Interesting stories I’ve found lately:
Two stories about the inside workings of the Papal Election: Religion News Service gives us The Story Behind Pope Francis Election. John Allen then lends his uniquely informed account in Not Him, Not Him, Therefore Him
Thomas Reese clears up some misconceptions and addresses perceptions of the past in Francis, Jesuits and the Dirty War. It is unfair to walk back through history and say every Christian in a troubled time should have been a martyr. He also gives us a quick view of another topic entitled: Pope Francis Supports Zero Tolerance to Child Abuse
John Allen outlines some Challenges to Vision of a ‘Poor Church for the Poor’ . The first item outlining the myths and realities of the Vatican’s wealth is particularly helpful: the Church isn’t quite as rich as it’s rumored to be. Harvard University has a bigger budget than the Vatican does.
In Pope Francis Hits Another Home Run, Michael Sean Winters gives us a great quote from the Pope’s meeting with other religious leaders: “But above all, we must keep alive in our world the thirst for the absolute, and must not allow the vision of the human person with a single dimension to prevail, according to which man is reduced to what he produces and to what he consumes: this is one most dangerous threats of our times.”
Jonathan Merritt asks Are Christian Dating Websites Undermining “Christian Values”? I’ve seen the ads and find them more than a bit creepy. How did God bring Christian couples together before the Internet? Relying on the Internet to provide a suitable love interest would be more of a leap of faith than I’d want to make (boy, am I glad I’m not looking!)
The Truth About The Lord’s Prayer is a reflection by Rick Hamlin about a little remembered aspect of this prayer: it’s in first person plural. Exploring the meaning of this is a very good enterprise.
A Jewish movement based in Berkeley gets back to their Passover roots in Jews Trek to the Mojave Desert for a Visceral Passover. The idea of celebrating this Jewish ritual in one of its earliest forms, under a tent in a desert, must yield some very different insights to the holiday. If I were Jewish, I’d be considering this.
Does the Passover Celebrate the Death of Innocent Egyptians? Rabbi David Brenner unpacks some ancient material and stories to answer this intriguing question.
A review of the new documentary: Jesus and Buddha: Practicing Across Traditions tells of a new work that seems worth checking out. I’ll put watching this on my to-do list.
Leah Libresco tells a powerful story from World War II in Now We Shoot Through a Screen, Darkly. It asks a good question whether we would be willing (if we personally were in a war) to be seen as the Angel of Death by someone else.
One of her previous posts has led me to realize that, like her, I am a Virtue Ethicist (as opposed to being a Deontologist or a Consequentialist). Some of you know know me would call that a Firm Grasp of the Obvious. We could have a party, but it likely wouldn’t be very wild, but very virtuous.
Pub Theology is a new movement that gets described in Beer, Conversation and God: Pursuing Faith Over A Pint. Glory Hallelujah, this sounds like my kind of faith sharing group! I’ll get this when it comes out as an eBook.
The Maccabeats do their version of Les Misérables, a Passover version. Some really fine singing in this clip.
A unique way of celebrating Passover: Ten Plagues Nail Decals. I wish I had a girlfriend so I could buy these for her, unless she was about to visit the Pyramids.