April 20, 2014

April 20, Easter Sunday, “Go Into the Tomb” John 20:1-9

In reading facebok yesterday there were the people putting down Easter, pointing out all of the resurrection narratives of the gods in the time of Jesus;  and then at the Christian Vegetarian Booth at Earthday yesterday I was bombarded with Scripture pro and con on vegetarianism, and one angry tirade against Christianity after another.

But each time I looked into the face of a hungry  person yesterday and fed them, and I listened to them,  I heard the words, “Go into the Tomb,” for in going into the tomb I come face to face with the empty tomb, and the risen Christ, and nothing else matters.

I have been trained to look at my faith through the eyes of experience, Scripture, reason and  tradition,and through those eyes I experience the evolutionary Christ who calls us to look at our eating habits and see their destructiveness to the environment, and to our own moral compass, and to love each person with our whole hearts, To me I experience God through Christ, I know God through the loving arms of Christ who is all inclusive and I am not ashamed to share  Christ for that reason.  Jesus for me has become so real and alive, and his inclusiveness and love for all of us is so real. Even in my darkest moments I know I am not far away from that love, no matter what I have done or will do–I am loved.

My heart bled yesterday as I gave two kids with no shoes, socks and just blankets around them all that I had, and I thought how much I have, and how what I do is so little. Their eyes burned into my consciousness as I saw their tears when I fed them, but my pain was that I have so much, and so many have so little, and I am selfish and self centered, and I pray that God will help me move from that selfishness and self centeredness.

Yesterday was a painful day–but an awesome day–for in experiencing the pain  ” I go late into the Tomb” and in it’s emptiness I will find the Crucifed and Risen One! Deo Gratias! Thanks be to God!


The most solid and enduring motivations for action are ultimately based on caring for others—in this case imprisoned animals, wildlife, starving people, slaughterhouse workers, and future generations, to name some of those damaged by our desire for animal foods. The health advantages of a plant-based diet are the perquisites of loving-kindness and awareness, and the diseases and discomfort caused by animal foods are some of the consequences that follow from breaking natural laws. Dr. Will Tuttle


April 19, 2014

April 19, “The Risen Life” Earth Day Holy Saturday

Matt. 28:1-10

Yesterday I saw the risen life in those who walk the Stations of the Cross-their care for each other, for those around them, their sensitivity.  I saw the risen life as I gave out food and talked to people last night, and today I go and have a table at Earth Day for the Christian Vegetarian Association and I see the risen life in those who work to preserve our enviornment. Christ is present, he walks with us. Deo Gratias! Thanks be to God!

We are all in this together. The vegan revolution will never include violence; it is a celebration of the joy and beauty of life, and an awakening to the beauty and potential of our shared life on this planet.

The only strategy for each of us is how to love and give more deeply, fully, and authentically, and in harmony with our unique talents and gifts. Together, we are transforming our world! Dr. Will Tuttle

April 18, 2014

Today is our 13th Stations of the Cross. As I look back I see not much has changed for the poorest of the poor—there are more of them, they suffer far more. For those of us who make less than $100,000.00 a year there is always the threat of being pushed out of the City if we lose our housing.
During Holy Week this year I have been putting patches on a stuffed rabbit, and reading the Velveteen Rabbit as a symbol of letting myself be open, and wearing myself out in the service of God. When the rabbit wears out—he becomes real. That is what happens to us when we are open, with our hearts, minds, and bodies to others, we are hurt, we are bruised but we become real.
Today as we silently travel through the Tenderloin let us open our hearts to the suffering of those without voice on these streets—ignore the new buildings, the peopled dressed in their finery, but look beneath that to the suffering, and see Christ being lifted upon his cross in their suffering—and in so doing become the Velveteen Rabbit—wearing yourself out in service—for in doing so we will enter resurrection, we will become real.
VegInspiration Dr. Will Tuttle
It’s actually quite obvious why heart disease and cancer “run in the family.” Everyone in the family has their legs under the same dinner table! As children we not only eat like our family but also soak up our inner attitudes from them. Unless we metaphorically leave home and question our culture’s food mentality and the enslaving propaganda of the meat-medical complex, we will find it difficult to discern our unique mission and grow spiritually.
Spiritual health, like physical and mental health, urges us to take responsibility for our lives, and to dedicate ourselves to a cause that is higher than our self-preoccupations.


April 17, 2014

April 17, “A Touch of Jesus” John 13:1-15 “Holy Thursday”

The washing of the disciples feet is a call of Jesus to all people, to get their hands dirty. It is a symbol that calls us to see beyond the money, and power, and the prestige, that we all so desire, to the pain of people–all of us. For strip away our money, prestige, and power, and we are fragile human beings.

Someone told me recentlly that as a pastor I am a “dying breed” because I sit, look people in the eye, and listen–rather then text, email, spend my time on the phone. And that is sad, and that is what I miss–someone to simply give me their time to listen, to hang out.

So to help people is actually rather easy–sit, look them in the eye, listen, give them some socks, some food, but simply be present.

This Holy Thursday–let us simply sit and give out time to another–without texting, cell phones, and email–become a part of the “dying breed”, and receive new life. Deo Gratias! Thanks be to God!

VegInspiration Dr. Will Tuttle
Animal foods require immense quantities of petroleum to produce. For example, while it takes only two calories of fossil fuel to produce one calorie of protein from soybeans, and three calories for wheat and corn, it takes fifty-four calories of petroleum to produce one calorie of protein from beef!

Animal agriculture contributes disproportionately to our consumption of petroleum and thus to air and water pollution, global warming, and the wars driven by conflict over dwindling petroleum reserves.

April 16, 2014

April 16, “A Purposeful Life”,  Isa.  50: 4-9, Matt. 26:14-25 Sor Juana Ines de la Cruz

The prophet Isaiah, spoke God’s message, “a word that would rouse the weary,” and he suffered for it. The psalmist bore insult and abuse, “because zeal for God’s house consumed him.” Jesus was betrayed by Judas and then continued through the Passion events.

At times when people tell me I am blunt, I am outspoken, and I live in away that is “scary”, I think to myself–I know damn well what I am doing, for this is the only way my life has purpose and meaning–to live out the Gospel on the edge, to speak the truth.  The cost has been people pulling away, little prestige or financial resources, but the gain has been a life full of purpose and meaning.  Like the stuffed rabbit I am sewing patches on during this week–I am torn, worn,. there are scars on my body and soul, but I am becoming more real and human–what greater reward can there be then that. Deo Gratias! Thanks be to God!

VegInspiration Dr. Will Tuttle
“Our study suggests that the closer one approaches a total plant food diet, the greater the health benefit…. It turns out that animal protein, when consumed, exhibits a variety of undesirable health effects. Whether it is the immune system, various enzyme systems, the uptake of carcinogens into the cells, or hormonal activities, animal protein generally only causes mischief.” – Dr. T. Colin Campbell, Author, The China Study

April 15, 2014

April 15, “Animal” Corrie ten Boom Jn. 13:21-33, 36-38

Yesterday monring I was walking across the street and a middle age man approached, “Fr. River?”  And as I turned, “You don’t remember me, but I knew you eighteen years ago, I was called   “Animal,”  and you gave me needles, food, and plodded me to NA. One night when I was high I tried to stabb you, and you had me 51/’50-u did not file charges.  Instead I stayed in treament, went to NA and have been clean for 18 years, here is my chip. I want to thank you for doing that, for treating me like a human being. ” I cried, for I saw resurrection.  Deo Gratias! Thanks be to God!

VegInspiration Dr. Will Tuttle
Animal foods require immense quantities of petroleum to produce. For example, while it takes only two calories of fossil fuel to produce one calorie of protein from soybeans, and three calories for wheat and corn, it takes fifty-four calories of petroleum to produce one calorie of protein from beef!

Animal agriculture contributes disproportionately to our consumption of petroleum and thus to air and water pollution, global warming, and the wars driven by conflict over dwindling petroleum reserves.


April 14, 2014

April 14 “Giving One’s All”  Bishop James Walsh,  Jn. 12:1-11

The story of the woman annointing Jesus is the story of as woman giving one’s all.  In my own way–living simply, giving of everything that I have, not hoarding or saving back–that is what I am trying to do–giving all that I have to Jesus in each person I meet, for in each person I see the broken body of Christ.

This Holy Week as I sew patches on a stuffed rabbit, and read the “Velveteen Rabbitt” slowly,  I see that this is the call  call of all of us–to give of all to others, and in so doing we have everything that we need. Leaving our selfishness in turns brings us a life of unselfishness that brings wholeness and peace to our lives. Deo Gratias! Thanks be to God!

VegInspiration Dr. Will Tuttle
Eating the flesh and secretions of animals is so fundamentally repulsive to us as humans that these animal foods make especially powerful placebos. We find vultures repulsive because they eat carrion, but we eat exactly the same thing! Sometimes it’s euphemized as aged beef.

And yet, because we’ve been taught to attribute strength and energy to eating animal foods, that expectation helps our quite miraculous and flexible psychophysiology to partially overcome the essentially disturbing and toxic nature of these foods so we can survive and function. As children, we had no other choice.

April 13, 2014

April 13, Palm Sunday, Isa. 50:4-9; Psalm 31:9-16; Philippians 2:5-11; Matthew 26: 14-27:66

Holy Week reveals our darkside. We enter the City praising God with Jesus and then desert him on Good Friday–but he is faithful and true to his word–he dies and rises believing in us.

Holy Week is about looking at our darkness–we can ignore the needs of our friends, we can walk down the street and pass by person after person who is hungry and not see them, we can turn our eye to evictions, worry about our bank account. In otherwords we only think of ourselves and those like us.

Holy Week calls us to repentance–for repentance means saying good-bye to the old self and leaving an entrance for God to act, to bring morning to the soul.  It means opening our hearts to everyone.

This Holy Week I am focusing on the story of the “Velveteen Rabbit” and my prayer is that I can become more tattered in loving others.  I invite you to become more tattered. Deo Gratias! Thanks be to God!

Veganism by Dr. Will Tuttle

The roots of our crises lie in our dinner plates. Our inherited food choices bind us to an obsolete mentality that inexorably undermines our happiness, intelligence, and freedom. Turning away is no longer an option. We are all related.

April 12, 2014

April 12, St. Teresa of Los Andes, Fear and Being A Trouble Maker

Ez. 37:21-28, Jn 11:45-56

Why would people turn on Jesus? He did good things didn’t he?  As long as you do the nice things–like simply feed people, be nice–then all is well, , but when you live out what you are teaching that is when you get into trouble. He challenged the power structures, he lived simply, he followed his own path.

I remember being told as a young pastor by a district superintendent–”You preach great sermons, but you try living that  out, you will not be a nice guy.”  I have been asked by people, “Why do people want to hurt you?, you do nice things.”    For one thing I challenge the system, like anyone else who challenges the status quo–troule follows.

Jesus challenged the status quo. On Palm  Sunday he was popular by Friday he was dead. Our friend Will Tuttle is a great vegan–but he dares to speak out the truth of why he is a vegan–and he too gets in trouble. Being a trouble maker is painful, and deadly, but from experience it is a  helll of a lot of fun.: Deo Gratias! Thanks be To God!

The word vegan, newer and more challenging than the word vegetarian because it includes every sentient being in its circle of concern and addresses all forms of unnecessary cruelty from an essentially ethical perspective, points to an ancient idea that has been articulated for many centuries, especially in the world’s spiritual traditions.

It indicates a mentality of expansive inclusiveness and is able to embrace science and virtually all religions because it is a manifestation of the yearning for universal peace, justice, wisdom, and freedom.


April 11, 2014

April 11, “The Hour of Darkness and Redemption” St. Guthlac

Jeremiah 20: 10-13 John 10:32-42

Two paintings hang on my wall, one by Elizabeth Wright is “Holy Communion and the Streets,” a picture of  a  Latino gang member bloodied, beaten and redeemed, the second is by a young man questioning his sexuality–full of question marks and crosses. 

Both are the center of worship each day for both illustrate–the darkness of life and the redeeming power of Jesus. In the questioning, in the violence–God comes through and calls us to struggle with our questions  and in the darkness of this Lent  the power of God will shine through.

For nearly twenty years there have been many hours of darkness on our journey, many, but ultimately there is redemption and resurrection and the shinging light of the Resurrected Christ shines. Deo Gratias! Thanks be to God!




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