The Common Good

Results for Life and Peace

This Is Jesus, in His Glory
Originally Posted: 12/05/2014 - 1:33pm | Type: Blog

"This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.” Luke 2:12 As the people walked into the sanctuary, the worship team behind us started to sing. “This is Jesus, ...

Will Faith Stay Safe or Stand Tall?
Originally Posted: 12/03/2014 - 11:50am | Type: Blog

If faith couldn’t address the dark sides, then it was just ritualized nostalgia. It was an in-crowd affirming itself; it was nice people gathering for pleasing ceremonies and making no discernible difference i ...

What Ever Happened to Rob Bell, the Pastor Who Questioned the Gates of Hell?
Originally Posted: 12/02/2014 - 2:53pm | Type: Blog

In 2011, his book “Love Wins” pushed the evangelical envelope on the nature of heaven, hell, and salvation. Many dismissed him as a modern-day heretic, unwilling to embrace traditional evangelicals beliefs abo ...

Pope Francis Joins Other Faith Leaders to Demand an End to Human Trafficking
Originally Posted: 12/02/2014 - 2:18pm | Type: Blog

“Modern slavery … fails to respect the fundamental conviction that all people are equal and have the same freedom and dignity,“ the joint statement said. Pope Francis and religio ...

Out of the Silence
Originally Posted: 12/02/2014 - 6:04pm | Type: Blog

One summer my cousin Betty and I sneaked through the barbed-wire fence of a neighbor’s orchard and ate so many wild plums right off the tree that we almost made ourselves sick. Betty was 13 and I was 9, and I ...

Online Troll or Therapist? Atheist Evangelists See Their Work as a Calling
Originally Posted: 12/02/2014 - 3:21pm | Type: Blog

Max is not alone in classifying his online commenting as more benevolent than belittling. Several atheist super-commenters mentioned a concern for others as motivation for spending up to 10 hours a day arguing ...

Waiting for Heaven
Originally Posted: 12/02/2014 - 10:56am | Type: Blog

But wait! What if we‘ve got it backward? To revisit that waiting-goes-both-ways thing: Instead of us waiting on God, what if God is waiting on us? John Dominic Crossan poses that question in his book The Pow ...

Finding The Perfect Gift
Originally Posted: 12/01/2014 - 4:56pm | Type: Blog

Like a lot of people, I love giving presents almost as much as receiving them. And the best gifts of all are ones that come with a clear understanding of the recipient in mind — ones that involve thought and c ...

A Season of Hope
Originally Posted: 12/01/2014 - 4:39pm | Type: Blog

With all of this pain and heartache in the world, I often find myself asking, “Where is the hope?” “For in hope we were saved. Now hope that is seen is not hope. For who hopes ...

Pope Francis Makes Overtures to Orthodox and Muslims
Originally Posted: 12/01/2014 - 4:55pm | Type: Blog

Never mind that Turkey is overwhelmingly Muslim. The most enduring image of Pope Francis’ three-day visit to Turkey was the moment when he bowed his head and asked for the blessing of the leader of Eastern Ort ...

'Peace, Peace.' But For Whom?
Originally Posted: 12/09/2014 - 10:05am | Type: Blog

Wherever peace is elusive, the first ones to suffer are the vulnerable. When I was living in China, taxis were a convenient and cheap mode of transportation. One time, our taxi ...

Noel Paul Stookey and Peter Yarrow: 50 Years of Song in 'Love of Community'
Originally Posted: 11/26/2014 - 6:11pm | Type: Blog

A just-released album, DISCOVERED: Live in Concert, includes 12 live songs never before heard on their albums. And on Dec. 1 (check local listings), PBS will air 50 Years with Peter, Paul and Mary — a new docu ...

Pope Francis Urges Europeans to Reject ‘Throwaway Culture’
Originally Posted: 11/25/2014 - 3:16pm | Type: Blog

The 77-year-old pontiff is well-known for his attacks on consumerism and for his compassion for the poor. More recently, Francis has turned his attention to bioethics issues, describing abortion, embryonic ste ...

A Homeless Man and A Candy Cane
Originally Posted: 11/25/2014 - 1:11pm | Type: Blog

James was playing cards with several other nursing home residents in a room that doubles as their dining area. The “stakes” for their game was a stash of candy from a Christmas party earlier in the day. He saw ...

November Sings the Blues
Originally Posted: 12/01/2014 - 2:51pm | Type: Blog

Late November is Vitamin D season. The dregs of the year threaten to swamp the spirit, clinging to each rough edge of the soul, and frequent shots of sunshine and warm coziness are needed just to keep the deep ...

Report: Solutions to Hunger, Poverty Must Focus on Empowering Women
Originally Posted: 11/24/2014 - 12:49pm | Type: Blog

This morning, Bread for the World, released the 2015 Hunger Report, When Women Flourish, We Can End Hunger. The comprehensive analysis focuses on the imperative role the empowerment of women and girls plays in ...

Obama Extends U.S. Combat Role in Afghanistan
Originally Posted: 11/24/2014 - 12:39pm | Type: Blog

News agencies reported Saturday morning that weeks ago President Obama signed an order, kept secret until now, to authorize continuation of U.S. military operations in Afghanistan for at least another year. ...

It's Time Again: Depression and the Holidays
Originally Posted: 11/24/2014 - 11:35am | Type: Blog

. We don’t want anybody to say, “You’ll get over it,” or “Other people have many more reasons to be depressed than you.” So on top of feeling depressed, we feel guilty about being depressed. The prophet Isaia ...

What Families Want — And How the Church Can Help
Originally Posted: 11/21/2014 - 12:43pm | Type: Blog

Churches have spent millions attempting to cater to the needs of the young families in their communities. "Come here! Bring your kids! We have a replica-sized Noah's Ark with real, live animals — a ...

Ten Commandments for Atheists: A Guide for Nonbelievers Who Want to Explore Their Values
Originally Posted: 11/20/2014 - 5:20pm | Type: Blog

“There are lots of books out there about why you should not believe in God,” Bayer said. “But there aren’t any about what do secular people believe in. I think that’s the question John and I felt hadn’t been a ...

Cardinal O’Malley Urges Church to Embrace Hierarchical Accountability
Originally Posted: 11/20/2014 - 4:48pm | Type: Blog

Following up on remarks to “60 Minutes” about the clergy sex abuse crisis and other controversial topics, Boston Cardinal Sean O’Malley has stressed that the Catholic Church needs a system to hold bishops acco ...

Pope Francis Laments 'Market Priorities' in Struggle Against Hunger
Originally Posted: 11/20/2014 - 4:36pm | Type: Blog

“It is also painful to see that the struggle against hunger and malnutrition is hindered by ‘market priorities,’” the pope said. Market speculation and pursuit of profits are hin ...

Faith Groups Take a Stand for Global Education
Originally Posted: 01/16/2015 - 5:46pm | Type: Blog

People of faith can play an important role in helping each child of God realize his/her potential. I remember the day my mother stopped helping me with my homework. I was in m ...

Central African Republic Faith Leaders Wage Holy Peace
Originally Posted: 11/20/2014 - 3:50pm | Type: Blog

“When politicians wanted to use the religious fibers to divide the people, whether to maintain power or to conquer it, we stood up as if we were a single man to say ‘non’ to this war and ‘yes’ to peace.” ...

Brittany Maynard Advocates from the Grave
Originally Posted: 11/20/2014 - 11:38am | Type: Blog

In the video, Maynard concludes: “If there’s one message to come away from everything that I’ve been through, it is no matter what life kind of presents you with, is never be afraid to use your own voice. And ...

Five Reasons Why We Want to Believe Jesus Was Married
Originally Posted: 11/20/2014 - 5:21pm | Type: Blog

And so it continues today, as modern Christians see Jesus as a successful businessman, a proto-Marxist, a political zealot, a vegetarian, or maybe a gay man. Or, more commonly, married with children — an Ozzie ...

Faith Leaders Join Consumer Advocates to Push for Lower Payday Loan Rates
Originally Posted: 11/20/2014 - 11:28am | Type: Blog

Dozens of faith leaders and consumer advocates are pressing Congress to create a national interest rate cap for payday lenders instead of the exorbitant three-digit rates currently charged to people in several ...

Shooting at Florida State University
Originally Posted: 11/20/2014 - 11:48am | Type: Blog

Early Thursday morning a gunman opened fire in a library at Florida State University, wounding three students before being fatally shot by police officers. Wielding a handgun, the shooter entered the library a ...

An Advent-Shaped Faith
Originally Posted: 11/20/2014 - 11:49am | Type: Blog

The high liturgical seasons of Advent and Lent have always held a special place in my heart because of their emphasis on the life, death, and resurrection of Christ. But Advent has special significance because ...

Pope Francis' Visit to Philadelphia Won't Focus on Hot-Button Sex Issues
Originally Posted: 11/19/2014 - 2:40pm | Type: Blog

the elderly and the disabled. On Nov. 17, Francis  confirmed that he would attend the event  on his first ...

An Interview with Elaina Ramsey, Sojourners' Women and Girls Campaign Associate
Originally Posted: 11/21/2014 - 10:19am | Type: Blog

Meet Sojourners' Women and Girls Campaign Associate, Elaina Ramsey Thanks to the support of our donors, activists, and subscribers, we are pleased to announce that we have hi ...

Can Commerce and Religion Go Their Separate Ways This Christmas?
Originally Posted: 11/19/2014 - 12:58pm | Type: Blog

Maybe it’s good that commerce has declared its independence from religion and decorum. That clears the way for faith to have its parallel season — not in competition with commerce, but as the deeper reality th ...

Richard Dawkins Stands by Offensive Remarks
Originally Posted: 11/19/2014 - 10:46am | Type: Blog

As the world’s most famous atheist, Richard Dawkins is no stranger to criticism from religious believers. As the world’s most famous atheist, Richard Dawkins is no stranger to cr ...

Why Are Religious Survey Results So Confusing?
Originally Posted: 11/18/2014 - 3:46pm | Type: Blog

Reading religion surveys can seem like confronting the Tower of Babel: stacked questions, confusing terms, unscientific methodology. It gets even crazier when results are contradictory. How does that happen? ...

Sexual Revolution Is Destroying Families, Russell Moore Tells Vatican Conference
Originally Posted: 11/18/2014 - 4:20pm | Type: Blog

Prominent U.S. evangelicals Russell Moore and Rick Warren blasted the sexual revolution at a Vatican conference Nov. 18 and said it is destroying the institution of marriage. Prom ...

Why Peter Kassig Was the Islamic State’s Greatest Threat
Originally Posted: 11/18/2014 - 4:20pm | Type: Blog

Abdul-Rahman Kassig, as he called himself after a conversion to Islam, was the greatest threat the Islamic State faced. He provided relief and comfort to those in need. He practiced mercy and compassion, and i ...

Four Killed in Jerusalem Synagogue Terror Attack
Originally Posted: 11/18/2014 - 2:49pm | Type: Blog

At least four worshipers, three of them U.S.-born, were killed in an attack on a west Jerusalem synagogue Nov. 18 by two Palestinians wielding a gun, an ax, and a meat cleaver, police said. ...

5 Simple Living Tips for Millennial Christians
Originally Posted: 12/01/2014 - 12:11pm | Type: Blog

It’s been said that one of the greatest tricks devil ever played was convincing most of the world he doesn’t exist. His greatest encore might be wrapping up vice in the midst of a big ball of virtue and lettin ...

Sojo Stories: OVERRATED
Originally Posted: 11/26/2014 - 5:28pm | Type: Blog

When justice and changemaking are buzzwords, how do we embrace the long challenge of bettering the world while remaining humble about our place in it? Eugene Cho is overrated. ...

Church of England Formally Approves Women Bishops
Originally Posted: 11/17/2014 - 4:19pm | Type: Blog

woman bishop by year’s end or at the start of 2015. On Nov. 17, the church’s two most senior leaders, ...

Jon Stewart's 'Rosewater' a Needed Depiction of Torture
Originally Posted: 11/17/2014 - 3:07pm | Type: Blog

While there are scenes of physical torture onscreen, the film doesn’t show them in graphic detail — to the point where it almost feels that Stewart isn’t going as deep with the subject matter as he could have. ...

'You Are a Human Being'
Originally Posted: 11/17/2014 - 12:56pm | Type: Blog

The ways we reach out to God should be happy endeavors, but these ways can become bones of contention, especially if they’re deemed to be special or exclusive paths to God. I beli ...

The Underside of Thanksgiving
Originally Posted: 11/17/2014 - 11:29am | Type: Blog

blessings bestowed upon us.  This tradition goes back to the 17 th  century when the New England ... and the socially marginalized simultaneously endure the pain of inequality and social misery just like the 17 th ...

A New Hymn-Prayer for Donor Sabbath
Originally Posted: 11/14/2014 - 2:53pm | Type: Blog

Local churches that support Sojourners and/or promoting organ donation have permission for free use of this hymn. From the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services : ...

The Oracle of Certainty: From Ancient Athens to ISIS
Originally Posted: 11/14/2014 - 2:39pm | Type: Blog

Though we no longer sacrifice to the gods or consult Oracles, I am afraid that we are still victim to the curse of knowing the end of things. I’m talking about the sense of inevitability that comes from politi ...

In Wake of Ferguson, a Bid to Make St. Louis a More ‘Compassionate’ City
Originally Posted: 11/14/2014 - 10:23am | Type: Blog

“We see this as a vital step to help heal the unconscious and conscious racism that infects this country,” Streeter said. “Laws do not change hearts and minds. We see this as having a direct social impact.” ...

A Christian Should Lead Christians
Originally Posted: 11/13/2014 - 5:06pm | Type: Blog

Not surprisingly, the situation has become one of the latest talking points for Christians invested in the grievance industrial complex. The difference between this and much of the other ax-grinding is that in ...

Catholic Church Losing Ground in Latin America
Originally Posted: 11/13/2014 - 2:14pm | Type: Blog

In just one generation, Latin America has seen the number of people who identify themselves as Catholic plummet, with more people becoming Protestant or dropping religion altogether, a new report shows. ...

Hashtag Activists Battle Online Anti-Muslim Speech, but #DoesItWork?
Originally Posted: 11/13/2014 - 2:00pm | Type: Blog

“Not a lot of Americans know Muslims as friends and neighbors, so their understanding of Islam and Muslims is shaped by negative views. That gives a very distorted impression,” Perez said. “To help people have ...

Should Pope Francis Visit Turkey’s Extravagant Presidential Palace?
Originally Posted: 11/12/2014 - 6:09pm | Type: Blog

which they claim has cut the size of the neighboring forest to 17 acres. “We have taken the fight ...