Dear Friends, I hope that this finds you well. I am writing from the city whose name signifies, in Hebrew, wholeness and peace. Today was a quiet day in the city. I even ventured downtown. There are days in which the downtown is a ghost city. No one wants to take a risk. The events of the last two years have seen the city abandon its name, its essence.
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July 25, 2002
July 22, 2002
To publish is, by definition, to go public. So religious publishing fits our category of "public religion." Evangelical publishing has gone public in such impressive ways that secular publishers compete for its authors and markets, and some (bad) evangelical fiction has topped the best-seller lists.
July 18, 2002
In "The Limits of Mother's Day and Father's Day" ( HYPERLINK "http://marty-center.uchicago.edu/sightings/archive_2002/0613.html" Sightings, 6/13/02) Reverend James L. Evans asked us to "find a way to affirm those families that work hard everyday to be faithful and effective." Evans brought us back to a valuable truth between Mother's Day and Father's Day this year.
July 15, 2002
In his column "Concerning Faith-based Initiatives," ( HYPERLINK "http://marty-center.uchicago.edu/sightings/archive_2002/0624.html" Sightings, June 24, 2002) Martin E. Marty raises questions about a piece written by John J. DiIulio, Jr., former head of the White House Office of Faith-Based and Community Initiatives.
July 10, 2002
Religious matters are increasingly in the news. There are the controversies over abuse in the Catholic Church, eruptions of European anti-Semitism in the wake of Arab-Israeli violence, and solemn arguments about the nature of Islam in the wake of 9/11, among others.
July 8, 2002
Eighteenth-century historian Edward Gibbon wrote of the Antonines' Rome: "The various modes of worship which prevailed in the Roman world were all considered by the people as equally true; by the philosopher as equally false; and by the magistrate as equally useful.
July 3, 2002
I recently rediscovered notes I had scribbled in church on a bulletin dated "Independence Day, 1971."
June 27, 2002
With the recent release of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone on video and DVD, it is an apt moment to review the religious reaction to last fall's two major film releases, the Harry Potter movie and the Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring.
June 24, 2002
Last week John J. DiIulio, Jr., who momentarily was director of the White House Office of Faith-Based and Community Initiatives, issued an angry manifesto. He foresees a "New Civil Rights Struggle." Read him on the editorial page of the The Wall Street Journal, (June 20), a site that will tilt some toward acceptance of his case and lead others to keep their guard up.
June 13, 2002
We have entered a very holy season in the Christian South. The weeks between Mother's Day and Father's Day have come to occupy a semi-sacred status. It is not just about motherhood and fatherhood. Churches use the season to celebrate and promote a vision of the ideal family. This idyllic image of family features Dad at work, Mom at home, and children playing blissfully around the hearth.
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