Sightings

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March 8, 2004
"Problematize" is not in my dictionary and is inelegant, but you can figure out what it means and might know that theologians sometimes use it. Example: they/we have problematized "narrative" and "conversation." An old cartoon in the New Yorker shows three people with a well dressed chimp at a restaurant table. Of course, he can't converse. They are looking at him.
March 4, 2004
Founded in 1905, the Baptist World Alliance (BWA), like other Christian World Communions (CWC), functions as an alternative to conciliar ecumenism in the maintenance of international denominational links. Through it, Baptist church bodies from around the world can meet periodically to network and share ideas about issues of common interest.
March 1, 2004
"Sensible Center Is Lost in Gay Marriage Debate" headlines a column by Cokie and Steven Roberts, who have the misfortune of not having been born or having developed as ideologues. Their approach is rare in these days when politically the fire-power and firing come from hard-liners on both extremes, and will grow more rare as this year of political destruction continues.
February 26, 2004
Several mainline Christian denominations are worried about gay marriage. Should the church bless a union between adults of the same gender? Can the church bless a union that the government does not recognize?
February 23, 2004
Someone once suggested that the two greatest inventions in American history are Alcoholics Anonymous and ice cream cones. As half-serious as that proposer must have been, I'd add Habitat for Humanity International (HFHI). Ordinarily we do our sighting for Sightings through print or electronic media.
February 19, 2004
The Passion of the Christ will be seen by millions of people. Many will view it reverently, as movie theatres become houses of worship. Others will condemn the director's interpretive spin in portraying Jews as unrepentant Christ killers or imposing a unified narrative on the numerous and varying biblical portraits of Jesus.
February 16, 2004
For exactly fifty years I have been tracking the "infidel" (also "free-thinker," "atheist," "secular humanist") in America, beginning with a dissertation on "The Uses of Infidelity" and an early book, The Infidel. I had expected to find a large but suppressed intellectual tradition of anti-Christian thought.
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."

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