Carl Kenney

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Carl Kenney is a minister, author, advocate, teacher, and in his own words, a “prophet of the people.” He believes that we spend too much time and energy fighting one another because of our differences—with devastating and wide-reaching results.

“I don’t have to tear you down for the sake of making me better.”

My theology is rooted in the compassion of Christ. I’m a person who has experienced the love of God after having made my share of mistakes. I’ve been in recovery over 30 years. My sister died at age 13 and I started using substances to hide my pain. My God loved me through that and I bring my own personal experience of recovery to my faith. I see the very spirit of God in every face. I cannot look at a person and hold myself higher than them. I can’t measure them as less than me because of what they believe, or their orientation, or any other issue that may be present in their life.

My theology is an experiential theology. It’s been supported by the teachings of Christ who found me and said “I love you still,” knowing that I did not deserve that. It comes out of knowing that even in my walk of faith, I have not been a perfect vessel. I never will be, but I’ve been faithful and I see that in everyone I meet. We share in common our frailty. Who am I to judge? That’s what gives me the strength to keep on moving.

Carl Kenney full podcast

Discussion Questions

  • What does true listening involve? How often do you listen to others? How would you describe your approach to listening?
  • Carl says, “I’m telling people to shut up long enough to listen to each other.” Is true listening synonymous with agreeing? How do you measure the quality of a conversation, even if it’s marked by profound disagreement? What is the point of conversation?
  • If you’re a person of faith, how does that impact the way to view other people?
  • How do you understand Carl’s words “My theology is an experiential theology.” How would you describe your own theology?
  • What are your thoughts on “coexistence?” What does that word mean to you?
  • Are you being who you’re created to be? How do you know who you’re created to be? Do you like who you’re created to be?

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