June 3, 2018

Communion is sacred. It’s one of two ordinances that Jesus explicitly commanded his followers to observe, the other being baptism. It’s a time for the Body to corporately remember Christ’s sacrifice, consuming the bread and wine (or, if you’re Baptist, grape juice), and thinking on his body and blood, broken and spilled out on the cross. It’s a time of fellowship, reflection and prayer. It’s a hallmark of Christian life. I’ve participated in communion almost every month since I was… Read more

June 1, 2018

I am a product of Christian camp. When I was a kid, one of the highlights of my summer was loading up my stuff in the church van and visiting Michigan’s Lake Ann Baptist Camp (I believe it’s now just called Lake Ann Camp because “Baptist” raise eyebrows). Like most summer camps, it provided an excuse for a week of bog walks, campfires, early crushes and launches from The Blob. Because it was a Christian camp, it also means my… Read more

May 29, 2018

When it was alleged that Paige Patterson, president of the Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, had counseled women to stay with their abusive husbands and forgive their rapists without going to the police, some were shocked that such teaching could come from Christian circles. When he was asked to resign from his position but still granted an honorary emeritus title, some were stunned that the church could be so tone deaf. (Update: As of May 30, Patterson has been fired and stripped of… Read more

May 25, 2018

Since its release 10 years ago, “Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull” has been a punchline. The term “nuke the fridge” replaced “jump the shark” in the vernacular and jokes about a geriatric Indy abounded. It seemed director Steven Spielberg and star Harrison Ford had lost their magic, turning a beloved franchise into a hodgepodge of bad CGI and Shia LaBeouf Tarzan swings. But here’s the thing: A decade ago, it was a different story. The film… Read more

May 23, 2018

About five minutes into “Camp Manna,” it’s clear that the filmmakers are in on the joke. The film, available on digital platforms June 5, follows a young boy, Ian (Luke Klein), during a summer at a Christian camp. Ian has gone to live with his pious aunt and uncle following a family tragedy, and he’s in no mood for a summer of Bible drills and the ultra-competitive “God Games,” lorded over by the unstable camp director Jack “Cujo” Parrish (Gary… Read more

May 21, 2018

Last week, a young man walked into his Texas high school armed with a gun, killing 10 of his classmates and wounding 13 others. It’s alleged that one of his victims was a young woman who rejected his advances. In April, Alex Minassian drove his car into a Toronto crowd, killing 10. Shortly before his attack, Minassian posted on Facebook ‘The Incel Rebellion Has Already Begun” and applauded another angry young man who killed six in California in 2014, leaving… Read more

May 18, 2018

This is the time of year when I am normally at my movie-geekiest. Usually by mid-April, I’ve already purchased Entertainment Weekly’s Summer Movie Preview and am plotting how to make it to all the big releases each week. This summer, I could barely tell you what’s coming out. Like everyone else, I saw “Avengers: Infinity War” opening weekend, and I’m reasonably excited for “Incredibles 2” and “”Mission Impossible: Fallout.” But other than that? I have rarely given it much thought…. Read more

May 17, 2018

Awhile back, I participated in a challenge to go a day without complaining. It was a spectacular failure. I could say that I just chose the wrong day to partake in such an experiment. After all, I had no clue that would be the day I had to dig my car out of a snowbank, then watch it die at work, then get it home, only to have it blocked back in and die again. But letting my circumstances provide… Read more

May 15, 2018

Awhile back, when I was in my mid-twenties, I became so frustrated with single life that I found myself in the lobby of a dating service, ready for them to help me find a spouse. This was the mid-00s, well before online dating had become one of the more accepted ways of meeting people. Match.com and Eharmony were around, but meeting a stranger online seemed sketchy and dangerous. Apparently, I would rather have had a corporation control my romantic destiny…. Read more

May 12, 2018

About 10 years ago, when I was living back at my parents’ house for a stint, I was awakened early one morning by the sound of murmuring down the hall. As I lay in the darkness, trying to will myself back to sleep for another hour or so, the sound continued, and I realized that my parents were talking  in the other room. More than that, I heard my name mentioned. I crept to the door and heard my parents… Read more

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