Updating myself at Redeemed Reader

J. B. Cheaney writes for World and for children.  With fellow children’s lit author Emily Whitten, she has a blog entitled  Redeemed Reader | Kids books. Culture. Christ.  They discuss kiddy-lit, yes, but also lots of other things, from homeschooling to our current cultural condition.  Anyway, they did an interview with me, which they are posting in two parts.  In addition to discussing classical education and vocation,  I take the occasion to update some of what I wrote in my books Reading… Read more

Homosexuality & abusing priests

A $2 million study of the priest child abuse scandal, paid for in part by the Roman Catholic Church,  takes the politically-correct position that homosexuality had nothing to do with it.  Louie Verrecchio, himself a Catholic, disagrees, based on the report’s own data: On May 18, researchers from the John Jay College of Criminal Justice released their long-awaited final report, “Causes and Context of Sexual Abuse of Minors by Catholic Priests in the United States, 1950-2010.” The research team, led… Read more

Nature & Grace in “The Tree of Life”

The movie that took the top prize at Cannes is entitled The Tree of Life.  Most critics laud the beauty of its scenes from nature but were puzzled by it all.  But Rev. Robert Barron, priest and theology professor at the University of St. Mary of the Lake, sees the Book of Job–which is directly referenced in the film–as the key.  His review in the Chicago Tribune is worth reading for his own reflections on that Book and on the way it resolves the Problem… Read more

Christless Christianity

On Sunday, Pastor Douthwaite at our church gave one of the best comments on the Harold Camping fiasco.  From his sermon on John 14: Thomas and Philip didn’t quite understand all that Jesus was saying. They ask questions. Their knowledge isn’t quite right or complete. But don’t mock them or think less of them for this – for who among us understands all this? Especially the mystery of the Trinity which Jesus here is teaching. But give Thomas and Philip… Read more

Cults of personality

Anthony Sacramone reflects on the Harold Camping non-rapture phenomenon, including some warnings about how Christians often get caught up in a cult of personality: You might be saying to yourself, “Sure, a buncha fundy, dispensationalist cranks with clever marketing skills. Tough luck on their ignorant, desperate disciples.” But ask yourself something: If your pastor, preacher, teacher, elder, priest were to walk into an open manhole tomorrow, only to be replaced by some less-winsome personality, would you leave your church? If… Read more

Athenians vs. Visigoths

Thanks to Joe Carter for posting this commencement address (which he never gave) by the late media scholar Neil Postman. Read the whole thing, but here are some excerpts that set forth the basic paradigm: I want to tell you about two groups of people who lived many years ago but whose influence is still with us. They were very different from each other, representing opposite values and traditions. I think it is appropriate for you to be reminded of… Read more

Harold Camping’s shamelessness

Harold Camping is taking nothing back, even though his prediction of the Rapture happening on May 21 fell flat.  Rather, as some of you commenters predicted, he is simply reinterpreting his prediction and holding strong to his other one, that the world will come to an end on October 21. Radio evangelist Harold Camping said in a special broadcast Monday night on his radio program Open Forum that his predicted May 21, 2011 Rapture was “an invisible judgment day“ that… Read more

Islamic End Times scheduled for June 5

Not to be outdone by Harold Camping, some Muslims are predicting the onset of the End Times  to occur on June 5.   Iran’s political establishment is being torn by a controversy over the return of the messiah-like Mahdi.   Some Shi’ites have set a date, so we will be able to see if they are right.  From Reza Kahlili: Increasing tensions between Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei and Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad intensified when hardline clerics exerted pressure on… Read more

Two kinds of Democrats

We’ve talked about different kinds of conservatives.  Let’s talk about different kinds of Democrats.   Michael Gerson says the current gridlock in Congress–especially when it comes to budgets and fiscal policy–is due not to Republicans (who are remarkably unified, he notes, despite fears about the Tea Party).  Rather, it is due to a split among Democrats: On fiscal issues, the Democratic Party is really two parties. One consists of European-style social democrats, represented by leaders such as Nancy Pelosi. They have… Read more

Mollie Hemingway on her faith

The Washington Examiner has a series in which they interview people about their faith.  (They did that to me once, which I blogged about.)  Journalist Mollie Hemingway didn’t mince any words.  Read the whole interview.  Here is an excerpt in which Mollie explains vocation: It seems in some ways that reporting on religion could lead to doubts about one’s own faith, or at least to confusion or pluralism. How has your journalism shaped or affected your own faith? Has it… Read more

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