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February 12, 2004
With all the praise being heaped on Mel Gibson's soon-to-be-released movie, The Passion of the Christ, many people may be wondering why many Christians and Jews are unhappy. Who can complain when a major movie star invests $25 million of his own money to make a historically accurate cinematic portrayal of Jesus' last hours? Here are some reasons.
February 9, 2004
Call this column "Gibson's Passion Not My Passion" or "Sightings Fails to Sight Gibson's Passion." It's a preemptive response to reader and media requests for comment on the forthcoming film, to which so much attention is being given, and about which we've already been asked for comment.
February 5, 2004
In a speech almost a year ago to U.S. troops, President Bush declared: "The freedom you defend is the right of every person and the future of every nation. The liberty we prize is not America's gift to the world; it is God's gift to humanity."
February 2, 2004
We at Sightings are often surprised by the responses we get. We read them all, but do not have the resources to write personal responses. We did not foresee the many reactions to last week's column on the violence of sundering conflicts in the churches.
January 29, 2004
Culture, acculturation, and assimilation are powerful phenomena that play immense roles in shaping the lives of individuals and societies. Martin Marty proves in his article on Kwanzaa (Sightings, December 29) how much he and his subject, Debra J. Dickerson, have been shaped.
January 26, 2004
Devoted as Sightings authors are to the craft of religion newswriting, we know that there is inevitable distortion when religion-as-news as opposed to religion-in-features dominates. We also know that congregations, parishes, movements, and denominations at peace, or in their peaceful modes, are often under-noticed.
January 22, 2004
Reconciliation and peace. This is the banner under which the Catholic Church and its leadership have been marching this week.
January 19, 2004
Our house has always remembered Martin Luther and Martin Luther King. Our children sometimes confused the two. Son John's teacher once advised me to confront our six-year-old about his fibbing. "He claimed to have spent a week in a dormitory with Martin Luther" -- whose name had come up in a Lutheran Sunday School class.
January 15, 2004
The 2004 presidential race is shaping up to be as much an old time religious revival as it is a political contest. Informed by consultants that sixty-two percent of American voters prefer candidates with religious convictions, Democratic presidential hopefuls are boning up on their pious platitudes.
January 12, 2004
No metropolis makes our mission of "sighting" religion in public life easier than Indianapolis. Decades ago, the BBC, for their classic world-religion TV series "The Long Search," chose the U.S. for its Protestant program (with me as the American consultant) and chose Indianapolis for the close-up.


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