As an inhabitant of a religiously vibrant city in a religiously vibrant nation, my "sightings" of religion in public life often come from the street. Lately my husband and I have been watching the tract war between Jews for Jesus and the Jewish Community Relations Council of New York (JCRC) heat up once again.
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August 30, 2002
August 22, 2002
Debate about school voucher systems and other tax-based support for religious institutions understandably invokes discussion of fairness and justice: for low-income parents and their children, for sectarian school parents and their children, and for the taxpayers who may be asked to fund them.
August 19, 2002
Next month in Nebraska I am to speak on non-violence -- domestic and international -- and education. While researching, I did a quick mental canvass. It is hard to think of any media coverage of religious witness against war in Iraq.
August 15, 2002
Islamic belief remained strong among Uzbekistan's traditionally Muslim population during the Soviet period. Thousands of "secret" places of worship appeared around a handful of official mosques tolerated by the government. At the same time, Soviet rule saw the decline of traditional Islamic morality.
August 13, 2002
Last week we mentioned how rare have been the reported-on voices of religious figures questioning the potential war against Saddam Hussein in Iraq. Also rarely reported on are religious questionings of American responses after 9/11. Maybe there have not been many questioners. Some were sighted in a gathering near Washington this month, and they will be reported on in Sightings.
August 9, 2002
Since its appearance two years ago, Bruce Wilkinson's The Prayer of Jabez (Sisters, Oregon: Multnomah Publishers, 2000) has sold over six million copies and has led to the creation of a small industry -- the Breakthrough Series -- based on prayers that guarantee immediate results.
August 5, 2002
"Reinhold Niebuhr, where are you now when we need you?" in effect asks David Brooks, a not unastute correspondent in The Atlantic Monthly (September, 2002). He beckons the ghost of the towering Protestant theologian and social critic of a half century ago.
August 2, 2002
There is an enduring wisdom behind the expression “we are what we eat.” Recent warnings from the public health sector that obesity has reached epidemic status in this country certainly lends credence to this culinary proverb. And if it is true that we are what we eat, what else about eating is true? Is it fair to say that we are how we eat, or where we eat?
July 31, 2002
Stories about the sexual abuse crisis in Catholicism have moved from the "feeding frenzy" to the "facing fallout" stages. Headlines announcing continued Wall Street traumas have not quite crowded priest-and-bishop news from the public eye. A sampling from last week includes: "Bishops Select Lay Board on Sexual Abuse Review," and "Young U. S.
July 25, 2002
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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