Jared Witt - October 30, 2018
Apologies that you haven't heard from me in a while. Busy times here at Castle Church HQ. Had a terrific Brewery Blessing with around 200 of our closest friends + the Bishop of the Florida Bahamas Synod of the ELCA, got our first beer kegged and have 6 more in the fermenter forest in preparation for New Release November and Grand Opening, December 1.
In lieu of a written blog, one of our church leaders, Dan Sterling, and I had the privilege of doing the very popular podcast, A Corporate Time with Tom and Dan, based here in Orlando. Thanks for your patience. Hope you enjoy.
Cheers and Peace,
Jared Witt - June 21, 2018
Do we get our beliefs from our Bible or our Bible from our beliefs?
This is a pretty urgent question in this twilight zone time in which we’re living, when so many of my pastoral colleagues are being reprimanded by their congregants for “getting too political”—typically by the same congregants who want to see the ten commandments and Christian prayer mandated in public schools and who see no problem with our Attorney General saying in an official statement on an urgent public crisis:
Jared Witt l May 3, 2018
Quick note: you don’t have to be a soccer fan to read this theology blog. Fans of soap operas, rap beefs, or any of the “Real Housewives” shows will enjoy as well.
It’s just, how does anyone talk about Hebrews 4 without first talking about what’s going on in English football right now. I certainly can’t.
Arsene Wenger has been the manager of Arsenal Football Club for almost 22 years, an institution of the game as both player and coach. Last weekend, either by choice or by "choice," he announced his retirement.
22! That’s 132 in Premier League years. Bear in mind, we’re speaking of a league where it’s not unheard of for a team to see three managers in a single season. If you’re wondering, the second longest active tenure in any of the English professional leagues is Sean Dyche of Burnley at 5 years. The record for shortest reign in the modern era is Les Reed, who cleaned out his desk just 40 days after setting it up with Charlton Athletic.
Jared Witt l March 22, 2018
One sees it in every farmer’s market, in every seasonally sourced restaurant, in every documentary about human rights in the clothing industry, in every Netflix show on the sustainable food movement (my favorite is Chef's Table). There is a deep desire, that is surfacing in communities all across the country, to re-humanize the things that we buy. And we’re starting at the most basic level: with the things we put on and put into our bodies.
It’s not like we all got together and planned this. There was no conference where grass-fed beef farmers in Wisconsin got together with “buy local” activists in so-Cal and said, “Alright, here’s what we’re going to do.” In fact, none of us who are a part of whatever this is can even fully say what binds us together or what the movement is called. Some of us have very high-minded ecological concerns. Some of us, just a gut yearning to live in a tastier and less artificial way. None of us even fully sticks to our ideals a hundred percent of the time (for my part, I can’t seem to quit the cheaply made queso sauce from the tex mex place near my house). But we know it when we see it. We can sense when a dish we’re eating was seasoned with a little bit of love. And we recognize each other from across the room.
Jared Witt l March 15, 2018
Consider for a moment this well known line from the United States' Declaration of Independence:
“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness.”
As kids, most of us were probably taught in school that the founding documents of our nation—the Constitution, the Declaration, the Bill of Rights, that preamble that we all had to memorize before knowing exactly what a preamble is—were something like the boundaries beyond which power and law in our country must never stray.
Jared Witt l March 1, 2018
You hear it constantly...
“Oh, these days you have to protect yourself…”
“Anymore, you can’t be too careful…”
“When we were kids we used to…nowadays, you wouldn't even think of letting…”
…this gnawing assumption, everywhere present but scarcely ever analyzed, that the world is somehow more dangerous and the people less trustworthy now than back in the “good ol’ days.”
This is just a straight up devil's lie.
Jared Witt l February 22, 2018
[The Lord spoke to Isaiah]
Shout out, do not hold back!
Lift up your voice like a trumpet!
Announce to my people that children are dying!
Announce to this “one nation under God” their sins.
I’m to understand that day after day they seek me
and delight to know my ways,
as if they were truly a “Christian” nation
and did not forsake the way of their God;
they presume that their judgments are my righteous judgments,
they claim to be close to God.
They say, “Look, we pray to open up House proceedings. Do you not see?
We place our hands on Bibles, do you not notice?”
Jared Witt l February 15, 2018
“The geeks have inherited the Earth.”
Thus says Justin McElroy, one of the co-hosts of the wildly popular (and wildly nerdy) podcast, “My Brother, My Brother, and Me." He would know. He never expected to become a subculture celebrity when he and his three brothers from Huntington, West Virginia first started a podcast for their own amusement in 2010, where they would provide insincere but good natured advice, "Ask Amy" style, to equally insincere question askers and to somewhat more sincere inquirers on the “Yahoo Answers” platform (the latter remain anonymous, as they didn’t anticipate that their questions would become the fodder for a comedy show).
"MBMBAM" (pronounced muh 'bim bam by its cult followers) now sells out major concert venues in cities across the country and boasts such esteemed guests as Jimmy Buffett and Lin-Manuel Miranda due to a cultural shift, which is tough to prove and yet everyone who has passed from high school into adulthood over the last couple decades is vaguely aware of it: Nerdy = cool now.
Jared Witt l February 8, 2018
Masculinity is a good thing.
Toxic masculinity has become the single biggest threat to all complex life on this planet.
We should talk about that.
I almost feel like, if you’re not already nodding your head, and I still have to define “toxic masculinity,” then I’ve already lost you. But here is the shortlist of its symptoms:
Today is a big milestone in Castle Church’s young history. After dozens of sleepless nights, hundreds of prayers, and thousands of words of support and encouragement from family and friends, today, we
How Castle Church is stirring up a new spirit in the church from a brewery in Orlando, FL.