Thundering new voice for Southern Baptists

A New Orleans preacher, preaching to a New Orleans crowd, can expect a few "Amens!" if he quotes lyrics from Billie Holiday's bluesy "God Bless the Child" while talking about God's love for sinners who get saved.But what if he's preaching at the pastors' conference before the annual meeting of the Southern Baptist Convention?All the people said, "Amen!"What really mattered was that the preacher was the Rev. Fred Luter and his turbo-charged call for salvation and social change was one of … [Read more...]

Faith on the Blind Side

In the beginning there was "Big Tony" Henderson, whose dying mother urged him to pull his son Steven from a public school on the bad side of Memphis and take him somewhere to get a Christian education.But there was one big complication. Steven didn't want to abandon his buddy Michael Oher (pronounced "Oar"), a street kid who slept on their floor most nights. "Big Mike" was afraid to return to the bleak foster homes he knew after police tore him away from his mother, her crack pipe and her 13 … [Read more...]

That other Notre Dame speech

It was hard to ignore the papal bull condemning the slave trade, which was read to American Catholic leaders gathered in Baltimore in 1839.Pope Gregory XVI proclaimed that "no one in the future dare to vex anyone, despoil him of his possessions, reduce to servitude, or lend aid and favor to those who give themselves up to these practices, or exercise that inhuman traffic by which the Blacks, as if they were not men but rather animals, having been brought into servitude, in no matter what way, … [Read more...]


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