Flags at the front of churches and Bibles waving at political rallies are common place in the United States, and two thirds of Americans agree with the statement “America is a Christian nation” (according to a 2013 poll). That level of fusion between love of God and love of country, however, does not explain why many, in the name of Christ, reject non-white immigrants, refuse to recognize racial injustice in spite of overwhelming evidence, oppose equality for women, defend gun culture, and excuse killing civilians…
The contemporary Christian musician Andrew Peterson provocatively laments “the second coming of the Pharisees” when he witnesses Christians behaving contrary to their teacher (Come, Lord Jesus, 2000). I heard this song playing repeatedly in my mind as I read Katherine Stewart’s recent book, The Power Worshippers, on the rise and danger of Christian nationalism.
What explains the continuing strong support by evangelical Christians for a president whose actions are the antithesis of following Jesus? Dr. Kristin Kobes Du Mez answers that question in her new book, Jesus and John Wayne: How White Evangelicals Corrupted a Faith and Fractured a Nation.
Lord, in case You haven’t noticed, things are falling apart down here. Of course, I know You’re omniscient, so I realize that You are aware, but I wonder if You’re really paying attention, Lord. This corona virus is plaguing the entire globe, and especially ravaging the poor, vulnerable and minorities, who for so long have already been suffering so much pain and injustice.
I cannot remember a time when I did not have a book or two on the go. My childhood was spent at the public library, reading under a tree, or staying up late into the night with a book. But in this time of social distancing and upheaval, my ability to focus has waned and I’ve read far less than usual.
I had the opportunity to see Keesmaat and Walsh speak on their latest joint effort, Romans Disarmed, last fall. The medium-sized lecture hall at Community Christian Reformed Church in Kitchener was packed, with nearly 100 people in attendance. Every seat was full. People were sitting in the aisle, standing against the walls, in the gymnasium…
In this sweet, gentle children’s picture book, Inuit writer and educator Nadia Sammurtok has realized her passion to preserve “the traditional Inuit lifestyle and Inuktitut language so that they may be enjoyed by future generations.”
In his boldly-titled blog post “Beauty will Save the World,” Dr. Curt Thompson urges readers to find and create beauty in art and the natural world even, and especially, during the stress of a global pandemic. He argues that noticing and creating beauty brings us into the present moment.
I know it. He knows it. I am here only to serve one teriyaki chicken on steamed rice extra broccoli extra carrots, your meal is ready sir, you’re welcome. I may be the only human he speaks with face to face this week, this month.
In White Fragility, Robin DiAngelo, a white anti-racism educator, describes the defensive moves that white people make when their ideas about race and racism are challenged. She terms these defensive moves “white fragility” – reactions characterized by emotions such as anger, fear, and guilt and by behaviours such as argumentation and silence. She argues that our largely segregated society makes these reactions possible, as it’s set up to insulate white people from racial discomfort.
In the midst of both a global pandemic and nationwide protests against anti-black racism, President Donald Trump had peaceful protestors forcefully removed from Lafayette Square by an unidentified military force so that he could walk across the street for a photo-op in front of historic St. John’s Episcopalian Church. He wanted to pose holding a Bible. The outrage expressed by Bishop Mariann Edgar Budde was echoed through much of the Christian community.
“I love Zoom coffee,” announced a friend with a tone of surprise. “Last Sunday we were in random chat rooms for ‘coffee’ after the church service. I met some wonderful people that I’ve never talked to before, though we’ve been part of the same church for fifteen years. I always had people in my own circle to catch up with after church. Now because of the pandemic lockdown I’m experiencing a bigger church.”