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What is Beach Theology?

It is a way of looking at the world. It is also an online collection of progressive Christian resources shared by the Rev. Dr. Rachael Keefe, originally from Cape Cod and for whom the beach is sacred.


Monday's Muse Vlog new!

New episodes of the pastor's vlog (video blog) are available each Monday. Check it out or directly subscribe.


Write Out of Left Field blog!

Popularly used as a free online sermon starter, also featured in the ecumenical Christian Century Blogs Network.


Living Table UCC church!

Rachael is the pastor of Living Table United Church of Christ. If you're ever in Minneapolis, you should come to worship here.

About Rachael Keefe

Rachael relocated to the Twin Cities to join Living Table UCC in December, 2014. She moved to the Midwest from New England, along with her wife, Erika, and their two cats. Rachael was ordained by the United Church of Christ in 1992, and has served in many different ministry settings both traditional and decidedly nontraditional, in Pennsylvania, Massachusetts and New Hampshire. She has a Master of Divinity degree from Princeton Theological School, another Masters degree (ThM) from Princeton, in Christian Education and Counseling, and a doctoral degree (DMin) from Andover Newton Theological School, in Newton, MA. Rachael is also an author, a painter, and a poet. On sunny afternoons you might see her with her easel at a local park or river walkway.

Have You Read These Books?

This list includes books by Rachael Keefe and others on her recommended reading list.


Barefoot Theology

Full TitleBarefoot Theoogy: A Dictionary for Pilgrims, Priests, and Poets
AuthorRachael A. Keefe
Formatpaperback 204 pages
PublisherWipf & Stock (2013)

Barefoot Theology is a paradigm-shaking invitation for readers to engage with the language of faith. Not your typical theological dictionary, this book explores Christian faith with imagination and passion. You will not find obtuse, prosaic definitions. Instead you will discover creative, poetic imagery that will accompany you as you wrestle with your own faith seeking understanding.

theology 1

Can I Get a Witness?

Full TitleCan I Get a Witness?: Reading Revelation through African American Culture
AuthorBrian K. Blount
Formatpaperback 168 pages
PublisherWestminster John Knox

In this accessible and provocative study, Brian Blount reads the book of Revelation through the lens of African American culture, drawing correspondences between Revelation's context and the long-standing suffering of African Americans.

leisure 1


Full TitleMoonheart
AuthorCharles de Lint
Formatpaperback, ebook, 448 pages
PublisherOrb Books

From Rachael: "This is my all-time favorite novel, although I am a fan of nearly everything de Lint has written. Moonheart has a little bit of everything that makes reading an adventure - time travel, romance, magic, and awesome characters."


Negotiating the Shadows

Full TitleNegotiating the Shadows: Daily Meditations for Lent
AuthorRachael A. Keefe
Formatpaperback 160 pages
PublisherWipf & Stock (2010)

This book invites the reader to experience Lent as a spiritual journey. It begins on Ash Wednesday with an invitation to engage with Christ, to have daily conversation with him, and to walk with him through the struggles and challenges of daily living. Each day offers a poetic, insightful meditation on Scripture verses that voice the human spirit's longing for the Holy Spirit. As the journey unfolds, the reader will experience the searing heat of the desert sun and the confusing shadows of the wilderness. The invitation to follow Christ, seek Christ, and be found by Christ leads the reader through the perils of the season with the promise of Easter morning.

project 5


Full TitleSuffering
AuthorDorothee Soelle
Formatpaperback 178 pages
PublisherFortress Press

A valuable contribution to the literature of theology and ethics, combining in a fascinating way biblical, theological, pastoral, and socioethical themes

project 6

Dowser Series

Full TitleDowser Series (5 books)
AuthorMeghan Ciana Doidge
Formatpaperback, ebook, pages vary
PublisherOld Man in the CrossWalk

From Rachael: "This series is just plain fun. It has cupcakes, witches, dragons and lots of laughs. It's great vacation reading!"


A Circle in the Dark

Full TitleA Circle in the Dark: Daily Meditations for Advent
AuthorRachael A. Keefe
Formatpaperback, ebook, 124 pages
PublisherWipf & Stock (2011)

Each week explores the traditional themes of Hope, Peace, Joy, and Love that are present throughout the season. It begins on the first Sunday of Advent inviting the reader to be open to new or unexpected encounters with God, to find the mystery and wonder so often missed in day-to-day life. Each daily meditation offers a poetic, insightful reflection on scripture verses that voice the human spirit's longing for the Holy Spirit - the continued struggle to find light in a dark world.

project 8

The Logic of the Spirit

Full TitleThe Logic of the Spirit: Human Development in Theological Perspective
AuthorJames E. Loder
Formatpaperback, ebook, 384 pages

In this deep and enlightening discussion, psychologist, and theologian James E. Loder demonstrates how a theological perspective enlarges our understanding of how humans grow and develop from birth through the life span.

project 9

Mr. Penumbra's 24-Hour Bookstore

Full TitleMr. Penumbra's 24-Hour Bookstore: A Novel
AuthorRobin Sloan
Formatpaperback, ebook, 304 pages

From Rachael: "This book is full of unexpected fun. It pulls you into a world that could possibly exist even though you know that it does not. Just make yourself comfortable and enjoy the journey."

  • Barefoot

    Barefoot Theology

    (a modern theological dictionary)

  • Lent

    Can I Get a Witness?


  • title



  • lent

    Negotiating the Shadows

    (Lenten reading)

  • project 5



  • project 6

    The Dowser Series


  • advent

    A Circle in the Dark

    (advent reading)

  • project 8

    The Logic of the Spirit


  • project 9

    24-Hour Bookstore


Write Out of Left Field

A lectionary-based blog, with weekly posts generally connecting the RCL to current events in the world, liturgical seasons, and the ordinary human experience. Posts include progressive Christian prayers, free sermon help, bidding prayers, reflections, and other free weekly online lectionary resources.

Here are a few selected posts. Visit the blog to read more or subscribe.

an open letter on mental illness

Read this post

Dear followers of Christ and other interested parties,

It’s time we talk about the last taboo of the church...

Sandra Bland

Read this post

Stumbling Toward a Worthy Life

If you live in the United States you should know these names as well as you know that the lion killed in Zimbabwe by a Minnesotan dentist was named Cecil... .

Superman is a Methodist

Read this post

Superman is a Methodist?

The Hulk is Catholic, Black Widow is Russian Orthodox, Captain America is Protestant...

Looking for the Pastor's Vlog?

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Editorial Book Reviews

Here is a selection of book reviews of Keefe's writing. Find more reviews on Amazon and back covers.

"I can walk through Barefoot Theology rapidly to get a feel of the ground covered, then slowly to experience its textures and to return repeatedly to the beginning of the pilgrimage. Dr. Keefe's pastoral heart and theological mind unite as she invites us to reverent, rejoicing, realistic reliance on the God who guides and loves us all the way to the heart of life-giving love."

Walter H. Wagner Moravian Theological Seminary, Bethlehem, PA

"Rachael writes with a keen intellect, a gift for creative phrasing, an idiosyncratic scriptural perspective that is both insightful and challenging, and an impressive invitation to trust in the absolute truth, love, and goodness of our Creator and Redeemer God. Sometimes the reader will have to reread and review a meditation in order to grasp its profound spiritual nuances. These meditations will guide many to a deep and meaningful spiritual Lenten journey."

Merle Jordan Professor Emeritus of Pastoral Psychology, Boston University

"Rachael Keefe offers individuals and communities of faith a fresh, timely, and authentic invitation to the season of Advent. Her readers will find thought-provoking verses with references and images that confirm the complexity of modern life. Through her poetry that resonates with Scripture, she opens up multiple layers of a lived faith that keeps hope alive in the midst of doubt. Readers will find the courage to dream again. This book is a valuable resource for personal reflections and public worship."

Sharon G. Thornton Professor Emerita of Pastoral Theology, Andover Newton Theological School

Barefoot Theology was reviewed in The Christian Century

"This lovely volume is a unique blend of scripture, poetry, and theological reflection that will enter your heart, stir your soul, and speak to your mind. Keefe is a fresh voice beckoning from the horizons of faith, the daily rounds of ministry, and deep spiritual longings. She brings a keen mind, poetic flare, and unfailing compassion to her work, and she writes with passion, vision, and an accessible style that will appeal to a wide audience." - THE CHRISTIAN CENTURY, Practical Theology Book Review, October 15, 2014.

Find more information about each of Rachael's books, and download excerpts, below. You can support the author by buying direct, or follow links to Amazon if you prefer.

A Dictionary for Pilgrims, Priests, and Poets

Add To Cart
Or view on Amazon.

Negotiating the Shadows
Daily Meditations for Lent

Add To Cart
Or view on Amazon.

A Circle in the Dark
Daily Meditations for Advent

Add To Cart
Or view on Amazon.

Bulk order discounts are available for 10+ copies of the same text. Message for a quote.

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Contact Rachael Keefe

Living Table UCC 3805 E 40th Street Minneapolis, MN 55406