The Common Good

Blog Posts By God's Politics Editor

Posted by God's Politics Editor 1 week 4 days ago
1. Germany 'May Revert to Typewriters' to Counter Hi-tech EspionageGerman politicians are considering a return to using manual typewriters for sensitive documents in the wake of the US surveillance scandal. Yes, really.2. World Cup Winners Donate Their Prize MoneySome German soccer players who took gold on Sunday—and fellow runner-ups from Argentina—both gave away portions of their earnings to charity, earning gold stars for empathy to go along with their trophy.3. The Crisis in Israel-PalestineVox is keeping an up-to-date StoryStream on the developing crisis in Israel-Palestine. While world leaders call for peace, we pray.4. Leading AIDS Researchers Among Those Killed in Malaysian Airlines CrashMalaysian Airlines flight MH17 was shot down over Ukraine yesterday. Evidence now suggests that more than one-third of the passengers were headed to an international health conference, including leading AIDS researchers.5. Neil Whosis? What You Don't Know About The 1969 Moon LandingThe names Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin were household names in 1969. But they were all but forgotten by 1970. How did the astronauts to land on the moon pass into obscurity, and why are their names famous again now?6. Meet The Former Call Girl Saving Hookers For Jesus Annie Lobert, who spent 16 years as a prostitute in Las Vegas, is running a ministry that gets women out of the sex trade.7. Why You Should (Really, Seriously, Permanently) Stop Using Your Smartphone At DinnerA “new paper from Virginia Tech … confirms that the mere passive presence of cellphones cheapens in-person conversation, even when we’re not looking at them.”8. On Campus, Young Veterans Are Learning How to Be Millennials“That difference in background made Horton see all his classes in a whole other light. His friends read Moby Dick and saw the story of a whale hunt. Horton saw a man who lost his leg and set out for vengeance … he knew what it felt like to cling to the timbers with his shipmates, hurtling forward on a mission that threatened, at any moment, to kill them all.” 9. Watch 1,000 Balls Blast Through a Vacuum-Powered MazeInspired by hulking machines like CERN’s Large Hadron Collider, Roy’s contraption is a playful attempt to provide an artistic visualization to what happens in actual particle accelerators.10. Word Crimes“Everybody wise up!” Did you miss him? Weird Al returns with a pitch-perfect spoof on Robin Thicke’s infamous “Blurred Lines”—but this time, it’s about grammar. A catchy song on proper verb tense usage? Our web team says YES. #grammarnerds.
Posted by God's Politics Editor 2 weeks 4 days ago
1. Afghan Taliban Bans Polio Vaccination Teams"Afghanistan is one of just three countries, along with Pakistan and Nigeria, where polio is still endemic. There has been a rise in cases this year, with seven reported so far compared with just three for the same period of 2013, according to the Global Polio Eradication Initiative."2. Communion in a Strip Club"I found myself in a strip club years ago. I carried a meal, and that was about all I carried. And a dancer asked me if I thought Jesus was insecure. … I quickly told her no. I told her that Jesus was entirely secure, hoping she wouldn’t try to take my Jesus away."3. This Is What Happened When I Drove My Mercedes to Pick Up Food StampsThe birth of twins and a job loss — stories like these illustrate how close so many people are to poverty: " … the judgment of the disadvantaged comes not just from conservative politicians and Internet trolls. It came from me, even as I was living it."4. Dismantling the White Male Industrial ComplexChristena Cleveland argues against the logic of the white man as the secret weapon in the fight against injustice. "… rather than contributing to the white male industrial complex and focusing most/all of our justice efforts on convincing and engaging white men, I propose a different strategy …"5. The Failure of Christian Witness in a World of Violence"Are we contributing to the epidemic of mockery and the glorification of violence in our world with what we share from our air-conditioned living rooms? If so, then the fact that we are privileged enough to have clean hands doesn’t make us any less guilty of the violence in our world than the suicide bombers and the drones."6. 'Life Ended There:' Rare Interviews With the Children of America's Border DisasterPOLITICO Magazine puts faces and stories to the border crisis in this must-read.7. How Hot Is It? Hot Enough to Ruin the Economy“The increased number of excessively hot days guaranteed to come with the changing climate has the potential to dramatically denigrate worker productivity, according to recent study. … Productivity figures to be the biggest economic hit, though energy costs will certainly give it a run for its, uh, money.”8. Cory Booker, Rand Paul Shine Light on Shadow Side of U.S. Justice SystemA new proposal pairs an unlikely duo to confront the injustice of mass incarceration. Read what brought the two together to find common ground.9. How It Feels to Love and Hate a Sex Offender"Most people do not understand how sex offenders function and therefore do not realize the depth of their damage. … In the healing process, I've learned that the families of sex offenders, the secondary victims, just like primary victims, must learn to do basic things even when all our beliefs and emotions scream it is not safe."10. This Land Is Their Land :The Braves, Chiefs, and Washington NFL Team All Play on Land Seized from American Indians“It is easy to assert that the name of your favorite team expresses solidarity with the survivors of the long, sordid history of Indian dispossession. But what if sports lore included the specifics of how the U.S. acquired the land below your team’s home field?”
Posted by God's Politics Editor 3 weeks 3 days ago
1. Five Takeaways From the Hobby Lobby CaseFive things to know about one of the biggest Supreme Court decisions of the year.2. Who’s Afraid of Soccer in America?The beautiful game captured the imagination of the United States as its national team advanced to the knockout rounds to fall valiantly at the hands — or feet, rather — of Belgium. And the numbers don't lie: soccer is taking off in America.3. Tim Howard: 'Nuff SaidSpeaking of the World Cup, goal keeper Tim Howard did the best he could to keep the U.S. in it. The shot-stopper has taken the Internet by storm, with #ThingsTimHowardCouldSave trending on Twitter, hilarious Tim Howard memes abounding, a petition to change the name of Washington National Airport (DCA) to "Tim Howard National Airport" going viral. The man even received a call from Obama himself.4. Here's How Vancouver Responded to London's 'Anti-Homeless Spikes'A Vancouver charity, RainCity Housing, is converting city benches into pop-up shelters for homeless people. And by giving homeless people in this rainy city some dry coverage and a place to rest, RainCity is putting London's anti-homeless spikes to shame. 5. 10,000 Christians Have Fled Northern Iraq Since the ISIS TakeoverAs many as 10,000 people have fled from predominantly Christian areas in northern Iraq, the U.N. warned late last week.6. In open primary Southern states, black voters flex new muscleAn unexpected group of voters charged in to save veteran Mississippi Senator Thad Cochran, a Republican, from losing a primary squeaker against a tea party challenger: African American Democrats.7. Plastic garbage on ocean's surface is vanishing. Where is it going?Large amounts of the plastic debris littering the ocean's surface seem to be disappearing. But scientists are at a loss to explain where it's going.8. Bathrobes And Baby Carriers: The Stuff Of Manliness?NPR's All Things Considered asks, "What Object Makes You Feel Manly?" One man gives an answer that steers away from masculine stereotypes.9. 3 Lessons from Wild Goose: Holy Rest, Holy Mischief, and Holy Reconciliation"This past week I was surrounded by an eclectic mix of barefoot wanderers, edgy thinkers, and hippie-hipsters at the Wild Goose festival. While none of these descriptors necessarily apply to me, I found myself quite at home at the Goose." 10. Astronaut Reid Wiseman Has an Out of This World Twitter FeedReid Wiseman is up in space taking insane photos — definitely worth following on Twitter. 
Posted by God's Politics Editor 4 weeks 4 days ago
1. WATCH: Powerful Ad Shows What A Little Girl Hears When You Tell Her She's Pretty“A new Verizon commercial cites a sad statistic by the National Science Foundation: 66 percent of 4th grade girls say they like science and math, but only 18 percent of all college engineering majors are female.”2.Sandy Hook Dad on What You Can Do Right Now to Help Prevent Violence “'Pick your eyes up from the sidewalk and look at people,' Mr. Barden pleaded, with tears in his eyes. Yes, we should call our representatives; yes, we should make our voices heard where laws are made. But we should also do what we can to foster empathy; to create a world where no one feels invisible and ignored — least of all those who disproportionately fall victim to our collective failure to care enough to act."3. Facebook VP: Stop Portraying Me as Mother-of-Four Who 'Wanted it All''"'When I got my post at Facebook it was all about how I was a mother-of-four who had 'won' the position, alongside pictures of my wedding,' she said, noting that the male executive hired at the same time came under no such scrutiny. Reports also said she insisted on working part-time, when in fact she was working a typical five-day week."4. FIFA Go Home: Inside Brazilians' Struggle to Challenge World Cup From Mashable: "Their goal isn't so much to change the current World Cup in any specific way; it's more to challenge — and, ideally, impact — the mainstream narrative surrounding the tournament, shifting its focus to the event's human costs and larger political context. To the billions spent on stadiums that won't be used again and the millions living in abject poverty."5. Ikea to Raise Its Average Minimum Hourly Wage to $10.76 "The happier the co-worker, the happier the customer and the better the overall shopping experience," said Ikea's acting U.S. president, Rob Olson. "We wanted to be less concerned about the competition and more concerned about offering our co-workers a better everyday life."6. The Decency of a NationA new index attempts to measure the 'goodness' of nations — based on the way they treat other nations, science and technology, culture, equality, etc. (Spoiler: guess who doesn't break the top 10.)7.WATCH: 'Columbusing': When White People Think They Discovered Something They Didn't "Macklemore Columbused same-sex marriage, just like Gwyneth Paltrow Columbused Eastern medicine."8.Use of Drones for Killings Risks a War Without End A bipartisan panel concluded that the use of armed drones "sets a dangerous precedent for lethal operations that other countries might adopt in the future," according to the New York Times.9. Detroit Activists Call for UN Help as City Shuts Off Water for Thousands “Detroit has too much of some things – stray dogs, abandoned houses – and not enough of others, such as residents who pay their water bills. The latest sign of Detroit’s decline came from the city’s water department, when it said in March it would begin shutting off water for up to 3,000 homes and businesses a week in an attempt to stop the utility from sliding even further into debt.”10. PHOTOS: Inside a Detention Center for Migrant Children The Customs and Border Patrol is overwhelmed by a flood of minors entering the U.S. from Central America.
Posted by God's Politics Editor 4 weeks 4 days ago
1. WATCH LIVE: The Summit: World Change Through Faith & JusticeToday is the last day of The Summit. Live stream Summit Sessions Unlocking Solutions to Disarm Injustice: Mass Incarceration & Gun Violence at 1 p.m. EDT and The Final Push: The Immigration Reform Debateat 7 p.m. EDT. 2. The Devastating Issue Pastors Aren't DiscussingA groundbreaking new poll shows the large discrepancy between pastors' belief that domestic and sexual violence is a problem in their local communities and their belief that it is a problem in their congregations.3. To Publish a PredatorChristianity Today's Leadership Journal recently published a first-hand narrative from a pastor who entered into a sexual relationship with a minor — framed around the concept of sin. The post spurred a Twitter firestorm using the hashtag #TakeDownThatPost. They did, and CT''s her.meneutics blog responds. 4. The Number of People Displaced by Violent Conflict at the End of 2013 Exceeded 51 Million"The number of people displaced by violent conflict hit the highest level since World War II at the end of 2013, the head of the United Nations refugee agency, António Guterres, said in a report released on Friday, warning that “peace is dangerously in deficit.”5. Presbyterians in U.S. to Allow Gay Marriage CeremoniesThe PC(USA) voted at its Detroit gathering this week to allow clergy to perform same-sex marriages wherever they are legal. 6. Russell Moore Weighs in on Hobby Lobby's China DealingsJonathan Merritt says Hobby Lobby cannot be considered a Christian business because of the ethical implications in its business dealings with China. "Because they’ve chosen to label their business as “Christian,” I think it is wholly fair to raise this issue." In his Religion News Service blog, he gives Russell Moore, president of the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission, a chance to respond.7. The Places They'll Go: Nuns Working on the Margins"If you happen upon a forgotten corner of desperate poverty or a neglected collection of humanity, chances are good that a religious woman has arrived before you."8. Rape Victims Say Bob Jones University Told Them To RepentIn this piece for Al Jazeera America, women survivors of rape while attending BJU during the course of three different decades share their stories. "… most damaging was how, through the language of Scripture, victims say they were told that their sins had brought on their rapes, that their trauma meant they were fighting God and that healing came from forgiving their rapists." 9. And watch the related three-part series: How the 'fortress of faith' handles rape.10. How Cities Use Design to Drive Homeless People Away"It has been encouraging to see the outrage over the London spikes. But the spikes that caused the uproar are by no means the only form of homeless-deterrent technology; they are simply the most conspicuous. Will public concern over the spikes extend to other less obvious instances of anti-homeless design? Perhaps the first step lies in recognizing the political character of the devices all around us."
Posted by God's Politics Editor 4 weeks 4 days ago
1. In Extremists' Iraq Rise, America's Legacy "First Falluja, then Mosul, and now the oil-refinery town of Bayji. The rapid advance of Al Qaeda-inspired militants across the Sunni heartland of northern and western Iraq has been stunning and relentless — and utterly predictable. Here’s a forecast: the bad news is just beginning."  2. Obama Says He Will Decide on Military Force for Iraq in 'Days Ahead' "This poses a danger to Iraq and its people and, given the nature of these terrorists, it could pose a threat eventually to American interests as well," Mr. Obama said of the offensive now threatening Baghdad. "We will not be sending U.S. troops back into combat in Iraq, but I have asked my national security team to prepare a range of other options."3. Ruby Dee, Actress and Civil Rights Activist, Dies at 91 "Over the course of Ms. Dee’s career, the lives of American blacks, both extraordinary and ordinary, belatedly emerged as rich subject matter for mainstream theater productions and films, and black performers went from being consigned to marginal and often belittling roles to starring in Hollywood mega-hits. … But Ms. Dee not only took part in that evolution; through her visibility in a wide range of projects, from classics onstage to contemporary film dramas to television soap operas, she also helped bring it about."  4. 5 Problems with Throwing Immigrants in Separate, Private Prisons From Vox, a breakdown of just one of the many problems with the current immigration system: "These facilities only house non-citizens, most of whom will be deported after their terms are completed — meaning the federal government is willing to set lower standards for their treatment in some respects than they do for other inmates."  5. WATCH: High School Boys Prove Feminism Is For Everyone "High school teacher Ileana Jimenez, who clearly deserves some sort of award, recorded seven of her students sharing their thoughts on feminism. And they are so, so refreshing you want to reach through the screen and hug those young dudes."  6. It's Really Hard to Be a Good Guy With a Gun "The universe of scenarios in which carrying a gun seems prudent or useful just keeps shrinking and shrinking, even as the legal freedom to wield personal firepower keeps expanding. The NRA has recalibrated its message for the 21st century: ''The only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun.'' But in many ways, the 21st century has already overtaken us good guys."  7. The World Cup of Food It's Brazil's feijoada v. Croatia's roasted lamb pod pekoe. Belguim frites v. Algerian tchakshoukha. And, of course, Ghananian red red takes on U.S. BBQ. Follow along to see what delicious dishes get kicked out in the first round.   8. Bergdahl Explains in Prison Letters Why He Vanished “In the 2013 letter, he seems to be well aware the U.S. army was investigating his disappearance from his base. … He sets about explaining why he left his base, in poorly spelled block print.”  9. Confronting Racism Face-to-Face “Mo Asumang, daughter of a black Ghanaian father and a white German mother, talks to BBC News about her experiences making her new documentary, The Aryans, in which she confronts racists, both in Germany and among the Ku Klux Klan in America.”  10. Starting Wednesday: Live Stream The Summit: World Change Through Faith & Justice The Summit kicks off on Wednesday. It's a 4-day event that intends to create a space to build relationships and inspire social change. That success is based on the contributions of every person involved. That includes YOU — at home, at school — on the ground, making a difference. Since not everyone can come to us, we’re coming to you! Interact with the speakers by Tweeting #summitforchange or texting in your questions.
Posted by God's Politics Editor 7 weeks 4 days ago
1. Seattle Pacific University Grieves After Deadly Shooting"'When the darkness closes in, Lord, still I will say, blessed be the name of the Lord,' they sang. And they cried. And they raised their arms high. And when the hymn ended, new words hit the screen: '#PrayforSPU.'"2. INTERACTIVE: D-Day Landing Scenes in 1944 and NowFrom The Guardian: Peter Macdiarmid has taken photographs of locations in France and England to match with archive images taken before, during and after the D-day landings. Check out the stunning changes.3. Four-in-Ten Pakistanis Say Honor Killings of Women Can Be At Least Sometimes JustifiedThe killing of a 25-year-old pregnant woman because she married without her family's consent in Pakistan has drawn international outrage. But so-called honor killings claim the lives of more than 1,000 Pakistani women every year.4. Remembering Tiananmen"Recently, as NPR’s Beijing correspondent, she took the famous picture from this time of “Tank Man” — a lone student standing in front of Chinese tanks — to contemporary university students in Beijing, asking if they could identify the iconic photo. Of 100 students, only 15 knew what it was, and they didn’t wish to discuss it. Their names were withheld out of respect for their anxiety."5. The Problem With Biblical AuthorityN.T. Wright writes for On Faith: "The risen Jesus doesn’t say, “All authority in heaven and earth is given to . . . the books you chaps are going to go and write.” He says, “All authority has been given to me.” The phrase authority of scripture can only, at its best, be a shorthand for the authority of God in Jesus, mediated through scripture."6. The Heated Battle for Cooled Texas PrisonsExtreme heat has killed nearly twenty people housed in correctional facilities. Now, inmates and guards have banded together to fight for improved conditions.7. The Church Has Been Left Behind"It is as if the church is stuck with the disciples in wondering when Jesus will restore Christendom to Christianity. It is as if the church has mistaken cultural normativity, full pews, big buildings, political influence, and societal power for the Holy Spirit. It is as if the church has forgotten the great commission to witness to Christ in their local towns, states, and to the ends of the earth. It is if the church is afraid of being left behind."8. The Lives of America's HomelessAt St. Stephen's Human Services in Minneapolis, Margaret Miles is creating oral and photographic histories of homeless people across Minnesota. "Somebody said, 'Gosh, that actually looks like the guy who drives my kids' school bus.' Well in fact it could be, and he could not be making enough money, or could have had a health crisis, or a divorce, or some other reason, and he's driving your kids and loving your kids and caring for your kids during his day job, and then having to sleep at night in a shelter."9. Candidates Who Signed Anti-Immigration Pledge Are Losing Their Primaries"In total*, 21 FAIR pledge signers lost to non-signers. Only two pledge signers have won so far in races where they were pitted against a non-signer."10. National Donut Day 2014: Where To Go To Get Your Free DoughnutsBut, "most importantly," today is National Donut Day. Go (do)Nuts!
Posted by God's Politics Editor 8 weeks 4 days ago
1. Your Princess Is in Another Castle: Misogyny, Entitlement, and Nerds Self-identified nerd Arthur Chu provides piercing analysis on the recent shooting in Santa Barbara, examining how rape culture and recent sitcoms have instilled a sense of entitlement for “nerds” when it comes to “getting the girl.”2. Why #NotAllMen Misses the Point#NotAllMen is a flawed response to the twitter trend #YesAllWomen: "Avoiding blame isn’t enough to heal us. Distancing ourselves won’t end cycles of injustice, whether in the form of sexism, racism, or any other division. #NotAllMen can’t break an oppressive culture towards women."3. Maya Angelou Knew How To Inspire As A Writer, Teacher, and Great Human Being Sojourners board member Joshua DuBois reflects on the life of Maya Angelou: "The African American author, dead at 86, led an extraordinary life and wrote about it in extraordinary ways."4. Maya Angelou Is Not in Heaven "Angelou is not in heaven 'now.' Her writings show a joyful person who was never not in heaven. To me, an ongoing theme of her remarkable work has always been its full-on, all-in commitment to living life in the kingdom."5. Slavery Is Still Thriving And Is More Profitable Than Big Oil The International Labor Organization (ILO), a United Nation's agency focusing on labor issues, this weekreleased a report on the global "forced labor" industry. The results are staggering.6. Inside the Mind of Edward Snowden After months of behind-the-scenes contact, NBC Nightly News anchor Brian Williams sat down with Edward Snowden, a man wanted for espionage here at home, for his first American television interview. Nothing was off limits.7. This Film Will Change How You See ImmigrationThe Stranger is a new 45-minute documentary created to introduce Christians to the stories and lives of immigrants living in this country. Interviews with pastors, Christian leaders, and policy experts provide a biblically based context for the immigration challenges that face our country today.8. Palestinian Refugees Welcome the Pope: The Story Behind the Iconic Photo at the Separation Wall In an effort to resist the Bethlehem Municipality’s efforts to beautify a section of the Apartheid Wall where Pope Francis was scheduled to pass, Local activists from Aida Refugee Camp gathered to paint slogans both against Israeli occupation and welcoming His Holiness, on the eve of his arrival, on May 24th 2014.9. The Wrong Way to Approach the PoorBefore we rush in with righteous vigor to help the helpless, so to speak, we would do well to dispense of some archaic lenses through which we view poverty.10. The Record for the Most Expensive Starbucks Drink Has Been Broken By a $55 Frappuccino On a lighter note, someone really took advantage of those free birthday drinks that accompany a Starbucks Gold Card membership — 60 shots of esppresso should be enough to wake you up, right?
Posted by God's Politics Editor 9 weeks 4 days ago
1. Vincent Harding: A Light Shines in the DarknessJonathan Wilson-Hartgrove beautifully tells the story of Vincent Harding in Mennonite World Review: "Though we didn’t know it, the Movement here in North Carolina was making its silent march through the State House as Uncle Vincent was crossing over from this life to the next. Given the life he lived, I can’t imagine a better sending."2. Senators Urge NFL to Act on Redsk*ns NameFIFTY members of the Senate have signed a letter to the NFL asking leadership to change the offensive name of Washington's football team. JOIN in the efforts to change the name HERE. 3. When Did Christians Get So Caught Up in God Being Male? Kate Wallace at the Junia Project dives into the latest #warofwords on Twitter, this time between Owen Strachan of The Council on Biblical Manhood and Womanhood and prominent egalitarian blogger Rachel Held Evans. In Wallace's piece: "Elevating one group of people above another in the name of God should never be accepted in the Church, and making God in our image, whether exclusively male or female, shouldn’t be accepted either."4. The Worst Day of My Life Is Now New York's Hottest Tourist Attraction"Nearly 13 years after my sister’s death, a reluctant Sunday visit to the 9/11 Memorial Museum, where public spectacle and private grief have a permanent home together."5. The Case for Reparations"Two hundred fifty years of slavery. Ninety years of Jim Crow. Sixty years of separate but equal. Thirty-five years of racist housing policy. Until we reckon with our compounding moral debts, America will never be whole." Ta-Nehisi Coates pens this long-form cover feature for The Atlantic tracing the history from slavery all the way through discriminatory housing policies and redlining. 6. The Way North: A New York Times Interactive StoryJoin Damien Cave and Todd Heisler as they travel up Interstate 35, from Laredo, Tex., to Duluth, Minn., chronicling how the middle of America is being changed by immigration.They're on Day 6 in San Antonio, interviewing 12-year-old Sebastien de la Cruz, who experienced a Twitter tirade of offensive slurs after singing the national anthem while wearing mariachi garb at last year's NBA Finals.7. WATCH - Sojo Stories: God and the Gay ChristianMatthew Vines became a YouTube sensation with his video "The Gay Debate: The Bible and Homosexuality." He recently sat down with Sojourners to talk about his new book, in which tells the story of his own pilgrimage of faith, fidelity, and family.8. No Lethal Injection Drugs? No Problem: Tennessee Reinstates Electric Chair"Republican Gov. Bill Haslam signed a bill into law Thursday allowing the state to electrocute death row inmates in the event prisons are unable to obtain the drugs, which have become more and more scarce following a European-led boycott of drug sales for executions."9. The Effluent SocietyIn the midst of an unprecedented drought, Wichita Falls is turning to a once unthinkable source to slake its thirst:"A city may survive for a time without electricity or natural gas, but water is the lifeblood of civilization. … The extremity of need in this part of Texas is so profound that Wichita Falls plans to turn this ancient relationship with human waste on its head — by drinking treated toilet water."10. 'We Can't Even Agree On the Definition of Consent'Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.) hosted the first roundtable on campus sexual assault, pointing out the problems that exist and aiming to strengthen and clarify the Clery Act, as sexual assault survivors told their stories.
Posted by God's Politics Editor 10 weeks 4 days ago
1. What the Media Can't Grasp About Pope Francis"… the world is ready to talk about inequality, redistribution, and an "economy of exclusion" for independent reasons, and the pope's words — which are very much in keeping with Catholic tradition — merely resonate because ears are ready to listen."2. Hack the Church"I want participatory church … An open source theology.” While our congregations dwindle and church doors shutter, a new group of technology-minded Christians (and just faith-friendly hackers), are breaking open a pathway for the future of the church — one that's inclusive, community-oriented, and innovative.3. Give JustlyIt's your last chance to enter to win a $350 gift card for fair trade products or other prizes via Sojourners' Just Giving Guide! It's as simple as a Facebook like!4. Young People Want Equality But Struggle to Discuss Bias"One oft-employed generalization about The Kids These Days is that they've grown up free from the legalized discrimination and racial neuroses of older generations, and they will live in a more multicultural world with less racism. But do we even know if that's true?"5. Guardian, AP, Others Challenge Lethal Injection SecrecyThe two news organizations and three Missouri newspapers have brought a legal challenge calling on the state to disclose the drugs used in lethal injections. "A Guardian survey has identified at least 13 states that have changed their rules to withhold from the public all information relating to how they get hold of lethal drugs. They include several of the most active death penalty states including Texas, which has executed seven prisoners so far this year, Florida (five), Missouri (four) and Oklahoma (three)."6 . Are You Reading Enough Academic Women?"Women read more than men, yet male authors still dominate literary journals." One writer and illustrator hopes to combat that fact social media-style with the Twitter hashtag #ReadWomen2014 and handle @ReadWomen2014.7. Illuminating Video on Teen's Mental Illness“Ask anyone that knows me now,” she says in the clip. “I’m the happiest girl because I know I’m getting the right support and help I need.”8. Student Journalists Exposed Columbia University's Rape Crisis. Then One of Their Own Was Accused.After uncovering a rape epidemic on campus, a student-run magazine blog wrestles with how to handle that crisis creeping into its own ranks — highlighting an institutional conflict of discretion and justice.9. Are Millennials Really Leaving the Church? Yes — But Mostly White Millennials“This is an opportunity for Christians to take a look at what they believe, and to ask, ‘Do we believe the Bible is good news for everyone?’” [Sojourners Emerging Voice Kathy Kang] says. “And if we do believe that, we have to find ways to communicate that good news with everyone.”10. Humans of New York"What's your greatest struggle right now?" "Not being white."  
Posted by God's Politics Editor 11 weeks 4 days ago
1. Dear Privileged-at-Princeton: You. Are. Privileged. And Meritocracy Is a Myth.A Princetonian responds to her classmate: “While Fortgang is not responsible for white male dominance in society, he should at least recognize that this social hierarchy is not a mere coincidence, nor is it a testament to the power of hard work.”2. The War Across the RiverThis beautifully photographed interactive from Al Jazeera tells the story of Central African Republic refugees crossing the Oubangi River into the Democratic Republic of Congo, a difference between life and death. "Refugees have come before, but this is something different … It seems they cannot return."3. Dear Americans, Your Hashtags Won't #BringBackOurGirls. You Might Actually Be Making Things Worse.“When you pressure Western powers, particularly the American government to get involved in African affairs and when you champion military intervention, you become part of a much larger problem. You become a complicit participant in a military expansionist agenda on the continent of Africa. This is not good.”4. Foster Kids Can Be Torn Between Worlds On Mother's DayRead this collection of stories of being or having foster mothers at NPR's Tell Me More.5. Letters to A Dying ChurchThis blog series explores the issues surrounding the decline of American Christianity. It asks the hard questions, offers suggestions, and sometimes just laments what cannot be controlled. Read the whole series of letters.6. The GOP Can't Ignore Climate ChangeJon Huntsman pens an op-ed for The New York Times decrying fellow Republicans' backtrack on climate change: "Last fall, 50 percent said there was solid evidence of rising temperatures on earth, according to the Pew Research Center. But that is down from 2006, when 59 percent of Republicans held that view. … So obtuse has become the party’s dialogue on climate change that it’s now been reduced to believing or not believing, as if it were a religious mantra."7. Austin's Utopian Homeless Village Is Becoming a RealityRent as low as $90. Permaculture food forest and gardens. Community space with movie screen. A stocked pond. Tiny houses built within 8 hours."The village just doesn’t feel like it’s a shelter for tragic people of some other class. It would be an incredibly lovely home for anyone, and many of the community’s principles are ones we could all use more of: living sustainably, and close to nature and animals, and spending time with those you love."8. Family Planning Through A Global Lens"In the developing world, access to tools for healthy timing and spacing of pregnancies can be a matter of life or death, for both the mother and the child. To women in these countries, the debates we have here would seem like a privilege."9. When Elite Parents Dominate Volunteers, Children LoseAn interesting problem for parents of school-aged kids: "It’s an inescapable fact that extracurricular activities, which increase student investment in school, are planned by parents who have ample time and money, who sometimes lack insight into the lives of students whose parents don’t."10. WATCH: Christian TingleIt's Friday. You need a laugh. "If it wasn't for the father, the son, and the Christian Tingle, I wouldn't have met the love of my life."
Posted by God's Politics Editor 12 weeks 6 days ago
"Grown men can learn from very little children for the hearts of the little children are pure. Therefore, the Great Spirit may show to them many things which older people miss." - Black Elk Black Elk + Sign up to receive our quote of the day via e-mail
Posted by God's Politics Editor 12 weeks 6 days ago
Then little children were being brought to him in order that he might lay his hands on them and pray. The disciples spoke sternly to those who brought them; but Jesus said, ‘Let the little children come to me, and do not stop them; for it is to such as these that the kingdom of heaven belongs.’ And he laid his hands on them and went on his way. - Matthew 19:13-15 + Sign up to receive our social justice verse of the day via e-mail
Posted by God's Politics Editor 12 weeks 6 days ago
God of eternal love, we know that Christ's glorious Resurrection is a testament to your unending love. Grant that we may look with hope to sharign in your heavenly glory, and see you face-to-face. Amen.
Posted by God's Politics Editor 13 weeks 18 hours ago
"We've chosen the path to equality, don't let them turn us around."  - Geraldine Ferraro Geraldine Ferraro + Sign up to receive our quote of the day via e-mail
Posted by God's Politics Editor 13 weeks 18 hours ago
Then after this [Jesus] said to the disciples, "Let us go to Judea again." The disciples said to him, "Rabbi, the Jews were just now trying to stone you, and are you going there again?" Jesus answered, "Are there not twelve hours of daylight? Those who walk during the day do not stumble, because they see the light of this world. But those who walk at night stumble, because the light is not in them." - John 11:7-10 + Sign up to receive our social justice verse of the day via e-mail
Posted by God's Politics Editor 13 weeks 18 hours ago
Lord, we pray we never find ourselves without hope, without a glimpse of the empty tomb each time we happen upon a cross. Help us begin our daily journey expecting both crosses and empty tombs and rejoicing when we encounter either because we know you are with us. Amen. - Adapted from Common Prayer: A Liturgy for Ordinary Radicals
Posted by God's Politics Editor 13 weeks 1 day ago
 “Treat the earth well: it was not given to you by your parents, it was loaned to you by your children. We do not inherit the Earth from our ancestors, we borrow it from our children.” - Native American Proverb Native American Proverb + Sign up to receive our quote of the day via e-mail
Posted by God's Politics Editor 13 weeks 1 day ago
Out of the depths I cry to you, O Lord. Lord, hear my voice! Let your ears be attentive to the voice of my supplications! If you, O Lord, should mark iniquities, Lord, who could stand? But there is forgiveness with you, so that you may be revered. - Psalm 130:1-4 + Sign up to receive our social justice verse of the day via e-mail
Posted by God's Politics Editor 13 weeks 1 day ago
O Great Spirit, grant that I may never find fault with my neighbor until I have walked the trail of life in his moccasins. Amen. - Cherokee Prayer
Posted by God's Politics Editor 13 weeks 4 days ago
 "It is justice, not charity, that is wanting in the world." - Mary Wollstonecraft Mary Wollstonecraft + Sign up to receive our quote of the day via e-mail
Posted by God's Politics Editor 13 weeks 4 days ago
Your steadfast love, O Lord, extends to the heavens, your faithfulness to the clouds. Your righteousness is like the mighty mountains, your judgments are like the great deep; you save humans and animals alike, O Lord. How precious is your steadfast love, O God! All people may take refuge in the shadow of your wings. They feast on the abundance of your house, and you give them drink from the river of your delights. For with you is the fountain of life; in your light we see light. - Psalm 36:5-9 + Sign up to receive our social justice verse of the day via e-mail
Posted by God's Politics Editor 13 weeks 4 days ago
God, source of new life, your Son broke the chains of death forever, as he rose powerfully to new and eternal life. Fill us with the joy of Resurrection, and the hope of that same Paschal miracle that made death itself the victim. Amen.
Posted by God's Politics Editor 13 weeks 4 days ago
1. How Some Christian Colleges Are Getting Around the Federal Laws That Help Address Campus Rape From the report: The Clery Act, which requires college campuses to collect and report incidents of sexual assault on campus, does not apply to colleges that do not receive certain types of federal funding. What does that mean for victims on those campuses?2. WATCH: Jon Stewart Call Out Media Sexism in 'The Broads Must Be Crazy' Jon Stewart highlights the double-standard treatment given to female politicians in the media, referring specifically to Hillary Clinton's latest role: grandmother — like no other politician in the history of ever has had children who have then had children. Related: "How to Be Less Stupid About Hillary Clinton's Future Grandchild"3. Evangelical Climate Scientist Katharine Hayhoe Named One of Time's Most Influential People Written by actor Don Cheadle, who joined Hayhoe in the Showtime film "Years of Living Dangerously: "It’s hard to be a good steward of the planet if you don’t accept the hard science behind what’s harming it, and it can be just as hard to take action to protect our world if you don’t love it as the rare gift it is."4. WATCH: 'Unsung Hero' Thai Video Will Make Your Friday "What does he get in return for doing this every day? He gets nothing. … What he does receive are emotions. … Receives what money can't buy and a world made more beautiful."5. For the Children's Sake, Put Down the Smartphone "We are behaving in ways that certainly tell children they don't matter, they're not interesting to us, they're not as compelling as anybody, anything, any ping that may interrupt our time with them."6. Why South Sudan May Face the World's Worst Famine in Quarter Century "The coming weeks could determine whether tens of thousands will die."7. How Mississippi Businesses Are Fighting a New Anti-LGBT Discrimination Law "Working with the LGBT rights group Equality Mississippi, Moore and other business owners designed stickers that say, 'We Don’t Discriminate: If You're Buying, We're Selling.'"8. Cedarville University Shuts Down Dissenting Student Newspaper Rachel Marie Stone reports on the latest in a string of conservative moves at the Ohio Christian college that has included restricting Bible classes taught by women to only female students.9. John Boehner Mocks GOP on Immigration Boehner: "We get elected to make choices. We get elected to solve problems and it's remarkable to me how many of my colleagues just don't want to. ... They'll take the path of least resistance."10. Root of CAR Conflict Is a Legacy of Poverty, Not Religious Warfare "[Enough Project's Kasper] Agger said the Séléka rebellion was sparked initially by poverty and lack of development in the northern part of the country. If the conflict is seen in religious terms, rather than as having its roots in poverty, he said, the frustrations of the Séléka will remain."
Posted by God's Politics Editor 13 weeks 5 days ago
"Easter says you can put truth in a grave, but it won't stay there." - Clarence W. Hall Clarence W. Hall + Sign up to receive our quote of the day via e-mail
Posted by God's Politics Editor 13 weeks 5 days ago
Jesus said to [Martha], "I am the resurrection and the life. Those who believe in me, even though they die, will live, and everyone who lives and believes in me will never die. Do you believe this?" She said to him, "Yes, Lord, I believe that you are the Messiah, the Son of God, the one coming into the world." - John 11:25-27 + Sign up to receive our social justice verse of the day via e-mail
Posted by God's Politics Editor 13 weeks 5 days ago
Transcendent God, you are the ground of our being and give life to all the world. Thank you for this divine love that undergirds the faith we strive to live with you, as revealed to us in Christ. We pray for openness to your grace and that we may see concrete signs of God's loving presence in our lives. Amen.
Posted by God's Politics Editor 13 weeks 6 days ago
“Easter is the demonstration of God that life is essentially spiritual and timeless.” - Charles Crowe Charles Crowe + Sign up to receive our quote of the day via e-mail
Posted by God's Politics Editor 13 weeks 6 days ago
On this mountain the Lord of hosts will make for all peoples a feast of rich food, a feast of well-aged wines, of rich food filled with marrow, of well-aged wines strained clear. And [God] will destroy on this mountain the shroud that is cast over all peoples, the sheet that is spread over all nations; [God] will swallow up death forever. Then the Lord God will wipe away the tears from all faces, and the disgrace of [God's] people [God] will take away from all the earth, for the Lord has spoken. - Isaiah 25:6-8 + Sign up to receive our social justice verse of the day via e-mail
Posted by God's Politics Editor 13 weeks 6 days ago
Lord, we long to be your people in this world where other powers claim our allegiance. You have stamped your image on us. Guide us by your light that we might see clearly who we are and what it means to give ourselves to you. Amen. - Adapted from Common Prayer: A Liturgy for Ordinary Radicals
Posted by God's Politics Editor 14 weeks 18 hours ago
"The joyful news that He is risen does not change the contemporary world. Still before us lie work, discipline, sacrifice. But the fact of Easter gives us the spiritual power to do the work, accept the discipline, and make the sacrifice." - Henry Knox Sherrill Henry Knox Sherrill + Sign up to receive our quote of the day via e-mail
Posted by God's Politics Editor 14 weeks 18 hours ago
Clean out the old yeast so that you may be a new batch, as you really are unleavened. For our paschal lamb, Christ, has been sacrificed. Therefore, let us celebrate the festival, not with the old yeast, the yeast of malice and evil, but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth. - 1 Corinthians 5:7-8 + Sign up to receive our social justice verse of the day via e-mail
Posted by God's Politics Editor 14 weeks 18 hours ago
God of life, the Resurrection of your Son is our greatest consolation, and our truest source of joy. Let this mystery imbue our lives, as we perceive signs of your life-giving grace everywhere we turn. Amen.
Posted by God's Politics Editor 14 weeks 18 hours ago
"The joyful news that He is risen does not change the contemporary world. Still before us lie work, discipline, sacrifice. But the fact of Easter gives us the spiritual power to do the work, accept the discipline, and make the sacrifice." - Henry Knox Sherrill Henry Knox Sherrill + Sign up to receive our quote of the day via e-mail
Posted by God's Politics Editor 14 weeks 18 hours ago
Clean out the old yeast so that you may be a new batch, as you really are unleavened. For our paschal lamb, Christ, has been sacrificed. Therefore, let us celebrate the festival, not with the old yeast, the yeast of malice and evil, but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth. - 1 Corinthians 5:7-8 + Sign up to receive our social justice verse of the day via e-mail
Posted by God's Politics Editor 14 weeks 18 hours ago
God of life, the Resurrection of your Son is our greatest consolation, and our truest source of joy. Let this mystery imbue our lives, as we perceive signs of your life-giving grace everywhere we turn. Amen.
Posted by God's Politics Editor 14 weeks 1 day ago
Posted by God's Politics Editor 14 weeks 1 day ago
Posted by God's Politics Editor 14 weeks 1 day ago
God of all wisdom, in our life of faith, we see you dimly but continue to hope for the clear vision of your face in your eternal presence. illuminate our path to you, as we strive to follow in the footsteps of your risen Son. Amen.
Posted by God's Politics Editor 14 weeks 4 days ago
"The answer to injustice is not to silence the critic but to end the injustice." - Paul Robeson Paul Robeson + Sign up to receive our quote of the day via e-mail
Posted by God's Politics Editor 14 weeks 4 days ago
O Lord, I am your servant; I am your servant, the child of your serving girl. You have loosed my bonds. I will offer to you a thanksgiving sacrifice and call on the name of the Lord. I will pay my vows to the Lord in the presence of all [God's] people, in the courts of the house of the Lord, in your midst, O Jerusalem. Praise the Lord! - Psalm 116:16-19 + Sign up to receive our social justice verse of the day via e-mail
Posted by God's Politics Editor 14 weeks 4 days ago
Sovereign God, you so loved the world that you gave your Son to die on the Cross and bring us to eternal life. Forgive us our blindness in sin, and help us always to be conscious of this wondrous love, as we seek to imitate Jesus and praise him as our heavenly King. Amen.
Posted by God's Politics Editor 14 weeks 4 days ago
Editor's Note: As we head into the weekend with eyes toward the resurrection, we must first journey through the darkness of Good Friday. Here are some reflections to help you reflect on that journey. 1. Simply Service "Jesus is The Servant of Servants. If we wish to be like Jesus, we cannot forget this.There is no empire building. There is no entrepreneurial vision. There is no institution keeping. There is simply service."2. Lent Hymn "For in this desert silence And dark night of the soul I am rooting you deeper I am making you whole"3. How Does Dying for Our Sins Work? "The cross is not what God inflicts upon Christ in order to forgive. The cross is what God endures in Christ as he forgives. Once we understand this, we know what we are seeing when we look at the cross: We are seeing the lengths to which a God of love will go in forgiving sin."4. The Five Lessons of Good Friday "The sufferings and death of Jesus, which Christians commemorate on Good Friday, may seem far removed from our everyday lives. … So what can the story of Jesus's crucifixion, as recorded in the Gospels almost 2,000 years ago, teach us about our own lives?"5. Good Friday and the Prophets in Detention "'Holy Week is a special time for us…' Ruth told me in her detention robe. 'Jesus’ passion gives us perspective to see that our situation is nothing compared to what Jesus suffered on the Cross. His journey encourages us to keep going.'"6. Five Errors to Drop from Your Easter Story Number 4: "Don't bypass the role of the women as the witnesses of the resurrected Christ."7. Easy Easter Girl "For people to whom life has been hard, there is a form of solace in praying to a God who does not look spotless, shining like the sun. For many, love is the very wounds of Christ, the greenish-purple skin tones, the bruised and battered life. By his wounds we are healed, the scriptures say. I didn’t realize another way to read it is like this: only the wounded can truly experience a savior."8. The Enthralling Art of Easter "… the agony and Crucifixion and Resurrection are no footnote. They are the bedrock we deal with. It's not hard to see why Bob Dylan became enthralled with the Christ story. It's not hard to see how people who stare too long at Titians can end up in monasteries."9. The Risen Christ: The Call to Conversion " For so many of us, Easter is not just a religious holiday — it is a personal celebration and re-commitment. How do we personally experience the resurrection? Every year, as I hear and say “He is risen,” I remember that it’s not just a theological affirmation, but something I need personally."10. 
Posted by God's Politics Editor 14 weeks 5 days ago
"A fresh critical look is being taken at the issues of power and authority, and people are beginning to learn, however haltingly, to relate to one another in less coercive and more creatively supporting ways." - Robert Greenleaf Robert Greenleaf + Sign up to receive our quote of the day via e-mail
Posted by God's Politics Editor 14 weeks 5 days ago
After [Jesus] had washed their feet, had put on his robe, and had returned to the table, he said to them, "Do you know what I have done to you? You call me Teacher and Lord — and you are right, for that is what I am. So if I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another's feet. For I have set you an example, that you also should do as I have done to you. Very truly, I tell you, servants are not greater than their master, nor are messengers greater than the one who sent them." - John 13:12-16 + Sign up to receive our social justice verse of the day via e-mail
Posted by God's Politics Editor 14 weeks 5 days ago
God of care and compassion, your Son humbled himself out of love to bring us closer to you. May we strive to follow his example of servant leadership as we try to bring others to a greater knowledge of your love. Grant this to us through your Son, our master and teacher. Amen.
Posted by God's Politics Editor 14 weeks 6 days ago
"A genuine fast cleanses body, mind and soul. It crucifies the flesh and to that extent sets the soul free. A sincere prayer can work wonders." - Mahatma Gandhi - Mahatma Gandhi + Sign up to receive our quote of the day via e-mail
Posted by God's Politics Editor 14 weeks 6 days ago
Jesus answered, "Very truly, I tell you, no one can enter the kingdom of God without being born of water and Spirit. What is born of the flesh is flesh, and what is born of the Spirit is spirit. Do not be astonished that I said to you, 'You must be born from above.' The wind blows where it chooses, and you hear the sound of it, but you do not know where it comes from or where it goes. So it is with everyone who is born of the Spirit." - John 3:5-8 + Sign up to receive our social justice verse of the day via e-mail
Posted by God's Politics Editor 14 weeks 6 days ago
Almighty God, preserve us from losing sight of eternal salvation. Grant that we turn from our earthly accomplishments to give you praise and glory in our daily lives. May the love of God and salvation of Jesus Christ remain our ultimate value. Amen.
Posted by God's Politics Editor 15 weeks 18 hours ago
“God has identified himself with the hungry, the sick, the naked, the homeless; hunger not only for bread, but for love, for care, to be somebody to someone; nakedness, not for clothing only, but nakedness of that compassion that very few people give to the unknown; homelessness, not only just for a shelter made from stone but for that homelessness that comes from having no one to call your own.” - Mother Teresa Mother Teresa of Calcutta + Sign up to receive our quote of the day via e-mail