Have you seen The Island?

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It's a Russian movie (original title, Ostrov) about a young man who is forced during the war to shoot his captain. Right after the tragedy, he ends up at a monastery and begins a tortured life of repentance, which frequently drives his fellow monks to exasperation. The movie primarily follows the closing chapter of Fr. Anatoly's life. Regarded as a holy man, locals flock to him for his spiritual insight. In one scene a fearful young woman comes to him, hoping somehow for a rationale to … [Read more...]

I like the Christian life: The Byrds’ Hillman talks about his faith

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This is the coolest thing I've seen all day. The backstory goes like this: I was talking with Ken Mansfield, author of The White Book and Stumbling on Open Ground. He mentioned Chris Hillman, one of the founding members of the Byrds, and said he was a Christian. I've been a fan of the Byrds since I was a kid and knew Roger McGuinn was a believer, but I didn't know about Hillman. Ken told me to check out an interview Hillman did with CBN. Here's the video. You'll only need one guess as to why … [Read more...]

The monk who wanted to live in the sky

I am utterly captivated by this story. In the country of Georgia stands a 140-foot rock pillar, crowned with a small hermitage. Hermits have lived atop the Katskhi Pillar in ages past, doing little more than praying for the life of the world. But no one has lived there in 600 years. That might change someday soon. Watch this: Fr. Maxim has fixated on living atop Katskhi Pillar since he was a boy, something that is undoubtedly hard for most of us to appreciate. He's been painstakingly … [Read more...]

When is a person a person? 3 libertarians debate abortion

If you have a spare hour (actually 50 minutes) and give two or more hoots about the abortion debate, it's worth watching this Reason-hosted conversation between Nick Gillespie, Ronald Bailey, Katherine Mangu-Ward, and Mollie Hemingway. Hemingway, as you likely know, writes for the excellent GetReligion blog, hosted by Patheos. … [Read more...]

Tech highlights revival of the faith in Russia

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I found this video very moving. It captures scenes from an exhibition on Orthodoxy in Moscow. It's touching to see the deep reverence shown by the faithful. And it's horrifying to view the footage of the Communists and their destruction of churches and icons. Even for for those of us in the West who've never witnessed anything like this, nor have any cultural memory of such barbarism, it's a soul-wrenching thing to behold. Watch it twice. … [Read more...]

Watch Alister McGrath discuss new C.S. Lewis biography

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Marking the fiftieth anniversary of his death, Oxford scholar and popular author Alister McGrath has released a new and illuminative biography of C.S. Lewis. Reviewers have given C.S. Lewis: Eccentric Genius, Reluctant Prophet a warm welcome. Here's McGrath presenting on the book at Wheaton College: Wheaton's Wade Center houses a collection of Lewis' papers -- along with a large wardrobe formerly belonging to Lewis into which a handful of children have been reportedly lost. I've … [Read more...]

So why should I care about monks?

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There is probably no figure so countercultural today as the monk. Having retreated from the world he gives himself wholly to pray for it. Actor Jonathan Jackson brought some unexpected attention to these misunderstood intercessors as he received his fifth Emmy award. Watch: Who are the monks of Mount Athos? TV news magazine 60 Minutes wondered the same question and wangled an invitation for their crew to go and find out more. It's a good start for understanding why Christians of whatever … [Read more...]


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