Hurricane Sandy, the role of government and the preferential option for the poor

After Sandy in working class Union Beach, NJ -- photo by Philadelphia Weekly's Tara Murtha

FEMA stands as a model of programs that help people in crisis — and everyone can see the proper role of government in this situation. But that’s what programs like food stamps and unemployment benefits do as well. In Catholic social teaching, “the preferential option for the poor” says we must always give the fragile wellbeing of the powerless — the poor, the sick, prisoners and immigrants — first consideration over advantages for the comfortable. [Read more...]

SAD That DST is Ending

winter-sun

This weekend marks the end of daylight-saving time for the year. (Literally) overnight, most of us will start getting off work to find it already dark. Check out these helpful tips to make the transition smooth and jet lag-free. [Read more...]

Dispatch from the Hurricane Sandy blackout

Looking uptown from within the downtown New York blackout caused by Hurricane Sandy.

I live in the middle of downtown Manhattan, so unless you have been on a self-imposed news blackout, you know that I’m in the midst of an electrical one, caused by Hurricane Sandy. Despite the warnings about potential outages, and despite the fact that I dutifully bought water and canned goods and made cold-brew coffee [Read More...]

Boo! My love-hate relationship with Halloween

bauhaus-bela-lugosis-dead-cover

Thoughts on my lifelong love-hate relationship with Halloween; video of the quintessential goth/Catholic/transgressive/punk song, “Stigmata Martyr” by Bauhaus; and a little history of the holiday [Read more...]

Integrity and sound judgment: Re-elect Barack Obama

Obama Economy

As I mentioned last week, integrity is my top criterion in choosing a leader. Sound judgment is also critical. We never know what a president will face, so how they make decisions and lead is all we have to go on. While I have been disappointed in several areas, overall President Obama has been a principled, honest and intelligent leader. His actions have been reasonable and at times, if anything, too moderate. Barack Obama has been and will be a better president than Governor Romney. Now that we’ve just barely managed to climb out of the hole Bush dug us into, I look forward to seeing President Obama preside over the rest of the recovery, the end of the war, and the full rollout of Obamacare. He deserves that, and our country will be better for it. [Read more...]

Annie Turner — The three crucial issues this election

polar-bears

There are three issues I see as crucial to this election, and none of them are being adequately addressed by either candidate: climate change, wealth inequality and war. All three issues affect the poor and marginalized of our world far more strongly than they do privileged folks who are more protected. [Read more...]

The key election issues my faith gives me

A prisoner in the film The House I Live In, an Abramorama release 2012. Photo courtesy of Derek Hallquist.

I answer this week’s #PatheosElection question: What are the key issues for people of your tradition to consider as they approach this election? Or as I put it, since the phrase “people of my tradition” raises its own set of questions: what issues my faith makes key for me. [Read more...]

Anne Lindley — The Good Samaritan and the Social Safety Net

The Good Samaritan, Rembrandt (1630)

As a Christian, I believe Jesus was not kidding when He said “Whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.” Jesus talks about offering meat and drink, providing clothes, helping the sick. How about us? What should we do for our sisters and brothers? What kind of a social safety net should we try to provide in our country? This election gives Christians the chance to show what we believe Jesus meant. [Read more...]

Jacob Slichter — What are the key issues in your tradition this election?

Photo credit: Steve Cohen

Musician and writer Jacob Slichter, the drummer for Semisonic, answers the question: What are the key issues for people of your tradition to consider as they approach this election? [Read more...]

Leading song without written lyrics

music-that-makes-community

Music That Makes Community teaches congregational song leaders how to work without hymnals, printed music or projected lyrics. I know firsthand that you’re more able to be fully present, to look around you at the other congregants; singing becomes even more communal. The next workshop is this weekend in New York. [Read more...]


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