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Full-time professor, part-time pastor, husband, father of two small boys, just trying to make my way in a new world.
Recent Activity
In a brief recorded message, Bono made an appearance at Willow Creek Community Church near the end of the 5:30 p.m. worship service on Saturday. The church, located in the south suburbs of Chicago, was wrapping up its “Celebration of Hope," an annual series challenging members to think theologically and... Continue reading
Posted Apr 23, 2016 at The Most Beautiful Sounds
March 1987. That was the month two pop records were released—albums that eventually gained iconic 1980s status. It might have been a well-timed conspiracy, or it was more likely a reaction to the era, but both reflected an unsettled view of America. Prince’s Sign ☮ the Times (intended to read... Continue reading
Posted Apr 22, 2016 at The Most Beautiful Sounds
Hi, Scott. Thanks for leaving such a thoughtful comment. And I think you're right about the sequence--it's one of the most powerful U2 have ever done. Thanks again.-Tim
On the eve of Christmas, at the dawn of a new millennium, speaking at the National Cathedral in Washington, D.C., Archbishop Desmond Tutu used an unlikely metaphor to describe the miracle of Jesus’ entry into the human experience: graffiti. What does graffiti have in common with the coming of God’s... Continue reading
Posted Dec 24, 2015 at The Most Beautiful Sounds
One of the greatest things about going to a U2 concert or joining the U2 tribe is the friends that are made along the way. It’s a stunning byproduct of the band’s music, message and mission, and I’m sure it’s intentional. Something that I’ve particularly loved about the i+e tour... Continue reading
Posted Nov 11, 2015 at The Most Beautiful Sounds
(This is a repost from my other blog. These posts are journals entries for me. I guess that's who I'm writing them for anyway. This one was written long before the i+e tour, and long before I had any inkling of an idea we'd end up having a Crystal Ballroom... Continue reading
Posted Oct 31, 2015 at The Most Beautiful Sounds
UPDATE, October 26: You can now download the virtual reality video for "Song For Someone" using the app "Vrse" in the iTunes and Google stores. My advice: plug earbuds into your device and sit in a free spinning chair! Vrse also has videos available to watch online at, but... Continue reading
Posted Oct 25, 2015 at The Most Beautiful Sounds
Sometimes we have to stand somewhere new in order to see an old familiar image in a different way. I noticed this one day as I looked into a mirror while wearing my shirt with the No Line On The Horizon logo. I've loved the image of "U2" with the... Continue reading
Posted Oct 17, 2015 at The Most Beautiful Sounds
While U2’s seasonal metaphor has always intrigued me, I’m more awed now by the essence of “October” than I ever have been. In an article for four years ago, on the 30th anniversary of U2’s second record, I wrote, I think that's why I'm drawn to the album October,... Continue reading
Posted Oct 1, 2015 at The Most Beautiful Sounds
From your American friends: we were happy too to find out that Ireland got first crack at the tickets! Completely fair, appropriate and understandable. Can't wait to hear what you think about the show. I promise not to text you ;-)
I'm with you, U2Trish. But, fortunately, I know the band appreciates fans at all levels of understanding! -Tim
U2Roeli, I've now heard that from a few Europeans, and I've been persuaded. Thanks for adding this viewpoint here. As is always the case with U2, there's always more to be said. I'm grateful for readers like you who say it! -Tim PS. I've always thought it interesting the love that Bono has for this melody from the 9th/Ode/Alle Menschen. Especially when he used it for the intro to "Get On Your Boots"!
Geoff, an excellent connection to Psalm 73 and Matthew 25. I think you're right on! Thank you so much. -Tim
U2’s recent European leg kicked off this last week with two shows in Turin. Many of us had wondered, would Bono keep a variety of American themes alive from the first leg? “I got my hands up. I surrender. Don’t shoot. I can’t breathe.” (References to racial violence in Ferguson,... Continue reading
Posted Sep 7, 2015 at The Most Beautiful Sounds
U2’s notion of names—and namelessness—continues on the I+E tour, reminding us that some things deserve to be named, while some are better left vague. At least partial inspiration for “Where The Streets Have No Name” comes from Bono and Ali’s visit to Ethiopia in the mid ‘80s, as they witnessed... Continue reading
Posted Aug 27, 2015 at The Most Beautiful Sounds
Thank you, Swisscritter. I appreciate the kind words! -Tim
Thanks, David! It's amazing how we can see our own lives represented in this tour. Makes it so personal and engaging! -Tim
About that title. Innocence + Experience. Or, as likes it, “iNNOCENCE + eXPERIENCE.” Which also has the abbreviation “i+e”. So many little nuances built into that simple, yet complex, title. I think of the top-level domain extension on the internet for Ireland: “.ie” is the country code on the... Continue reading
Posted Aug 10, 2015 at The Most Beautiful Sounds
It's always nice to have one's thoughts confirmed by the B man (my tweet/graphic from July)... iNNOCENCE AND eXPERIENCE. (And apparently Bono kept Adam's glasses). "Change the World." #U2ieTour — Tim Neufeld (@timneufeld) July 3, 2015 _______________________________________ And then this excerpt from the band's SiriusXM interview, to be aired... Continue reading
Posted Aug 6, 2015 at The Most Beautiful Sounds
This U2 tour has been a kind of crack. I never anticipated attending so many of the concerts. I didn't set out to be a groupie or a "fangirl." I've never met the band, I've only attended a few tours (my first was on top of the LA Coliseum in... Continue reading
Posted Aug 4, 2015 at The Most Beautiful Sounds
“We have come here to apologize for what our ancestors did, to ask for your forgiveness.” “We plead with you, if you can, to forgive us and the crimes of our forefathers.” These are just two of the acknowledgments made... Continue reading
Posted Jul 18, 2015 at Occasio
Jim, I completely agree that the pages are cut/torn very intentionally. One thing I've been trying to determine: If a page is showing most of Ps 105 on the bottom half, but has a couple lines from Ps 104 indicating that the top half of the page contained more of 104, did they also drop that half of the sheet or discard it? They use so many different Psalms at this point, it could be very hard to tell. Thanks for the kind words!
Thanks for the tip, Glen. I'll watch for that! I have no idea why that would happen. -Tim
Toggle Commented Jun 28, 2015 on New Graffiti Wall: not invisible at Occasio
On June 5, 2015, I delivered the closing address for a gathering of the North American Association of Christians in Social Work (California chapter) at Fresno Pacific University. In my talk, "Social Justice and Pop Culture: U2 as a non-traditional... Continue reading
Posted Jun 15, 2015 at Occasio
"Lucifer's Hands" strikes me in exactly the same way. I was giddy when I heard it come into the set on Saturday. And it fits perfectly in the early 2nd half of the show as a joyful tribute to freedom and release. One other connection I find interesting--I think it's deeply linked to "The Troubles." As the final song on SOI, "Troubles" reminds me that "little by little they robbed and stole till someone else was in control." But LH, the 1st song on the extended CD/Album (and the very next song we hear after "Troubles"), shifts the focus in the opposite direction, declaring "you're no longer in control of me," and then adding a proclamation of the ancient name for the divine, "I AM." It's such a thrilling sound, beat and message. It's time for more punk rock like this in the suburbs!