God, Tebow and the NFL

Once upon a time, there was this controversial quarterback.Even his strongest defenders admitted that he was a fiery field general, not a conventional pinpoint passer. He made lots of big plays with his legs, dodging tacklers and creating havoc until he could unload the ball.His throwing motion wasn't much to look at, either. Purists said he brought the ball way too low while winding up to fire it deep.On top of all that, he was devoutly religious and very conservative. He was especially … [Read more...]

Maher says Obama’s faith is fake

The last thing the White House needed was another TV preacher questioning the sincerity of President Barack Obama's Christian faith.But there was a twist. This time it was HBO's Bill Maher -- sermonizing against religion has become his life's work -- who claimed that Obama is hiding a deep, dark secret. During the Feb. 11 episode of his "Real Time" talk show, Maher said he knows an unbeliever when he sees one and that Obama is probably an agnostic.This came a week after the president made … [Read more...]

A Catholic Colbert report

For Catholics raised during the head-spinning days after Vatican II, few things inspire flashbacks to the era of flowers and folk Masses quicker than the bouncy hymn "The King of Glory."But what was a goofy nerd doing on Comedy Central, belting out this folk song while doing a bizarre blend of Broadway shtick and liturgical dance?"The King of glory comes, the nation rejoices! Open the gates before him, lift up your voices," sang Stephen Colbert a decade ago, in a video that is now a YouTube … [Read more...]

‘Lost’ in the eternal lite

When describing the mysterious concept called purgatory, the Catechism of the Catholic Church starts with the basics."All who die in God's grace and friendship, but still imperfectly purified, are indeed assured of their eternal salvation; but after death they undergo purification, so as to achieve the holiness necessary to enter the joy of heaven," the text states. "The Church gives the name Purgatory to this final purification. ... The tradition of the Church, by reference to certain texts … [Read more...]

Island of ‘Lost’ souls

It's getting harder to visit office water coolers without hearing the whispers of the "Lost" disciples who are bracing for the end of the world as they know it.The same thing is happening during coffee hours in religious congregations of every shape and size, which is a testimony to the complexity of the religious themes and symbols embedded deep in the show's mythology. Tough theological questions have circled the island of the castaways ever since the fateful crash of Oceanic Flight 815.Do … [Read more...]

Faith and the Russert Test

The politico facing Tim Russert was Vice Present Al Gore and their testy dialogue was one of the memorable moments during the 2000 White House race.RUSSERT: When do you think life begins?GORE: I favor the Roe vs. Wade approach, but let me just say, Tim, I did --RUSSERT: Which is what? When does life begin?GORE: Let me just say, I did change my position on the issue of federal funding and I changed it because I came to understand more from women -- women think about this differently than … [Read more...]

Oprah and her American faith

Faithful members of Oprah Winfrey's TV flock know what's happening when guests start talking and their leader keeps saying "Amen," "Preach it" or even, "Sister, I understand the whole God connection!"The host wants the guest to start "testifying," a confessional process in which believers look for God's healing hand in life's hard lessons. Winfrey learned all about "testifying" as a girl back in the Faith United Mississippi Baptist Church, where jealous peers often called her "Miss Jesus."But … [Read more...]

Blonde, female, Christian, late-night comedian

It's no surprise that Victoria Jackson watches "Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip," the latest slice-of-elite-life offering from Aaron "West Wing" Sorkin.After all, one of the main characters in this drama set inside a late-night sketch comedy show -- a fictional West Coast version of "Saturday Night Live" -- is Harriet Hayes, a blonde, female, singing comedian who is a born-again Christian.This got Jackson's attention real quick."I'm the only blonde, female, singing, born-again Christian comedian … [Read more...]


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