From San Quentin to Silicon Valley

a story of change, accountability and freedom

The Unforgivable 

In the world of Harry Potter there are 3 curses deemed to be “unforgiveable”: curses that cause mind control, torture and death. These can send someone to Azkaban the wizard prison – for life.

This makes some sense to me.

But growing up as a conservative Christian, I was taught that all sins could be forgiven except one – but it wasn't murder, mind control or torture of another human, it was blasphemy against the holy spirit. A couple years ago, there was a trend on You Tube where people would film themselves “blaspheming against the Holy Spirit” and then they’d keep the video rolling just to prove that they were not struck down by God.  They indeed, remained un-smited.

It’s important to me that The Confessional not be a particularly religious show so forgive me for the following – but when Jesus and his followers went about forgiving sins and casting out demons they always did so by “the power of the Holy Spirit” so I realized the unforgivable sin isn’t saying the Holy Spirit doesn't exist, the unforgivable sin is believing that there is no power to the holy –  meaning, it’s believing that you are not redeemable and someone else is not redeemable.

But if people can’t change – if we are so cynical as to think human transformation is not possible, then what the fuck are we up to? Why bother with anti-racism work and therapy and AA meetings. 

I believe in redemption, not because I am naïve. I believe in redemption because I am desperate for it myself.

Episode 3 of The Confessional

This week I talk to Chris Schumacher about what landed him in San Quentin for 17 years, how he did his time, and what he’s like now. It’s a true story of redemption, but not an easy one to take in. I hope you listen anyhow.

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Tune In This Friday For A Live Chat and Q & A With Me And Chris!

Friday May 1st, 5p PST/ 5p MST/ 6p CST/ 7p EST Chris and I will have a chat live on my Instagram. Just click on the circle with my image on the upper left. Last week’s chat with Lenny was really fun. One thing I will be asking Chris is what wisdom he can offer us while we are quarantined about how to live well during social isolation and while having our freedom of movement so restricted. I think folks who are formerly incarcerated have something to offer us!

speaking of which….Ear Hustle a finalist for the Pulitzer!

Ear Hustle - a brilliant show about life inside San Quentin is my favorite podcast! It humanizes incarcerated men and takes us inside prison life. Also, one of the founders, Antwan Bank Williams, who wrote the theme music for Ear Hustle also wrote the theme for The Confessional. He served his time and is out now creating visual art and amazing music. Here’s his Instagram.

Please keep incarcerated people in your prayers.

They are at such high risk for infectious disease and add to that the fact that all the programing and visits have been taken away from them. It’s a hard time for everyone, but especially for those behind bars. I miss the women at the prison where I get to preach and it makes me crazy that I can’t be there.

Thanks For Supporting This New Project!

I’m deeply grateful that in a world where there are a gazillion pieces of media clamoring for our attention, that you would choose to tune in to this one. If you’d like to help further, consider subscribing wherever you get your podcasts, rating or much better yet, writing a review on Apple Podcasts. That really helps. Also, if you like the show, tell a friend about it. Podcasts are still mostly a word-of-mouth phenomenon. And of course if you feel compelled to share The Confessional on social media that is lovely as well, you can use the hashtag #The ConfessionalPod 

There’s bonus content from each episode for paid subscribers to The Corners.

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