magazine it reflects a responsible, progressive approach to current issues.

ProgressiveSecretary is a service provided by a small band of volunteers, who compose letters directed to legislators and others, presenting them with views on a wide range of issues from a progressive point of view.  They send you the letter, you read it, and if you want to send it then you just click and reply. Progressive Secretary does the rest.

The Institute for Food and Development Policy – better known as Food First – is a member-supported, nonprofit peoples' think tank and education-for-action center. Their work highlights root causes and value-based solutions to hunger and poverty around the world, with a commitment to establishing food as a fundamental human right. Their web site has over a thousand articles on social justice, development, aid, trade, sustainable agriculture, and social movements – and lots more!

Just added:

Lutheran web site carries news from the Lutheran Alliance for Full Participation

The webmaster describes the site: is a grassroots campaign to change the discriminatory Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) policy regarding ordination of lgbt clergy and to protect the right of ELCA pastors to bless convenanted same-gender relationships.

He adds that "the ELCA's church-wide assembly in August this year has the opportunity to make decisions on these matters, and much of our effort is oriented toward that decision point." Here’s a good place to follow their efforts.   [4-13-05]

ExploreFaith -- a website for faith explorers    [7-8-05]

Supported largely by Episcopal congregations in the US, it has brief essays by such luminaries as Marcus Borg, Barbara Brown Taylor, as well others less well known. Dugan adds, "There are many interesting links for questions, thoughts, ideas for those on their respective spiritual journeys and development."   

A few samples:

bullet Marcus Borg answers the question, What is the significance of the cross and the crucifixion of Jesus?
bulletThe Rev. Margaret Gunness, a retired Episcopal priest, writes on "Do I have to believe that Christ literally rose from the dead to be a Christian?"


Two interesting new websites    [11-10-04]

bulletBruderhof offers Peacemakers' Guide

Anyone can be a peacemaker. The site is described thus: "The Bruderhof Peacemakers Guide was created to inspire and empower you to work for peace, and to arm you with living proof of the power of nonviolence to effect change and resolve conflicts. Some of the peacemakers featured on this website are famous, others obscure, but all have dedicated their lives to building a more peaceful and just world through nonviolent means. For each you will find a short biography, an original portrait, and links to further reading.

"We've also supplied you with ammunition to help you convince those who doubt the practicality of nonviolence. In this section you'll find writings on nonviolence, reconciliation, conflict resolution, pacifism, and conscientious objection to military service, as well as free e-books on peace-related themes."

The site includes material on such peacemakers as Jim Wallis, Thich Nhat Hanh, Thomas Merton, and Jun Yasuda.

bulletA new website boldly proclaims "Jesus Is a Liberal"

JesusIsALiberal is described by its creators as "a website for liberal and progressive thinking Christians. This website is for those who believe that the teachings of Jesus outline a liberal, progressive, tolerant, loving, open minded, holistic, and sustainable vision for our World."

Jonathan W. Logan, one of the creators of the site, says further: "While we come from three different Christian denominations, we all share one faith and a compelling belief in the positive good news of Jesus and His teachings and what they ask of us and require of us in living our faith -- good deeds, honesty (personal and professional), the cessation of violence & war, fairness & justice, a caring compassionate acceptance of others and tolerance for all whom we disagree with -- provided they do us no harm -- and a Liberal, Progressive, Tolerant, Loving, open minded, holistic, and sustainable vision for our World. There is so much work to do in this world!"

The lighter side of the Web

If you enjoy satiric views of American religion, drop in on "Landover Baptist: America's Favorite Church." If you take conservative Christianity -- especially of the Southern Baptist variety -- with ultimate seriousness, avoid this site; otherwise, enjoy it.

And if you prefer to laugh at progressive Presbyterians, take a look at PresbyWorld, "the satire site for Presbyterians."  Here's satire aimed at folks like the sponsors of this website -- along with serious expositions of conservative views on current issues. You may find some of the humor to be in poor taste, but .... you've been warned.


New website launched to strengthen progressive Christian voices

The Progressive Christian Witness ( is an Internet-based initiative to strengthen progressive Christian voices in public discussion across America, especially in communities where the dominant voice is that of the religious right. Progressive voices proclaim the redemptive heritage of the Christian faith in a manner that is biblically and theologically responsible, ethically committed, and informed by current knowledge.

A ministry of Pacific School of Religion (PSR) to be launched on January 24, 2006, The Progressive Christian Witness (PCW) presents a growing collection of resources that bring a progressive Christian perspective to significant issues in American life—for example, the authority of the Bible, gender and sexuality, government and economics, environmental stewardship, beginning and end of life ethical issues, and America’s role in the world. PCW’s Witness pages publish brief, theologically grounded articles on these topics. Witness articles are available as PDFs designed to be included in Sunday worship bulletins or distributed for adult class discussions. Its Explorations pages provide more extensive essays by Christian scholars and pastors. The Other Voices page carries briefly annotated links to scores of other progressive Christian websites. These resources can be used in shaping sermons, Bible study, media statements, and other forms of public discourse.

Click here to sign up for our email newsletter; direct questions and comments to

This page was last edited on 03/10/10

A whole new treasure-trove of connections:  Blogs for thoughtful and curious progressives!

A blog for eager readers and explorers of faith   [4-3-07]

Your WebWeaver must confess he is a bit baffled by the current flood of blogs, but he’s slowly recognizing that there are good things worth a visit now and then.

Let me introduce just one of them today, and I’ll try to be back with more suggestions in the weeks to come.

And if you have suggestions, please send a note! We don’t want this website to become just a advertising list of blogs, and we won’t automatically recommend just anything that is mentioned. But if you can suggest a blog page that offers helpful news and commentary about church and/or society – and especially the interactions between them – we’ll be happy to consider mentioning it. (Even if it’s your own!)

Just send a note!

Enough introduction. Here’s our first venture into the wild world of blogs:

Shuck and Jive is the creation of the Rev. John Shuck, who describes his blog thus: "A Presbyterian minister blogs about spirituality, culture, religion (both organized and disorganized), life, evolution, literature, Jesus and lightening up. John Shuck is the pastor of the First Presbyterian Church of Elizabethton, Tennessee (a liberal church on the buckle of the Bible belt)."

A couple recent samples:

On March 29, as part of a series of blogs on readings for Holy Week, he gave very brief introductions to books such as Marcus Borg's latest, Jesus: Uncovering the Life, Teachings, and Relevance of a Religious Revolutionary; Borg and John Dominic Crossan’s The Last Week: A Day-by-Day Account of Jesus' Final Week in Jerusalem; and James Tabor’s The Jesus Dynasty – among others!

Shuck reads a lot, but he doesn’t limit himself to the library. He offers his own theological and ethical reflections on a wide range of issues, including the environment, politics, the church, the American Empire, and more. Much more.

For a slightly different tone, check out his thoughts for Saturday, March 31, on the topic "Sometimes I wish I was a RevGal," which begins: "Do you notice the difference between clergy boy bloggers and clergy girl bloggers? There really is a difference."

As with many bloggers, he invites visitors to subscribe to e-mail updates sent whenever he adds to his blog.

So – what do you think of blogs (either Shuck and Jive in particular, or others, or the whole proliferating genre)? Just send a note with your comments and recommendations, and we’ll share it here.

More blogs
for the curious and the thoughtful  

After recommending on blog of interest to progressive Presbyterians (and others!), we asked for other suggestions.  We’ve received some very good suggestions:


Please consider my blog -- . I think it's unique. I promote progressive Christianity, progressive Politics, the Perennial Philosophy and the New Church for the New Age. Sometimes I write my own stuff but usually I'm more like the webweaver finding good stuff and offering links and excerpts. I'm a retired Presbyterian pastor with too much time on my hands -- actively involved at First Presbyterian Church, Utica and Presbytery of Utica Church & Society Committee chaired by John Preston -- but I do enjoy blogging and I would love a little more attention from the Progressive Presbyterian community. Thanks. I do link to WS items from time to time, most recently March 27.

John A Wilde


Two blogs from San Francisco Theological Seminary students

The following pair of blogs are by myself and a good friend. We are both seminary students at SFTS who bring a unique perspective to the blogosphere.

Aric Clark:

Doug Hagler:

We've been very active lately in commenting and debating on the conservative blogs of Jim Berkley, and Tom Gray,

In return we've drawn the attention of a variety of people who disagree with our progressive views, but we welcome the opportunity for meaningful dialogue.

Incidentally, I'm writing a series of rebuttals to the work of Robert Gagnon of Pittsburgh Theological Seminary, that your readers might be interested in.



Preaching Peace

This suggestion comes from John Mann, formerly a PC(USA) pastor, now serving in the Church of Scotland. He has contributed a number of reports and essays here.  For one example >>

I would recommend the blog at Preaching Peace,; I must add though that I'm partial to it because I am one the regular contributors.

Take Care - John Mann


Who’s next?

If you have one or two favorite blogs (even your own),
just send a note.
And unless we have serious doubts, we’ll post it here.


Some blogs worth visiting

PVJ's Facebook page

Mitch Trigger, PVJ's Secretary/Communicator, has created a Facebook page where Witherspoon members and others can gather to exchange news and views. Mitch and a few others have posted bits of news, both personal and organizational. But there’s room for more!

You can post your own news and views, or initiate a conversation about a topic of interest to you.


John Shuck’s new "Religion for Life" website

Long-time and stimulating blogger John Shuck, a Presbyterian minister currently serving as pastor of First Presbyterian Church of Elizabethton, Tenn., writes about spirituality, culture, religion (both organized and disorganized), life, evolution, literature, Jesus, and lightening up.

Click here for his blog posts.

Click here for podcasts of his radio program, which "explores the intersection of religion, social justice and public life."


John Harris’ Summit to Shore blogspot

Theological and philosophical reflections on everything between summit to shore, including kayaking, climbing, religion, spirituality, philosophy, theology, The Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), New York City and the Queens neighborhood of Ridgewood -- by a progressive New York City Presbyterian Pastor. John is a former member of the Witherspoon board, and is designated pastor of North Presbyterian Church in Flushing, NY.


Voices of Sophia blog

Heather Reichgott, who has created this new blog for Voices of Sophia, introduces it:

After fifteen years of scholarship and activism, Voices of Sophia presents a blog. Here, we present the voices of feminist theologians of all stripes: scholars, clergy, students, exiles, missionaries, workers, thinkers, artists, lovers and devotees, from many parts of the world, all children of the God in whose image women are made. .... This blog seeks to glorify God through prayer, work, art, and intellectual reflection. Through articles and ensuing discussion we hope to become an active and thoughtful community.


Got more blogs to recommend?

Please send a note, and we'll see what we can do!


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