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It is always a daunting task to turn a Broadway hit musical into a major film. Even if you front load a ton of stars into said movie, you will have to either: 1) make sure they can all really sing, or 2) settle for someone who is really good at lip-syncing or is that lip-singing? The perils of the latter became very clear in the Milli Vanilli scandal of a band who never actually sang their own songs, but… Read more

E. Stanley Jones, a twentieth-century Methodist missionary to India (and Asbury graduate): “A soul without a body is a ghost; a body without a soul is a corpse. The Gospel is addressed to living persons, soul and body, in all of their broken humanity and need for wholeness.” There is no spiritual Gospel without the social Gospel. There is no social Gospel without the spiritual Gospel. Proclaim the whole Gospel for the whole person in the whole world, and the… Read more

BONUM NOVUM ANNUM Why is new important If old can do the job? Why a cause to celebrate Or perchance to sob? Thank Julius for the calendar It didn’t come from God. It seems so strange we celebrate The arbitrary and odd. Janus at least was two-faced He looked back and ahead. But we seem to like it better If we consider the old year dead. And even the numbered year itself Comes from a short monk’s error. Jesus’ birth… Read more

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Anyone who lived through the 60s will remember the haunting paintings of children with enormous eyes. And almost none of them will know the story behind the paintings— until now, thanks to Amy Adams, Christoph Waltz, and surprisingly, Tim Burton who has produced a whole series of strange and wonderful movies—-Beetlejuice, Edward Scissorhands, The Nightmare Before Christmas, Ed Wood, Sleepy Hollow, Corpse Bride, Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street, Dark Shadows and Frankenweenie, and is well known for… Read more As we head to the New Year, one thing we need more of in America is thoughtful discussion on major issues that trouble our society. We need less polemics, less propaganda, less shouting, less shock jocks on radio or TV, less ideologically driven news from whatever perspective, and more real dialogue, rather than posturing. Here is a link to a thoughtful discussion on race and guns and related matters by former President Clinton. In my view, he’s right about… Read more

“There are two great days in a person’s life – the day we are born and the day we discover why.” —William Barclay “God gave us the gift of life; it is up to us to give ourselves the gift of living well.”—Voltaire “How old would you be if you didn’t know how old you are?”—Satchel Paige (famous baseball pitcher who was famously elusive or uncertain about his own age, perhaps so he could keep pitching professionally). “The great thing… Read more

“It’s the person one imagines can hardly do anything, that end up doing something no one has yet imagined.” This is the leitmotif of ‘The Imitation Game’, a very fine film indeed which is receiving all kinds of award nominations during this season. We seem to love our stories about socially awkward, eccentric, geniuses. Interestingly, the two most memorable roles that Benedict Cumberbatch has thus far played both involve such persons— the fictional character Sherlock Holmes and the very real… Read more

I’ve been a Lindsey Davis fan for a very long time. Of the truly excellent novelists about the Roman Republic and the Empire, Coleen McCullough, Stephen Saylor, and Lindsey Davis, none of them are as clever and add as much humor to the telling of the tale as Lindsey Davis. None cook up the atmosphere or ethos of the era any better than her either. I’ve read all twenty or so of the Marcus Didius Falco novels and loved them… Read more

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