Weekly Wrap 11.22.13: The 10 Best Stories You Missed This Week
1. 805 Speakers, 159 Women
Jonathan Merritt’s informal study of prominent evangelical conferences found that only 19 percent of speakers at plenary sessions were women led to a lot of buzz in the Christian world. Check out which conferences he looked at.
2. But Americans Don’t Have to Wait for Health Care ... Do We?
The Commonwealth Fund’s annual report on health care in 14 developed countries shows that America spends 50 percent more per capita than does Norway, the next-most-expensive nation. Yet, if you’re sick and need a same-day or next-day appointment, you’re more likely to get it in seven other countries.
3. Zombies 101? Colleges Offer Courses on the Undead
Monmouth University in New Jersey is the latest school to offer a course on the growing zombie phenomenon. "Zombies: Social Anxiety & Pop Culture" was among the first courses to fill up when students at the private university in West Long Branch registered for fall classes. But studying zombies also involves some serious scholarship, said Edward González-Tennant, the professor of the class.
4. Catholicism Gets Funny
Catholic humor is spreading — from Stephen Colbert and other comedians to Eye of the Tiber, the Catholic version of The Onion.
5. Charlotte Churches Get Cameos in ‘Homeland’
Ever wondered where some of the Middle Eastern scenes featured in Showtime’s Homeland really took place? Blogger Tim Funk tells about a few churches in Charlotte, N.C., used as film sets.
6. Santorum to GOP: You Can Learn Something From Francis
Rick Santorum, the former senator who ran for president, believes that Republicans should look to Pope Francis as a model for maintaining beliefs while agreeing to talk about common ground.
7. Vancouver’s Banning Doorknobs
Vancouver, Canada, is phasing out traditional round doorknobs in favor of easier-to-grasp levers in a nod to its aging population. Perhaps, it’s also a nod to the commandment to honor thy mother and father?
8. Restless America
Using 2012 census data, analyst Chris Walker gives an interactive kaleidoscope look at migration patterns in the United States.
9. Racial Preferences and Online Dating
Data from the Facebook dating app, Are You Interested?, finds, in a surprise twist, that all racial groups prefer another race over their own.
10. Preachers, Snakes and Salvation — Oh, My!
A Tennessee pastor pleads not guilty to keeping dozens of poisonous snakes that he and his parishioners touch during services. "This ain’t no longer just a fight for snake handling," Andrew Hamblin, pastor of the Tabernacle Church of God in LaFollette and a star of National Geographic’sSnake Salvation, said. "This is a fight for freedom of religion."