Some Thoughts on Broadcasting Worship…

While re-watching Frost/Nixon, I was struck by one of the opening lines of the film.  Reflecting on the whole experience of interviewing Richard Nixon, James Reston, Jr. (Sam Rockwell) says of David Frost (Michael Sheen), "He understood television better than any of us."  I've been thinking more and more about the church in the digital age lately and wondering what the church could understand and do better. … [Read more...]

A Boy and His Dogs

I don't know how it escaped me, but a draft of this review has been sitting around for a couple of months now.  Better late than never!  Over the past couple of years, my novel reading has suffered greatly due to "required" reading.  I certainly chose wisely when I picked The Story of Edgar Sawtelle by David Wroblewski.  … [Read more...]

Graphic High Art

Asterios Polyp.  It's either the name of an obscure Greek philosopher or some sort of intestinal ailment.  Actually, it's neither.  Asterios Polyp is the titular character in one of the most engrossing and beautiful graphic novels that I have ever read.  Famed graphic novelist David Mazzucchelli has turned out a masterpiece that draws from, and elevates the medium to, high art. … [Read more...]

District 9: A Pop Theology Conversation

Pop Theology contributor Richard Lindsay and I discuss one of the year's best movies after the jump. … [Read more...]

Michael Vick: On Judgement and Participation

Whenever pop culture icons exhibit bad behavior...behavior that would ruin the careers and lives of us average folk...the social commentators inevitably talk about how America is a forgiving culture.  As time passes, society will forgive and forget, or at least the most recent scandal will occupy our attention.  When the news story broke about Michael Vick's involvement in a dog-fighting ring over a year ago, I thought that this would perhaps test the bounds of popular forgiveness. … [Read more...]

The Gospel According to U2

While I was living in London in Spring 2004, I came across a selection of sermons entitled Get Up Off Your Knees:  Preaching the U2 Catalog, which highlighted, in part, the very significant role that the Psalms play in the band's creation of their songs and their role as contemporary prophets.  This sent my thinking about the band and their music into a whole different and more theological direction.  Another, more recent book about the band, We Get To Carry Each Other:  The Gospel According to U … [Read more...]

Teaching Religion and Film: A Review

As I have mentioned in other reviews of film and religion books, the interdisciplinary field is in something of its teenage years.  While it is a particularly strong field, it is at a point in its life where it must decide...or articulate...which path(s) it will take.  In his collection of essays, Teaching Religion and Film, Gregory J. Watkins brings together some of the finest thinkers, writers, and practitioners in the field to share their thoughts on possible next steps and the ways in which t … [Read more...]

A Graphic Depiction of the Flood

We are quickly approaching the four year anniversary of Hurricane Katrina.  I was living in Charlottesville, Virginia, at that time and was forced to keep up with those tragic events from news accounts and phone calls with family and friends.  The images on the screen and the stories I heard seemed literally otherworldly...the storm and broken levees things from a Roland Emmerich film.  Moreover, the inept leadership at the city, state, and national levels before, during, and after the storm se … [Read more...]