Not prone to patriotic sentiment, I was surprised to be nearly moved to tears when I first visited the new National Constitution Center in Philadelphia. The museum, located on the Independence Mall near the Liberty Bell and dedicated on the 4th of July, communicates both the promise and fragility of U.S. institutions.
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September 11, 2003
September 8, 2003
"Anything anybody can say about America is true," said 60's countercultural figure Emmett Grogan. "Anything anybody can say about American religion is true," an 00's figurer about culture could also say. Whoever monitors the scene weekly, as Sightings does, could find evidence to support that thesis.
September 4, 2003
In the June 3, 1981 entry of Father Alexander Schmemann's Journals (St.
September 2, 2003
"Homosexual bishops? How long before we see pedophile bishops, necrophile Deans of Cathedrals and cannibalistic Archdeacons?" Those questions come from a Wall Street Journal op-ed (August 28) by an Anglican-ist from London. Sharing the same page is an editorial that mildly chastises Justice Roy "Ten Commandments" Moore of Alabama and then really chastises his chastisers.
August 28, 2003
In the wake of the Situation Ethics debate sparked by Joseph Fletcher in the late 1960s, the defensive cry often heard regarding the Decalogue was “They’re not the Ten Suggestions; they’re the Ten Commandments.” Absolutism versus relativism (or Fletcher’s proposed middle ground) in moral choice was, and is, a proper debate within the household of faith, but how does it translate in the broader
August 18, 2003
A few weeks ago, while I was hiding in the mountains of Oregon and Colorado, Sightings published a critique by Andrew Weaver of "a gaggle of so-called 'renewal groups'" financed by the political right-wing.
August 14, 2003
Three events related to the ongoing argument over homosexuality in the Anglican (Episcopal) church popped up in recent months, forcing the Anglican communion to take action. The Canadian diocese of New Westminster authorized liturgies for blessing same-sex partnerships in late spring.
August 11, 2003
When religion was "a private affair," it showed up in cartoons only in innocuous forms. Occasionally there would be representations of happy-go-lucky if slightly sappy, and certainly harmless, parsons. In The New Yorker the self-important Episcopal or other mainline clergy made appearances from time to time.
August 7, 2003
In his July 10 Sightings, “The Fighting Methodists,” Andrew Weaver uncritically accepts the hyperbolic claims of United Methodism @ Risk, a self-published outcry against conservative influence within the United Methodist Church.
August 4, 2003
Last week Sightings introduced the just published A People Adrift, The Crisis of the Roman Catholic Church in America by Peter Steinfels. Since this column is not in the book review or book promotion business, it has to regard a book as news in order to note it. And Steinfels's elaboration of crisis is news.
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